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Today’s News - Friday, October 7, 2011

EDITOR'S NOTE: We'll be scoping out the Association of Architecture Organizations annual conference ( in Philly on Monday and Tuesday, and not sure we'll be able to post the newsletter. But we'll be back for sure on Wednesday, October 12.

•   Zandberg reports on a report that "paints a grim picture of the planning situation" in Israel: "Cosmetics won't help. Israel's open spaces require surgery...before it's too late."

•   Arieff on a grassroots guide to saving America's Rust Belt and some reasons to be positive about its future.

•   High hopes (and some reservations) about plans for a new TOD near Princeton, NJ, that developers promise will have a high "coolness factor."

•   Riga works to find a balance between its architectural heritage and still allow "architectural creativity in new construction."

•   Pogrebin and Iovine weigh in on H&deM's restoration of NYC's landmarked Park Avenue Armory: the architects "don't want to turn this into a ridiculous version of itself," and view it as a chance to prove "we are not just producers of icons."

•   Koolhaas offers a "wry" description of and "cheeky" assertion about OMA's Maggie's Gartnavel in Glasgow.

•   Hume hums high praise for the new Helsinki Music Centre: it doesn't "provoke a "Wow" so much as an "Of course": it's "one of those rare projects that do double duty" as a home for music and "also the dwelling place of urbanity."

•   This year's Stirling Prize brings out some tarnished (and some quite barbed) responses: does the jury process need to be more transparent? No, says Ruth Reed; Yes, says George Ferguson + Baillieu finds "something very wrong about the RIBA's refusal to let the judges explain why Hadid triumphed" + some previous "Stirling stars lambast system."

•   Holcim Awards 2011 for Latin America winners prove sustainable construction is a key to better urban life.

•   Weekend diversions:

•   An amazing eyeful of Arthus-Bertrand's "New York From the Air: A Story of Architecture" that transforms "street-level scenes into majestic, abstract cityscapes."

•   An eyeful of Cassani's "Sacred Spaces in Profane Buildings" on view at NYC's Storefront for Art and Architecture.

•   Crosbie weighs in on Tigerman's retrospective at Yale: "he didn't want to be original. He wanted to be good."

•   "Richard Barnes: Unnatural Spaces" takes a "provocative look at the way architecture is both a complicit partner in, and also an unwitting subject of, the practice of presentation."

•   Hawthorne x 2: "California Design 1930-1965 " at LACMA, "designed with noticeable joie de vivre" by Hodgetts + Fung, "has an irresistibly light touch, offering a few dozen rays of sunshine for every drop of noir."

•   He revisits Hise's 1997 "Magnetic Los Angeles" that "sets out systematically to undermine the idea" that the city "is the ultimate unplanned metropolis."

•   Heathcote wishes Hal Foster didn't feel "perhaps, too much affection for his protagonists" in "The Art-Architecture Complex"; instead of being "an excoriating examination," it "becomes a friendly guide to an art and architecture phenomenon that now appears rather last century."

•   "John Portman: A Life of Building" documentary debuts in Rotterdam tomorrow, then on to NYC, Singapore, and Chicago.


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