Today’s News - Monday, December 15, 2014
• Byrnes pays eloquent tribute to August Perez III: "It's hard to look at New Orleans' skyline today without seeing something that Perez had his hands on."
• Filler more than fulminates about what's being done to Chartres Cathedral (with pix to prove it!), "raising a worldwide alarm about this unfolding cultural disaster" (the Black Madonna is now "a simpering kewpie doll"; next up: arms added to the Venus de Milo - yikes!).
• Ward wades into the "complicated and controversial" efforts to save Taliesin West - and "it's taking a long time" (amazing pix).
• Moore minces no words about his upset with wind farms being (rightfully) "carefully scrutinized," but rules to protect London's "peerless skyline" seem to be another matter.
• Florida parses a new study that "suggests there's a gap between how researchers think about gentrification and what journalists are telling the public" (it's talking about you, NYT).
• Wainwright has issues with Canberra being named OECD's "most livable city in the world" for the second year running: it is "is a deathly place. It is what a city looks like when it is left to politicians to plan" (Gehl and Rogers don't get off lightly, either).
• Davies, meanwhile, takes issue with Wainwright's issues: "Canberra-bashing," apparently "is a common bloodsport" in the media, "but do they land some telling blows or are they bullies missing the mark?"
• Omidi delves deep into Moscow's apparent embrace of "hipster Stalinism": with Gorky Park now transformed "from rusting funfair to Wi-Fi heaven [and] more gentrifying projects on the cards, is it just a way to silence dissent?"
• Nouvel's Philharmonie de Paris in the Parc de la Villette hopes to bridge the banlieues and affluent boulevards: it is "a glamorous architectural statement. But it is aiming for nothing less than social transformation through the arts" (maybe it's just us - but is there a striking resemblance to another glamorous design in another Paris park?).
• Ramos cheers Boston's new mayor for going "up against boring architecture - not everything needs to built in red brick. Architects and developers shouldn't need political cover to put their best ideas forward. But now they have it - and should make the most of it."
• Lewis finds proof in the 2014 AIA/HUD awards that "affordable housing design doesn't have to be boring": "all four projects receiving awards are in California. Is there something about California that we in Washington and elsewhere in the United States should know about?"
• Birnbaum basks in 2014's "notable developments in landscape architecture," but cautions "we still have to deal with retrograde thinking that views parks as dumping grounds and places to put 'stuff.'"
• Kamin has a thoughtful Q&A with Van Valkenburg re: Chicago's Maggie Daley Park: "It was a deliberate design decision to make play a beacon for the park" (and he's 100% behind banning dogs).
• Barash has a different take on Maggie Daley Park: it may be "a technicolor dreamcoat of a park," but it "is symptomatic of a larger cultural trend - hyper-competitive spaces are what the 'Bilbao Effect' was to a previous generation. Call it the High Linification of the public space."
• Governors Island's Leslie Koch offers her take on how to start a megaproject: "People get tripped up with utopian plans."
• Perth's new Yagan Square has high hopes "to reconnect the CBD with Northbridge across the rail corridor that has divided it for more than 100 years."
• It's "David versus Googleiath" as Attia sues Google for stealing his invention.
• Eyefuls of Architect Magazine's 2014 Annual Design Review (great presentation!).
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Remembering a Giant of New Orleans Architecture: August Perez III had an incredible impact on the way New Orleans looks today...one of the city's most important architects of the 20th century, passed away last week at the age of 81...It's hard to look at the skyline today without seeing something that Perez had his hands on. By Mark Byrnes -- Charles Moore [images]- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
A Scandalous Makeover at Chartres: The belief that a heavy-duty reworking can allow us see the cathedral as its makers did is not only magical thinking but also a foolhardy concept that makes authentic artifacts look fake...I could not agree more about raising a worldwide alarm about this unfolding cultural disaster...Officials...now are engaged in a pursuit as foolhardy as adding a head to the Winged Victory of Samothrace or arms to the Venus de Milo. By Martin Filler- New York Review of Books
Seeking the Wright Path: As official plans to save Taliesin West are formalized, the remaining Legacy Fellows struggle to maintain the aging Arizona sanctuary in the spirit of their former master...the plan is proving complicated and controversial. And it’s taking a long time. By Logan Ward -- Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation; Arnold Roy; Fred Prozzillo; T. Gunny Harboe/Harboe Architects [images]- Architect Magazine
One rule for the windfarms but quite another for London’s peerless skyline: It’s right that plans relating to the countryside are carefully scrutinised. But let’s accord the same respect to London’s incomparable heritage...it might finally oblige applicants and planners to take seriously the real impacts of the towers they propose and approve. By Rowan Moore- Observer (UK)
No One's Very Good at Correctly Identifying Gentrification: A new study suggests there's a gap between how researchers think about gentrification and what journalists are telling the public: ...a compelling new paper [in] Urban Studies that takes the New York Times to task for not deploying the word "gentrification" very well. By Richard Florida- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
