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Today’s News - Friday, March 1, 2013

•   Can U.S. embassies be safe without being unsightly? Yes, according to a new State Department video "describing art, design and architecture as diplomatic languages."

•   Saffron says no matter how many design tricks even talented architects use, "design will not save us from what's wrong with parking garages," as evidenced by a new one in Philly that, in the end, "is as oppressive and lifeless as any other."

•   Rochon cheers plans to "soften the edges" of the ROM's "jagged face."

•   Chan cheers Selldorf's new gallery: "Amid a neighborhood of High Line-hugging trophy buildings, it dialogues with a less polished Chelsea, highlighting the oft-overlooked pulchritude of warehouses, factories, and auto shops rather than expunging its industrial past."

•   Eyefuls of the 60th Annual Progressive Architecture Award winners (great presentation).

•   A good reason to head to Harvard next week: "Putting Public Space in its Place" conference (an impressive line-up of participants led by GSD's own public space guru Kayden).

•   Weekend diversions:

•   The release of a new report on the benefits of green schools times perfectly with the opening of the "Green Schools" exhibition at the National Building Museum.

•   While in D.C., check out the "new kid on the design-fest block," the D.C. International Design Festival.

•   King takes in SFMOMA's Lebbeus Woods show: it "can be challenged on multiple levels, starting with whether he in fact was an architect at all. But there's no denying the potent force of the drawings that hum with life along the walls."

•   Rawsthorn and McDonald are enraptured by Eileen Gray show at the Centre Pompidou: it "goes a long way toward correcting misperceptions by asserting both her architectural credentials and her commitment to modernism" + it's a "stunning" and "breathtaking retrospective" that leaves "no doubt she has been rescued from relative obscurity."

•   Wainwright x 2: Vitra Design Museum's "vast new retrospective" of Louis Kahn, "the brick whisperer," brings to life "a vivid picture of a curious man, with his obsessions."

•   He's quite taken by "Venice Takeaway" at RIBA: "What do the national anthem and a 'small, elderly woman' have in common with statutory building rules?"

•   NYC's Skyscraper Museum offers "The Woolworth Building @ 100," that shows itself "still radiant on the lower Manhattan skyline."

•   Design Museum Boston presents an array of entries in the Street Seats Design Challenge competition (some are pretty nifty!).

•   Schumacher gives two thumbs-ups to Brook's "A History of Future Cities": he "relays these complicated histories succinctly, densely and vividly."

•   Thompson cheers Bosker's exploration of "duplitecture" in "Original Copies."

•   Galinsky's "Malls Across America" is "a time capsule of not only American culture, but an unflinching document of the shopping mall in its prime."

•   A new play in Sydney features built environments by nine architectural teams of established and up-and-coming architects.


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