Today’s News - Tuesday, July 24, 2018
● Moore delves deep into how landmark buildings in Gulf states by a bevy of starchitects "are at once expressions of progress and weapons in a cultural and architectural arms race" that "combine good intentions and political calculation," but "masks deeper ethical concerns."
● Hopkins says "the recent battle to acquire the Trump Baby blimp is proof" that "museum collections are being hijacked by political agendas" by codifying 'rapid-response collecting.' It's not just intellectual and cultural vapidity that should concern us."
● Betsky has a hard time coming to grips with the Frick Collection's recently approved "nip-and-tuck" expansion plan that "evidences no conception of classical architecture - the proposed additions appear so without distinguishing elements that I am at a loss of words to describe them" ("the Frick should just move").
● Kamin finds "a troubling lack of detail" in the proposed $5 billion-plus Lincoln Yards development in Chicago: it may be "bold" and "ambitious" with some "good strokes," but it is "not yet a good neighbor - it should not resemble one of those instant cities in China."
● Bernstein reports on Fentress Architects being tapped to design the U.S. Pavilion at 2020 World Expo in Dubai - and brings up the spotty success record of previous pavilions.
● Keenan, co-author of a recent study on Climate Gentrification theory, raises "the ethical problems facing architects. Climate change is already turning cities, buildings and landscapes into sh%tshows. The more fundamental challenges" are professional ethics and legal liability.
● Sisson parses "the High Line effect" and whether high-profile park projects that are "catalysts for development" can "play nice with neighboring communities - Chicago's 606 is "a case study in the consequences - and cost - of this new generation of urban amenities."
● Green x 2: He cheers two "massive, city-changing riverfront parks" in Oklahoma, including MVVA's 100-acre, $485 million Gathering Place in Tulsa "designed to bridge the racial divide and bring reconciliation."
● He has a great Q&A with retail planning consultant and new urbanist Gibbs re: why "mall closures are good for cities" (retailers are moving back): "It's essential a retail district have multiple uses and good public realms" ("trees cause you to spend more" - who knew!).
● Slessor cheers London's Architecture Foundation efforts to make architecture more diverse: "Though it may be easy to dismiss such initiatives as minor moves in the wider scheme of architecture's stubbornly rooted culture of complacency and condescension, the fuse is lit. Expect fireworks."
● One we couldn't resist: McManus explains how "architecture and rap music have influenced each other in ways we're just starting to notice - rappers name-dropping architects reflects an interesting development in the relationship between architecture and pop culture" + "7 Shout-Outs to Architects in Rap Lyrics."
● Cheers for the five firms that won the Miller Prize and will design 2018-19 Exhibit Columbus installations (designs to be unveiled in January).
● The Architectural Review announces ZAV Architects' Habitat for Orphan Girls in Khansar, Iran, as winner of the 2018 AR House award + the Highly Commended winners.
● The 2018 North American Copper in Architecture Awards go to 15 projects.
● Eyefuls of the Big Tiny Coffee House Challenge to reinvent the coffee shop in miniscule locations across northern Europe with an easily replicated design.
● PennDesign names Williams and Tsien recipients of the inaugural Kanter Tritsch Medal for Excellence in Architecture and Environmental Design, the Kanter Tritsch Medal and a $50,000 fellowship goes to second-year M.Arch. student Adamski.
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Rowan Moore: How landmark buildings became weapons in a new Gulf war: Across the Gulf region, states are vying to build ever grander museums and towers from the world’s most famous architects. But this display of soft power masks deeper ethical concerns: The museums and towers are at once expressions of progress and weapons in a cultural and architectural arms race. They combine good intentions and political calculation. -- Jean Nouvel; Zaha Hadid; Frank Gehry; Rem Koolhaas/Ellen van Loon/OMA; Arata Isosaki; Mangera Yvars; Allies and Morrison [images]- Observer (UK)
Owen Hopkins: Museums need to focus less on collecting headlines: Museum collections are being hijacked by political agendas...the recent battle to acquire the Trump Baby blimp is proof: The V&A...was one of the pioneers of this practice, and the first to explicitly codify it as "rapid-response collecting"...This approach to collecting is not only short-termist and intellectually lazy, but ultimately counter-productive...It's not just intellectual and cultural vapidity that should concern us...museums need to focus...more on collecting objects that rise above the one-liner. However amusing, the Trump Baby blimp simply doesn't.- Dezeen
Aaron Betsky: Trying not to Grimace: the Frick Collection’s nip-and-tuck works, but only by a stretch: ...it shows the powerlessness of contemporary architecture in the face of both past achievements and entrenched interests and attitudes...Annabelle Selldorf is...no John Russell Pope. Her design evidences no conception of classical architecture...awkward in its proportions...proposed additions appear so without distinguishing elements that I am at a loss of words to describe them...[She] came up with a reasonable set of floor plans; a good Neo-Classicist could style those with a bit more elegance...What should really happen is that the Frick should just move. -- Carrère & Hastings (1914); John Russell Pope (1935); Russell Page (1977) [images]- Architect Magazine
Blair Kamin: Lincoln Yards plan: Bold, ambitious and not yet a good neighbor: While there are good strokes in the $5 billion-plus plan to construct about 12 million square feet of buildings on precious riverfront land...It’s as though a giant had picked up a chunk of downtown and dropped it in the middle of a swath of three-flats...the big issue is density...Lincoln Yards should not resemble one of those instant cities in China. -- Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Douglas Voigt; CBT Architects; James Corner Field Operations- Chicago Tribune
Fred A. Bernstein: Fentress Architects to Design U.S. Pavilion at 2020 World Expo in Dubai: “What Moves You"...will focus on advances in transportation [and] other things that move you...theme of the 2020 Expo is the predictably vague “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future.” Three sub-themes - Mobility, Sustainability and Opportunity - will be explored in central pavilions, designed by Foster + Partners, Grimshaw, and BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group...master planned by an HOK-led team that included Populous and Arup... -- Giuliani Associates Architects; George P. Johnson Experience Marketing- Architectural Record
