Today’s News - Friday, December 10, 2010
• Kamin names his Top 10 best architecture picks for 2010: in "a brutal year for architects" these "shone through the gloom" (he promises his picks for worst will follow).
• In "a rare bow by a Russian official to public opinion," it seems that plan to relocate the Gazprom tower from St. Petersburg's historic center is now official.
• An eyeful of MAKE Architects' aluminum-clad UBS HQ in London (with a few 1980s Arup buildings biting the dust to make way).
• A great Q&A with Coletta and Barton re: their Give a Minute project "to reinvent public participation in America for the 21st century" (very cool - and coming to a city near you!).
• A report from Israel re: the Rehovot Conference on poverty and sustainability - and rays of hope from sustainable development initiatives around the world.
• ArchitectureBoston goes thoroughly "Un-Modern": we couldn't pick which were our faves, so we leave it up to you.
• Brussat brings us an eyeful of "Atlanta's bold new old buildings" despite "height and glitz remaining the order of the day."
• An excerpt (and terrific slide show) from Eggener's "Cemeteries": they "more than any other designed landscapes communicate grand social and metaphysical ideas."
• An eyeful of the winners of the 2010 Faith & Form/IFRAA International Awards for Religious Art and Architecture.
• Weekend diversions:
• Huxtable hails Yale's (and Vidler's) James Stirling show as a "must-see": "Once we have gotten the glitz and bling of recent years out of our eyes, we will see Stirling as the innovator he really was, a man towering over his contemporaries, far ahead of his time."
• Hawthorne hails Stephen Kanner retrospective at L.A.'s Architecture & Design Museum: the "richly layered exhibition" proves he was "a quiet cosmopolitan" who saw his city as "a clean, bright, modern, can-do place where the buildings were handsome."
• The Art Institute of Chicago "Hyperlinks" architecture and design to "suggest a paradigm shift that is occurring across both fields."
• In Tokyo, "Global Ends: Towards the Beginning" is "an ambitious project" (and some ambitious architects) that "seeks to address crucial issues of architecture today."
• MoMA's lobby is "abloom with terrariums in biomorphic containers" that "add life to the space in an oddly sensuous way" (we want one!).
• Neither Cotter nor Lange are taken by "Leonardo's Last Supper: A Vision by Peter Greenaway" at NYC's Park Avenue Armory: it's a "big, expensive, technological-bells-and-whistles-to-the-max dud" where you'll probably find yourself "being beaten into sonic submission" (double-ouch!).
• The Dirt picks Best Books of 2010 for "your favorite designer or built environment policy wonk."
• Gardner and Donoghue find hits ("Joseph Wells is the discovery here") - and misses - in "Triumvirate: McKim, Mead & White."
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From the tallest tower to a vibrant urban park, the best architecture of 2010: It was a brutal year for architects...These successes shone through the gloom. By Blair Kamin -- Adrian Smith; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Foster + Partners; John Ronan; Jeanne Gang/Studio Gang; Joe Valerio/Valerio Dewalt Train; Ralph Johnson/Perkins+Will; T. “Gunny” Harboe/Harboe Architects; Peter Schaudt; Site Design Group; Bruce Graham [images, links]- Chicago Tribune
In Rare Bow to Public, Russian Tower to be Moved: ...has caused too much dissension among architects and residents for it to be built at the chosen site in the city’s historic center...St. Petersburg’s governor announced Thursday that the proposed headquarters of Gazprom’s oil subsidiary would not be built beside the Smolny Cathedral...after four years of on-and-off protests and numerous letters from prominent international architects opposing the tower. -- RMJM- New York Times
MAKE Architects unveils 5 Broadgate scheme: ...proposed £460 million aluminium-clad headquarters for Swiss bank UBS in the City of London...will feature the largest floor plates in The City...14-storey building...Featuring just 45% glass cladding, Ken Shuttleworth said: "You’re looking at the future of what the next 10 years of office development will look like." [images]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Give a Minute: Carol Coletta and Jake Barton discuss an interactive project that seeks to reinvent public participation in America for the 21st century...mining the wisdom of the crowds for the next great urban innovation..."an attempt to make participation fun." -- CEOs for Cities; Local Projects [images, links]- Urban Omnibus
Reporting On Poverty and Sustainability from the Rehovot Conference: The relationship between poverty and environmental degradation is a major impediment to sustainability. Specialist from throughout the world gathered...in Israel to discuss sustainable development initiatives. By Dr. Yosef Gotlieb [links]- Green Prophet (Middle East)
Un-Modern: Are we on the cusp of a new kind of Modernism? + Why Modern Architectural Education is Archaic + Pole Dancing Around the Past: The co-dependency of Modernism and historic preservation is in need of an intervention; etc. By Anthony Flint; George Thrush; Miguel Gómez-Ibáñez; J. Frano Violich; Robert Cowherd; Duo Dickinson; Matthew Bronski; Kiel Moe; Henry Moss; William S. Saunders; Elizabeth S. Padjen; etc.- ArchitectureBoston (Boston Society of Architects/BSA)
