Today’s News - Wednesday, December 12, 2012
• Goldhagen and Williams offer very interesting takes on the darker side of Niemeyer and the "beauty and inhumanity" of his architecture; "is there anything worth salvaging from his complex legacy?"
• Iovine, on the other hand, considers "his commitment to an architecture that placed people and pleasure at its core."
• Hunt makes thoughtful connections between Niemeyer and his contemporaries in music and literature - his work is "part of larger whole in ways some criticisms of it may have missed."
• A handful of starchitects and others expound on how the Brazilian architect influenced them and their profession.
• A British Brutalist masterpiece faces an iffy future.
• On a lighter note, Makovsky talks to the children of midcentury masters about growing up in a world surrounded by design.
• A special report finds many green schools are "long on promise, short on delivery"; there's a new rating system that "emphasizes features that affect students as opposed to the outdoor environment."
• Grabar cheers the Empowerhouse passive house landing on its permanent site in D.C.
• Sydney's Darling Harbour picks an impressive team for its makeover.
• The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts has big expansion plans (design competition open to Quebec architects only).
• Gallagher rounds up the "bumper crop" of winners in the Detroit by Design 2012 competition to reimagine the city's riverfront.
• An in-depth look at Höweler + Yoon's Shareway 2030 - a "radical transportation vision" for the Boswash mega-region.
• Yale celebrated women in architecture: the good news: Yale women are everywhere; the bad news: "there are still wide and puzzling gender-related disparities in architectural practice and opportunity."
• One we couldn't resist: Duckzilla sails up the Thames (this one quacked us up).
• Call for entries: Call for Housing Research Proposals, the MacArthur Foundation's five-year, $25 million research initiative + Visionary (re)generation Open International Competition for a sustainable campus community for the University of Manitoba + RFP for adaptive re-use of Governors Island's historic district buildings + Reinvent Payphones Design Challenge for the future of NYC's public pay telephones.
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The Beauty and Inhumanity of Oscar Niemeyer’s Architecture: [He] holds an important place in the history of modern architecture, but it’s not the one to which he and his glorifiers lay claim...the myth of his outsized contribution to the founding of a humane modern architecture doesn't withstand scrutiny...what can we celebrate in his work...some really great architecture. (A lot of not great architecture too, as well as some appalling urban ideas...) By Sarah Williams Goldhagen -- Le Corbusier; Frank Lloyd Wright; Alvar Aalto; Berthold Lubetkin; Roberto Burle Marx; Lucio Costa [images]- The New Republic
The Architect of the Future That Never Was: The failed dreamscapes of Oscar Niemeyer: Brazil's most celebrated architect leaves behind a decidedly mixed legacy...Brasilia has become a buzzword for the impractical, utopian ideas of the past: a white marble monument to central planning surrounded by slums. Is there anything worth salvaging from his complex legacy? By Richard J. Williams -- Lucio Costa [links, slide show]- Foreign Policy magazine
Oscar Niemeyer: Concrete Optimism: ...was the last living link to an era that truly believed in architecture and its capacity to embody progress and new technology for the good of all...his commitment to an architecture that placed people and pleasure at its core was a revolutionary goal then and now...Brutal and heroic, scenographic and spectacular, Brasilia is his more complicated legacy...(now a nowhere hugged by slums)... By Julie V. Iovine -- Lúcio Costa; Le Corbusier; Roberto Burle Marx- Wall Street Journal
Oscar Niemeyer: Some Brazilian Contexts: ...Brasília may have been an isolated phenomenon...but the innovative modernism of Niemeyer and his contemporaries was not...his work appears part of larger whole in ways some criticisms of it may have missed. The radiant forms of Brasília might seem detached from history, but they turn out to be very much part of it. By Holly Hunt- California Literary Review
What did Oscar Niemeyer mean to you? Zaha Hadid, Daniel Libeskind, Todd Saunders and others tell us how the Brazilian architect influenced them and their profession. -- Fernando and Humberto Campana/Campana Brothers; Juergen Mayer/J. MAYER H.; Zoë Ryan/Art Institute of Chicago; Bernard Tschumi; Richard Meier; Norman Foster [slide show]- Azure magazine (Canada)
