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Today’s News - Friday, June 13, 2014

•   ArcSpace reviews "MVRDV Buildings" that is "highly accomplished and quietly radical...this is not your dime-a-dozen architectural monograph."

•   Shigeru Ban's Pritzker Prize ceremony will be live-streamed for the first time today.

•   Hawthorne parses this year's Pritzker, Golden Lion, and AIA Gold Medal winners that indicate "an emerging shift in how architecture defines itself, a loosening of the Monuments Men's collective grip."

•   Roose lets loose with "5 reasons cities are getting better, and everywhere else is getting worse."

•   A long look at how "defensive urban architecture" has evolved from "a more positive movement to design against crime" to the current propensity to "perceive the public as a threat and treat everyone as a criminal."

•   Scottish architects call for the University of Strathclyde to loan empty studios to the Glasgow School of Art while it rebuilds.

•   A most engaging Q&A between Jencks and Koolhaas, who "debate the morality, message and meaning behind this year's Venice Biennale": Rem "arrived and left quickly by a special Koolhaas speedboat that gave the conversation an added urgency and Dutch humor" (great read).

•   Menking offers his thoughtful take on the Biennale: "It remains to be seen, given the profound cultural, political, and environmental crisis rolling over the world, whether it is enough to empower architects to engage with these issues or simply return to the past."

•   Goodburn cheers the "amusing collaboration between FAT and Crimson" for the British Pavilion that "joyfully celebrates the heyday of British Modernism," but it is "bereft of bite."

•   Meanwhile, the Rotterdam International Architecture Biennale's "Urban by Nature," curated by landscape architect Sijmonds, proves its relevance by "acknowledging that our environmental problems have been caused by urbanization - and it is only in cities that the solutions can be found."

•   The Palm Springs Art Museum's new Architecture and Design Center, in a 1961 former bank by E. Stewart Williams and transformed by Marmol Radziner, will be ready for its close-up this November.

•   Jones says Gormley's art leaves him "cold," but he starts to enjoy himself in the artist's "Room" in a luxury London hotel: "There's something powerfully perverse about offering, as the height of luxury, a room that resembles a penitent monastic cell created for some guilt-stricken Renaissance prince."

•   Singh says "Room" is "a £2,500-a-night pitch black hotel room is not suitable for the claustrophobic, but could become "a bonking site of choice" for others.

•   The Four Season's Picasso curtain will make its new home at the New-York Historical Society: "It sort of breaks my heart," says Lambert.

•   Eyefuls (great presentations) of the Good Design Is Good Business 2014 winners: "Each corroborates the notion that design matters."

•   Weekend diversions:

•   A good reason to head to L.A.: highlights of the always interesting (and fun) Dwell on Design 3-day design exhibition.

•   Beirut Design Week puts the spotlight on Dutch and Danish design "beyond flat-pack furniture and housing."

•   Wainwright is wow'd by "Ecopolis China," a new documentary "drenched with pathos" that offers "fascinating glimpses behind the scenes of the Chinese eco gold rush."

•   "Open To The Public: Civic Space Now" at NYC's Center for Architecture "explores the conflict between our desire for freedom and our desire for control" (we saw it last night - most excellent!).

•   "Women Building Change" at the Chicago Architecture Foundation celebrates 40 years of Chicago Women in Architecture members and legacies.

•   Schmertz cheers Filler's "Makers of Modern Architecture, Volume II" that "deftly places his subjects in the aesthetic, theoretical, historic, and political life of their time," while "revealing his own mastery of the art of critical praise."

•   Rajagopal gives two thumbs-ups to Thomé's "Ettore Sottsass" that "offers a look at lesser-known aspects of the Italian designer's work."

•   Happy Friday the 13th (the only one this year)!


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