Today’s News - Monday, January 10, 2011
• ArcSpace brings us eyefuls of Gwathmey Siegel in Sacramento, and RUR in Southern Taiwan.
• Hume looks back on the new century's first decade and finds "Toronto a few bricks short of a cultural renaissance"; he wonders what the second will hold: "Though many have cheered the demise of so-called starchitecture, the criticism is mean-spirited or beside the point."
• Goldin offers not such glowing words about grand Grand Avenue plans: "As usual, Los Angeles gets the architecture of anywhere" (even though DS+R's Broad will be "a pleasant museum").
• Jerusalem-based architect/planner Heumann bemoans that "no more than a handful of Israeli planners and architects have absorbed the notion" that urban design can be "an important influence on personal and communal safety and security."
• Greer grimaces at Gehry's UTS design in Sydney: he may call it a tree house, but "it looks more like an abandoned termites' nest" and it "verges on self-parody" (ouch!).
• Campbell is much kinder to MRY's management school for MIT: "a place for workaholics who don't much care what architecture looks like...makes the case for the background building, the one that's here to do its job rather than flaunt its aesthetics."
• Gardner has guarded hopes for Mori's Poe Park Visitor Center in the Bronx: it resembles "nothing more than a functional gas-station" from some angles, and "a rather sophisticated piece of contemporary architecture" from others, but if it brings attention to the poet "its effect will be entirely to the good."
• Moore on Britain's brightest young architects: "Their overwhelming desire is to do stuff and to do it in a way that anyone...can enjoy. It's not a bad way to start."
• British Columbia's top architects "are being forced to look elsewhere for growth...but there's a downside."
• Aedas wins a hat trick from Foster in Hong Kong (we detect a bit of snark).
• Gunts reports on civil rights leaders and preservationists protesting plans to demolish a "key landmark in the history of America's civil rights movement" in a battle for a new superblock to revitalize a Baltimore neighborhood.
• The demolition debate continues re: Rudolph's Orange County, NY, government center: "many see hulking maze; a few see brilliance" (with some inspiration from Yale's Rudolph restoration).
• Heathcote has a most amusing lunch with Koolhaas: "he removes his watch and puts it on the table, which makes me a little nervous" + The next generation of "super-starchitects" might well be Chinese.
• Maya Lin becoming a superstar in China with her latest work: "my fifth and last memorial...I will be working on it for the rest of my life."
• Court rules against architect in 10-year-plus dispute over UAE embassy design in DC.
• NYC launches sustainable park guidelines; other cities will most likely follow suit (easy to do - just download the whole thing).
• Eyefuls of 2011 AIA Awards for Architecture, Interior Architecture, Regional and Urban Design, and Twenty-five Year Award winners (great presentation).
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-- Gwathmey Siegel & Associates: Teel Family Pavilion, Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, California
-- Reiser + Umemoto (RUR): Port and Cruise Service Center, Kaohsiung, Southern Taiwan, ROC
Toronto a few bricks short of a cultural renaissance: The first decade of the 21st century was good for architecture...but what about the second?...the last decade was one in which Toronto began to embrace the notion of itself as a city and think about itself in urban terms. Suddenly, the public realm was a serious issue. By Christopher Hume- Toronto Star
Comment: Architecture Is Not Enough at Grand Avenue: As it is conceived, the Broad is a pleasant museum...As usual, Los Angeles gets the architecture of anywhere, leaving us to wonder where our city really is and who has the guts to confront it. By Greg Goldin -- Diller Scofidio + Renfro- The Architect's Newspaper
Op-Ed: Crime deterrence through urban design: Our physical environment is an important influence on personal and communal safety and security, yet no more than a handful of Israeli planners and architects have absorbed this notion. By Gerard Heumann- Jerusalem Post
Frank Gehry's new UTS building looks like five scrunched-up brown bags: The lionised architect's new design for the Sydney suburbs verges on self-parody...He calls the building a tree house...It looks more like an abandoned termites' nest. By Germaine Greer -- University of Technology, Sydney [image, links]- Guardian (UK)
MIT's Sloan School of Management building appealing, not audacious: Signals shift from push to stand out to desire to fit in...a place for MIT workaholics who don’t much care what architecture looks like...makes the case for the background building, the one that’s here to do its job rather than flaunt its aesthetics. By Robert Campbell -- Moore Ruble Yudell; Halvorson Design Partnernship [image]- Boston Globe
