Today’s News - Tuesday, July 21, 2015
• Bozikovic is pleasantly surprised that the "city-by-committee" being designed by four Canadian firms for the Pan Am/Parapan Am Games in Toronto "is coming out well" (despite it sounding "like a recipe for virtuous blandness").
• Tony McGuirk explains the lessons that can be learned from Erskine's 1970s Byker estate in designing housing for people in need today.
• Eyefuls of the four finalists' latest designs for the "contentious" Nine Elms Bridge across the Thames.
• The NYT Editorial Board calls Congress on the carpet for dragging its feet re: Gehry's Eisenhower Memorial: "Critics in Congress insist that there will be no monument built without final approval by the Eisenhower family" - it should not be so: "This is not being built for the grandchildren."
• King offers a standing ovation for SOM's makeover of ACT's Strand Theater in San Francisco: "focusing on the parts wouldn't do justice to the whole, the calm power of the void" where one can "watch the real-life theater of a civic crossroads."
• Wainwright talks to H&deM about "their vast gothic design" for a "medieval village in the heart of London" - it's actually "a gargantuan new home for Chelsea FC" (a.k.a. a "cathedral" for soccer; renderings alone tell the story!).
• Now that Harrison & Abramovitz's U.S. Embassy in Havana re-opening after what seems like a gazillion years, Sisson offers a neat round-up of American Modernist embassies of the Cold War by mid-century masters.
• Andersen catches up with a scholar "rescuing Cold War history before it disappears" with a new museum in Los Angeles (vintage videos - wow!).
• Rykwert pens a most eloquent tribute to Correa, "whose authentic modernity superseded stale colonial imports - much of his energy was devoted to the unruly and - as he thought - disastrous growth of Mumbai, his home."
• Kamin cheers Chicago becoming "a nationally significant testing ground for public space" with three new major public spaces: "It's not just more open space. It's a different kind of open space - they make clear the increasingly prominent role of the landscape architect."
• Litt delves into what it means for Cleveland to be part of the National Park Service's new "urban agenda."
• Hosey explains how "sexism is alive and well in architecture" - it goes well beyond discrimination and pay inequity: "While the profession of architecture discriminates against women, the rest of society objectifies women through the image of architecture."
• A new RIBA survey shows "9 out of 10 graduates still want to be architects - despite the industry's culture of long hours and low wages" (stress is one factor why others want out).
• The London Design Festival team is launching the London Design Biennale next year, with up to 40 countries addressing the theme "Utopia by Design."
• Elemental's Aravena named director of the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale a mere 10 months before it opens.
• Call for entries: Expression of Interest for the U.S. Pavilion exhibition at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale, themed "The Architectural Imagination."
• One we couldn't resist: Gensler's newest JFK terminal, The Ark, isn't for humans (but we sure wish it was!).
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How top Canadian architects designed a Pan Am district from scratch: Surprisingly, this city-by-committee is coming out well. The $514-million, 14-hectare complex is walkable, sustainable, contemporary but respectful of history, and economically diverse...If that sounds like a recipe for virtuous blandness, it is. These are seven buildings in 50 shades of grey. But the four architecture firms involved...set out to build an ensemble. By Alex Bozikovic -- KPMB; architectsAlliance (aA); MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller (MJM); Daoust Lestage- Globe and Mail (Canada)
Housing for people in need - the big void in today's thinking: How do architects design lasting communities for people and what lessons can we learn from [Ralph Erskine's] Byker estate: ...at a time when one of our most notable global architects proposes the retention of a monolithic Brutalist experiment and failed housing model by the Smithsons, it is important to rally to what Colin St John Wilson termed ‘the alternative tradition in modernism’ represented in Byker. By Tony McGuirk/McGuirkWatson- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Revealed: Nine Elms bridge finalists’ latest designs: ...a contentious new £40 million...pedestrian and cycle bridge connecting Pimlico and Nine Elms across the Thames...London residents are being invited to comment on the four alternatives which will be displayed at two exhibitions on either side of the river... -- Hopkins; Amanda Levete/AL_A; Marks Barfield; Bystrup with Robin Snell & Partners [images]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Editorial: A Battle Over Eisenhower in Washington: Several significant design changes have already been made...This has not satisfied critics, including the Eisenhower grandchildren...Critics in Congress insist that there will be no monument built without final approval by the Eisenhower family. For Congress to yield such power to family members, however, cuts against the whole idea of a national consensus to honor a national hero...“This is not being built for the grandchildren" -- Frank Gehry- New York Times
