Ada Louise Huxtable Biography

Ada Louise Huxtable was the first to win Pulitzer Prize for Criticism and a critic for The Wall Street Journal. Read about the profile, childhood, life and timeline in this biography below.

Ada Louise Huxtable

Quick Facts

Gender: Female
Birthday: 14 March 1921
Died: 07 January 2013
Nationality: American
Sun Sign: Pisces
Education: Hunter College, New York University
Awards: John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, MacArthur Fellows Program, Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Ada Louise Huxtable is an architecture critic at The Wall Street Journal and is also a prolific writer. Some of her selected works are ‘Will They Ever Finish Bruckner Boulevard?’ and ‘Kicked a Building Lately?’. She has also written over ten books in architecture and a biography on Frank Lloyd Wright. Ada Louise Huxtable was born as Ada Louis Landman on March 14, 1921. It appears that Huxtable was very clear of the career she wanted to choose from a very young age. Since she was born in a posh locality in New York, her love for the urban life and tall buildings inspired her build a career related to architecture. She attended Hunter College and majored in art and architecture. She landed her first job as a furniture display assistant before falling in love with Garth Huxtable and marrying him. Under strenuous financial conditions, the duo made and sold 140 tableware items for restaurants in New York for a living. Huxtable continued to study at the Institute of Fine Arts and got a job as curator at the New York Museum. In her spare time, she would often contribute her views as contributing editor to ‘Progressive Architecture and Art in America’ and was finally named the first architecture critic by the New York Times. She then started writing for Newsweek and the Times. It is believed that some of the heavyweights of the architecture, political and the film industry would also duck from her sight so that they would not be targeted in the weekly columns of The Wall Street Journal with her upfront criticism. Huxtable’s best columns of the 60’s were compiled and put into a book called ‘Will They Ever Finish Bruckner Boulevard?’. Towards the latter part of her life, Huxtable received a major award that would change her career forever. She received a $200,000 cash award from the MacArthur Foundation fellowship, which was designed for creative individuals who pursued their dreams, unencumbered by financial concerns. At the turn of the century, Huxtable served as jury for the ‘Annual Pritzker Architecture Prize’ and continued to write intense columns for The Wall Street Journal. In 2004, she wrote and published Frank Lloyd Wright’s biography, which became a national best-seller. She now lives in an Apartment on Park Avenue in Manhattan and continues to rule in the field of architecture criticism and American column writing.

Major Works

‘Frank Lloyd Wright: A Life’
‘The Unreal America: Architecture and Illusion’
‘Kicked A Building Lately?’
‘Architecture, Anyone? Cautionary Tales of the Building Art’
‘Goodbye History, Hello Hamburger: An Anthology of Architectural Delights and Disasters’.
‘On Architecture: Collected Reflections on a Century of Change’

Awards And Achievements

Ada Louise Huxtable was awarded the Pulitzer prize for Criticism in 1969.
She was named the first architecture critic by the New York Times.
Huxtable received grants from the Graham Foundation for numerous projects.
She has authored over ten best-selling architectural publications.

Media Representations

Paul Goldberger gave a popular speech for ‘The New Yorker’ on Huxtable’s achievements and life, titled, ‘A tribute to Ada Louise Huxtable’ for the press. This became of the well-known speeches during the early 20th century.


It is said that some of the most influential faces in business, medicine, politics and cinema have ‘ducked’ under the table with Ada Louise Huxtable’s comments. Such is her fiery, upfront criticism. Although she is a woman with strong opinions, Ada Louise Huxtable was the first architectural critic and is still considered one of the best ever seen, that changed the course of architecture forever.


1921: Ada Louise Huxtable was born in New York on March 14th.
1941: She received at A.B. from Hunter College, CUNY.
1946: Huxtable served as Curatorial Assistant for architecture and design at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
1950-1963: She was a contributing editor of the ‘Progressive Architecture and Art in America’.
1963-1982: She was named the first architectural critic in America and worked with The New York Times.
2004: She wrote a biography on Frank Lloyd Wright.

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Ada Louise Huxtable Biography

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Last Updated

June 11, 2019

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