Bronx Poe Park Visitor Center looks foreign, but hopefully brings attention to the poet: To say that Toshiko Mori was not interested in contextualism is putting the matter politely...from certain angles it resembles nothing more than a functional gas-station; from others...a rather sophisticated piece of contemporary architecture...if it succeeds in drawing visitors to a relatively underserved section of the city...then its effect will be entirely to the good. By James Gardner [images]- The Real Deal (NYC)
Meet Britain's brightest young architects: Rowan Moore...finds them keen to get back to the basics of building...Their overwhelming desire is to do stuff and to do it in a way that anyone...can enjoy. It's not a bad way to start. -- Practice Architecture; Studio Weave; Feilden Fowles; HAT Projects; etc. [slide show]- Observer (UK)
B.C. Architects Without Borders: In the wake of the Olympics building boom, British Columbia’s top architectural firms are being forced to look elsewhere for growth...pinning their hopes on an expanded global practice...there’s a downside... -- Bing Thom Architects/Bing Thom Works; James KM Cheng Architects; IBI Group; Hotson Bakker Boniface & Haden/Dialog; Busby Perkins+Will [slide show]- BCBusiness (Canada)
Aedas tops Foster + Partners in Hong Kong: In a joint win with Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners, it scooped the $400 million job to design an immigration centre for the Hong Kong government...completed a hat trick against its London rival. -- SOM [images]- BD/Building Design (UK)
Superblock plan rejected after civil rights leaders protest: Read's Drug Store was site of 1955 sit-in...A $150 million plan to revitalize downtown Baltimore's West Side was rejected...after local civil rights and preservation leaders warned that it would demolish a key landmark in the history of America's civil rights movement. By Edward Gunts -- Peter Fillat; Bailey Pope- Baltimore Sun
Will it be demolition or makeover for county government center? Many see hulking maze; a few see brilliance...will Orange County’s government center stand the test of time?..."The people of Goshen have yet to realize what they have in their backyard"...champions are in touch with Hoffman Architects, one of the firms that renovated the Yale building. -- Paul Rudolph- The Warwick Advertiser
Lunch with Rem Koolhaas: As we sit down, he removes his watch and puts it on the table, which makes me a little nervous...one of the few architects who still talks about ideas and politics...."There is this irony that as we have become more famous we are also taken less seriously.” + The great call of China: The next generation of “super-starchitects” might well be Chinese. By Edwin Heathcote -- Office for Metropolitan Architecture/OMA/AMO; Herzog & De Meuron; Ai Weiwei; Foster + Partners; Zaha Hadid; Steven Holl; MAD; Limited Architecture; Studio Pei Zhu- Financial Times (UK)
Architecture and Nature: Maya Lin has become renowned by people in China recently because of her latest work - "What is Missing?" The multi-site project aims to raise public awareness of the current crisis surrounding biodiversity and habitat loss..."my fifth and last memorial...I will be working on it for the rest of my life."- Beijing Review
D.C. Appeals Court Rules Against Architect in Embassy Design Dispute: ...the latest twist in architect Elena Sturdza's long fight against the United Arab Emirates over the disputed design of an embassy in Washington...licensing requirement "contains no exemption for international design competitions..." -- Angelos Demetriou- Legal Times
Landscape Guidelines Landslide Debut: "High Performance Landscape Guidelines: 21st Century Parks for NYC"...sustainable park guidelines...produced through a partnership between The Design Trust for Public Space and the Department of Parks and Recreation...first of its kind in the nation...Other cities are already expressing an interest in producing similar reports of their own. [link to Guidelines]- The Architect's Newspaper
2011 AIA Awards for Architecture, Interior Architecture, Regional and Urban Design, Twenty-five Year Award -- John Hancock Tower/I.M. Pei & Partners; REX|OMA; Weiss/Manfredi; Steven Holl; Bernard Tschumi; Thomas Phifer; Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF); Marcy Wong Donn Logan; Jensen Architects/Jensen & Macy Architects; Julie Snow; Allied Works Architecture; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill; dlandstudio; KlingStubbins; Rene Gonzalez; Lake | Flato; Belzberg Architects; Clive Wilkinson; ZGF; Patrick Tighe; Cannon Design; Lehrer Architects; LMN Architects; Montalba Architects [links to ionfo, images]- American Institute of Architects (AIA)
Book Review: "Cities for People" by Jan Gehl: Copenhagen's urban-space guru explains the principles, practices, and priorities that make cities more livable - beginning, but not ending, with dethroning King Car...He’s clearly earned his increasing influence, which this masterful book will help spread and cement By Bill Millard- ArchNewsNow
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