Today’s News - Friday, May 1, 2015
• ANN feature: Taylor finds "delight and design" in "Provocations: The Architecture and Design of Heatherwick Studio" at L.A.'s at the Hammer Museum: "Wonder and joy pervade the exhibition. Skip - don't walk - to experience it."
• "Sources" say the University of Chicago has won the bid for the Obama Presidential Library, with efforts to fast-track "state legislation that would authorize the use of parkland."
• A look at how Chicago's Friends of the Parks and TCLF "are trying to fight off 'Star Wars' and the White House. It doesn't look good": "It really opens the door for other cities to display a similar hubris to grab designated parkland."
• King delves into "several thousand pages of documents" (obtained through the Freedom of Information Act) that detail "how George Lucas' bid for a Presidio museum misfired," and "the strained relationship between the Presidio Trust and the billionaire filmmaker" (a totally fascinating read!).
• Lamster laments what may be brewing for the Trinity Corridor: "Welcome to Dallas, a city with barely 15% of its streets in acceptable condition, still looking to spend billions on a highway through a park."
• Kennicott looks at the change in our behavior in public spaces in a digital age: "Silence was once prized as a mark of success in many public spaces," like libraries and museums, but now, "the vibrancy of many of those spaces is measured by noise, hubbub and laughter" (+ an amusing take on selfie sticks in museums).
• Anderton has a most thoughtful (and inspiring) Q&A with Hadley and Peter Arnold of the Arid Lands Institute, and their vision of "hydrological zoning" and "deep water intelligence": it "is about thinking about water as a true design question at the level of urban design, system design, city design, spatial design, public space and architectural building systems."
• Capps inspires us to raise our auction paddle at the Van Alen Institute's "experience auction" online fundraiser: "Do you want to go bird-watching in Chicago with Jeanne Gang? Blow smoke rings in Copenhagen with Bjarke Ingels? Um, get in a hot tub with Charles Renfro?" (he "can't pass up on that hot-tub roundtable").
• Weekend diversions:
• Kimmelman cheers MoMA's "Latin America in Construction": it "recalls a not-so-distant time when architects and governments dreamed big about changing the world for the better" - and it's "an eye-opener, rectifying a long-skewed, Eurocentric worldview."
• Roberts revels in MCNY's "Saving Place: 50 Years of New York City Landmarks," an "illuminating exhibition" that, "like the city itself, is about what lies ahead, a promising but uncertain destiny."
• Iovine digs "The Landscape Architecture Legacy of Dan Kiley" at NYC's Center for Architecture, which "shows how modern landscapes often make a better case for modernism than the architecture itself."
• Shaw tools around "Prague Functionalism: Tradition and Contemporary Echoes" (also at the Center for Architecture): a "tightly executed and interesting" show "full of wonders that are worth seeing."
• Heathcote is heaven strolling through Hauser & Wirth's show of architectural drawings, with "vibrant sketches from the greatest names of the 20th century. This is architecture at its most free," and "reminds us of its lost utopias - a rebuke to contemporary architecture that it has largely lost its nerve."
• An excerpt from Harbusch and Burnett-Stuart's "Ludwig Leo Ausschnitt" to whet the appetite for the Leo exhibition at London's Architectural Association (great pix!).
• Also to whet the appetite for "Le Corbusier: The Measures of Man" at the Pompidou Centre: eyefuls "the man, the modernist, the nudist."
• Matchar cheers Lydon and Garcia's "Tactical Urbanism" that is "a history of the movement and a guide for aspiring practitioners" who want to improve cities "one rogue fix at a time" - and city governments are paying attention.
• Benfield gives two thumbs-up to Green's "Designed for the Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World": "I love it that it incorporates social sustainability as much as environmental sustainability and shows how the two work together" (full disclosure: yours truly contributed one of the essays - about Chattanooga).
• Medina marvels at two new, "painstakingly researched books" that "reveal the depths of Louis Kahn's material explorations."
• Lamster cheers Welch's memoir "On Becoming an Architect": "A Texas legend narrates his remarkable story with an easy, straight-shooting charm."
• Happy May Day!
