Bruce Mau, Robert Hammond, David Bragdon: Three Compelling Interviews

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Bruce Mau, Robert Hammond, and David Bragdon are each leaders in thinking about the city and how it can change. We present links to three recent interviews with them here:

Bruce Mau is a legendary designer who has been steadily thinking about the future. In a remarkable interview with the Pratt design journal Catalyst (h/t Lisa Overton), Mau discusses the role of design in creating the good life:

“We need to think about…having more of an experience and less of an impact.”

Read more in Catalyst.


Robert Hammond is Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director of Friends of the High Line, the non-profit conservancy that manages the High Line. In a wide-ranging interview with the journal of landscape design, The Dirt, Hammond describes two important factors that helped the initially radical concept of the High Line gain support:

“…It was an asset that neither Josh nor I was an architect, landscape architect, or city planner. It forced us to basically go to other people for help. Talking to people who are interested in starting their own kind of project, that’s always the point I try to make: The most important thing that they can do is just start something. That enables other people to come along and help them get it done.

[and on the importance of using visuals to explain what you’re doing]

..I realized the most effective way to bring people on board was to show them [Joel Sternfeld’s] photographs, talking less and taking more time for people to experience the High Line through the photographs. The images really made the case for the project.”

Read Hammond’s interview in The Dirt


David Bragdon, Director of Long Term Planning and Sustainability for the City of New York, talks about the importance of big visions and small actors in his native NYC, and moving beyond regulatory convention to promote the common good.

“I think that one recipe for change is to unleash a lot of individual as well as collective random genius and innovation.”

Read more thoughts from David Bragdon on

Photo of Bruce Mau: Dave Gillespie; Photo of Robert Hammond: Annie Schlechter