Today’s News - Friday, December 12, 2014
• McGuigan and Mirviss find out how Scott Brown feels about the "close vote" that almost garnered Venturi Scott Brown the 2015 AIA Gold Medal instead of Safdie: "It's not ripping my flesh off."
• Florida crunches the numbers from a variety of studies that prove irrefutably that "walkability is no longer just an ideal - walkable neighborhoods not only raise housing prices but reduce crime, improve health, spur creativity, and encourage more civic engagement in our communities."
• Tierney delves deep into "how the arts drove Pittsburgh's revitalization," now "widely regarded as the most impressive and successful such effort" (a "band of dreamers" required).
• Norman looks into recent research that found "cities could be the secret to fighting climate change. The very real challenge now is to plan, design and construct cities that will minimize harmful emissions - but still keep them livable."
• Six impressive teams shortlisted in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Culture & Education Quarter competition (a real international mix of almost 50 firms!).
• Saffron has some reservations about the velodrome proposed for Philly's FDR Park: it offers "a seductive set of renderings" and a "tantalizing" package of public benefits in exchange for a sliver of a public park, but there are still questions to be answered before the city gives away a piece of its patrimony.
• Steinberg waxes poetic about Philly's 2,000-acre Fairmount Park, but warns against taking "this massive legacy landscape for granted - it must develop the civic stewardship and social infrastructure required to support a park of this magnitude."
• The last segment of Maya Lin's Confluence Project spanning 438 miles of Oregon's Columbia River ("the largest public art project in the U.S.") gets a big boost.
• Kats is impressed with how the "past meets the present" in the Cooper Hewitt's 3-year make-over, due to the "monumental efforts" of 13 design firms (she only names three) "to achieve minimal aesthetic intervention into the landmarked Carnegie Mansion's historic fabric."
• Call for entries: Call for Presentations for ASLA 2015 Annual Meeting in Chicago next November + IS ARCH Awards for Architecture Students.
• Weekend diversions:
• Ciampaglia is more than a bit disappointed in the documentary "Design is One: Lella & Massimo Vignelli": "in the end it's just a well crafted, glossy, superficial art volume in cinematic form - and an unfortunate missed opportunity."
• Flint finds many lessons to be learned from MoMA's "Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities."
• Metcalfe previews "Sink or Swim: Designing for a Sea Change" at L.A.'s Annenberg Space for Photography: it's a "haunting" photo exhibit and "the rare disaster show with an uplifting twist" (by some stellar photogs!).
• Webb is wow'd by "Haunted Screens: German Cinema in the 1920s" at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art: "Architects will be drawn to the elaborate sets and city streets," and by Maltzan and Murphy's installation design that "subtly conveys an air of menace, mystery, and insecurity."
• Skolnick's design for "Holiday Express: Trains and Toys from the Jerni Collection" at New-York Historical Society "is what happens when you let grown men play with toys" (we saw it - it's wonderful!).
• Moore says "The English Railway Station" is "just the ticket": "The story of the English railway station since its Victorian heyday is that of a distinctively creative free-for-all." + His pick of the best architecture books of 2014.
• Ferro gets a peek from Rockwell re: his creative process just as "What If...? The Architecture and Design of David Rockwell" is about to come out.
• Lange gives (mostly) thumbs-up to Thomé's "Sottsass": "While I wish the text was arranged differently, there's no denying the visual power of the work, which is more timely than ever."
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AIA Chooses Moshe Safdie Over Venturi Scott Brown for Gold Medal: “It’s not ripping my flesh off,” says Denise Scott Brown of the loss: Robert Venturi and Scott Brown were one of the three finalists considered...in what a source described as a close vote. By Cathleen McGuigan and Laura Mirviss- Architectural Record
Walkability Is Good for You: Walkability is no longer just an ideal. The evidence from a growing body of research shows that walkable neighborhoods not only raise housing prices but reduce crime, improve health, spur creativity, and encourage more civic engagement in our communities. By Richard Florida- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
How the Arts Drove Pittsburgh's Revitalization: Pittsburgh is not unique in looking to the arts as an economic catalyst for revitalizing a downtown and improving an urban area’s quality of life...But [it] is widely regarded as the most impressive and successful such effort...“You need to have that ‘band of dreamers’..." By John Tierney -- Pittsburgh Cultural Trust- The Atlantic
Cities could be the secret to fighting climate change: Recent research...found that cities could help cut global energy-related emissions by 34% at absolutely no net cost...The very real challenge now is to plan, design and construct cities that will minimise harmful emissions - and risks to future communities - but still keep them liveable. By Barbara Norman/University of Canberra- The Conversation (Australia)
Revealed: The six teams competing for Olympicopolis gold: Haworth Tompkins and O’Donnell & Tuomey make shortlist in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Culture & Education Quarter competition. -- David Chipperfield; Alison Brooks; 6a; Coffey Architects; AECOM; Ramboll UK; Allies & Morrison; Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios; Baumschlager Eberle; etc.- BD/Building Design (UK)
