Today’s News - Thursday, October 1, 2015
EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow will be a no-newsletter day; we'll be back Monday, October 5 (unless Hurricane Joaquin has other plans).
• ANN feature: Taylor says LACMA's "Frank Gehry" tries a bit too hard to prove that his work "distinguished him as an urbanist" - "The curator doth protest too much."
• Hawthorne says the show offers "a view of Gehry that is deeply informed if always admiring," but "barely scratches the surface of Gehry's unorthodox working method - or the projects that have slid off track."
• Kennicott has a few reservations about "this otherwise compelling exhibition": "tying Gehry's work together proves almost impossible, and one is better served by looking at the questions he is asking about architecture."
• Dunlap reports from the opposite coast: Condé Nast may have left 4 Times Square, but Gehry's 15-year-old cafeteria will remain: "It's aged very well."
• Bozikovic sees H&deM's proposed Vancouver Art Gallery as "a sensitive response to Vancouver's building culture and a dramatic argument for doing things differently" by focusing "on an urbanistic and architectural vision that is bold and compelling."
• Griffin calls the VAG design "distinctive and dynamic," and "looks both contemporary and totemic."
• Geller, on the other hand, is not convinced: he likes "the many covered outdoor spaces. However, while the architects said the building design was inspired by its context and the city, I do not think it honors Vancouver."
• Heathcote delves into how museums have "again emerged as a tool for engendering a sense of the collective consciousness of otherwise fractured communities."
• Bliss reports on the "backlash" to FR-EE's High Line-style park in Mexico City: "Critics say the Corredor Cultural Chapultepec is not the kind of public space the city desperately needs" (and will it be truly "public"?).
• Arquitectonica wins big in Luxembourg (and BIG loses out) on a project that will be the city's tallest building.
• UC Berkeley graduate students and Kuma come together to design Nest We Grow, a self-sustaining vertical farm in Japan - tea room included (very cool!).
• Chatham University's new home for its Falk School of Sustainability is on "a bucolic 388-acre farm" north of Pittsburgh.
• Mruk minces no words re: why "architecture's outdated, costly and time-consuming qualification process" needs a "gut rehab" (what other profession averages 14.5 years to become licensed?!!?).
• Oto Arquitectos' visitor center on the Cape Verde island of Fogo (ArchDaily's 2015 Building of the Year) has been consumed by a volcano: "It took us seven years after we won the competition and it lived seven months."
• Weekend diversions:
• Great preview guides to NYC's 5th annual Archtober festival and the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennial.
• Kats's Q&A with "Shelter: Rethinking How We Live in Los Angeles" curator Rago re: "the show, hypothetical home design, and the future of L.A. architecture."
• Good timing for "HACLab Pittsburgh: Imagining the Modern" at the Carnegie Museum of Art: it "has lessons to offer" a city planning its future: "much of what Pittsburgh's efforts inspired was the audacity to think big - it is thinking big again."
• Kahn cheers a Chinese architect finally getting a retrospective at NYC's Museum of Chinese in America: "Chinese Style: Rediscovering the Architecture of Poy Gum Lee, 1923-1968" is a treasure trove of his "family's rediscovered material."
• Medina queries Goldberger re: "Gehry's peculiar psyche, his triumphs and disappointments, and giving reporters the finger," as told in the new tome "Building Art."
• Chow's "Changing Chinese Cities" argues that "it is possible - indeed preferable - for Chinese cities to modernize without superseding their traditional aspects, and calls for a more nuanced approach to urban design."
• Q&A with King re: his "Cityscapes 2: Reading the Architecture of San Francisco" that "describes 50 of his favorite architectural works - some well-known icons and other obscure treasures."
