Today’s News - Monday, August 11, 2008
• ArcSpace brings us Gehry’s Serpentine, a coffee bar in Ireland, and a tome on Olympic architecture...speaking of which...
• Hawthorne’s last Olympic installment takes on Beijing’s smog and buildings designed with pollution in mind (+ links to his series should you have missed any).
• Kennicott ponders "given the billions spent...why are the Beijing Olympics so ugly?"
• Dyckhoff finds CCTV HQ "the most significant building of the century so far...architecture will not be the same again, and nor will China."
• Kamin offers the first in a series on the skyscraper wars in Asia
• written 14 years ago, yet oh so timely. On a very different note: the Chinese architect who is part of the worldwide design effort to create "a phoenix to rise from the ashes" in earthquake-ravaged Sichuan province.
• Bernstein banters with Adrian Smith re: his towering success in the UAE.
• Heathcote has high praise for a mini-corporate city rising in Basel (where only Gehry "has produced a bit of a dog").
• In Rome, the controversy over how far it should go with contemporary architecture (Meier’s Ara Pacis as the poster child for the conflict).
• Architects challenge the quality of mushrooming Kampala buildings.
• Greer growls back at critics who accuse her of "not knowing my eco from my elbow."
• A new report finds pedestrian-friendly streets are good for retail and property values.
• King finds a new synagogue by Saitowitz "pushes the notion of neighborhood context to the breaking point," but its "architectural quality wins out."
• Crosbie minces no words about Disney’s "Innoventions Dream Home" (a.k.a. "Dream McMansion") - and another more deserving of attention.
• The battle heats up over Washington, DC’s Brutalist Christian Science church: "an eyesore or a work of genius, depending on who is discussing it."
• Auschwitz Museum seeks international help (including funds to change its permanent exhibition that’s been on view since 1955).
• A copyright infringement suit has a happy ending for the architect infringed upon.
• Karim Rashid dishes (and disses) New York.
• An eyeful of the 2008 International Illumination Design Awards winners.
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-- Frank Gehry: Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2008, London, UK
-- architecture53seven: Egan-s Coffee Bar & Roof terrace, Portlaoise, Ireland
-- Book: Olympic Architecture 2008, Introduction by Guoxin Ma
Architects take Beijing’s smog into account: Buildings are designed with pollution in mind. White is definitely out...in an odd twist, completed towers now look blurrier, somehow less fully formed, than the crisp computer renderings used to promote them before they’re built. By Christopher Hawthorne -- Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Paul Andreu; Koolhaas/Scheeren/OMA [links]- Los Angeles Times
Gold and Leaden: Amid China’s Dull Olympics Architecture, in a City More Gray Than Green, Two Imports Shine...Unfortunately...they have been placed in the midst of a plaza that demonstrates the default thinking of so much of Chinese urban design...given the billions spent...why are the Beijing Olympics so ugly? By Philip Kennicott -- Herzog & de Meuron; PTW; Hu Yue [images, videos, links]- Washington Post
CCTV, the new state television headquarters, will broadcast China’s rise: The stunning headquarters of Chinese television is the most significant building of the century so far...Its Orwellian looks and, indeed, function mean that this is no easy building to love. But you can-t deny its power...The genie is out of the bottle. Architecture will not be the same again, and nor will China. By Tom Dyckhoff -- Koolhaas/Scheeren/Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA); Cecil Balmond/Arup- The Times (UK)
Skyscraper wars, part one: Egos clash and cultures collide as Chicago architects reshape Asia’s skylines...To a certain extent, the clash over the Asian skyscrapers is simply a replay of the debate over the role of history in architecture that divided the design world in the 1980s. By Blair Kamin -- Adrian Smith; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Helmut Jahn/Murphy/Jahn- Chicago Tribune
