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Today’s News - Friday, May 20, 2011

•   Ordos 100 architects "accuse the profession of not speaking out about Ai Weiwe's incarceration for fear of losing work" (some big names beg to differ).

•   Haggerty and Perine call for NYC to renovate housing laws and take a cue from "Tokyo and San Diego, which permit innovation in housing design and living arrangements."

•   Rybczynski ruminates on the demise of the McMansion (a good thing).

•   Saffron x 2: a "striking" hangar-shaped HQ at the end of a former runway "may look like an alien spaceship landed," but it really "conjures memories of more glorious times, restoring some lost dignity to the site" and "offers bright ideas for cubicle slaves" (it's also LEED Platinum green).

•   She cheers the unexpected reprieve for a historic church from impending demolition with high hopes that it "could still be a catalyst for a neighborhood revival."

•   Ijeh wonders whether Chipperfield's Hepworth Wakefield gallery is a "work of art devoid of humanity" even with its "impeccably well crafted" sculptural form and "vibrant, charismatic" gallery spaces.

•   Glancey's first in a series of weekly architecture round-ups finds "the architectural world was a cabinet of curiosities."

•   Weekend diversions:

•   In Wilmington, NC, Toby Keeton offers "a visual exhibition of design activism."

•   Inspired by Fathy, a French architect who specializes in sustainable development brings her exhibition to Cairo.

•   LaBarre relishes Herman Miller's new POV series, where "house porn meets furniture porn" (with pix to prove it).

•   Caldwell and Serraino talk about the re-issue of "California Houses of Gordon Drake."

•   It may be the 50th anniversary of Jane Jacobs' "Death and Life of Great American Cities," but it "still resonates" and "current leaders would do well to read it."

•   Gruber offers two takes on essays that make up "Reconsidering Jane Jacobs" (some thumbs-up's, some thumbs-down's).

•   "The Architecture of Harry Weese" is "extensively researched, honestly written and generously illustrated" and demonstrates what "made him arguably more influential than any of his contemporaries" (great pix!).

•   "CCCP: Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed" is an amazing collection of "weird and wonderful Soviet architecture."

•  Zeiger's "Micro Green - Tiny Houses in Nature" is "succinct but high on style" (terrific slide show - we'll take one of each, please!).


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