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Today’s News - Friday, January 10, 2014

•   Wilson talks to Calori & Vanden-Eynden re: the positive payoffs of integrated environmental graphic design: if you've ever felt lost in a building, the lack of effective EGD is the likely culprit (ANN exclusive).

•   Hawthorne weighs in on MoMA plans: he was never a big AFAM fan, but he does find great "irony" - and wonders what it would have meant if DS+R had resigned from the project: it "would have made a powerful statement that architects can be more than the handmaidens of an ethos that says growth is always good."

•   Pedersen had "a hard time believing that MoMA's announcement was anything more than political theater," and that opening the Sculpture Garden to the public is "a nice gesture, but it's hard for me not to interpret that as a bone being thrown to us."

•   Bozikovic strikes a brighter note, cheering the Vancouver Art Gallery getting it right with its shortlist of superstars and a very talented "sleeper" (ironically, including DS+R and TWBTA): "VAG's choice now is between metaphors and materials" (alas, no images - yet).

•   Speaking of superstars, eyefuls of BIG, OMA, and Büro Ole Scheeren's vying designs for a media campus on what was once a no-man's land in Berlin.

•   Chaban cheers NYC developers converting garages into high-end condos: "They'll be painting a garage to put up paradise."

•   Piano ponders his life as an Italian senator: "the very sound of it makes him guffaw incredulously. 'I still prefer architect...architecture is by definition a political job'" - and what he's doing with his senatorial salary proves it.

•   Salomon and Kroeter have an enlightening Q&A with Scott Brown re: the significance of "Learning from Las Vegas" today (and more): "Urban design should not be confused with the design of large scale architecture."

•   Clemence queries Foster re: his encounter with Niemeyer: "Our talk affirmed shared values rather than revelations" (great pix!).

•   Weese's wonderful Washington Metro wins the 2014 AIA Twenty-five Year Award for giving "monumental civic space to the humble task of public transit" (yay!).

•   Call for entries: Azure magazine's AZ Awards 2014 international competition.

•   Weekend diversions:

•   In Hong Kong, "Building M+: The Museum and Architecture Collection" juxtaposes lost Hong Kong landmarks with designs by Western architects in Asia - and showcases H&deM's M+ future home.

•   Almost anything goes in Santa Barbara, CA, where "Almost Anything Goes" presents cutting-edge architects doing art: "none of it resembles anything one might expect to find in a conventional architect's studio" ("weirdoes" being pulled "back from the edge of insanity" with whimsy included).

•   Moore gives (mostly) thumbs-up to Montgomery's "Happy City": once you "get past the title" and "some gushing prose," you'll find it "a valuable book."

•   Schumacher finds Montgomery "combines solid research and thinking with down-to-earth, relatable and spirited arguments" and "elegant" writing. "If nothing else, the optimism and excitement make this book worth taking in."

•   Way dissects Chakrabarti's "A Country of Cities": it is "well-written, though slightly redundant, prose and clear illustrations. Redundancy here is not a bad thing."

•   Jordison cheers "Concretopia": Grindrod has "plenty of good things to say about postwar British architects and planners," but in addition to the "good intentions, this is a catalogue of folly, cost-cutting and, above all, hubris."

•   "Closer to God: Religious Architecture and Sacred Spaces" is filled with "striking" photographs that prove "the most evocative buildings are often the most unassuming" (striking indeed!).

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