Today’s News - Thursday, July 3, 2014
EDITOR'S NOTE: With the 4th of July upon us, our summer schedule starts tomorrow - we will not be posting on Fridays and Mondays (gasp!). We'll be back Tuesday, July 8.
• Betsky bemoans the change to a more negative tone that is "ironic and disturbing" when it comes to shared public spaces: "The place of commonality or gathering has turned into the safety of distance and disengagement."
• Evitts Dickinson delves into the realm of public space and buffer zones when it comes to women's reproductive health clinics and "why architects need to do more" (especially with the recent Supreme Court ruling).
• Pritchard visits Hadid's Heydar Aliyev Centre in Baku: "As a piece of architecture devoid of context" it is "captivating - and perhaps the most important building of recent years, but the unstated set of values that this building represents should maybe give cause for concern."
• Waite wades into what's behind the Holl vs. Hopkins standoff re: a Maggie's Centre at St. Bart's Hospital that has become a "planning battle" in "a polarized tug-of-war between the Maggie's Modernists and the heritage protectors."
• Olcayto re: the Serpentine Pavilion: "it's not worth spending too much time wondering what Radic's freakish folly actually is" - other than "another sign that primitivist forms are oh so now" (it's always been "more about the curator than the architect" anyway).
• Ulam is left feeling "oddly glum" by Koolhaas's vision for the Biennale; it seems that for Rem, "architecture has lost the potential to delight" and "has removed practicing architects (besides himself) from the stage."
• Brussat is brutal x 2: Charleston's approval Cleopfil's Clemson University School of Architecture is an "official blessing to poke a stick in its own eye"; and at the Biennale, Rem "gave the architectural establishment a taste of its own medicine. The elites didn't like it."
• Berg takes us out of the gloom and doom (whew!): SurveyLA intends "to keep Los Angeles from forgetting itself" using open-source software that is being adapted for cities around the world.
• Montreal landscape architect Cormier looks ahead at five public space projects that will transform three Ontario cities.
• UNESCO considers whether to name 11 FLW buildings World Heritage Sites (please say yes!).
• Weekend diversions:
• Shaw finds FLW's recreated filling station is a gas at Buffalo's Pierce-Arrow Museum, and looks at a few other architects whose designs were built posthumously: "These recreations raise questions about intent, authorship, and authenticity."
• Heathcote gives thumbs-up to GRAD Gallery's "Work and Play Behind the Iron Curtain" in London: "This delightful exhibition lifts the curtain on Soviet-era consumerism" (we'll take the vac any day!).
• The Chicago Architecture Foundation turns the city into (really) big data, "encompassing everything from tweets to demographics to air quality."
• Bentley cheers Lavin's "Everything Loose Will Land" at the Graham Foundation in Chicago: it "betrays no looseness of concept or execution" and "doesn't feel like a geographic or historical oddity. It's alive, still inspiring experimentation today."
• Bernstein says Albrecht's "Designing Home: Jews and Midcentury Modernism" at the Contemporary Jewish Museum of San Francisco "is worth seeing. But it also makes clear that a larger, more far-reaching show would be worth organizing."
• Q&A with Maya Lin re: "saving the planet through art," and her environmentally-minded site-specific projects for a show at the H&deM-designed Parrish Art Museum.
• The National Building Museum's "BIG Maze" (yes, that's Bjarke's BIG) opens Friday: "Don't worry if you get totally lost. 'We will sweep it at the end of the day.'"
• McGuirk's "Radical Cities" is "a collection of stories that demonstrates great ingenuity in the harshest of circumstances."
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Imagining Public Spaces: How can we design shared public spaces that are integral to our daily lives, safe, and make us come to a sense of shared destiny? From the mundane...to the important - such as giving women a chance to work through their own life issues without being confronted by protesters - space matters. But it only matters in a negative way...What we have lost is the sense that space is something we venture into because it is a stage for society... By Aaron Betsky- Architect Magazine
The Architecture Of Abortion: How Providers Build Their Own Buffer Zones. And why architects need to do more to ensure women's reproductive rights: ...many resort to clever architectural hacks to help safeguard against protesters...It is the failure of architecture to protect patients and providers...design was practically nonexistent...“They can’t afford architects...they believe architects won’t work with them..." By Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson -- Anne Fougeron/Fougeron Architecture; Lori Brown- Fast Company
Heydar Aliyev Centre by Zaha Hadid: As a piece of architecture devoid of context, ZHA’s captivating cultural centre in Baku, Azerbaijan, is perhaps the most important building of recent years, but its purpose and values remain unclear...Many will regard it as a worthy winner of the Design Museum's Design of the Year award, but the unstated set of values that this building represents should maybe give cause for concern. By Owen Pritchard [images]- Icon (UK)
Holl versus Hopkins standoff: On 17 July Maggie’s Centre will seek permission for its Steven Holl design for a centre at St Bartholomew's Hospital in the teeth of vehement objections...planning battle became a polarised tug-of-war between the Maggie’s Modernists and the heritage protectors. + Q&A with Holl. By Richard Waite -- Donald Insall Associates [images]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
The Serpentine Pavilion: A space-age dolmen (for sipping fizzy wine in) or a symbol of the future of British architecture? Both...it’s not worth spending too much time wondering what Smiljan Radic’s freakish folly actually is...another sign that primitivist forms are oh so now...the pavilion has always been more about the curator than the architect...more obvious now there’s no starchitect obscuring this truth. By Rory Olcayto [images]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
