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Today’s News - Thursday, June 2, 2016

EDITOR'S NOTE: Apologies for tardy posting - the Internet gods were not happy with us (again). Tomorrow and Monday will be no-newsletter days. We'll be back Tuesday, June 7.

•   Willis makes a passionate call to end architecture's style wars: "Maybe our post-partisan era could start with the Pritzker and Driehaus Prize juries meeting for drinks?"

•   Zeiger ponders Aravena's Venice Biennale: it "is filled with good intentions, but can architects ever really be honest about architecture?"

•   Dodman delves into the New Urban Agenda that will be finalized at the Habitat III conference, and why it "still needs work."

•   Darley wonders why the U.K. pushes planners to the margins, while the Netherlands values their expertise: "Which do you think is working?"

•   A call for Sacramento to resurrect plans for a five-year-old Hadid-designed civic center: "This is an opportunity for the city to construct an instant architectural icon (and tourist attraction)."

•   King looks beyond SFMOMA's "rippled eastern wall that's already in need of a scrub. Instead, think of the mountainous cultural complex as a giant lens that magnifies everything around it on the block."

•   Plan to spend some time with a fabulous NYT Magazine special issue about NYC that includes Kimmelman and others (VR included).

•   The 2016 China Environmental Press Awards celebrate environmental journalists who "shine despite dark times for local media - the news industry has seen huge changes, and even the most optimistic of observers admit these have not been for the better."

•   Call for entries: The Illuminated River International Design Competition: create an elegant and charismatic light art installation for 17 of London's bridges.

•   One we couldn't resist (and hope it gets through spam filters): The Landscape Urbanism Bullsh!t Generator (archi-babble at its best!).

•   Weekend diversions:

•   Wainwright walks us through Meades' documentary "Ben Building: Mussolini, Monuments and Modernism" that turns the camera "towards Il Duce - one fascist monument at a time."

•   Felperin gives thumbs-up to "Gray Matters" - "a compelling Eileen Gray documentary," and thumbs-down to the "drippy, borderline risible" Gray biopic "The Price of Desire."

•   Saffron is quite taken with "Creative Africa: Building for Community" at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and how Kéré's design approach for Third World societies "is now inspiring First World architects."

•   Pawlett Jackson minces no words about what he thinks of RIBA's "saccharine" show "At Home in Britain: Designing the House of Tomorrow" - a "let-them-eat-cake exhibition of sickly home sweet homes."

•   In Paris, "Wasteland: New Art from Los Angeles" features Auerbach's photographic catalogue of "the drab architecture of megachurches."

•   Edelson cheers "Moholy-Nagy: Future Present" at the Guggenheim that "offers bracing insight into his lifetime of art-making, but leaves us to contemplate what his vision for a utopian society looked like."

•   Welton is fairly wow'd by Kwun and Smith's "Twenty over Eighty": "Here we have a book that, as they say in the news business, has legs - and long ones at that."

•   An intriguing excerpt from Andraos's "The Arab City: Architecture and Representation" in which she ponders "what is actually happening as global practices meet local conditions?"

•   Brussat cheers a Scruton essay that "expresses hope that a young female Syrian architect, Marwa al-Sabouni, can transform her hometown of Homs and perhaps Damascus some day" (and do check out her new book "The Battle for Home" - a powerful read!).

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