Atlanta's bold new old buildings: ...height and glitz remain the order of the day in Atlanta. The Institute of Classical Architecture & Classical America (ICA&CA) chapter hopes to change that. By David Brussat -- Philip Trammell Shutze; John Portman; Philip Johnson; Robert A.M. Stern; Hugh Petter/Adam Architecture [images]- Providence Journal (Rhode Island)
Building on Burial Ground: Because cemeteries are such patently liminal sites — poised between past and future, life and death, material and spiritual, earth and heaven — they more than any other designed landscapes communicate grand social and metaphysical ideas...an excerpt drawn from new book, "Cemeteries" by Keith Eggener [slide show]- Places Journal
2010 Winners: Faith & Form/IFRAA International Awards for Religious Art and Architecture -- Gwathmey Siegel; Hanrahan Meyers Architects; Graham & Hyde Architects; Conrad Schmitt Studios; HGA Architects; Butler Rogers Baskett; etc. [images]- Faith & Form Magazine
Postmodernism's Pivotal Figure: "Notes From The Archive: James Frazer Stirling, Architect and Teacher"...a must-see for any architectural professional or student of architecture...a rewarding and long-overdue reappraisal...Once we have gotten the glitz and bling of recent years out of our eyes, we will see Stirling as the innovator he really was, a man towering over his contemporaries, far ahead of his time. By Ada Louise Huxtable -- Anthony Vidler'- Wall Street Journal
A quiet cosmopolitan: Architecture and Design Museum turns the spotlight on the late Stephen Kanner...was something of an outlier among architects of his generation for the sheer volume and range of his output...a richly layered exhibition...his Los Angeles was not the dystopia of writer Mike Davis or the disjointed landscape of architect Thom Mayne...It was a clean, bright, modern, can-do place where the buildings were handsome... By Christopher Hawthorne [slide shows]- Los Angeles Times
"Hyperlinks: Architecture and Design" at the Art Institute of Chicago: ...presents more than 30 proposals and ideas...suggests a paradigm shift that is occurring across the fields of architecture and design... -- Florencia Pita/mod; Jurgen Mayer H; R&Sie(n); Experimental Jetset; EMERGENT/Tom Wiscombe; Arik Levy; Studio Makkink & Bey; Shigeru Ban; Joris Laarman; Nacho Carbonell; Matali Crasset- Canadian Architect
A Human Architecture: 25th Anniversary Exhibition of Toto Gallery MA – "Global Ends: Towards the Beginning" – is an ambitious project showcasing seven architects...seeks to address...crucial issues of architecture today. -- Architectural Institute of Japan; Sean Godsell; Junya Ishigami; RCR Aranda Pigem Vilalta Arquitectes; Tom Kundig/Olson Kundig Architects [images]- Tokyo Art Beat
Adding Green Space to MoMA With Tropical Terrariums: Museum of Modern Art lobby is abloom with terrariums in biomorphic containers...These hybrids of art and urban-dweller’s garden make up the small exhibition "Nocturne of the Limax maximus"..."add life to the space in an oddly sensuous way.” -- Paula Hayes [images]- New York Times
Adding Bells and Whistles to Leonardo: “Leonardo’s Last Supper: A Vision by Peter Greenaway” has arrived at the Park Avenue Armory, but there’s no reason to be excited. It’s a dud. It is, however, a big, expensive, technological-bells-and-whistles-to-the-max dud, which is something. By Holland Cotter [images, video]- New York Times
No Rest at the Last Supper: "Leonardo's Last Supper: A Vision by Peter Greenaway" is indeed a dud, though I have slightly different reasons for calling it so than Holland Cotter...What we all need is more stillness in front of great works of art, not more bombast...being beaten into sonic submission... By Alexandra Lange [image, video, links]- Design Observer
Best Books of 2010: ...here are 5 worth exploring or perhaps giving as presents to your favorite designer or built environment policy wonk: "Stickwork" by Patrick Dougherty; "Urban Green: Innovative Parks for Resurgent Cities" by Peter Harnik; "Biophilic Cities: Integrating Nature into Urban Design and Planning" by Timothy Beatley; "The Ecology of Commerce Revised Edition: A Declaration of Sustainability" by Paul Hawken; "The Climate Fix: What Scientists and Politicians Won’t Tell You About Global Warming" by Roger Pielke Jr.- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
The Elevation of Taste: A portrait of the firm whose buildings reshaped America's urban landscape. "Triumvirate: McKim, Mead & White: Art, Architecture, Scandal, and Class in America's Gilded Age" by Mosette Broderick...makes an honorable effort but falls short...The hit-or-miss nature...is evident in the biographical material as well as in the architectural writing. By James Gardner- Wall Street Journal
Architecture and morality in America's Gilded Age: "Triumvirate: McKim, Mead & White" by Mosette Broderick...served up as a seemingly endless series of interconnected lives...Joseph Wells is the discovery here...strongest theme is that incredible heyday itself, when the firm created an entirely new architectural landscape for the country...an otherwise sumptuous monument to a trio of men...who created so many sumptuous monuments of their own. By Steve Donoghue- The National (UAE)
UNStudio: UNStudio Tower, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
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