Today’s News - Monday, April 8, 2013
• ArcSpace brings us Sambuichi Architects' stunning nature observatory in Kobe, Japan.
• Burrows digs deep into what's really going on behind the scenes with Apple's $5 billion "doughnut" HQ, now trying to shave $1 billion off - lots of intriguing insider disclosures (one of several must-reads today).
• Saffron takes in GlaxoSmithKline's new HQ in Philly's Navy Yard: it's "a boho loft space in conventional corporate clothing," and "a social disrupter that promises to shake up the way we work, as well as our cities" (we saw it, and she's right!).
• A great Q&A with Denise Scott Brown re: the petition to put her name on the 1991 Pritzker Architecture Prize, sexism in architecture, and her career in design.
• Eisenman and Krier have a spirited debate re: Albert Speer and whether "a war criminal can be a great artist," Poundbury, master planning, and so much more.
• Zandberg talks to an Israeli historian about the Nazi government being "the first in history to pass a law protecting the natural environment, but saving the planet wasn't high on their priority list."
• Pyzik takes on Chernobyl and "'urban explorers' obsessed with so-called 'ruin porn' - its tourism status as a toxic Disneyland ceases to be as innocent as it once was."
• Pearman visits the reopened Rijksmuseum: it's not quite the marvel one would expect after 10 years and €375 million, "but it's good - hats off to the engineers" (as he told us, "I love the underwater-concrete thing. Digging a basement in Holland was never going to be easy").
• Heathcote x 2: he finds São Paulo a "museum of modernism" with an "exhilarating, inventive use of civic space."
• He dissects the "shared influence" of Rietveld's Schröder House and the Eames House, "quite clearly designed for living in and among the most radical but also, it seems, the most comfortable small houses of the 20th century."
• The Shed gives London's Southbank "an injection of color" with "a striking, exciting structure" that is "rugged, but ready to be used and enjoyed."
• Calys cheers the new Museum of Craft and Design in "the current hippest neighborhood in San Francisco."
• Lange ponders "what's so great about 'timeless' design" in downtown Portland, which "turns out to be an excellent place to explore the definition of timeless in architecture."
• Four Charleston firms band together on new downtown housing development.
• A new prize in memory of a young Australian architect who disappeared in Iran in 1993 will award new research on architecture in the public realm.
• America's Top Small Town ArtPlaces 2013 salutes smaller communities "where the arts are central to creating the kinds of places where people want to live, work, and visit."
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Sambuichi Architects: Rokko Shidare Observatory, Kobe, Japan
Inside Apple's Plans for Its Futuristic, $5 Billion Headquarters: ...in Silicon Valley, nothing says you’ve peaked quite like a lavish new HQ...Few architects will publicly question the judgment of Jobs and Foster, but many privately snicker at the doughnut-shaped design...Aesthetics seem to trump productivity...The true expense of the campus lies not in green tech...some of the sought-after $1 billion savings will likely come by rolling back...sky-high requirements for fit and finish. By Peter Burrows -- Foster + Partners- Bloomberg/BusinessWeek
GlaxoSmithKline's new building carries big implications: ...it is tempting to dismiss the new building at the sedate, manicured Navy Yard as a fancy variation on standard office-park fare...it is a superficial reading...would be better described as a boho loft space in conventional corporate clothing...a social disrupter that promises to shake up the way we work, as well as our cities. By Inga Saffron -- Robert A.M. Stern Architects; Francis Cauffman- Philadelphia Inquirer
Q&A: Denise Scott Brown: The co-founder of Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates (now VSBA) talks about a petition to put her name on the 1991 Pritzker Architecture Prize, about sexism in architecture, and about her career in design. [slide show]- Architect Magazine
Revisiting the Reich; Léon Krier's newly republished book on Nazi architect Albert Speer argues that a war criminal can be a great artist. Peter Eisenman sits down with Krier to challenge that claim..."All architecture is political."- Architect Magazine
