Today’s News - Friday, July 2, 2010
EDITOR'S NOTE: We're celebrating the Fourth of July weekend by taking Monday off - we'll be back Tuesday, July 6.
• A fitting start to Independence Day weekend: a Centerbrook architect takes a stab at creating a British-to-American glossary for Yale's Kroon Hall U.K./U.S. team (lippings, skirtings, totems, and a bit of kit included).
• Part of Cleveland's plan for a comeback is investing in 58 pilot projects "that move vacant land strategies beyond temporary fences and lawns."
• Saffron cheers Drexel University finally "getting the hang of the urban thing" with two new buildings.
• Risen rallies behind Stout's new museum in Roanoke: "it's hard to imagine anything else in its place...a delicate balance of convention and unorthodoxy."
• Calys says Cavagnero's "skillful renovation" of the Oakland Museum of California "makes sure the museum keeps its Roche and Dinkeloo edge."
• Heathcote on the "astonishing discrepancy" between sales prices for great works of art and great works of architecture, and says it's high time to market Modernism.
• Zohn + Zaha re: her MAXXI Museum: "It's a sort of architecture-on-Pilates" (great Q&A).
• An amusing lunch with Nouvel reveals "why so many of his buildings are red or phallic or both...his penchant has to do with strawberries, greed and childhood gratification."
• An in-depth Q&A with Mathur and da Cunha re: why they concentrate less on client-driven commissions than on issue-centered public investigations.
• One of the "smaller pieces of brilliance" at the London Festival of Architecture is "a clever little contraption": a zero-carbon elevator at the Duke of York steps.
• Pridmore waxes poetic about Ponte Vecchio, a "marvel of medieval construction" that reveals Florence's layered history of "genius, commerce and tyranny."
• A tribute to Ralph Adams Cram, the unsung architect behind Cape Cod's "grand old ladies known as the Bourne and Sagamore bridges."
• Weekend diversions:
• With luck, the "clever blend of optimism and pragmatism" in "Our Cities, Ourselves" at NYC's Center for Architecture "will convince local planners and policy makers to - at the very least - "find better role models for urban growth than Miami and Detroit."
• Kamin can't say enough about "Louis Sullivan's Idea": it's "one of the finest architecture shows to appear in Chicago in a long time" (great pix, too).
• Perrin finds "three is a crowd" in the CCA's "Other Space Odysseys," where "three visionary architects get lost in space."
• Gruber finds "despair" in the pages of "Urban Design": "one cannot read these essays without reflecting on how disastrous the past 50 years have been for cities."
• At 765 pages, "Architecture of the Sun: Los Angeles Modernism 1900-1970" is "lavishly illustrated" with "lively tales of friendships gone south...and petty crummy selfishness" (FLW "may have been the Daddy of modernism but he was not a nice guy").
• An eyeful of photographs by Høltermand: "I focus on 'ordinary' architectural buildings and turn them into desolate containers."
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Proper English, as in "Crikey, It's the Loo!": What in the Sam Hill are lippings, we beseeched? Answer: trim. Conversely, our colleagues from across the pond were anxious to know who, precisely, Mr. Sam Hill would be. By By Jim Coan/Centerbrook -- Hopkins Architects- ArchNewsNow
Cleveland’s Comeback: Reimagining the City from the Ground Up: While the vast majority of the city’s $54 million in Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) money will be used to demolish blighted and foreclosed homes, the city is also investing in 58 pilot projects that move vacant land strategies beyond temporary fences and lawns.- Next American City
Two new Drexel buildings bringing a livelier look to West Philly streets: Drexel University may finally be getting the hang of the urban thing. While the design isn't as polished as one might like, it achieves something that has eluded most of [its] recent architecture: It feels alive. By Inga Saffron -- Sasaki Associates/EwingCole; Diamond + Schmidt [images]- Philadelphia Inquirer
Roanoke Reborn: ...the first thing one notices about the new Taubman Museum of Art is how unnoticeable it is. This is no mean feat...absorbs its surroundings, but it also enhances them. It is undeniably contemporary, and yet it is so perfectly contextual that it’s hard to imagine anything else in its place...a delicate balance of convention and unorthodoxy... By Clay Risen -- Randall Stout Architects; Rodriguez Ripley Maddux Motley [images]- Inform: Architecture + Design in the Mid-Atlantic (Virginia Society of the American Institute of Architects)
Soft Touch Transforms Oakland Museum of California: Mark Cavagnero's skillful renovation makes sure the museum keeps its Roche and Dinkeloo edge...he has found that elusive middle ground where the existing building retains its power and the additions improve on the past. By George Calys [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