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Frank Gehry's Urban Renewal: Throughout "Frank Gehry" at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the repeated and insistent message is that his work "distinguished him as an urbanist," as if trying so hard to convince us that it's true. The curator doth protest too much. By Julie D. Taylor, Hon. AIA/LA [images]- ArchNewsNow.com
'Frank Gehry' at LACMA is well framed but still needs build-out: ...barely scratches the surface of Gehry's unorthodox working method...has shed a good deal of the starched, carefully sealed conservatism that held it in check in Paris [Pompidou Center]...a view of Gehry that is deeply informed if always admiring...fails to confront with any force the weaknesses of the projects that have slid off track... By Christopher Hawthorne [images]- Los Angeles Times
Frank Gehry’s variations on a theme: LACMA exhibition provides context for his Eisenhower Memorial and Los Angeles River restoration: He is competitive; he is idealistic...and he all but confessed to loving the political and intellectual struggle of complicated and contentious projects...tying Gehry’s work together proves almost impossible, and one is better served by looking at the questions he is asking about architecture...Perhaps the most consistent element in his work is his impatience with the standard answers to these questions, and his willingness to find either middle ground, or blow up the very premise of the distinction. By Philip Kennicott- Washington Post
Condé Nast Has Left Times Square, but Frank Gehry’s Cafeteria Will Remain: The Durst Organization, which owns the publisher’s former headquarters at 4 Times Square, has committed to preserving what counts as the architect’s first New York City project...“It’s aged very well. There’s no feeling that it’s from a different era at all.” But what a different era it was, 15 years ago. By David W. Dunlap- New York Times
VAG [Vancouver Art Gallery] design proposal will change the way Vancouver thinks about its architecture: ...a sensitive response to Vancouver’s building culture and a dramatic argument for doing things differently...[H&deM] have determined how to make a vertical gallery serve art. And add the bonus of some killer views...centres on an urbanistic and architectural vision that is bold and compelling. By Alex Bozikovic -- Herzog & de Meuron [images]- Globe and Mail (Canada)
VAG unveils plans for new gallery: The Vancouver Art Gallery proposes...a distinctive and dynamic new building...Resembling boxes on top of one another...looks both contemporary and totemic...design comes out of wanting to create something that’s lacking in Vancouver: covered outdoor spaces that are usable year-round...“It’s not an elitist institution. We wanted to create architecture that accommodates that.” By Kevin Griffin -- Herzog & de Mueron [images]- Vancouver Sun
Vancouver Art Gallery building needs redesign: ...aspects of the gallery layout could be very successful...including the many covered outdoor spaces. However, while the architects said the building design was inspired by its context and the city, I do not think it honours Vancouver. By Michael Geller -- Herzog & de Meuron- Vancouver Courier
Cities turn to high culture to help them work better: Museums are palaces of the people, symbols of the city and a source of civic pride: ...the role of cultural architecture in stimulating a mixed-use city has been more marked than at any time for more than a century. The museum has again emerged as a tool for engendering a sense of the collective consciousness of otherwise fractured communities. By Edwin Heathcote -- Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Frank Gehry; Herzog & de Meuron; Jean Nouvel- Financial Times (UK)
The Backlash to Mexico City's High Line-Style Park: Critics say the Corredor Cultural Chapultepec is not the kind of public space the city desperately needs...“They just needed to fix the street and the crosswalks...there are so many other places that need urgent intervention"...CCC project’s development process has been questionable...Will the CCC be truly “public”? By Laura Bliss -- Fernando Romero/FR-EE [images]- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
Arquitectonica chosen ahead of BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group and Fuksas for mixed-use scheme in Luxembourg: ...40,000 square meter project will anchor the development of the new region of Kirchberg, a district that houses the majority of the city’s European institutions...the 27-storey complex will be the country’s tallest, comprising a mix of retail, residential and office programs. [images]- designboom
This vertical farm is completely self-sustaining: ...a collaboration between graduate students from UC Berkeley and...Kengo Kuma, brings West-Coast style to Hokkaido...Nest We Grow...At the building's heart is a traditional Japanese tea area for socialising among the crops...Looks like we've also outgrown the need for interior designers. [images]- Wired UK