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Delight & Design: "Provocations: The Architecture and Design of Heatherwick Studio": Wonder and joy pervade the exhibition and enchant its viewers. Skip - don't walk - to experience it...at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. By Julie D. Taylor, Hon. AIA/LA [images]- ArchNewsNow.com
Obama presidential library to be built in Chicago, sources say: Obama Foundation's president...declined to comment...fast-tracking state legislation that would authorize the use of parkland for a presidential library...unclear whether a decision had been made on...Washington Park or Jackson Park. -- University of Chicago- Chicago Tribune
Chicago park advocates are trying to fight off ‘Star Wars’ and the White House. It doesn’t look good: ...Barack Obama’s presidential library and the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art..."It really opens the door for other cities to display a similar hubris to grab designated parkland"... -- Friends of the Parks; Charles Birnbaum/The Cultural Landscape Foundation- Huffington Post
How George Lucas’ bid for a Presidio museum misfired: Filmmaker tried for three years to build a museum...before the plan combusted...previously undisclosed details of the strained relationship between the Presidio Trust and the billionaire filmmaker found in several thousand pages of documents... By John King- San Francisco Chronicle
The Trinity Corridor: In search of responsible governments: Welcome to Dallas, a city with barely 15% of its streets in acceptable condition, still looking to spend billions on a highway through a park. Responsible governments? Just one would be nice. By Mark Lamster- Dallas Morning News
How to act in public spaces in a digital age: Perhaps we are entering a new age of radicalism individualism...something more anarchic and carnivalesque. Silence was once prized as a mark of success in many public spaces...the vibrancy of many of those spaces, today, is measured by noise, hubbub and laughter. + At museums, selfie sticks poke holes in the idea of anything goes. By Philip Kennicott- Washington Post
DnA/Frances Anderton: Hadley and Peter Arnold Envision “Hydrological Zoning” As a Way Out of Drought: Would it be possible for Angelenos to capture water and feed it back into the water system...Yes, we can..."'Deep water intelligence' is about thinking about water...as a true design question at the level of urban design, at the level of system design, city design, spatial design, public space and architectural building systems..." -- Arid Lands Institute/Woodbury University; Arup; Perkins+Will [images]- KCRW (Los Angeles)
Win a Date With Your Favorite Starchitect! ...Van Alen Institute's "experience auction" fundraiser: Do you want to go bird-watching in Chicago with Jeanne Gang? Blow smoke rings in Copenhagen with Bjarke Ingels? Um, get in a hot tub with Charles Renfro? Anything is possible... By Kriston Capps- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
"Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980" at MoMA: ...recalls a not-so-distant time when architects and governments in the region dreamed big about changing the world for the better...show is an eye-opener, rectifying a long-skewed, Eurocentric worldview...Barry Bergdoll briefly contemplated a different title...“When Latin America Was the Future.” Back then, it was. By Michael Kimmelman [images]- New York Times
“Saving Place: 50 Years of New York City Landmarks": New York is neither Brasilia, forged full grown from the jungle, nor Bruges, frozen in amber...illuminating exhibition...like the city itself, is about what lies ahead, a promising but uncertain destiny... By Sam Roberts -- Studio Joseph; Donald Albrecht; Andrew S. Dolkart [images]- New York Times
"The Landscape Architecture Legacy of Dan Kiley": Urban Oases: Kiley’s modern landscapes provide welcome relief from the city while also complementing modernist architecture...exhibition at the Center for Architecture shows how modern landscapes often make a better case for modernism than the architecture itself. By Julie V. Iovine -- The Cultural Landscape Foundation- Wall Street Journal
The Ongoing Reign of Modernism: "Prague Functionalism: Tradition and Contemporary Echoes" investigates the distinct ways the tenets of modernism were applied in Czechoslovakia...full of wonders that are worth seeing...coherent and large selection of historical buildings and their contemporary echoes...tightly executed and interesting show; Center for Architecture, New York City By Matt Shaw [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Architectural drawings at Hauser & Wirth: Vibrant sketches from the greatest names of the 20th century provide an alternative history of modernism: This is architecture at its most free...reminds us of its lost utopias...The irony is that...architecture has retreated into a globalised banality...The show is a riposte to contemporary ennui...a rebuke to contemporary architecture that it has largely lost its nerve. By Edwin Heathcote [images]- Financial Times (UK)
Cutting the Crap: Ludwig Leo Exhibition at the Architectural Association, London: ...his oddly distinctive buildings were almost forgotten, only to be slowly rediscovered over the past few years...excerpt from "Ludwig Leo Ausschnitt" by Gregor Harbusch and Jack Burnett-Stuart/BARarchitekten [images]- Uncube magazine (Germany)
Le Corbusier, the man, the modernist, the nudist - in pictures: He redefined architecture for the 20th century, pioneered modernity, made radical urban utopias for the masses - and spent his last years nearly nude in a cabin inspired by human physiology. "Le Corbusier: The Measures of Man" at the Pompidou Centre, Paris, until August 3 [images]- Guardian (UK)
Tactical Urbanists Are Improving Cities, One Rogue Fix at a Time: And city governments are paying attention..."Tactical Urbanism: Short-term Action for Long-term Change" by Mike Lydon and Anthony Garcia offering a history of the movement and a guide for aspiring practitioners...[it] is not anti-government...It can in fact be a powerful tool for municipalities. By Emily Matchar- Smithsonian magazine
Collected Ideas That Bring Hope for a Greener, Healthier World: "Designed for the Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World" by Jared Green...highly accessible volume...contains short essays and beautiful photos...I love it that it incorporates social sustainability as much as environmental sustainability and shows how the two work together...chock-full of examples of how we can do both, and that gives me hope for the future. By Kaid Benfield- Huffington Post
Kahn’s Concrete: Two painstakingly researched books reveal the depths of the architect’s material explorations...offer an exhaustive analysis on what seems a well-trodden facet of the Kahnian canon - the architect’s use of concrete..."Louis I. Kahn: Exposed Concrete and Hollow Stones, 1949-1959" by Roberto Gargiani and "Towards the Zero Degree of Concrete, 1960-1974" by Anna Rosellini. By Samuel Medina [images]- Metropolis Magazine
"On Becoming an Architect: A Memoir" by Frank D. Welch: A Texas legend narrates his remarkable story with an easy, straight-shooting charm...an unaffected, congenial, handsome and sharp figure. Those same characteristics animate his architecture and his joyful narrative of a life in that profession. By Mark Lamster- Dallas Morning News
INSIGHT: West Street: A Little-Noticed Success: If a 19th-century method of moving traffic can succeed in a city as congested as Manhattan, it can work in many other cities as well. By Peter Gisolfi, AIA, ASLA, LEED AP- ArchNewsNow.com
Henning Larsen Architects: Moesgaard Museum: Surrounded by woods on the outskirts of Aarhus, Denmark, the new MOMU offers a new perspective on the role of the museum as a public space. By Robert Martin [images]
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