Rebuilding from rack and ruin: One of the volunteers to Sichuan earthquake reconstruction is acclaimed architect Liu Jiakun who is part of the worldwide design effort to create "a phoenix to rise from the ashes"...hoping that he can contribute to a master plan, a brick at a time. -- Jiakun Design Studio- Shanghai Daily
Reaching for the Clouds in Dubai: Adrian Smith left his old firm because he wasn-t ready to retire. Now he and his new partners have a full docket in the United Arab Emirates...which he admits is "a lot of eggs in one basket." By Fred A. Bernstein -- Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM)- New York Times
The best of Basel: Novartis- mini-city taking shape on the banks of the Rhine proves that corporate design can be as radical, as engaging and as compelling as any of the grand arts buildings that populate...blue-sky backgrounds of coffee-table books. By Edwin Heathcote -- Peter Märkli; Adolf Krischanitz; Sejima & Nishizawa/SANAA; Frank Gehry; Vittorio Magnano Lampugnani; Herzog & de Meuron- Financial Times (UK)
Is Rome the eternal city or stuck in the past? Whether it survives or not, Richard Meier’s Ara Pacis has become a symbol of a fierce controversy over how far, if at all, the Eternal City should let contemporary architecture take its place alongside the Colosseum or Michelangelo’s dome. -- Renzo Piano; Zaha Hadid; Massimiliano Fuksas- Reuters
Architects challenge the quality of mushrooming Kampala buildings -- William Katatumba/Uganda Architectural Society- UGPulse (Uganda)
I’ve been accused of not knowing my eco from my elbow. But Brown’s green towns won’t work: Ecotowns will need innovative design to avoid being environmentally catastrophic and dysfunctional. By Germaine Greer- Guardian (UK)
New Report: Smart Streets Boost Foot-Traffic, Retail, Property Values: "Streets to Live By" compiles information gathered at cities across the country and around the world, on pedestrian zones, bike lanes, parks, street trees, transit access and parking... [link to report]- Transportation Alternatives
New synagogue livens up Richmond District: Congregation Beth Sholom...a strong modern design that pushes the notion of neighborhood context to the breaking point...Once the shock of the juxtaposition fades, the synagogue’s architectural quality wins out. By John King -- Stanley Saitowitz/Natoma Architects [images]- San Francisco Chronicle
Real House Of The Future Is No Disney Dream: "Innoventions Dream Home"...a 5,000-square-foot ...Dream McMansion...There’s another Dream Home out there. It hasn’t gotten a fraction of the attention lavished on Disneyland, but it offers a future that we might actually be able to live with...HUD "Concept Home"... By Michael J. Crosbie- Hartford Courant (Connecticut)
Christian Science church near the White House sues over landmark status: The building...is an eyesore or a work of genius, depending on who is discussing it. -- Araldo A. Cossutta/I.M. Pei & Partners (1971)- New York Times
Auschwitz, Site of Nazi Death Camp, Seeks International Funding: ...museum can’t afford to carry out urgent repair work...lacks the funds to change its permanent exhibition...which has not been replaced since it was first set up in 1955..."This has to be the oldest exhibition ever!"- Bloomberg News
1st Circuit Appeals Court Salvages Boston Firm’s Copyright Infringement Suit: ...appeals court ruled that the statute of limitations did not begin until the firm actually learned about the infringement... -- Warren Freedenfeld Associates (now Rauhaus Freedenfeld & Associates)- Architect Magazine
Kurve Designer Karim Rashid Thinks New York Has Some Catching Up to Do: Q&A re: other New York City restaurants; his favorite color, pink; and what he plans to do with the hidden cameras above his oddly shaped bar..."I thought the East Village was hip. Have all the punks retired?" [images]- New York Magazine
2008 International Illumination Design Awards (IIDA) winners -- Office for Visual Interaction (OVI); Horton Lees Brogden Lighting Design; ALD; Derek Porter Studio; Lighting Planners Associates; Douglas Welch Design Associates; etc. [link to images]- Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES)
WORDS THAT BUILD: Respecting Key Words as Materials for Building Durable Structures: Tip #5: Recognize the key vocabulary shaping your professional practice and share those keywords with your clients. By Norman Weinstein- ArchNewsNow
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