Today’s News - Tuesday, April 1, 2014
• Kamin offers some thoughts on this year's Pritzker pick: "Ban is "a Japanese philosopher king and an impish uncle" - he "isn't 'St. Shigeru'; he's funny and down-to-earth, not preachy, and that's good. Architects who wrap themselves in the mantle of do-goodism can be tiresome."
• Farrelly lays out the two choices left for the environment if our "our daggy and retrograde governments" don't get their acts together: "Either we form an axis of planet-lovers to protect nature from ourselves. Or we accept future cockroaches as the inheritor species."
• Murphy doesn't want "to come across as an angry architect," but he minces no words re: Scotland being "one of worst places to be an architect" where "there was little to be proud of built in the past 20 years" ("government of hypocrisy" included).
• Christiansen hopes it's not to late to save the soul of Edinburgh from the proposed Caltongate development that "must rank among the most lazy, craven and myopic I have ever encountered - a glassy piece of identikit urbanism, cynically laminated with a bit of period pastiche" (with lots of space for Pizza Express).
• Saffron is seething over Children's Hospital's plans that "would turn the bustling Schuylkill waterfront into Philadelphia's own Great Wall of Parking - but there is still time to limit the damage. What happens now on the river stays on the river forever."
• Lange has an eye-opening visit to the Museo Nacional de Antropologia in Mexico City that "is a stark contrast to the commodified museum experience that has become the norm. Sometimes you have to see something done right to know what's been wrong all your life."
• Betsky is totally taken by the new Rotterdam Central Station that "makes room for and celebrates the movement that is so central to our life in a manner that is public, shared, and open - and not to mention exhilarating."
• Loos likes the loose banter between Ando and the Clark Art Institute's director: "no one ever said hiring a starchitect would make life easy. The back and forth has pushed the project to be more ambitious than it might otherwise have been."
• Down Under, a "first glimpse" at plans for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games Village shows housing, retail, and infrastructure that "will be transformed into a new mixed-use community" in post-Games mode.
• Green finds a "park for the nostalgic" in Vancouver that is "fun, sustainable, and popular" (we want to go play!).
• A Norwegian social worker teams up with a "fledgling" firm to build a low-budget orphanage in a small village in Thailand that is anything but Dickensian.
• Eyefuls of Hadid's City of Dreams hotel in Macau (we can't wait to see what nickname(s) this gets stuck with).
• Horton, meanwhile, thanks Schumacher "for taking to Facebook to let off steam": "Coming from a place of privilege, it is easy to assume an apolitical, form-making agenda," but "architecture is too important to be a neutral, meaningless vessel, simply about the drama of forms and technology."
• Eyefuls of the Living Cities Competition winners that offer two very different visions for 2040 New York (we'll reserve judgment).
• Eyefuls of the Fabergé Big Egg Hunt that launches across NYC's five boroughs today with more than 200 eggs designed by some mighty fine folks.
• Eyefuls of the 15 2014 OAA Design Excellence winners - People's Choice Award voting now open.
• Call for entries: MESH: Medellín Experimental Social Housing International Competition.
• Planetizen's April 1st Edition: "New Study Finds Asthmatic Children Cause Inner City Traffic Congestion" (you didn't think we'd forget it's April Fool's Day, did you? The headlines alone will make you grin!).
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This year's Pritzker prize opens a new door: Selection of Shigeru Ban puts socially conscious architecture in spotlight: This was an inspired, inspiring pick...Ban isn't "St. Shigeru"; he's funny and down-to-earth, not preachy, and that's good. Architects who wrap themselves in the mantle of do-goodism can be tiresome...Low budgets need not breed low expectations. By Blair Kamin- Chicago Tribune
Just two choices are left for the environment: Each era has such a battle...Ours...is environmentalism. However it ends - and it may not be well - this will be our defining moral issue...Pretty soon even our daggy and retrograde governments will have to admit that environmentalism is not just the way of the future. It's the only way we'll have a future...Either we form an axis of planet-lovers...to protect nature from ourselves. Or we accept that future cockroaches, as the inheritor species... By Elizabeth Farrelly- Sydney Morning Herald
Scotland ‘one of worst places to be an architect’: ...according to the man behind a string of the nation’s most acclaimed modern buildings...there was little to be proud of built in the past 20 years...accused the Scottish Government of hypocrisy for pursuing a cost-driven system while preparing for a year-long celebration of architecture and design in 2016...“I don’t want to come across as an angry architect. But most of my compatriots will not raise their head above the parapet." -- Richard Murphy- The Scotsman (UK)
Saving the soul of Edinburgh: it's not too late: The proposed Caltongate development would merely add to the list of mediocre new buildings blighting the great medieval city...must rank among the most lazy, craven and myopic I have ever encountered...a glassy piece of identikit urbanism, cynically laminated with a bit of period pastiche...Edinburgh, one can only conclude, is at risk of losing not only its dignity but its soul. By Rupert Christiansen -- Allan Murray [image]- Telegraph (UK)
Parking garages threaten to wall off Schuylkill's east bank: If built as designed, they would turn the bustling Schuylkill waterfront into Philadelphia's own Great Wall of Parking...but there is still time to limit the damage...The city needs to send Children's Hospital back to the drawing board. What happens now on the river, stays on the river forever. By Inga Saffron -- Pelli Clarke Pelli; Ballinger; and Cooper Robertson & Partners [image]- Philadelphia Inquirer
