Today’s News - Wednesday, March 15, 2017
• Dunlap pens an eloquent tribute to Christopher Gray, the NYT's "architectural detective and social historian" who "lovingly highlighted quirky design and backstairs gossip from decades past" (we will miss him so much!!!).
• It's (another) Trumpian day: A Miami firm is "proposing a softer, gentler version" of Trump's border wall: "a sustainable structure built out of recycled shipping containers" (with shopping and housing and more - oh my!).
• Miller minces no words about aestheticizing the wall: "the architects who design it will be complicit" in its politics - "a lesson that history has already taught us."
• Deamer et al. are against the wall: "responses to the RFP reflect a profession that has become passive about its ethical mission," and "can no longer assert moral agency."
• Untapped Cities' Young parses the public spaces at Trump Tower: "We need to hold him accountable to the legal standards - starting with the sad public spaces" within the tower itself.
• Walker walks us through some art projects that could help turn NIMBYs into YIMBYs.
• McKay offers a "nine-step architectural beauty detox plan: Representation is perhaps the closest to the center of all that is wrong."
• Volf explains why Behar's "crib sheet" of design principles just isn't enough - what he leaves out "is telling" (and a warning).
• King has high hopes for SOM's towering plans for 1500 Mission Street that "shows how this part of San Francisco could be transformed - but it also shows how tough it is to fit ambitious visions into a complex setting" (preservationists are not pleased).
• Farrow's design for a new cancer center in Jerusalem intends to offer a "sense of hope and protection - where people can thrive and prosper, rather than cope and survive."
• Boyadzhieva explains how to rethink campus infrastructure: "'think out of the box' of infrastructure's standard forms, think (not build) big, think sustainable, and think playful - and put them to the test."
• Landscape architect Julie Stevens has overseen three design-build projects at a women's prison in Iowa that "help make the case for corrections departments everywhere to invest in humane design."
• Goldberger celebrates Pei on the eve of his 100th birthday: this living legend's career "has never rested on success and always seemed to be reaching for something new."
• Bouras basks in the beauty of a never-built Beadle, now "balancing geometry with the natural landscape" in Palm Springs.
• Why Ishrat Nowshehri "decided to swim upstream" and become Kashmir's first female architect ("women in India seem to have a keen liking for architecture - nearly 44% of the 58,646 registered architects are females" - wow!).
• Ingalls parses the four winners in the Arch Out Loud/Last House on Mulholland Competition with houses under the Hollywood sign that "could portend the next iteration of residential design."
• Call for entries: Nominations for Open Season on Open Space - TCLF's Landslide 2017 Threatened and At-Risk Landscapes in North America.
• Happy Ides of March (though Caesar might not concur).
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Obituary: Christopher Gray, Architecture Writer and Researcher, 66: ...an architectural detective and social historian whose Streetscapes column in The New York Times opened readers’ eyes to the richness of buildings all around them...narratives of creation, abandonment and restoration that lovingly highlighted quirky design and backstairs gossip from decades past. By David W. Dunlap -- Office for Metropolitan History- New York Times
The Great Green Wall of America: DOMO Design Studio wants to make Trump’s wall big, beautiful and sustainable: The wall has galvanized Trump’s supporters and horrified his opponents...One thing it has not done, however, is inspired America’s architects...to start drawing up designs. Until ... now? ...proposing a softer, gentler version of [the] wall: a sustainable structure built out of recycled shipping containers... [images]- Politico
Meg Miller: Please Do Not Aestheticize The Wall: Designing a mixed-use development into the Mexican border wall would be a $25 billion architectural bandaid: The problem with framing this project as strictly a design exercise is that building a border wall is inherently political...the architects who design it will be complicit in that...a lesson that history has already taught us. -- Architecture Lobby; Architects Advocate; DOMO Design Studio- Fast Company / Co.Design
Peggy Deamer, David Langdon, Melinda Agron: Architecture and the Border Wall: A Call for Collective Action: ...the AIA statement and the responses to the RFP reflect a profession that has become passive about its ethical mission...it can no longer assert moral agency...Architecture is fundamentally a political and social act, and capitulation to opportunism will only precipitate further loss of identity and potential. -- Architecture Lobby- Architectural Record
Michelle Young: Trump Got Millions to Make His Tower “Public”: We need to hold him accountable to the legal standards for public space...starting at the sad public spaces within Trump Tower itself: POPS (privately-owned public spaces) have been very little understood by the public...the controversy over Trump can raise awareness about this larger issue on public space. -- Untapped Cities- Metropolis Magazine
