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Today’s News - Thursday, January 28, 2016

EDITOR'S NOTE: Very early tomorrow morning we will be catching up with old friends (and mainlining caffeine) at Contract magazine's 37th Annual Interiors Awards Breakfast, so there will be no newsletter. Monday will also be a no-newsletter day, but we'll be back Tuesday, February 2 (Groundhog Day!).

•   Bernstein weighs in on "The Weight of Sacrifice" World War I memorial: Weishaar's "biggest 'move' is turning the plaza into a lawn - but otherwise he has no desire to eradicate Friedberg's design"; meanwhile, Pershing Park "has become a cause célèbre" for TCLF.

•   Hume minces no words when it comes to what seems to be in store for Toronto's Gardiner Expressway: "When the easternmost stretch is rebuilt," instead of the hoped-for demolition, "it will be faster and freer than ever. While other cities explore ways to get drivers out of cars and into transit, Toronto does the exact opposite."

•   Ingalls ponders why the Pritzker is "such a big deal": while it "does have all the ingredients it needs to mint prestige, its significance is ultimately based on how it is perceived - and prestige is not immune to deflation."

•   Zeiger finds a few high points in DS+R's Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, but "matched against the spatial drama of both the Ciampi building and The Broad, it comes up pale - an unrequited architecture - a building wishing it was more than the sum of its parts, of its pasts."

•   Gilmartin cheers Koning Eizenberg's new Pico Branch Library in Santa Monica: it's an "experiment in neighborhood connectivity" with a "spirit of quiet assertion" that works for all.

•   Plans for a National LGBT Museum move from Washington, DC, to NYC: "When we had to rule out identifying a space near the Mall, it was no longer a museum in the nation's capital, it was a museum in the city of Washington."

•   Dickinson profiles Yale's incoming Dean Berke: she "is in the club, while not being of the club," and "radiates confident pride and a steely resolve to make a great place better."

•   Six (very cool) projects win the 2016 SEED Award for Excellence in Public Interest Design.

•   Weekend diversions:

•   Kamin cheers "Our Most Distinguished Outcast: Frank Lloyd Wright and 'Wendingen'" at the Art Institute of Chicago: this "fine small show" is "especially worth seeing in conjunction with 'The City as Image: The 1909 Plan of Chicago' - the juxtaposition of the two shows is telling."

•   Also in Chicago, "Architecture of Independence: African Modernism" at the Graham Foundation "explores the complex history and legacy of modernist architecture in sub-Saharan Africa during the 1960s and 1970s" (some great pix!).

•   Carr can't say enough about "Case Work: Studies in Form, Space & Construction by Allied Works Architecture" at the Denver Art Museum: "The models are works of art in their own right. It's an effective approach: The best idea or solution is seldom achieved following straight line."

•   Moore may quibble with who he thinks are "maverick" architects, but he cheers on "Mavericks: Breaking the Mould of British Architecture" at London's Royal Academy ("shape-makers, the iconists, the whooshers" vs. "rectangularizers, the whisperers").

•   Wainwright x 2: "Walter's Way: The Self-Build Revolution" at the AA focuses on self-build pioneer Walter Segal, whose "pioneering principles, largely since forgotten, are enjoying a revival in the very same borough - pointing the friendly way out of a housing crisis."

•   He says "Creation from Catastrophe: How Architecture Rebuilds Communities" at RIBA is an "ambitious snapshot of how architects have helped (or cashed in) after calamities."

•   Lari, a leading Pakistani architect featured in "Creation from Catastrophe," calls for aid agencies to "stop shipping in mass-produced, pre-fabricated shelters after disasters and help people rebuild their villages with local materials" (and she should know!).

•   In celebration of the opening of "Louis Kahn: The Power of Architecture" at the Bellevue Arts Museum, Arcade republishes Cava's 2004 Q&A with several Northwest architects who worked with Kahn (informative - and amusing).

•   Ferguson considers Goldberger "the most readable and sensible architecture critic there is," and says "Building Art" is "authoritative and endlessly interesting new biography," but as for Gehry: the "chief purpose in his breakthrough work was mockery and satire" (huh?!!?).

•   Sorabjee's winning essay "The Wandering Women" is about Bombay, "where the intersection of loitering and gender identity potently demonstrates why occupation of physical and, increasingly, digital space is still a radical act."

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