We need more museums that let us relax into knowledge: a 1960s institution in Mexico that gives visitors space and time to wander is a stark contrast to the commodified museum experience that has become the norm...Sometimes you have to see something done right to know what's been wrong all your life. The Museo Nacional de Antropologia in Mexico City is like that. By Alexandra Lange -- Pedro Ramirez Vasquez/Jorge Campuzano/Rafael Mijares (1964)- Dezeen
Rotterdam Central Station Sets a New Standard for the Design of Public Transportation: ...represents a commitment to the future of the design and transportation...it makes room for and celebrates the movement that is so central to our life in a manner that is public, shared, and open—and not to mention exhilarating. By Aaron Betsky -- Bentham Crouwel Architects [images]- Architect Magazine
From Divergence, a Thoughtful Calm: ...the give and take between designer and client turns divergent ideas into a synthesis of bricks and mortar...no one ever said hiring a starchitect would make life easy...The back and forth...has pushed the project to be more ambitious than it might otherwise have been. By Ted Loos -- Michael Conforti/Clark Art Institute; Tadao Ando; Annabelle Selldorf; Reed Hilderbrand [images]- New York Times
First glimpse at Gold Coast Commonwealth Games Village, designed by Arkhefield, ARM Architecture and Archipelago: ...to deliver essential accommodation and services in time for the 6,500 athletes and officials in Games-mode...will include 1,200 permanent apartments and townhouses and a neighbourhood retail centre. After the games, the infrastructure will be transformed into a new mixed-use community. [images]- Architecture & Design (Australia)
A Park for the Nostalgic: ...in Vancouver, the Palm Dairy and Milk Bar, an old ice-cream shop, was a popular spot for more than 30 years, until it closed in the late 80s. In its place, Mid Main Park speaks to what must be the community’s nostalgia for those times...The history of the place is found everywhere...Fun, sustainable, and popular. By Jared Green -- Hapa Collaborative [images]- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Brilliant Architectural Ideas, Brought to Life in a Low-Budget Orphanage: ...Norwegian social worker Ole-Jørgen Edna proves they don’t have to embody the scary stories of Dickens...[in] a small village in Thailand...The result is six “Soe Ker Tie,” which translates to “butterfly houses.” Each is bright, constructed from bamboo and timber. Instead of stuffing everyone into a communal building... -- TYIN Tegnestue [slide show]- Wired
Zaha Hadid in Macau: City of Dreams hotel tower under construction: ...sculptural design forms part of a large-scale entertainment resort... [images, video]- designboom
Thank You, Patrik Schumacher: ...for taking to Facebook...to let off steam — thus starting a meaningful discussion on the role of the architect in society and culture...Coming from a place of privilege, it is easy to assume an apolitical, form-making agenda for the profession...Architecture is too important to be a neutral, meaningless vessel, simply about the drama of forms and technology. By Guy Horton -- Cameron Sinclair/Architecture for Humanity; Cruz Garcia/WAI Architecture Think Tank; Shigeru Ban- ArchDaily
Announcing the Winners of the Living Cities Competition: Two speculative visions for 2040 New York...proposed two wildly different structures. -- Chad Kellogg/Matthew Bowles/Nina Mahjoub/AMLGM; Andrew Duffin/NBRS+Partners [images]- Metropolis Magazine
Fabergé Big Egg Hunt Hides Artist-Designed Eggs Around New York City: New Yorkers are used to having new things appear seemingly out of nowhere: skyscrapers, bike lanes, the cronut. On April 1, more than 200 three-foot-tall eggs will be added to the cacophony, each designed by an artist, designer, or architect and mounted in a public space somewhere in the five boroughs...benefits Studio in a School...and Elephant Family... [slide show]- Architectural Digest
Ontario Association of Architects Announces 2014 OAA Design Excellence Winners and Opens Voting for People's Choice Award through April 15: A Jury selected 15 projects... -- Diamond Schmitt Architects; Edward J. Cuhaci and Associates Architects; Stantec Architecture; KPMB Architects; HDR Architecture; Kongats Architects; MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects; Teeple Architects; Ted Handy & Associates; etc. [images]- Ontario Association of Architects (OAA)
Call for entries: MESH: Medellín Experimental Social Housing International Competition; earlybird registration deadline (save money!): May 18- ArchMedium
Planetizen April 1st Edition: Study Examines the Evolution of the New York Minute + NIMBY Added to the Oxford English Dictionary + New Study Finds Asthmatic Children Cause Inner City Traffic Congestion + SimCity Imposes Congestion Pricing + Smart City Accidentally Downloads Virus +++- PLANetizen
Opening a New Chapter on Designing Public Libraries: Why Robert Dawson's photographic essay on the public library plays it safe by looking back when architects need to scan an emerging horizon. By Norman Weinstein- ArchNewsNow
-- MAD Architects: China Wood Sculpture Museum, Harbin, China: ...signals that even China's frozen northern periphery is beginning to be reshaped...behind the thunderbolt-hued building is China's leading experimental architect, Ma Yansong... By Kevin Holden Platt
-- Exhibition: Film and Architecture as the act of framing: Q&A with Morten Melgaard, who has been researching the relationship between architecture and film for several years.
-- Rafael Viñoly: Today he is a household name and ranks among the greatest living architects. Recently however, his star status has been a little burnt...
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