Today’s News - Tuesday, September 6, 2011
• ArcSpace brings us an eyeful of Henning Larsen and Olafur Eliasson's Harpa in Reykjavik (beautiful pix!).
• As the 10th anniversary of 9/11 approaches, there's sure to be miles of retrospection, introspection, and observation. To begin:
• Russell reviews the 9/11 Memorial and finds the "veils of water...shower the names of the dead with grace."
• An in-depth, thoughtful look at the evolution of the 9/11 Memorial and how its architect, Michael Arad, "evolved from a hot-headed novice to a more temperate veteran."
• Schumacher offers a visual preview of what's going on at Ground Zero (with some fearless views!).
• Randy Kennedy's poetic prose and Damon Winter's stunning photos are an ode to the "ironworkers of the sky...who are stacking the top floors of One World Trade Center."
• Hawthorne and Bentley Mays consider skyscrapers, post 9/11: they may be "vertical hubris" but "remain powerful symbols"; now, if only developers were "willing to invest more energetically in design excellence, North American cities could have tall buildings as exciting and innovative as anything rising into the Asian and Middle Eastern skies" (it's a shame 1WTC is "just the dull-as-dishwater result of the long rebuilding squabble").
• Two guides to 9/11 tributes going on around NYC this week (some interesting surprises).
• A number of Spanish cities are pinning their hopes on big arts complexes, but the "notion that a flagship building can yield economic redemption almost overnight doesn't always manifest in success."
• An architect explains why regional urban strategies are "desperately needed" in developing "ecological urbanisms": Suburban cities and towns "need to be seen as a large part of the solution, not the whipping boy of the density ubanistas."
• Research studies find "the much-decried homogenization of America is, in part, a product of our residential mobility"; we're willing to relocate, but "once there we crave the familiarity of our favorite fast-food joints."
• The U.K.'s draft National Planning Policy Framework has heritage watchdogs up in arms in "an escalating war of words" (insults, "rock-throwing," and "semi-hysterical" included).
• Glancey's review of the week include Dutch architects' plans for a man-made mountain, solar towers in the Californian desert, and anyone on the Windermere steamboat museum shortlist "would make a good winner."
• Some cheer - and some jeer - new RIBA chief's plans for "a funky institute" (and all that jazz) to bring young architects on board.
• McGuirk cheers Korea's design biennial, complete with architectural follies that cynics might see as "a pinch of architectural stardust sprinkled on the property market. But they also demonstrate a city's willingness to invest in moments of urban whimsy and character." + While the "architects' hope is that the city will absorb their follies as landmarks...critics have pointed out that folly is not a word that can be translated into Korean": "The Korean Language Society is looking into it."
• Rawsthorn cheers winners of the INDEX: Design for a Better Life Award, which is itself "a model for good design."
• Call for entries/RFQ/RFP: Design Team for the Pierscape at Navy Pier, Chicago.
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Henning Larsen Architects: Harpa - Reykjavik Concert Hall & Conference Centre, Reykjavik, Iceland -- Olafur Eliasson
Pools Mist Names of the Dead With Grace at 9/11 Memorial: The dancing waters don’t strike the solemn note I expected...I am glad the names came up to the plaza...Recognizing loss while getting on with our lives is an enormously affirming gesture. The memorial never needed to do more than that. By James S. Russell -- Peter Walker; Michael Arad; Snohetta [images]- Bloomberg News
Architect and 9/11 Memorial Both Evolved Over the Years: How Michael Arad evolved from a hot-headed novice to a more temperate veteran while building a landmark. -- Peter Walker; Thom Mayne; Aedas Architects; Snohetta; Daniel Libeskind; Handel Architects [images]- New York Times
Developments at the World Trade Center site: ...a preview... By Mary Louise Schumacher [images]- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Ironworkers of the Sky: The best view in New York belongs to the fearless ironworkers who are stacking the top floors of One World Trade Center...the affinities between ironworkers and photographers themselves run deep. Both professions are defined by the compulsion to go where most people won’t go and see with their own eyes what most people will never see..."There is no dress rehearsal." By Randy Kennedy -- Damon Winter [slide show, video]- New York Times Magazine
Skyscrapers remain powerful symbols, post 9/11: The tall tower is architecture's most famous building type and also the one most clearly at odds with the profession's roots...A skyscraper is vertical hubris...More skyscrapers have gone up in the last 10 years than in all of architectural history before the destruction of the World Trade Center...According to "Supertall!" at the Skyscraper Museum...48 such mega-towers have been completed since 2001 or are in the works. By Christopher Hawthorne -- Minoru Yamasaki; Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill; Rem Koolhaas/Ole Scheeren/Office for Metropolitan Architecture/OMA; HOK; David Childs/Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Pickard Chilton; Frank Gehry; Santiago Calatrava; Jean Nouvel; Daniel Libeskind- Los Angeles Times