50 years of gentrification: will all our cities turn into 'deathly' Canberra? The drive to make cities more ‘liveable’ means parks, plazas and happy pedestrians. But the reality is ever more sterile, identikit cities where public space isn’t public at all: ..."while we live in a capitalist world, especially one run by extreme capitalists, it’s better to have semi-public space than no public space at all. As architects we have limited control.” By Oliver Wainwright -- Jan Gehl; Richard Rogers; Jerome Frost/Arup- Guardian (UK)
Is life in Canberra really like capital punishment? Canberra-bashing is a common bloodsport in Australian media...but do they land some telling blows or are they bullies missing the mark? Oliver Wainwright is not the least bit amused by Canberra apparently winning [OECD most liveable city in the world]...there’s considerable scope to improve the quality of public spaces, but there’s much more to the place in 2014 than easy and dated stereotypes convey. By Alan Davies- Crikey (Australia)
Moscow embraces 'hipster Stalinism': Following the wildly popular transformation of Gorky Park from rusting funfair to Wi-Fi heaven, Muscovites finally felt as if their city was becoming liveable. But with more gentrifying projects on the cards, is it just a way to silence dissent? ...ArtKvartal, a 510-hectare...artistic quarter...that caters to Moscow’s growing creative class. By Maryam Omidi -- Andrey Grinev/Citymakers; Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Wowhaus- Guardian (UK)
A tale of two cités: can the Philharmonie de Paris bridge the social divide? Built on the boundary between the capital’s banlieues and its affluent boulevards...attracting complaints both of elitism and of dumbing down...organic structure rising up in the Parc de la Villette...Glamorous design, great acoustics and a classy programme...But its ambitions are greater than that. It is aiming for nothing less than social transformation through the arts. By Gillian Moore -- Atelier Jean Nouvel [images]- Guardian (UK)
Walsh goes up against boring architecture: In what could mark a major turn for Boston’s architectural history, Mayor Marty Walsh signaled that not everything needs to built in red brick..."We should aim for world-class design...We can balance the old and new"...Architects and developers shouldn’t need political cover to put their best ideas forward. But now they have it - and should make the most of it. By Dante Ramos- Boston Globe
Affordable housing design doesn’t have to be boring: ...2014 AIA/HUD national awards for excellence in affordable housing design...all four projects receiving awards are in California...Is there something about California - its architects, developers, zoning regulations, building codes, housing market, climate - that we in Washington and elsewhere in the United States should know about? By Roger K. Lewis- Washington Post
2014's Notable Developments in Landscape Architecture: ...there was a cultural shift that saw landscape architecture and its practitioners achieve an unprecedented level of visibility and influence...For all of the progress we can cite...we still have to deal with retrograde thinking that views parks as dumping grounds and places to put "stuff." By Charles A. Birnbaum/The Cultural Landscape Foundation -- Michael Kimmelman; Russell Page; SWA Group; Design Workshop; Reed Hilderbrand; Nelson Byrd Woltz; Michael Van Valkenburgh; Hoerr Schaudt; Hargreaves Associates; Thomas Balsley Associates/WEISS/MANFREDI/ARUP; Simonds and Simonds/Mitchell and Ritchey; Conrad Hamerman; Roberto Burle Marx; etc. [images]- Huffington Post
Maggie Daley Park architect says it's still a work in progress: "It was a deliberate design decision to make play a beacon for the park"...Do you agree with the Park District's decision to keep dogs out of the park? "100 percent." By Blair Kamin -- Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates [images]- Chicago Tribune
The New Park in the Park: Musings on Maggie Daley Park: ...a technicolor dreamcoat of a park...tries very hard to please, and perhaps it does. Its design...is symptomatic of a larger cultural trend...These new, hyper-competitive spaces that are emerging all over the world are what the “Bilbao Effect” was to a previous generation. Call it the High Linification of the public space. By F. Philip Barash -- Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates [images]- Newcity Design (Chicago)
Governors Island's Leslie Koch on How to Start a Megaproject: ...in 2014, the organization developed 30 new acres of public open space and parkland that debuted to critical praise...“I got a call from the mayor’s office asking: ‘There’s an island in the Harbor, would you like to run it?’' It was a leap of faith on everyone’s part"...Koch is not one to pine for utopias. “People get tripped up with utopian plans." [images]- Architizer
New square to become the centre of a reconnected Perth: ...Yagan Square, set to become the city’s newest major public space...part of the Perth City Link Project, which will reconnect the CBD with Northbridge across the rail corridor that has divided it for more than 100 years. -- ASPECT Studios; Lyons Architecture; Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects [images]- ArchitectureAU (Australia)
Architect Eli Attia sues Google for stealing invention: Google estimates Engineered Architecture has $120 billion potential annual revenue. Attia and Max Sound are suing for compensation. David versus Googleiath...- Globes (Israel)
2014 Annual Design Review: This year's jury selected 19 projects that represent the best in American architecture. -- Weiss/Manfredi Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism; Hacin + Associates; Substance Architecture; De Leon & Primmer Architecture Workshop; Jensen Architects; Steven Holl Architects; BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group; Louise Braverman, Architect; Mark Cavagnero Associates; Davis Brody Bond; Smith-Miller+Hawkinson Architects; Perkins+Will; Rogers Partners Architects+Urban Designers; Fleetwood/Fernandez; Salmela Architect [images]- Architect Magazine
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