Strand Theater: ACT’s sublime oasis on Market Street: A central challenge when restoring historic buildings is to decide what to save and when to turn the page...Better yet, do so while adding an element of surprise...focusing on the parts wouldn’t do justice to the whole, the calm power of the void...watch the real-life theater of a civic crossroads where so many populations overlap. By John King -- American Conservatory Theater; Skidmore Owings & Merrill/SOM [images]- San Francisco Chronicle
'It's beyond beauty or ugliness': Chelsea's new stadium: A medieval village is being built in the heart of London. Oliver Wainwright talks to Herzog & de Meuron about their vast gothic design, making fans feel at home ... and why a refined stadium would be absurd for Stamford Bridge. [images]- Guardian (UK)
Constructing America's Image: Modernist Embassies of the Cold War: ...the State Department had purchased existing buildings in foreign capitals, by the '50s, diplomats felt it was in our interest to commission a series of Modernist buildings that presented America as forward-thinking and idealistic. By Patrick Sisson -- Harrison & Abramovitz; Richard Neutra; Walter Gropius (recently renovated by Ann Beha Architects); Edward Durell Stone; Eero Saarinen; Marcel Breuer; Harry Weese; John M. Johansen/Michael Scot; Gordon Bunshaft/Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); José Luis Sert [images]- Curbed
Rescuing Cold War History Before It Disappears: A new museum in Los Angeles has dedicated itself to rescuing the disappearing artifacts of everyday life in East Germany. The Wende Museum and Archive of the Cold War...a DIY passion project that now holds over 100,000 items in its collection. -- Justinian Jampol [images, videos]- Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen
Charles Correa obituary: Premier architect of India whose authentic modernity superseded stale colonial imports: ...his vast range of interests and eloquence marked him out as a leading figure...much of his energy...was devoted to the unruly and - as he thought - disastrous growth of Mumbai, his home...In planning Navi Mumbai, he attempted to recreate the lively urban environment that was at risk from bureaucracy and speculation. By Joseph Rykwert [images]- Guardian (UK)
Landscape architecture comes to the fore in Chicago: It has become a nationally significant testing ground for public space...dedicated three major public spaces in rapid succession: The 606, with its 2.7 mile Bloomingdale Trail...Riverwalk...and Maggie Daley Park...It's not just more open space. It's a different kind of open space...they make clear the increasingly prominent role of the landscape architect. By Blair Kamin -- Michael Van Valkenburgh; Sasaki Associates/Ross Barney Architects; SmithGroupJJR/Studio Gang Architects [images]- Chicago Tribune
National Park chief declares Cleveland part of the agency's new 'urban agenda': ...one of 50 cities nationwide to participate in a $5 million initiative...aimed at broadening use of the nation's parks and diversifying employment in the park service...wants park visitation and employment to look more like America...recognizes that 80 percent of the nation's inhabitants live in urban areas... By Steven Litt- Cleveland Plain Dealer
Sexism Is Alive and Well in Architecture: The profession and image of architecture both are used against women: While the profession of architecture discriminates against women, the rest of society objectifies women through the image of architecture...Is the transformation of Marilyn's or Beyoncé's body into a chair, a city hall, a museum, or a skyscraper merely artistic inspiration, or does it signify something more sinister, the literal objectification of women? By Lance Hosey -- Julia Morgan; Zaha Hadid; Kazuyo Sejima; Denise Scott Brown; Frank Lloyd Wright; Arata Isozaki; Elenberg Fraser- Huffington Post
Survey results: 9 out of 10 graduates still want to be architects: ...despite the industry’s culture of long hours and low wages...evidence of graduates struggling to find employment in the architecture profession...Many of those who said they did not want a career in architecture mentioned stress as a factor...male graduates were more likely to be employed on a permanent or open-ended contract on a full-time basis than women...- The Architects' Journal (UK)
London Design Biennale to Launch in 2016 at Somerset House: ...will showcase design installations and exhibitions from up to 40 countries from around the world...an amazing opportunity for countries and representative cities to create design statements that address the 2016 theme of “Utopia by Design.”- Artinfo
Chilean Architect Alejandro Aravena to Direct the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale: ...appointment comes a mere 10 months before the exhibition is due to open on May 28...will be devoted to contemporary practice - with, it seems, an emphasis on the profession’s social impetus...and the strategies they might employ in using design as a tool of collective betterment... By Anna Kats -- Elemental- Artinfo
Call for entries: Expression of Interest/EOI: US Pavilion Exhibition at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale: "The Architectural Imagination": curators Cynthia Davidson and Monica Ponce de Leon will commission 12 American architectural practices to produce new work for four sites in Detroit as the loci for speculative projects; deadline: August 13- The Architectural Imagination
JFK Airport's New All-Animal Terminal Is Ahead Of The Pack: The Ark...178,000 square feet of posh amenities...clearly this terminal isn't for humans - it's for our pets, livestock, birds and other animals..Part of the shelter is devoted to pet pampering...But the rest is designed to service animals that need to be quarantined... -- Gensler [images]- Huffington Post
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