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Today’s News - Friday, October 18, 2013

•   Some really great reads today! Davis posits that it isn't artists - or preppies - who are to blame for gentrification, "but a symptom of dysfunctional urban policy."

•   Saffron weighs in on efforts to make over Philly's Fabric Row, now "morphing into something new. Of course, it's how change gets managed that matters."

•   Hume blames the failure of Toronto's planning process for the city's "countless, near-identical glass towers": in a city "terrified of change, awash in NIMBYism, planners are always nervous. Too frightened to be imaginative, let alone bold."

•   Q&A with Williamson re: the future of the 'burbs: there are "challenges that good design should have a role in redressing - suburbia represents an opportunity we can't afford to squander."

•   Wood warns that "we need to take a huge pinch of salt with any "net-zero energy"-skyscraper claims. We are a long way from achieving that Holy Grail."

•   Quirk reports that perhaps a "secret" Google project has come up with an answer that "could transform the construction industry as well as architecture itself, especially for skyscrapers and large buildings."

•   Jaffe talks to some neuroscientists who are studying why we love "curvy architecture": turns out our "affection for curves isn't just a matter of personal taste; it's hard-wired into the brain."

•   Maybe that's why we can imagine never getting out of a bed designed by Hadid for her new Dubai hotel.

•   Olcayto on why "architecture is a magical act" even if it's "hard to see under the weight of PQQs, PFIs, red tape, and any manner of the other black arts that seem designed to neutralize your role."

•   Sperber calls for a revision in our ideas about "gender and genius - at a time when we are exploring how and where" women should "lean in."

•   Weekend diversions (and case in point):

•   Lange and Wisniewski parse MoMA's "Designing Modern Women": it "creates a sisterhood of many wonderful objects," but much of the "chronology is the same old story, with the same heroes, only now they have female collaborators" + "all my best friends are here - and they've all brought their boyfriends."

•   Cooke's "Her Brilliant Career" spotlights "10 women who led inspirational lives in the 1950s"; here, an excerpt devoted to Alison Smithson ("She was a one-off," said Peter).

•   "Archeology of the Digital" at the CCA and as a book by Lynn look to preserve "artifacts from the formative years of digital architecture - his voice is especially important today, as much of the early work is stored in increasingly inaccessible files."

•   A spotlight on 10 of the trends featured in "Participatory City: 100 Urban Trends from the BMW Guggenheim Lab": "Density! Hacking! Micro-Units!"

•   The Cooper Union shows off "a variety of beautifully original, informative and radical" ideas from a competition in "DYMAX REDUX: Crowd-sourcing a new projection map for the Buckminster Fuller Institute."

•   The Dallas Center for Architecture spotlights "creative and innovative marquee design projects that local architects are doing for clients internationally."

•   Schmertz is taken by Ryan's "White Cube, Green Maze: New Art Landscapes": "it has much to teach" and "attention should be paid."

•   de Monchaux gives (mostly) thumbs-up to a new Utzon monograph: he was "our sage Kenobi, our renegade Solo, our heroic Skywalker...an architect out of central casting - as tall as Koolhaas, as beautiful as Herzog, as Danish as Ingels."

•   Bakewell basks in Campbell's "precise and enlightening" "The Library: A World History": libraries "must be efficient machines but the best ones are a little crazy, too. Long may they stay that way."

•   FAT's Jacob enjoys Shepheard's "How To Like Everything: A Utopia" that "tears up the familiar maps of architectural theory - with hardly a mention of disciplinary architecture," making it "all the more valuable."



  


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