Last stop yet again for Preston's Brutalist masterpiece: The 20th Century Society has vowed to fight...recommendation to demolish the city’s iconic Brutalist bus shelter ‘every step of the way’ -- BDP (1969) [image]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Modernists At Play: The children of midcentury masters reflect on growing up in a world surrounded by design. By Paul Makovsky -- Hugh Hardy; Charles Moore; György & Juliet Kepes; Jean Prouvé; Richard Dattner; Aldo Van Eyck [images]- Metropolis Magazine
Green schools: Long on promise, short on delivery: ...special report finds little link between environmentally friendly buildings and learning or energy use...schools are not operating as promised...school designers "often overestimate the savings" in energy use...An alternative school-rating system developed by the California-based Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS) emphasizes features that affect students as opposed to the outdoor environment.- USA Today
D.C. Gets Its First 'Passive House': What began as a competition entry is now a two-family home in Northeast Washington...Last year, as a joint entry of The New School and the Stevens Institute of Technology to the Department of Energy's Solar Decathalon...the Empowerhouse...landed a permanent site and two new owners. By Henry Grabar- The Atlantic Cities
OMA, Hassell, and Populous to redevelop Sydney’s Darling Harbour: The Destination Sydney team, lead by developers Lend Lease...the winning bidders with their plans to create a 40,000-square-metre exhibition centre, a red-carpet entertainment venue, a 900-room hotel and a new residential neighbourhood. -- Denton Corker Marshall [images]- Dezeen
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts expands to house Hornstein collection: Museum will construct new building to house $75M in Old Masters paintings...The architect of the new space will be chosen through a contest...- CBS News (Canada)
Detroit's riverfront design contest draws new visions, names top winners; ...a bumper crop of new visions to help it reimagine its riverfront. Designers from as distant as South Korea and England were among the winners in...Detroit by Design 2012 competition... By John Gallagher -- Atelier WHY; Matthew Edward Getch; OMMX; Architecture W [images]- Detroit Free Press
Höweler + Yoon’s radical transportation vision: The Boston firm earned the Audi Urban Future Award with an ambitious concept that revolutionizes the transportation system of the Boston-Washington corridor. The Shareway 2030...would create a network of roads, train tracks and tunnels in the mega-region known as Boswash. [images]- Azure magazine (Canada)
Yale Celebrates Women in Architecture: The many statistics that appeared over the course of the weekend made it clear that today there are still wide and puzzling gender-related disparities in architectural practice and opportunity. By Brigid Williams/Hickox Williams Architects -- Anne Weisberg/The FutureWork Institute; Sonia Schimberg; Sara Caples/Caples Jefferson Architects; Lisa Gray; MJ Long; Maya Lin;Anna Fels- Architectural Record
Giant rubber duck thrills London: Duckzilla! A giant 50ft-tall rubber duck paddled up the River Thames to publicise a new £250,000 bursary to help make more Britons have more fun...maybe it quacked you up? [slide show]- Guardian (UK)
Call for entries: Call for Housing Research Proposals: How Housing Matters to Families & Communities 2012-2013 Competition, a five-year, $25 million research initiative; deadline for abstracts: January 11, 2013- MacArthur Foundation
Call for entries: Visionary (re)generation Open International Competition: envision a sustainable campus community for the University of Manitoba Fort Garry campus in Winnipeg; cash prizes; deadline: March 11, 2013- University of Manitoba (Canada)
Call for entries: Trust for Governors Island Issues Request for Proposals/RFP for Historic District Buildings: Largest Opportunity for Adaptive Re-use of Historic Buildings in the Country; deadline: March 14, 2013- Trust for Governors Island
Call for entries: Reinvent Payphones Design Challenge, a competition to rally urban designers, planners, technologists and policy experts to create physical and virtual prototypes that imagine the future of New York City’s public pay telephones (U.S. residents); deadline: February 18- City of New York
-- Herzog & de Meuron: Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, New York -- Douglas Moyer Architect; Reed Hilderbrand Landscape Architects
-- Diamond Schmitt Architects: Ryerson Image Centre, Toronto, Canada
-- Riding the Los Angeles Metro: Architects and artists have collaborated on turning the new LA Metro Stations into exciting, colorful spaces that reflect a community of culturally diverse people. By Kirsten Kiser -- The Tanzmann Associates; Siegel Diamond Architecture; Dworsky Associates; Miralles Associates; Escudero-Fribourg Architects; Diedrich Architects & Associates; Ellerbe Becket; Anil Verma Associates; Arquitectonica; etc.
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