Brown and Green: Were the Nazis forerunners of environmental movements? The Nazi government was the first in history to pass a law protecting the natural environment, but saving the planet wasn't high on their priority list, says Israeli historian Boaz Neumann. By Esther Zandberg- Ha`aretz (Israel)
Toxic Ruins: the Political & Economic Cost of Ruin Porn: In the radioactive debris of Chernobyl, a new type of safari has sprouted, led by ‘urban explorers’ obsessed with so-called ‘ruin porn’, a phenomenon propagated by architecture magazines & websites worldwide. But what is really at stake? ...its tourism status as a toxic Disneyland ceases to be as innocent as it once was. By Agata Pyzik [images]- Australian Design Review
Digging deep: the reopened Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam: ...a rebuilding programme lasting over a decade, and costing 375m Euros. For that time and money, you expect to find a marvel. It’s not quite that, but it’s good...hats off to the engineers...Welcome back with all your faults... By Hugh Pearman -- Petrus Josephus (Pierre) Cuypers; Cruz y Ortiz; Jean-Michel Wilmotte; Van Hoogevest Architecten; Arcadis [images]- HughPearman.com (UK)
Sao Paulo: museum of modernism: In their exhilarating, inventive use of civic space, the architects of São Paulo have achieved something unique: Praça das Artes...what defines this vast, parasitic piece of infill are the wonderful urban spaces the architects have created at its centre...a sprawling reimagination of urban industry as public realm..."The Insides are on the Outside"... By Edwin Heathcote -- Paulo Mendes da Rocha; Brasil Arquitetura; Lina Bo Bardi; João Batista Vilanova Artigas;Hans Ulrich Obrist [images]- Financial Times (UK)
Lives lived in parallel: ...the shared influence of the Netherlands’ Schröder House and California’s Eames House: Some modernist houses are conceived and designed more for effect than for everyday life. Yet these two seemingly painterly houses were quite clearly designed for living in and are among the most radical but also, it seems, the most comfortable small houses of the 20th century. By Edwin Heathcote -- Gerrit Rietveld (1924); Charles and Ray Eames [images]- Financial Times (UK)
The Shed: The National Theatre unveils its new temporary theatre space: London’s Southbank has been given an injection of colour...a striking, exciting structure...rugged, but ready to be used and enjoyed. By Sarah Howell -- Haworth Tompkins- New Statesman (UK)
What is hip? The Museum of Craft and Design! MCD is opening its long-awaited new home...has taken a bold step in relocating to Dogpatch... By George Calys -- Gary Hutton Design; McCall Design Group [slide show]- San Francisco Examiner
Portlandia + Timelessness: ...what's so great about "timeless" design anyway? Downtown Portland turns out to be an excellent place to explore the definition of timeless in architecture in 1947, 1970, 1982. By Alexandra Lange -- Michael Graves; Pietro Belluschi; Lawrence Halprin & Associates [images]- Design Observer
Happy Family: Four local architecture firms band together on new downtown housing development: It's not every day that four rival architecture firms work together on a single small in-fill project. But here they are...a currently empty lot...will soon become a 14-house development. -- John Douglas Tucker; Heather A. Wilson; Neil Stevenson and Associates; Byers Design Group- Charleston City Paper (South Carolina)
New prize announced in memory of David Lindner: ...talented architect who disappeared in Iran in 1993 – he was 27 years old...Prize entrants must submit a written proposal dedicated to encouraging new research on architecture in the public realm.- Architecture & Design (Australia)
America’s Top Small Town ArtPlaces 2013: ...a new annual initiative recognizing smaller communities in the country where the arts are central to creating the kinds of places where people want to live, work, and visit.- ArtPlace
Book Review: "Original Copies: Architectural Mimicry in Contemporary China" by Bianca Bosker: A must-have for those who wish to see a design phenomenon and trend explained in a clear and concise manner without the pretentious tribal signifiers that so plague academic writers. By Christian Bjone- ArchNewsNow
Nuts + Bolts #3: Focus on the Future: Keys to Steady Growth in a Slow Recovery: Business forecasts are looking brighter, but steady, measured growth is still your best strategy for success. By Steve Whitehorn- ArchNewsNow
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