Today’s News - Thursday, March 2, 2017
EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow and Monday will be no-newsletter days. We'll be back Tuesday, March 7.
• As promised more poetic Prtizker Prize prose (with some politics mixed in for good measure):
• Hawthorne says selecting the Spanish trio is "a nod to the forces that gave rise to Brexit and Trump," with the jury "looking for architecture - both to encourage a new set of priorities in the profession and to send a distinctly political message."
• Rhodes sees the Pritzker pick as "an oblique commentary on global politics" - RCR Arquitectes "stands in as a metaphor for appreciating otherness in the world."
• Mafi sees the selection "to be highly political," acknowledging "the importance of collaboration in an increasingly divided world and a tacit rejection of exclusionary policies."
• Glancey cheers the Catalan trio that has "shaped one exquisite modern building after another, each one a delight for the senses."
• Heathcote hails the winning trio for not being afraid of the "slightly suspect concept of beauty" by creating "some of the most ethereal, exquisite and, yes, beautiful architecture of modern times" (may - or may not - be behind a paywall; we got to it 2 out 3 tries).
• Budds minces no words: "RIP, starchitecture. And good riddance" - the Pritzker pick "illuminates a path forward for an industry struggling with identity and communication."
• Lange had never heard of RCR Arcquitectes, but she's pleased the jury picked "three!" collaborators - and "added another woman. This is how architecture is really practiced so, thank you."
• Pritzker Prize Executive Director Thorne re: why the jury selected three people: "because they have a very special form of working together," and their architecture "is very experiential."
• McGuigan mulls the proliferation of awards programs, and how much they really matter: "if your project is honored along with hundreds of others, how big a deal can that be?"
• Morris ponders "doing the right thing in an upside down world of Trump and Brexit": against the odds, "we are grass roots, community based, collaborative, cooperative - we are the place makers; we are the community builders."
• Buday calls for putting "narrative back into architecture," which "has spent the last 75 years searching to regain the public's interest, to reconnect buildings to culture, to rediscover its social purpose. It is still looking."
• Goldhagen dives deep into how "New York's waterfront park-building campaign epitomizes a reorientation of major cities around the globe toward their aquatic edges."
• A debate arises from a study about the relationship between compact development and driving, "leading to a muddled understanding about the true impact of compact development."
• Weekend diversions:
• Iovine cheers "Architecture of Independence: African Modernism" at NY's Center for Architecture that offers 80 "underappreciated gems built to embody exuberant hope, calculated anti-colonialism, ambition, and liberation."
• New-York Historical Society celebrates Women's History Month in anticipation of Jiricná's new Center for Women's History, opening late April.
• "Smarter Buildings: At the Intersection of Architecture, Design, and Technology" is the result of AIA Seattle's Emerging Professionals Travel Scholarship, showcasing Miller Hull's Eckhardt's search for the world's smartest buildings.
• "Road to Revolution: A 30-Day Journey Across Cuba" at BSA Space in Boston charts the 560-mile trek Shepley Bulfinch's Gordon took across the island.
• Riley cheers "Robert Adam's London" at Sir John Soane's Museum (but this "clever and expository" show is on view only 'til March 11).
• Moore gives thumbs-up to Webb's "Building Community New Apartment Architecture" that "mines a rich seam since, for both good and questionable reasons, architects love playing around with blocks of flats."
• Moonan marvels that "Michigan Modern: Design That Shaped America" makes the most excellent "case that Modernist architecture and design was developed in Michigan, not imported from Europe between 1900 and 1970."
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Christopher Hawthorne: Architecture's highest honor goes to a Spanish trio, with a nod to the forces that gave rise to Brexit and Trump: It would be difficult...not to understand the Pritzker jury’s decision as a commentary on the ways in which globalization, [etc.]...have devastated rural and small-town culture...looking for architecture - both to encourage a new set of priorities in the profession and...to send a distinctly political message... -- Rafael Aranda; Carme Pigem; Ramon Vilalta; RCR Arquitectes- Los Angeles Times
Margaret Rhodes: Even Architecture Prizes Are Political In This Crazy World: In an oblique commentary on global politics, the Pritzker Prize jury just awarded architecture’s highest honor to a little-known trio of Spanish architects...RCR Arquitectes stands in as a metaphor for appreciating otherness in the world...It’s not the job of the jury to make identity politics out of the award. But right now, it’s hard not to. -- Rafael Aranda; Carme Pigem; Ramon Vilalta- Wired
Nick Mafi: The Surprising Reason Why a Spanish Trio Was Awarded This Year's Pritzker Prize: ...a selection that was an embrace of multiculturalism through the prism of design: The selection appears to be highly political...the jury acknowledged the importance of collaboration in an increasingly divided world...a tacit rejection of exclusionary policies... -- RCR Arquitectes- Architectural Digest
Jonathan Glancey: Pritzker Prize 2017: Catalan trio wins architecture's Nobel prize: Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem and Ramon Vilalta...have shaped one exquisite modern building after another, each one...a delight for the senses...deeply aesthetic, yet unpretentious 21st-century architects promising to create a balance between our intensely modern world and the age-old senses and feelings we have for nature, place and sentiment. -- RCR Arquitectes- CNN Style
