Today’s News - Wednesday, February 15, 2017
• Virginia Tech's recently-completed FutureHAUS and the facility it was built in go up in flames, but students and faculty are already working on their entry for the Solar Decathlon Dubai in 2018.
• Small has a great Q&A with "Bulldozer: Demolition and Clearance of the Postwar Landscape" author Ammon "to unpack urban renewal and what it tells us about the idea of waste in cities."
• Wainwright x 2 (two real ouchers!): Calatrava's £1bn Greenwich Peninsula project "reads as a series of tired tropes bodged together in one clichéd collage. But at least we'll be able to say we've got a Calatrava bridge" (ouch!)
• He minces no words about what he thinks of public art being used as "a developer's decoy strategy" with "lumps of 'public art' that you might wish would be hauled off to the furnace and boiled back down to the gloop from whence they came" (double ouch!).
• Gasp! A New York-based artist(?) argues against the NEA: "the basic problem with the government supporting the arts is that it stands in the way of free market competition" (shades of Schumacher?).
• More on the plans to transform the Thames Estuary into arts hub that "would be one of the biggest redevelopment projects since disused docklands were turned into the Canary Wharf financial hub in the 1980s."
• Two takes on Apple's "spaceship" HQ: Love says, "The project took a toll on contractors" (door handle approval process says it all).
• Bogost explains why Apple's new HQ "shows how its beauty has always been skin deep - a monolith meant to be worshiped at sight and by touch. Just don't ask too many questions about how it works in practice."
• Moore makes the case for why the University of Durham's student union building should be saved: it's "a Brutalist gem in need of renovation - its charms would be more obvious if it wasn't in its current shabby and neglected state."
• Byrnes cheers Meier's 1995 The Hague City Hall being "Mondrian'd" to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the De Stijl movement.
• Pedersen offers 10 seriously funny ground rules for design magazine editors: "1.Ugly buildings always photograph better at night - if a media kit's featured image is a nighttime shot, beware, they may be dressing up a turd."
• Eyefuls of the 5 finalists vying for the 2017 EU Prize for Contemporary Architecture - Mies van der Rohe Award.
• Eyefuls of the (fabulous!) winners of the Little Free Library Design Competition ("spoiler alert - we all win").
• Your eye candy for the day: eyefuls of "100 stunning architectural gems" in L.A. (what? no Watts Towers???).
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‘It’s not the end’ of Virginia Tech FutureHAUS, vows professor after fire: ...College of Architecture and Urban Studies students and faculty put three years into building...unveiled the final phase of the prototype...last month...They’re working on a home to compete in the Solar Decathlon Dubai in 2018.- WSLS 10 (Virginia)
Andrew Small: The Wastelands of Urban Renewal: ...American urban renewal waged a war on perceived waste - and created a new tide of it: Q&A with "Bulldozer: Demolition and Clearance of the Postwar Landscape" author Francesca Russello Ammon to unpack urban renewal and what it tells us about the idea of waste in cities...- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
Oliver Wainwright: Calatrava finally arrives in London - but is he rehashing old ideas? [He] is loved for his striking designs and loathed for cost overruns. Will his £1bn project for Greenwich Peninsula stay on course? ...reads as a series of tired tropes bodged together in one cliched collage...represents a total lack of imagination...But at least we’ll be able to say we’ve got a Calatrava bridge.- Guardian (UK)
Oliver Wainwright: Urban public art: can it be more than a developer’s decoy strategy? Expensive sculptures are often funded from the same small pot of money as affordable housing, public space...lumps of “public art” that you might wish would be hauled off to the furnace and boiled back down to the gloop from whence they came...The institutionalisation of the decorative decoy strategy has spawned an entire industry...- Guardian (UK)
As Trump Mulls Funding Cuts For The Arts, An Artist Argues Against The NEA: Scott Simon talks to David Marcus...artistic director of a theater company in New York City, about defunding the National Endowment for the Arts: ..."the basic problem with the government supporting the arts...is that it stands in the way of free market competition..."- NPR / National Public Radio
Thames Estuary to be transformed into arts hub bringing tens of thousands of new jobs and homes: Traditionally a place of fishing and heavy industry...scheme would be one of the biggest redevelopment projects since disused docklands were turned into the Canary Wharf financial hub in the 1980s.- Evening Standard (UK)
Julia Love: Channeling Steve Jobs, Apple seeks design perfection at new 'spaceship' campus: no aspect of the 2.8 million-square-foot main building has been too small to attract scrutiny...some in the architecture community question whether Apple has focused on the right ends...treating the construction the same way they approach the design of pocket-sized electronics...The project...took a toll on contractors. -- Foster + Partners- Reuters
Ian Bogost: The Myth of Apple's Great Design: ...new “spaceship” headquarters shows how its beauty has always been skin deep: Like every Apple product, the company’s new headquarters is a monolith meant to be worshiped at sight and by touch. Just don’t ask too many questions about how it works in practice. And work it surely will. Borg-like...- The Atlantic
Rowan Moore: Save Dunelm House from the wrecking ball: University of Durham’s student union building, once graced by Thelonious Monk, is a brutalist gem in need of renovation, not demolition: [Its] charms would also be more obvious if it wasn’t in its current shabby and neglected state...The University says that it is keeping an open mind... -- Architects Co-Partnership (1966); Twentieth Century Society [images]- Observer (UK)
Mark Byrnes: The Hague's City Hall Has Been Mondrian'd: To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the De Stijl movement, Richard Meier’s only project in the Netherlands is getting an extremely Dutch treatment...Other buildings will get the Mondrian treatment throughout the year but city hall served as a good place to start. [images]- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
Martin C. Pedersen: Confessions of a Former Design Magazine Editor: ...after some trial and error...I eventually learned the following ground rules, both spoken and unspoken: 1.Ugly buildings always photograph better at night...if a media kit’s featured image is a nighttime shot, beware, they may be dressing up a turd.- Common Edge
5 Finalists for the 2017 EU Prize for Contemporary Architecture - Mies van der Rohe Award. -- NL Architects/XVW architectuur; Alison Brooks Architects; Lundgaard &Tranberg Architects; BBGK Architekci; Rudy Ricciotti [images]- Mies van der Rohe Foundation / Fundació Mies van der Rohe
Winners of the Little Free Library Design Competition: Spoiler alert - we all win: The response floored us...300 designs from 40 countries... -- Bartosz Bochynski/FUTUMATA; Seth Thompson; Rachel Murdaugh/Clark Nexsen; Lea Randebrock; CIRCLE (Ryo Otsuka, Lin Zihao); etc. [images]- Little Free Library / AIA San Francisco / Chronicle Books
A Guide to the 100 Stunning Architectural Gems of L.A.: The burnished splendor of Art Deco. The clean grace of Modernism. When it comes to architecture, our city is a wonderland. [images]- Los Angeles Magazine
Kirsten Kiser: Snøhetta: Lillehammer Art Museum & Cinema, Norway: 22 years after completing the first expansion...[the firm] has again expanded the project, creating a holistic expression for both the art museum and the adjacent cinema...The concept...came from the idea of art hovering above a transparent base. -- Erling Viksjø (1964) [images]
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