Recourse for Resiliency: A new school of sustainability stokes the Iron City’s renaissance: ...a bucolic 388-acre farm 20 miles north of [Pittsburgh] in Gibsonia, Pa., where Chatham University is building a school of sustainability from the ground up...Eden Hall Farm now serves as a satellite of Chatham’s downtown site and the new home of the university’s Falk School of Sustainability. -- BNIM; Andropogon Associates; Mithun [images]- Architect Magazine
Architect Licensing Needs a Gut Rehab: No wonder fewer students are signing up - it takes on average 14.5 years after high school to become licensed...architecture’s outdated, costly and time-consuming qualification process...The drain on young talent, coupled with a building comeback, is an opportunity to redesign the profession, and revisiting the qualification process would be a good place to start. By Frank J. Mruk III/NYIT School of Architecture and Design- Wall Street Journal
Award-winning building destroyed by volcano seven months after completion: ...visitor centre completed last year by Oto Arquitectos on the Cape Verde island of Fogo...named cultural building of the year in Archdaily's Building of the Year 2015 awards..."It took us seven years after we won the competition and it lived seven months"... [images]- Dezeen
Archtober Preview: Our expert picks for what to see this Fall, from exhibitions to building tours: ...now in its fifth year...makes New York such a mecca not only for architects and designers but anyone with the slightest interest in their spatial surroundings. -- Architecture & Design Film Festival; Open House New York/OHNY; Center for Architecture; etc.- The Architect's Newspaper
Chicago Architecture Biennial Preview: Chicago’s Architecture Biennial, kicking off October 3, will showcase a broad range of work. By Zach Mortice- Architectural Record
Rethinking Los Angeles Architecture with Curator Danielle Rago: With “Shelter: Rethinking How We Live in Los Angeles,” the Architecture + Design Museum in Los Angeles is playing a dual role...Q&A about the show, hypothetical home design, and the future of L.A. architecture. By Anna Kats -- Bureau Spectacular, LA Más, Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects, MAD Architects, PAR, and wHY- Artinfo
Pittsburgh's modernist past has lessons for today's urban renewal: When modernism came to Pittsburgh, the city really ran with it..."HACLab Pittsburgh: Imagining the Modern"...focuses on several specific projects...comes at a time when the city is actively planning for the city’s future, and has lessons to offer...much of what Pittsburgh’s efforts inspired was the audacity to think big...[it] is thinking big again. -- Carnegie Museum of Art; Rami el Samahy/over,under [images]- Keystone Crossroads
Poy Gum Lee Finally Has a Retrospective: “Chinese Style: Rediscovering the Architecture of Poy Gum Lee, 1923-1968" explores Lee’s designs for hundreds of buildings and interiors in New York and China...the family’s rediscovered material has made the display “an even better story than I thought it would be"; at the Museum of Chinese in America, New York City. By Eve M. Kahn- New York Times
Q&A: Paul Goldberger on Frank Gehry's Life and Work: The architecture critic on Gehry's peculiar psyche, his triumphs and disappointments, and giving reporters the finger: "Building Art: The Life and Work of Frank Gehry" acknowledges the architect’s celebrity status but doesn’t acquiesce in it...Rather, Goldberger interrogates the peculiar psyche and restless contradictions of the man... By Samuel Medina- Metropolis Magazine
"Changing Chinese Cities: The Potentials of Field Urbanism" by Renee Y. Chow: ...argues that it is possible - indeed preferable - for Chinese cities to modernize without superseding their traditional aspects, and calls for a more nuanced approach to urban design...essays examine the relationships between ancient and modern, public and private, and inner and outer realms in China’s urban identity and progress...a case study of the challenges faced by many countries, both developing and developed. By Simone van Nieuwenhuizen- Asian Review of Books (Hong Kong)
The Coolest Structures in San Francisco: an Interview with John King: The urban design critic for the San Francisco Chronicle publishes "Cityscapes 2: Reading the Architecture of San Francisco"...describes 50 of his favorite architectural works...some well-known icons and other obscure treasures.- PLANetizen
Gehry Partners, LLP: A Gehry building begins with a sketch..."As soon as I understand the scale of the building and the relationship to the site and the relationship to the client, as it becomes more and more clear to me, I start doing sketches." By Kirsten Kiser
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