Today’s News - Monday, June 7, 2010
• ArcSpace brings us an amazing eyeful of Holl's Linked Hybrid in Beijing (courtesy of Baan).
• Speck rebuts Bruegmann's recent critique of "The Smart Growth Manual": "Reform means that you start with the processes and products that are currently in place and try to make them better" - it's "what keeps us in the fight."
• Gallagher offers 10 tips for downsizing Detroit (#1. Stop calling it "downsizing"; #7. Check Cleveland).
• Speaking of Cleveland, Litt lights up with just about every superlative in the thesaurus for Oberlin College's new Bertram and Judith Kohl Building for jazz: "a place of magic"; "a cascade of exciting sensations"; "brilliant use of materials"; "a magnificent investment" (need we say more).
• Why London's 2012 Olympics are more likely to be known as the "Almost Green Games."
• Lewis on why the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts' architecture review process is worth emulating: even if some of the work "is less than stellar," its "greatest legacy - not guaranteeing design excellence, but elevating design aspirations."
• Moore finds out what Zaha's MAXXI is like with art on the walls: "works do not, as some predicted, shrivel and die in the mighty volumes of Hadid's architecture."
• Kennicott waxes poetic on the very temporary opportunity to view Mies's Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in all its glory: the demolition of an adjacent church reveals "the monumental purity of Mies's vision."
• Revisiting Gehry's Experience Music Project 10 years later: "it's been a three-dimensional Rorschach test from day one...is it provocative-in-a-good-way strange or just too strange?" (great slide show, too).
• SOM's 1999 U.S. embassy in Ottawa opens its doors: "Reconciling accessibility with security was a challenge from the start."
• Filler fills pages and pages about the "spiritual origins and transcendental aspirations of the Bauhaus" and its "myriad works that can still astound us" (well worth your time).
• Geller x 2: he reports from the Shanghai World Expo, its "outstanding" international designs, and the many lessons it offers (great pix, too!).
• AIA and USGBC create Design Fellow for Haiti to work directly with community members on the ground in Architecture for Humanity's Rebuilding Center.
• D'Arcy wishes the Cooper-Hewitt's "decoratively-deprived" show "Why Design Now?" told its story with a little more style.
• A Zimbabwean anti-desertification project wins the 2010 Buckminster Fuller Challenge, offering an "incredible ecological transformation" with "far-ranging ramifications."
• AIA Seattle announces the 2010 What Makes It GREEN? Award winners.
• An eyeful of winning and runners-up designs for an all-titanium bridge in Akron (and optimism that financing will be found).
• Calls for entries: railLA: California High Speed Rail ideas competition; and GOOD DESIGN 2010 for the most innovative and cutting-edge industrial, product, and graphic designs.
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Steven Holl Architects: Linked Hybrid, Beijing, China; photos by Iwan Baan
Why They Hate Us: A New Urbanist dissects the movement’s critics: ...many projects that claim to be New Urbanism or Smart Growth are not...even if we look only at our own work...some of it falls short...Reform means that you start with the processes and products that are currently in place and try to make them better...is what keeps us in the fight. By Jeff Speck- Architect Magazine
10 tips for downsizing Detroit: 1. Stop calling it "downsizing."...3. Stop selling vacant land to speculators...6. Don't expect urban farming to solve all the problems...7. Check Cleveland. By John Gallagher- Detroit Free Press
Oberlin College scores big time with its new Bertram and Judith Kohl Building for jazz: ...a place of magic...one of the best new buildings in Northeast Ohio designed...in recent decades...shows that architects and clients in the Cleveland area are capable of truly great new things - and that local standards can always rise...one more reason to be optimistic about the future of the region. By Steven Litt -- Westlake Reed Leskosky; GroundView [images]- Cleveland Plain Dealer
Will the London Olympics Live Up to Its Green Ambitions? ...have scrapped or hedged on some aspect of their environmental goals, casting doubt on whether there's even such a thing as Green Games..."Having an Olympics is an inherently unsustainable thing to do"...Almost Green Games just doesn't have the same ring. -- Hopkins Architects; NORD; Zaha Hadid; Anish Kapoor [images, links]- Fast Company
U.S. Commission of Fine Arts achieves better architecture through review process: ...is worth emulating...even if in retrospect some of the work it has blessed is less than stellar. Perhaps this is the commission's greatest legacy - not guaranteeing design excellence, but elevating design aspirations. By Roger K. Lewis- Washington Post