An art show for toilets and ductwork: Rem Koolhaas’s vision for architecture’s biggest fair is oddly glum, and often wrong...for director of the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, architecture has lost the potential to delight...has removed practising architects (besides himself) from the stage...Fortunately, he was unable to impose his vision on all 66 national pavilions... By Alex Ulam- Maclean's (Canada)
Architecture's slap in Charleston's face: Charleston, S.C., gave Clemson University...official blessing to poke a stick in its own eye...a school of architecture, modernist in design, will be built amidst the city’s historic district. In the face of the entire community’s revulsion...two traditional counterproposals that should be considered...14th Venice Architectural Biennale...Rem Koolhaas...gave the architectural establishment a taste of its own medicine. The elites didn’t like it... By David Brussat -- Brad Cleopfil/Allied Works; Bevan & Libertos [images]- Providence Journal (Rhode Island)
A database to keep Los Angeles from forgetting itself: L.A. may be a young city still but it’s creating a model for how to chronicle its historic resources...Beyond the physical landmarks...SurveyLA is focusing on its cultural history...open-source software to be able to capture all types of heritage, from ancient to structural to cultural...Arches is being adapted for cities across the world to use. By Nate Berg- Citiscope
5 Re-Imagined Landscapes by Claude Cormier: We sat down with Montreal landscape architect to look ahead at five public space projects that will transform three Ontario cities – Toronto, Ottawa and Kingston – for the better... -- Hariri Pontarini Architects/bKL Architecture; Saucier + Perrotte; Daniel Libeskind/Edward Burtynsky [images]- Azure magazine (Canada)
Frank Lloyd Wright buildings up for UNESCO World Heritage Sites status: Nearly 3,000 miles separate the 11 structures under consideration...- Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune
Blast From the Past: Frank Lloyd Wright Gas Station Finally Completed: ...a piece of American history, recreated...Buffalo Filling Station has been built at the Pierce-Arrow Museum...Many other architects have had designs finished or recreated posthumously...These recreations raise questions about intent, authorship, and authenticity. By Matt Shaw -- Le Corbusier; Jose Oubrerie; John Hedjuk [images]- Architizer
"Work and Play Behind the Iron Curtain," GRAD: Gallery for Russian Arts and Design, London: This delightful exhibition lifts the curtain on Soviet-era consumerism...shows some of the most ubiquitous items of the era...there is also a glimpse of the counterculture. By Edwin Heathcote [links to images]- Financial Times (UK)
"Chicago: City of Big Data" Makes the Invisible, Visible: In the lobby of Daniel Burnham’s Railway Exchange building, the Chicago Architecture Foundation...turned its centerpiece Chicago Model—a 320-square-foot resin replica of the city’s downtown...into an interpretive piece through which to “view” the city’s data. Encompassing everything from tweets to demographics to air quality... [slide show]- Architectural Record
Visions of Los Angeles: "Everything Loose Will Land": Sylvia Lavin’s exhibit at the Graham Foundation in Chicago...betrays no looseness of concept or execution...Well aware that the artist/architect binary is a forced division, she doesn’t make too much of such crossovers for crossover’s sake...doesn’t feel like a geographic or historical oddity. It’s alive, still inspiring experimentation today in points far beyond LA. By Chris Bentley- The Architect's Newspaper
Modernism's Jewish Connection: The role of Jews in creating and popularizing post-war modernism has largely escaped attention, but it is now the subject of "Designing Home: Jews and Midcentury Modernism" at the Contemporary Jewish Museum of San Francisco...The show, under Donald Albrecht’s able direction, is worth seeing. But it also makes clear that a larger, more far-reaching show would be worth organizing... By Fred A. Bernstein [slide show]- Architectural Record
Q&A: Maya Lin on Saving the Planet Through Art: Her environmentally-minded site-specific projects...are the subject of “Platform: Maya Lin,” which opens this Friday at the Herzog & de Meuron-designed Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, N.Y...discusses how her work addresses climate change, art’s power to shift perceptions and the place where the land meets the sea.- New York Times Magazine
At the National Building Museum’s BIG Maze, you can test your internal GPS: ...opens Friday, so here’s a chance to get in a little practice. Take out your pen — and look out for dead ends...a precursor to amBIGuity, an exhibit the museum has planned for January on the work of the BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group...Don’t worry if you get totally lost. “We will sweep it at the end of the day"...- Washington Post
"Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of New Architecture" by Justin McGuirk: A tour of informal settlements from Rio to Caracas shows cities being reclaimed in remarkable ways. "When will we come to terms with the fact that the favelas are not a problem of urbanity, but the solution?" ...the failure of many public projects has less to do with their architecture and more to do with mismanagement and poverty...a collection of stories that demonstrates great ingenuity in the harshest of circumstances.- Icon (UK)
ANN Feature: Notes from the Giardini - La Biennale di Venezia 2014: "Fundamentals" is certainly not the typical way one would think of displaying architecture. By Terri Peters -- Rem Koolhaas- ArchNewsNow
-- 7 Spectacular Pools to Cool Off In: ...will leave you chilled and stunned. -- PTW; Moshe Safdie; Kengo Kuma & Associates; Sadar Vuga Arhitekti; Álvaro Siza; PLOT; Michael Graves
-- The 2014 FIFA World Cup Stadiums, Brazil. By Ulf Meyer -- Schulitz Architects; Eduardo and Vicente Castro Mello; Coutinho, Diegues, Cordeiro Arquitetos (DDG)/Werner Sobek; GCP Arquitetos; gmp Architekten; Populous; Daniel Fernandes
-- 8 Things to See in Toronto & Montreal -- Daniel Libeskind; Diamond Schmitt Architects; Gehry Partners; Alsop Architects; Provencher Roy + Associés; Saucier + Perrotte; Tétreault Dubuc Saia et associés
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