Is proposed velodrome just another public-land grab? Project 250's backers have come up with an ambitious plan and a seductive set of renderings...All they ask is that the city gift them a four-acre sliver of South Philadelphia's FDR Park...offering a package of public benefits that is tantalizing...There's still a great deal of vagueness to their plan...Before giving away a piece of its patrimony, the city needs to get a few answers. By Inga Saffron -- Sheward Partnership [images]- Philadelphia Inquirer
Pleasure in the Park: Visualize a 2000-acre working landscape...Fairmount Park...And yet, Philadelphians take this massive legacy landscape for granted...to fully realize its potential as one of the great urban parks of the world ...it must develop the civic stewardship and social infrastructure required to support a park of this magnitude. By Harris Steinberg- Drexel News Blog (Drexel University, Philadelphia)
Maya Lin: Celilo Park 'a sacred space': Schnitzer family announces $1 million gift for her final public art site on the Columbia River...Confluence Project, which spans 438 miles of the Columbia River...the largest public art project in the United States.- Portland Tribune (Oregon)
Past Meets Present in Cooper Hewitt’s Expansion: ...required monumental efforts to achieve minimal aesthetic intervention into the landmarked Carnegie Mansion’s historic fabric...$91 million in funds and the creative capital of 13 design firms... By Anna Kats -- Gluckman Mayner Architects; Beyer Blinder Belle; Diller Scofidio + Renfro [images]- Artinfo
Call for entries: Call for Presentations: ASLA 2015 Annual Meeting, November 6-9, 2015, Chicago; deadline: January 29, 2015- American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Call for entries: IS ARCH Awards for Architecture Students, 5th edition (international); cash prizes; deadline: February 15, 2015- ISARCH
Film Review: "Design is One: Lella & Massimo Vignelli": ...promotes Massimo’s genius and vision far too often at the expense of Lella’s role in the partnership...To an almost fetishistic extent, the film dwells on the accomplishments and triumphs at the expense of Massimo's and Lella’s personal history. That’s a fundamental and inexcusable omission...in the end it’s just a well crafted, glossy, superficial art volume in cinematic form - and an unfortunate missed opportunity. By Dante A. Ciampaglia- Architectural Record
At MoMA, How 'Tactical Urbanism' Can Preserve the Future of Cities: "Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities"...seeks to challenge assumptions about formal and informal settlements, bottom-up and top-down planning, and the changing role of architects and designers in the massive urban expansion that the world is experiencing. By Anthony Flint -- URBZ; Ensamble Studio/MIT-POPlab; Superpool; Atelier d’Architecture Autogérée; RUA Arquitetos; MAS Urban Design, ETH Zurich; NLÉ; Zoohaus/Inteligencias Colectivas; MAP Office; Network Architecture Lab, Columbia University; SITU Studio; Cohabitation Strategies [images]- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
How Designers Are Responding to Rising Sea Levels: "Sink or Swim: Designing for a Sea Change"...A haunting photo exhibit shows the steps people are taking to adapt to the angry ocean...at L.A.'s Annenberg Space for Photography, we can see some of the unique, crafty, and sometimes frantic things that civilization is doing to cope with the looming waterworld....the rare disaster show with an uplifting twist. By John Metcalfe -- Frances Anderton; Iwan Baan; Stephen Wilkes; Paula Bronstein; Jonas Bendiksen [images]- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
Mirroring Weimar Germany: Monsters, madmen, and magicians play starring roles in "Haunted Screens: German Cinema in the 1920s" at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art...Architects will be drawn to the elaborate sets and city streets, and by the installation...strong emphasis throughout on architecture and urbanism...subtly conveys an air of menace, mystery, and insecurity. By Michael Webb -- Michael Maltzan; Amy Murphy [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
All Aboard for Nostalgia Trip at Exhibit of Old Trains: “Holiday Express: Trains and Toys from the Jerni Collection” at New-York Historical Society...billing as this “first annual” exhibition, you may have to add it to your December calendar - alongside the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree...In short, this is what happens when you let grown men play with toys. -- Lee H. Skolnick Architecture + Design Partnership [images]- Wall Street Journal
Just the ticket: the joy of England’s railway stations: The story of the English railway station since its Victorian heyday is that of a distinctively creative free-for-all..."The English Railway Station." By Rowan Moore- Observer (UK)
The best architecture books of 2014: ...from a study of Latin American cities to a dictionary of Duchamp: "All That Is Solid" by Danny Dorling; "Expulsions" by Saskia Sassen; "Radical Cities" by Justin McGuirk; "The Working Drawing" edited by Annette Spiro and David Ganzoni; "Mies" by Detlef Mertins; "Ettore Sottsass" by Phillipe Thome; "The Duchamp Dictionary" by Thomas Girst. By Rowan Moore- Observer (UK)
David Rockwell's Secret To Creativity? Asking "What If": [His] exuberant designs have made him the go-to architect for everything from playgrounds to hotels. Here, a peek at his process..."creating places where you’re celebrating the moment." "What If...? The Architecture and Design of David Rockwell" comes out in late December... By Shaunacy Ferro [images]- Fast Company / Co. Design
"Sottsass" by Philippe Thomé: What does a computer look like? ...the Italian architect, designer and provocateur, was one of the first to grapple with the character of these new objects in the office landscape...While I wish the text was arranged differently, there’s no denying the visual power of the work, which is more timely than ever. By Alexandra Lange- New York Times
7 Examples of Seductive Retail Architecture: ...a local landmark that helps to make a brand seem substantial...a few recent examples of enchanting retail architecture. -- MVRDV; OMA; Toyo Ito & Associates; Jun Aoki; Zaha Hadid Architects; Reiser + Umemoto [images]
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