Today’s News - Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Larmes pour Notre Dame

●  Kimmelman at his most eloquent: "For centuries, Notre Dame Cathedral has enshrined an evolving notion of what it means to be French. As smoke and flames wafted into the sky - the symbolism was hard to miss."

●  Madrigal tells us the tale of Tallon, a pioneering architectural historian, who (with computer scientist Blaer) scanned every piece of Notre Dame before he died last year at 49 - "the images could be an invaluable aid to whoever is charged with rebuilding the structure."

●  Capps & O'Sullivan offer good news: "There's hope for restoration. Gothic architecture is strong stuff, built to withstand even an inferno - governments and institutions around the world will be standing by to help."

●  Architectural historian Melvin measures "the architectural loss of Notre Dame fire. Rarely has the destruction of an historic work of architecture generated so much public emotion."

●  Schmich: "The most beloved church in the world went up in flames, and with it a piece of the world's heart" - it's "tempting to think of the fire as an omen of the world gone mad. But we have to remember that the world has always been mad and always figured out a way to rebuild from ruins."

●  A round-up of French and British newspapers' front pages about the Notre Dame fire.

In other news:

●  Still in Paris, Adjaye "pips Heatherwick" and wins the competition to one of eight towers in a major new urban district by the Seine.

●  Betsky x 2: He finds The Shed at Hudson Yards to be "a movable spectacle at a gigantic scale - its lacey steel structure and the translucent panels summon the image of a Gothic cathedral that has become abstracted and stretched into a thin membrane."

●  He explains why Isozaki deserves a Pritzker Prize (it's about time): "His architecture mixes the grand and the mundane, the eye-catching and the confusing, and the composed and the unfinished - the perfect architect for our confused and perilous times."

●  Brussat re: why Scruton's sacking was "inevitable - like any such sane voice in an asylum run by its inmates, he had a target on his back - architecture itself is probably better off with Scruton roaming freely to speak his mind without the restrains of chairmanship."

●  Grabar crunches the numbers to find out why, "even in thriving cities, old buildings house far fewer people than they did 50 years ago - a reminder that 'growth' in cities isn't always what it seems and that architecture can be an awfully poor proxy for the social structures to which it seems so closely tied. "

●  Lamster cheers plans to save the "crumbling" Hall of State built for 1936 Texas Centennial Exposition in Dallas: "The magnificent hall, once and still the pride of Texas, now depends on the kindness of strangers."

●  Blander cheers Diamond Schmitt's transormation of Ottawa's disused 1912 train station into "a new civic space and provisional home for the Canadian Senate - the project's sensitivity, restraint, and ample Canadian imagery feel right at home" ("opulent elegance" included with fab photos to prove it!).

●  Dupré hails the restoration of Nevelson's Chapel of the Good Shepherd at Saint Peter's Church - "a singular treasure" that is "the fruit of a series of unlikely alliances between a larger-than-life artist, an entrepreneurial pastor, a global financial giant, and New York City itself."

●  TCLF's Birnbaum responds to a rather self-serving "Report and Opinion" on effects of the Obama Presidential Center in Chicago "solicited by a private party (the law firm representing the Obama Foundation) whose primary interest in doing so is the furtherance of plans to build the OPC in Jackson Park."

●  Cascone reports on controversial plans to demolish NYC's art-filled Elizabeth Street Garden to build affordable housing. "The project has divided the neighborhood 'pitting community green space against affordable housing'" (TCLF calls it "an Outsider Art garden").

●  Bernstein reports on BIG's proposal for Brooklyn's Brooklyn-Queens Expressway "that would replace the existing expressway" so that the Promenade and Brooklyn Bridge Park "would become part of a multilevel recreation space."

Everything Bauhaus

●  Witte & Beck: The Bauhaus is finally "getting its due" - with celebrations across Germany: "A utopian ideal of modernity that was snuffed out by hatred and mass killing only to rise again after its leading lights had fled abroad - the movement has been allowed to take center stage."

●  Ravenscroft x 2: He hails Heike Hanada's just-completed Bauhaus Museum Weimar - "a minimalist concrete museum that creates a physical cultural presence for the Bauhaus in the city where it was based between 1919 and 1925."

●  He brings us everything you need to know about Bauhaus architecture and design, from A to Z.

●  D. Hill brings us the fascinating tale of how the Bauhaus came to Aspen via Herbert Bayer: "Aspen may now be a billionaire's paradise, but you can still tease out Bayer's legacy. His playful spirit still permeates the serene Aspen Institute campus" (Gropius declined invitation design a master plan).

●  Safi explains how, a 100 years later, "capitalism is a boon for Bauhaus, which has its origins, ironically, in a very anti-capitalist art movement."

●  Only a few more days to see OMA and Knoll's "Knoll Celebrates Bauhaus" at the Knoll showroom in Milan.


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