It is time to market modernism: It would be nice to report that there is competition...to acquire the finest modernist houses – which should, after all, be assets with a dual value, both as dwellings and as landmarks. But it would be misleading...What’s the worst that could happen? You get to live in and enjoy a masterpiece...This is a rare chance to create the market. By Edwin Heathcote -- Le Corbusier; Lord Palumbo; Mies van der Rohe; Frank Lloyd Wright; Philip Johnson; Richard Neutra; Jean Prouvé; André Balazs- Financial Times (UK)
Zaha Hadid and Her MAXXI Museum in Rome: ...she has wrought...a remarkably successful integration of the old military barracks which was its core and the muscular structure which has grown alongside it. It's a sort of architecture-on-Pilates..."It's a very thin line between saying to people that 'everything must be preserved' and yet one also believes in new things." By Patricia Zohn- Huffington Post
Jean Nouvel has designs on London: I ask him why so many of his buildings are red or phallic or...both...his penchant has to do with strawberries, greed and childhood gratification...he is now setting up stall opposite St Paul's Cathedral, despite the protestations of Prince Charles. With some indignation, he defends his modernist agenda...- Evening Standard (UK)
Preparing Ground: An Interview with Anuradha Mathur + Dilip da Cunha: Trained in architecture and landscape architecture...have focused on the cultural and ecological issues of contested landscapes...notable for concentrating less on client-driven commissions than on issue-centered public investigations... -- Mathur/da Cunha [images]- Places Journal
Zero Carbon Elevator Lifts London Festival of Architecture: ...one of the smaller pieces of brilliance on show is...a clever little contraption that uses water and solar power to lift wheelchair users up the (for them) previously inaccessible Duke of York steps... -- Matthew Lloyd Architects [images, links]- Fast Company
Ponte Vecchio, a Bridge That Spans Centuries: This marvel of medieval construction provides a lens on Florence's layered history...distinct elements weave together like immutable strands - genius, commerce and tyranny, to name three big ones - of the Florentine character. By Jay Pridmore- Wall Street Journal
Cape canal bridges carry architect's legacy: ...the grand old ladies known as the Bourne and Sagamore bridges were designed by Ralph Adams Cram...many architectural historians consider him to be the most influential architect of the early 20th century. -- HDB/Cram and Ferguson- Cape Cod Times
Reclaiming the City for Its People: "Our Cities, Ourselves"...a very persuasive balance between the utopian dream and the actionable plan...With luck...its clever blend of optimism and pragmatism will convince local planners and policy makers to become catalysts of change - or, at the very least, to find better role models for urban growth than Miami and Detroit. -- PALO Arquitectura Urbana; Michael Sorkin; Budi Pradono Architects; HCP Design; Varos-Teampannon and Kozlekedes [images, links]- Metropolis Magazine
"Louis Sullivan's Idea": Looking for architectural fireworks? Here’s the place to go: A spectacular new exhibition...at the Chicago Cultural Center...combination of compelling detail and logical structure - and its ability to take the viewer on a journey through both time and robust, three-dimensional space...one of the finest architecture shows to appear in Chicago in a long time. By Blair Kamin [images]- Chicago Tribune
Shooting the Moon: "Other Space Odysseys: Greg Lynn, Michael Maltzan, Alessandro Poli": Three visionary architects get lost in space at the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA), rocketing past Francois Perrin...three is a crowd... -- Superstudio [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
"Urban Design": Good Book, Unfortunate Field? ...the adjective that pervades the sense of the book is "despair." One cannot read these essays without reflecting on how disastrous the past 50 years have been for cities...The essayists may have been trained to design cities, but few of them...express optimism that anything they can do will improve things substantially. By Frank Gruber -- Alex Krieger; William S. Saunders; Michael Sorkin; Denise Scott Brown; Joan Busquets; Jane Jacobs; Lewis Mumford- Huffington Post
"Architecture of the Sun: Los Angeles Modernism 1900-1970" by Thomas S. Hines...At 765 pages...lavishly illustrated...lively tales of friendships gone south...and the petty crummy selfishness...humanizes their work...reminds one even islands on the land were built by somebody. -- Rudolph Schindler; Richard Neutra; Frank Lloyd Wright [slide show]- Flavorpill
We Are All Alone: I focus on "ordinary" architectural buildings and turn them into desolate containers...The mood is lonely and cold, as if the viewer were the last person on earth... By Kim Høltermand [slide show]- Places Journal
Small Firm, Global Practice: An Interview with Jim Goring and Andre Straja of Goring & Straja Architects: How they manage an international practice as a small firm.- ArchNewsNow
Morphosis: University of Cincinnati Campus Recreation Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
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