Zaha Hadid's new Roman gallery joins the pantheon of the greats: The Maxxi gallery is a masterpiece fit to sit alongside Rome's ancient wonders – but what's it like with art on the walls?...works do not, as some predicted, shrivel and die in the mighty volumes of Hadid's architecture. The first impression is festive and celebratory...both architecture and art contribute to the experience. By Rowan Moore- Observer (UK)
Mies's modernist D.C. library building is getting a complementary companion: ...demolition of the adjacent church...has revealed the monumental purity of Mies's vision. But only temporarily. If you want to see it, get there fast. Already cement is flowing into the gaping pit. By Philip Kennicott -- Mies van der Rohe (1972); Tod Williams Billie Tsien; Cunningham Quill Architects- Washington Post
After 10 years, Experience Music Project is still perplexing: Everyone agrees that the rock museum's design is unique and its construction was a technical marvel, but there's little agreement about whether it's beautiful or ugly...it's been a three-dimensional Rorschach test from day one...is it provocative-in-a-good-way strange or just too strange? -- Frank Gehry; Magnusson Klemencic [slide show]- Seattle Times
‘Fortress’ unveiled: U.S. embassy joins Doors Open Ottawa: ...within the walls of this Sussex Drive landmark, there is a sparkling dome, a dramatic four-storey atrium...Reconciling accessibility with security was a challenge from the start. -- David Childs/Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) (1999)- Ottawa Citizen (Canada)
The Powerhouse of the New: The spiritual origins and transcendental aspirations of the Bauhaus were a direct outgrowth of the universal craving for regeneration...attempted to integrate the entire spectrum of arts into one life-enhancing whole...By viewing all mediums with fresh eyes, they made the old new again, and the new timeless as never before, proven by the myriad works that can still astound us... By Martin Filler- New York Review of Books
Shanghai’s World Expo hopes to transform the way we live: While I had high expectations, I have not been disappointed. Many of the international designs are outstanding... By Michael Geller [slide show]- Vancouver Sun
Shanghai Expo 2010 offers glimpses of a greener future: Every pavilion displays ideas to create more sustainable buildings and cities...If Vancouver truly wants to be the greenest city in the world, we might want to pay close attention to what others are doing. There is some stiff competition out there. By Michael Geller [slide show]- Vancouver Sun
AIA, USGBC Create Design Fellow for Haiti: ...will provide tools and training for safe and sustainable construction to mitigate similar building failures in the future...a two-year commitment to work directly with community members on the ground in Architecture for Humanity’s Rebuilding Center based in Port-au-Prince- Healthcare Design magazine
Review: Design Triennial "Why Design Now?" Wins No Beauty Contests: If the world is ending and it is up to designers to save it, David D'Arcy wishes they did so with a little style...If the challenges facing design are as serious as the decoratively-deprived show’s curators insist that they are, this should be an annual event. -- Foster + Partners; Snøhetta; Michael Maltzan; KieranTimberlake; MVRD [images, links]- The Architect's Newspaper
Operation Hope Triumphs: The Zimbabwean anti-desertification project has won 2010 Buckminster Fuller Challenge...a new approach called “holistic rangeland management”...This incredible ecological transformation has far-ranging ramifications -- Allan Savory/Africa Center for Holistic Management (ACHM) [links]- Metropolis Magazine
AIA Seattle Congratulates 2010 What Makes It GREEN? Award Winners: Illustrate the Best in Regional Sustainable Design -- ZGF Architects; LMN Architects/Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership/DA Architects & Planners; Mithun; The Miller|Hull Partnership [link to images/info]- AIA Seattle
Spanning future: University of Akron Blue Team captures design competition for all-titanium bridge...Billed as the first bridge in the world that will be made solely with titanium...Financing for the project is being sought. [slide show]- Akron Beacon Journal (Ohio)
Call for entries: railLA: California High Speed Rail ideas competition...With a focus on Union Station in Los Angeles...looking to improve mobility statewide by linking HSR through pedestrian-friendly, multi-modal transportation centers with transit enabled communities; cash prizes; deadline: July 13- AIA Los Angeles (AIA/LA) / American Planning Association (APA-LA)
Call for entries: GOOD DESIGN 2010: Awards program for the most innovative and cutting-edge industrial, product, and graphic designs produced around the world; deadline: July 1- Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design / Metropolitan Arts Press
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