Jesse M. Keenan: Climate Gentrification theory illustrates the ethical problems facing architects: Architects must consider not just the environmental, but the social and economic repercussions of building in places at risk from climate change: Climate change is already turning cities, buildings and landscapes into sh%tshows...This isn't because of a lack of development in the techniques and technologies shaping adaptation and resilience designs. As it turns out, we are doing a pretty good job at that...The more fundamental challenge...is grounded in considerations relating to professional ethics and legal liability.- Dezeen
Patrick Sisson: Can high-profile park projects, catalysts for development, play nice with neighboring communities? ...the challenge of pairing new urban amenities with equitable development: Like the High Line...the 606 has demonstrated the transformative potential of new parks...But, just like residents...around New York’s High Line, Chicagoans in the areas closest to the 606...see the trail as a case study in the consequences - and cost - of this new generation of urban amenities...park advocates, community groups, and local leaders continue to grapple with the housing issues raised by... “the High Line effect"...many believe the real solution to this park-influenced property inflation is better planning.- Curbed
Jared Green: Ambitious Parks Aim to Transform Oklahoma’s Cities:...massive, city-changing riverfront parks...In Oklahoma City, Hargreaves Associates is now building the 70-acre, $130-million Scissortail Park to revitalize its downtown. In Tulsa, Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) is building the 100-acre, $485 million Gathering Place designed to bridge the racial divide and bring reconciliation. [images]- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Jared Green: Interview with Robert Gibbs: Trees Cause You to Spend More: ..."mall closures are good for cities. You’re going to see retailers moving back into cities, and many Internet-based companies opening brick and mortar stores...It’s essential a retail district have multiple uses...It’s also essential to have a good public realms...the landscape architect working on a retail environment has to advocate for good place-making...people feel comfortable paying up to 12% more for the same product if they purchase in a well-landscaped place with nice streets. -- Gibbs Planning Group- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Catherine Slessor: How do we make architecture more diverse? We should begin by encouraging school children to feel they can participate in architecture and design: ...change is painfully slow in a profession notorious for its long and costly training period, exacerbated by a culture of nepotism, casual racism and the under-representation of ethnic minorities...."Architecture for All," a new short film just launched by London’s Architecture Foundation exploring issues around diversity...AF also supports the New Architecture Writers initiative...Though it may be easy to dismiss such initiatives as minor moves in the wider scheme of architecture’s stubbornly rooted culture of complacency and condescension, the fuse is lit. Expect fireworks. -- Neil Pinder- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Jack McManus: 7 Shout-Outs to Architects in Rap Lyrics: Architecture and rap music have influenced each other in ways we’re just starting to notice - with the connection between the two even revealed as consciously and conspicuously as rappers including references to notable architects in their lyrics...the fact that rappers are name-dropping architects reflects an interesting development in the relationship between architecture and pop culture...it might be tough for some architects to hear that popular culture could view the profession as defined by hero worship, immodest extravagance, and consumerism.- ArchDaily
Five Firms Selected to Design 2018-19 Exhibit Columbus Installations: The festival organizers announced the winners of the J. Irwin and Xenia S. Miller Prize: In January, the firms will unveil their designs, and the completed works will open the following August. -- Agency Landscape + Planning; Bryony Roberts Studio; Frida Escobedo Studio; MASS Design Group; SO-IL- Architect Magazine
Veiled in Secrecy: ZAV Architects' Habitat for Orphan Girls in Khansar, Iran announced as winner of the 2018 AR House awards: ...gives vulnerable children a safe and culturally sensitive environment to grow up in..."an atypical project that has no ambitions in the architectural sense of monumentality. The expression of the 'inner' quality, however, is monumental - and also brave." -- Schemata Architects; Vo Trong Nghia Architects; Fernanda Canales & Claudia Rodríguez; Mesura; Aalto University Wood Programme [images]- The Architectural Review/AR (UK)
Winners of the 2018 North American Copper in Architecture Awards: The Copper Development Association (CDA) and the Canadian Copper and Brass Development Association (CCBDA)...selected 15 projects... -- Gensler; SHoP Architects; CollinsWoerman; Flansburgh Architects; O'Brien & Keane; GEC Architecture; Zimmerman Workshop Architecture + Design; Hunt EAS; Arcop/Evoq Architecture (formerly Fournier Gersovitz Moss Drolet et Associés Architectes); Humphries Poli Architects; Jan Hird Pokorny Associates; +VG Architects; SmithGroupJJR [images]- Architect Magazine
The Big Tiny Coffee House Challenge results: ...reinvent the staple of modern urban culture: the coffee shop...creating a design that could be easily replicated in miniscule locations across northern Europe. -- Lau Wai Lap (Hong Kong); Ali Parva/Reza Khosravi (USA); Marco Di Pisa/Daphne Tarantino/Marianna Di Salvo/Studio 2HB (Italy) [images]- Bee Breeders (formerly HMMD/Homemade Dessert) / Kremm Coffee and Gelato
Tod Williams and Billie Tsien Receive New Medal for Excellence in Architecture and Environmental Design: The University of Pennsylvania School of Design has selected architects Williams and Tsien...to receive the first Kanter Tritsch Medal for Excellence in Architecture and Environmental Design...the Kanter Tritsch Medal and a $50,000 fellowship called the Kanter Tritsch Prize in Energy and Architectural Innovation [to] second-year M.Arch. student at PennDesign...Alexandra Mae Adamski... -- Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects|Partners- Architect Magazine
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