Edwin Heathcote: Pritzker Prize 2017 goes to RCR Arquitectes of Catalonia: ...recognised a practice that focuses on the local, not the global...In architecture, [beauty] is not something you hear much about, a slightly suspect concept...Yet Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem and Ramón Vilalta are not afraid to use it. And they have good reason. The architecture...is some of the most ethereal, exquisite and, yes, beautiful architecture of modern times.- Financial Times (UK)
Diana Budds: Three Little-Known Spanish Architects Win Architecture's Top Prize: RIP, starchitecture. And good riddance: The commendation...goes to a firm that has quietly reinvented regional design...emblematic of evolving dynamics in the profession, and the priorities of architecture's gatekeepers...illuminates a path forward for an industry struggling with identity and communication. -- Rafael Aranda; Carme Pigem; Ramon Vilalta; RCR Arquitectes- Fast Company / Co.Design
Alexandra Lange: 2017 Pritzker Prize awarded to RCR Arcquitectes: To say I was surprised by the 2017 Pritzker...wouldn’t be quite right, because I had never heard of them...picked collaborators - three! - and added another woman...This is how architecture is really practiced so, thank you. -- Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem and Ramon Vilalta [images]- Curbed
Martha Thorne discusses her thoughts on the Pritzker Pritzker 2017: "The reason the jury selected three people is because they have a very special form of working together...its an architecture that is very experiential..." -- Rafael Aranda; Carme Pigem; Ramon Vilalta; RCR Arquitectes [video]- IE School of Architecture & Design (Spain)
Cathleen McGuigan: Everyone’s a Winner! As architecture and design awards proliferate, how much do all these honors matter? In architecture, it’s always awards season. The field now has dozens of programs...if your project...is honored along with hundreds of others, it dilutes the potency of a prize. When everyone’s a winner, how big a deal can that be?- Architectural Record
Joe Morris/Duggan Morris Architects: Doing the right thing in an upside down world: ...small creative businesses are doing their best to hold their own against the challenges posed by Trump and Brexit: ...against these odds...We are grass roots, community based, collaborative, cooperative...we are the place makers; we are the community builders.- BD/Building Design (UK)
Richard Buday/Archimage: Let’s Put Narrative Back into Architecture: Overt stories disappeared during the modern era, stripping buildings of the social glue that bound them to their public...Architecture has spent the last 75 years searching to regain the public’s interest, to reconnect buildings to culture, to rediscover its social purpose. It is still looking.- Common Edge
Sarah Williams Goldhagen: Urban Pastorals: Designs for three major New York parks reconfigure the experience of city life in the 21st century: New York might soon lay claim to being America’s greatest water city...Landscape architecture, once an effete and marginal practice, has become a frontline design profession. -- Freshkills; Governors Island; Brooklyn Bridge Park; James Corner Field Operations; Adriaan Geuze/West 8; Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates; Frederick Law Olmsted; Calvert Vaux- Art in America
Study Sparks Debate Over Relationship Between Compact Development and Driving: ...different studies over the years have yielded different outcomes, leading to a muddled understanding about the true impact of compact development.- American Planning Association (APA)
Julie V. Iovine: "Architecture of Independence: African Modernism": Overlooked Riches at Eye Level: ...discover underappreciated gems built to embody exuberant hope, calculated anti-colonialism, ambition, and liberation...of fascinating, sometimes calamitous and often inspiring dimensions...80 projects [from 1957 to 1974]...at the Center for Architecture, NYC.- Wall Street Journal
AIA Seattle exhibition will showcase the world’s smartest buildings: Q&A with Derik Eckhardt/Miller Hull Partnership re: smart cities, technology-driven sustainability, and design innovations: "Smarter Buildings: At the Intersection of Architecture, Design, and Technology" explores this meeting of buildings and technology that can sometimes feel like science fiction.- Curbed Seattle
New-York Historical Society to celebrate Women’s History Month with a special series of exhibitions and programs: March 2017 Initiatives offer a peview of the new Center for Women’s History, opening late April. -- Eva Jiricná- New-York Historical Society
BSA Space exhibit charts architectural designer’s trek across Cuba: an exhibit of photos by Shepley Bulfinch architectural designer Abby Gordon called "Road to Revolution: A 30-Day Journey Across Cuba." The project charts Gordon’s 560-mile trek... [images]- Curbed Boston
Benjamin Riley: "Robert Adam’s London" at Sir John Soane’s Museum, London: ...of all the sobriquets applied to Adam (1728–1792), the most elucidative of his work in London...may be the one he gave himself: “Bob the Roman"...as long as the museum keeps organizing shows as clever and expository as this one, there is no reason the drawings should ever go back in the vault.- The New Criterion
Rowan Moore: The joy of living on top of one another: At a time when we need to make better use of space, a new book celebrates the world’s best apartment blocks: "Building Community New Apartment Architecture" by Michael Webb...shows outbreaks of artistry...[He] mines a rich seam since, for both good and questionable reasons, architects love playing around with blocks of flats.- Observer (UK)
Wendy Moonan: "Michigan Modern: Design That Shaped America," edited by Amy L. Arnold and Brian D. Conway: This well-illustrated compendium is a detailed history...that makes the case that Modernist architecture and design was developed in Michigan, not imported from Europe between 1900 and 1970.- Architectural Record
Steven Holl Architects: Visual Arts Building, University of Iowa, Iowa City: At first glance, the humble state of Iowa, located in the heart of the American Midwest, might seem an unlikely location for the work of starchitects. [images]
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