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Today’s News - Thursday, July 23, 2015

EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow is this week's "floating" no-newsletter day - we'll be back Monday, July 27.

•   Giovannini digs deep into what could be considered some dubious dealings - and a "dubious design" regarding LACMA: "from the very beginning the ambitious project has been personality driven" rather than based "on a compelling and original design or trustable financial facts" (sure to rankle some).

•   Jacobs ponders the rise of supertall observation decks designed to be "tourist magnets" embracing the "contrived concept of 'experience'": they're "a machine. You come in. You experience. You go through it. You come out."

•   Brussat x 2: He takes issue with the NYT's endorsement of Gehry's Eisenhower Memorial: "If it is built, the entire idea of national consensus on any issue will receive a severe blow. It will become conventional for monuments to be incomprehensible, because a bland nothingburger of meaning is the least potentially offensive."

•   He makes a case for saving "an old monstrosity" Brutalist building from demolition (gasp!) if its replacement is going to be an "even uglier" hotel.

•   Grimshaw's The Ship (a.k.a. the Western Morning News building) in Plymouth, U.K., becomes the youngest building to be listed, staving off the threat of demolition.

•   CTBUH announces the 2015 Urban Habitat Award winner and finalists.

•   The 2015 Palladio Awards recognize 10 firms for outstanding work in traditional design (great presentation).

•   Weekend diversions (and lots of 'em!):

•   Iovine gives (mostly) thumbs-up to Heatherwick's "Provocations" at the Cooper Hewitt, and a resounding ovation for "a young talent of startling originality who's on a mission to vanquish all things ugly - he is fighting the good fight."

•   Traub (mostly) hails MCNY's "Saving Place: 50 Years of New York City Landmarks": "In its determination to celebrate the landmarks law," it "can seem to leave the most difficult questions unasked. But the sort of city we would have without the landmarks law is clear."

•   Kolson Hurley has a ball at Snarkitecture's "The BEACH" at the National Building Museum: "Visiting definitely feels like an escape from the everyday, and there's no risk of getting sand in your eyes."

•   "Contemporary Architecture. Made in Germany" at the German embassy in Paris shows off how German architects are "solving modern urban problems" in developing markets by "focusing on sustainability, urban development and technology."

•   Kats cheers Arch League's "30 Years of Emerging Voices": it "accomplishes a rare feat, presenting a comprehensive testament to and analysis of the architectural styles and discourses that dominated the years covered."

•   Douglas gives (mostly) thumbs-up to three new tomes about "informal urbanism," though they "lack sufficient cautions and critiques," and raise "questions to ask about rewarding these efforts when many people want for basic shelter and services."

•   Day delves deep into "the iUrbanisms of Los Angeles": a "range of insightful protagonists" in "(In)Formal L.A.: The Space of Politics" offers "a valuable new perspective for urbanists, one that underscores not just the link between intent and impact but also, and crucially, the link between intent and form."

•   Corbu's architecture and politics "are at the heart of fresh controversy in France set off by three new books and an exhibition at the Pompidou Center" (was he "a fascist-leaning ideologue" or "a political naïf"?).

•   Newman cheers "BIG, HOT TO COLD," a 700-page "decadent and wholly optimistic treatise" and "rhapsodic hymn to architectural evolution. Someday, perhaps, the world will catch up to Bjarke Ingels and his band of renegade rationalists."

•   Filler fills his page with some fascinating history about Gaudí's Sagrada Família, and CCNY's exhibition catalogue that "suggests why the version being realized today seems somehow less Gaudíesque than might have been expected."



  

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