Alissa Walker: How to talk to your NIMBY neighbors about zoning: These art projects could help explain to your neighbors that their decisions are blocking out people and projects that could make their streets more vibrant and their housing more affordable...a YIMBY movement...has taken hold in many cities... -- Neighbors for More Neighbors- Curbed
Graham McKay: The Nine-Step Architectural Beauty Detox Plan: In envisioning a new way forward, it’s helpful to remember what we need to discard: Of the qualities I’ve listed and that should have no place in an architecture that exists for the good of humanity, Representation is perhaps the closest to the center of all that is wrong.- Common Edge
Misha Volf: Why Yves Behar’s 10 Principles for Design Just Aren’t Enough: His crib sheet aims to reorient design in an increasingly networked, augmented world. But what his decalogue leaves out is telling: ...doesn’t take the potentially profound ethical and existential crises associated with AI seriously...Unless designers...take up some truly principled positions, the profession risks being relegated to mere styling once again. -- fuseproject [images]- Metropolis Magazine
John King: Ambitious plan for once-central S.F. crossroads: The street life is spotty at best...the first major project...hints at a livelier future, but also shows how tough it is to fit ambitious visions into a complex setting...1500 Mission St...shows how this part of San Francisco could be transformed...Aesthetically, there’s a lot to like about the design...Wind also factors in. -- Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); SCB/Snøhetta [images]- San Francisco Chronicle
Farrow unveils design of Israel’s newest cancer centre in Jerusalem: ...takes a bigger view of design for health..."where people can thrive and prosper, rather than cope and survive"...[it] evokes the shape and movement of a butterfly...The sense of hope and protection - of being in good hands - is evident in this nurturing habitat for staff, patients and family who use the centre. -- Rubenstein Ofer Architects [images]- Canadian Architect
Too Big to Hide: Rethinking Infrastructure on Campuses: By banishing infrastructure facilities from sight, we avoid an important conversation about their potential - both functionally and aesthetically: ...“think out of the box” of infrastructure’s standard forms...think (not build) big, think sustainable, and think playful - and put them to the test. By Zhanina Boyadzhieva/Leers Weinzapfel Associates [images]- Metropolis Magazine
The Case for Humane Prisons: .It’s in this arena - fraught with moral undertones and concerns about safety, accountability, justice, and injustice - that landscape architect Julie Stevens practices...has overseen three design-build projects at the Iowa Correctional Institution for Women...they help make the case for corrections departments everywhere to invest in humane design. [images]- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Paul Goldberger: Why I.M. Pei Is One of the World’s Most Revered Architects: On the eve of Pei’s 100th birthday, Goldberger celebrates the enduring impact of a living legend: ...he likes to talk architecture as much as ever...a career that has never rested on success and always seemed to be reaching for something new. [images]- Architectural Digest
Effie Bouras: Beadle Resurrection: Al Beadle Architecture in Palm Springs: O’Donnell felt compelled to sit under the proverbial sword of Damocles and fully commit himself to bringing the unbuilt Beadle to Palm Springs. -- Mike Yakovich/Better Built; Ned Sawyer Architect; Lance O’Donnell/o2 Architecture [images]- Java Magazine (Arizona)
An architect by design: Growing up in a family of doctors and engineers, it was not easy for her to think beyond these professions...Ishrat Nowshehri decided to swim upstream and be an architect...believed to be Kashmir’s first female architect...an inspiration for many...Women in India seem to have a keen liking for architecture as nearly 44% of the 58,646 registered architects...are females. -- Council of Architecture- Kashmir Monitor (India)
Julia Ingalls: And the Winner of the Hollywood Competition is...Ethos over Categorizable Style: ...four different visions...sited just beneath the Hollywood sign...could portend for the next iteration of residential design...each highlights a quintessential element of the city it overlooks... -- Arch Out Loud; Last House on Mulholland; A2.0 Studio di Architettura ; FGO/Arquitectura; YBDD, NHD; Hirsuta [images]- Archinect
Call for entries: Call for Nominations: Open Season on Open Space - TCLF’s Landslide 2017 Threatened and At-Risk Landscapes in North America; deadline: June 30- The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF)
Jennifer McMaster: Sambuichi Architects: Naoshima Hall, Naoshima Island, Japan: ...a beautifully nuanced building in Honmura, an old castle town...It is at once a work of art, an astonishing piece of architecture...as a part of the Benesse Art Site...It is rare to find a building as meticulously crafted, and thoughtfully configured... [images]
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