An urge to touch the sky: The continuing appeal of building tall: The competition to get the world’s tallest, glassiest, classiest tower often seems about as graceful and useful as a celebrity cage-match...If developers were to become far-sighted, and willing to invest more energetically in design excellence, Toronto and other North American cities could have tall buildings as exciting and innovative as anything rising into the Asian and Middle Eastern skies. By John Bentley Mays -- Carol Willis; Adrian Smith; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM)- Globe and Mail (Canada)
NYC Commemorates 9/11 Attacks: As the 10th anniversary of 9/11 approaches, here is a compilation of upcoming exhibitions, programs, and events...- e-Oculus (AIANY)
Diverse 9/11 tributes planned for the city: Groups that include the Manhattan Institute, Bryant Park and the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art are planning a range of 9/11 tributes for the 10th anniversary of the attacks.- Crain's New York Business
Spanish Cities Pin Hopes on Big Arts Complexes: The success of the Guggenheim Bilbao triggered a chain reaction of downtrodden towns trying to bolster tourism with a big arts complex....notion that a flagship building can yield economic redemption almost overnight...doesn’t always manifest in success. -- Renzo Piano (Botín Center); Frank Gehry (Guggenheim Bilbao); Oscar Niemeyer (Niemeyer Center); Peter Eisenman (City of Culture of Galicia); Norman Foster (Avilés)- New York Times
Urbanism needs to move beyond city boundaries: Our fractured metropolitan regions are the big problem in creating sustainable solutions for climate challenges. High-towered, dense city living is only a small part of the solution, which is to develop "ecological urbanisms"...why regional urban strategies are so desperately needed. By Peter Steinbrueck -- Bruce Katz; Jeb Brugmann; Edward Glaeser; Peter Calthorpe- Crosscut (Seattle)
For Americans, Mobility Breeds Uniformity: Researchers argue the much-decried homogenization of America is, in part, a product of our residential mobility..."the very factor that allows Americans to pursue their individual desires, ironically facilitates the uniformity of American landscapes"...In other words, we’re willing to relocate to an unfamiliar city in the hope of making our fortune, but once there we crave the familiarity of our favorite fast-food joints.- Miller-McCune
Planning reforms will devastate historic sites: ...controversial shake-up of the planning laws will have a "devastating effect" on historic buildings and sites, according to the government body charged with protecting the country's heritage...millions of acres of countryside are being placed at risk by the draft National Planning Policy Framework. -- English Heritage; National Trust- Telegraph (UK)
Constructive criticism: the week in architecture: Dutch architects have tall plans for a man-made mountain, while solar towers are set to soar in the Californian desert – and there's competition to redesign Windermere's steamboat museum... By Jonathan Glancey -- Hoffers and Krüger; RAFAA architecture and design; Carmody Groarke; Adam Khan; Niall McLaughlin; Terry Pawson; Reiach and Hall; 6a; Sutherland Hussey; Witherford Watson Mann; Nord architects; Angela Brady/Brady Mallalieu Architects- Guardian (UK)
Architects back new RIBA chief in 'cool' revolution: Angela Brady speaks of plans to bring young architects on board through RIBA satellite in Hoxton...venue would allow younger architects to exhibit work “with music sessions in the evening...It’s about the possibility of having a funky institute"... -- Piers Gough/CZWG; Paul Monaghan/AHMM; Chris Lee/Serie Architects; Ian Simpson- BD/Building Design (UK)
Korea's design biennial: an extreme body of work that pushes no products: ...the Gwangju Design Biennale – curated by Ai Weiwei – is challenging the norms of commercially motivated design weeks...The cynical would view these [follies around the city] as urban branding, a pinch of architectural stardust sprinkled on the property market. But they also demonstrate a city's willingness to invest in moments of urban whimsy and character. By Justin McGuirk -- Seung H-Sang; Francisco Sanin; Peter Eisenman; Alejandro Zaera-Polo; Dominique Perrault; Atelier Bow-Wow- Guardian (UK)
The Tao of Design at the 2011 Gwangju Design Biennale: Any expectations that it would solely be a display of objects...should be thrown out the window...This year's theme is a puzzling phrase: "Design is design is not design," boiled down to "d = D ? d."...architects' hope is that the city will absorb [their follies] as landmarks...critics have pointed out that folly is not a word that can be translated into Korean, Seung rebuffs, "The Korean Language Society is looking into it." -- H-Sang Seung; Ai Weiwei; MANIFESTO Architecture; Brendan McGetrick; Theo Deutinger; Florian Beigal; Nader Tehrani; Dominique Perrault; Francisco Sanin; Hyungmin Pai; Ah-Yeon Kim; nOffice [slide show]- Artinfo
This Contest Takes the Prize: The INDEX: Design for a Better Life Award, which seeks out ideas that make life better for people, is in itself a model for good design...winners this year illustrate how diverse the fields of sustainable and humanitarian design have become... By Alice Rawsthorn -- Elemental; Design Seoul; Anna Haupt/Terese Alstin; Fuseproject; Design for Change/Kiran Bir Sethi- New York Times
Call for entries: Request for Qualifications and Design Proposals/RFQ/RFP: Design Team for the Pierscape at Navy Pier, Chicago; deadline to submit intnet to participate: September 20; Phase I deadline: October 6- Navy Pier, Inc. (Chicago)
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