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Today’s News - Tuesday, May 31, 2016

•   As promised, lots more Venice Biennale punditry: ArcSpace brings us Q&As with the talents behind the Danish Pavilion.

•   Moore says that while the Biennale's "good intentions don't always translate into good ideas - they are nonetheless engaging, enriching and sometimes enlightening."

•   Wainwright finds the Biennale pavilions to be "the architectural equivalent of a UN summit," and "as kooky and curious as ever," with "a few stand-out gems amid the cacophony."

•   Hawthorne x 2: he takes in Govan and Zumthor's LACMA dog-and-pony road show in Venice: the architect's "attitude toward supporters and detractors of the controversial design is the same: 'There it is: Take it or leave it, love it or hate it.'"

•   He calls out the "sparse U.S. showing" that "leaves the American pavilion to shoulder a heavier weight," but its focus on Detroit is "more a playground for American architecture's digitally savvy but politically illiterate parametric wing."

•   Menking also makes mention of the lack of U.S. architects in the main exhibition: "there are seemingly no 'new points of view' from America - are the solutions offered so corporate in nature that they cannot have applications outside the developed world?"

•   Biennale Golden Lions go to the Spanish Pavilion and Paraguay's Gabinete de Arquitectura, and a Silver Lion for Kunlé Adeyemi and his studio NLÉ.

•   King gives thumbs-up to Foster's San Francisco Apple Store for its "deceptively effortless architectural pyrotechnics," but says a bit more attention is due for Asawa's 1972 "idiosyncratic fountain."

•   Suich offers a great take on three of Silicon Valley's new Versailles: "Apple's is the grandest"; Facebook wants "to capture a scrappy, start-up vibe"; and "Google's plans are the most audacious."

•   Grabar cheers Saarinen's "futuristic 60-year-old" GM Technical Center in Michigan that "remains as relevant as ever" with a "sleek, renovated interior" by SmithGroupJJR (the original architect-of-record, no less) - it "hardly looks dated."

•   In ARO's design for a progressive synagogue for the LGBT community in a Cass Gilbert building in NYC, "there are worship space must-haves, but you'll find no straitjacketing dogma."

•   McElvoy marvels at a modern mosque in Istanbul designed by Fadillioglu, the first Turkish woman to build a mosque (it wasn't without challenges).

•   A look at what went into restoring one of the world's oldest libraries in Fez, Morocco (which started out as a mosque in the 9th century) by Chaouni - a Canadian-Moroccan woman architect.

•   Now that Wroclaw, Poland, is the European Capital of Culture, its (stunning) Modernist architecture is rightfully back in the international spotlight.

•   Napier, New Zealand, was devastated by an earthquake 1931 - now it is "home to one of the largest - and most beautiful - collections of Art Deco buildings in the world."

•   The fascinating tale of Marshall Field vs. Montgomery Ward (the moguls) and their battle over where to build the Field Museum, that must be giving Chicago history buffs a sense of "deja vu during the struggle over the proposed Lucas Museum."

•   Help wanted: the GSA is looking for a Chief Architect, Public Buildings Service (to replace Les Shepherd, who is moving on to EYP).

•   One we couldn't resist: Foster waxes poetic about the Boeing 747, arguing that it is "a work of architecture rather than just design. It's just that it also flies."

•   Eyefuls (via links) of the 30 semi-finalists in the Memorials for the Future Competition.

•   Call for entries: Iceland Trekking Cabins International Architecture Competition (earlybird registration due tomorrow!).



  


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