Today’s News - Tuesday, November 5, 2019

●  Betsky paints one of our fave portraits of Charles Jencks: "The brilliant witticist, raconteur, and connoisseur of remarkable buildings became the maker of monuments that demonstrated architecture's ability to bring us back to ourselves."

●  The Citizen's Brigade to Save LACMA issues a call to arms to storm tomorrow's Los Angeles City Council's meeting to express opposition to Zumthor's Wilshire Boulevard bridge - or send an email, fax, or letter.

●  Gibson reports that Sidewalk Labs and Waterfront Toronto have released new details for Quayside, Toronto's proposed smart city - new stipulations include "restrictions on Sidewalk Labs' ability to collect data" and a dramatic reduction in size (from 190 to 12 acres!).

●  Gelinas on MoMA's makeover: It's not about architecture and art. It "is a monument to the one commodity more priceless than a bunch of Monets: superfluous space" - the museum "is good at real estate. But has no idea what to do with much of its new space. Still, it is ineffably fun."

●  Otterman parses Holl's Queens Public Library, the "$41.5 million masterpiece heralded as an architectural triumph," but its "accessibility problems" have left library officials and the architects "hurrying to find solutions. How the planning process for the building did not include more of a consideration for accessibility has left critics puzzled and frustrated."

●  Moore mulls "Aberdeen's bid to reinvent itself" with a new events center ("an entertainment and display factory"), and a revamped art gallery: "It's a difficult sweet spot for a local authority to hit, to achieve architecture that both keeps its feet on the ground and transcends its function. Aberdeen, like many others, hasn't quite found it."

●  Wainwright, on a brighter note, cheers what Niall McLaughlin and SANNA have - and will - wrought at the 1,000-year-old Auckland Castle in North East England - he "scales its siege tower - and marvels at the prospect of a 13-orb glasshouse" (SANAA's first permanent project in the UK - very cool).

●  Astbury brings us eyefuls of The Last Redoubt, China's first museum for architectural models inspired by sci-fi films because "the collection was chosen to present architectural visions of the future," and "designed to give the sense that it is one giant architectural model housing scores of models, like a dollhouse."

●  Pagliacolo parses Brooks + Scarpa & Plant Prefab's prefab affordable housing "toolkit for curbing homelessness" that "features off-the-grid energy, water, and sewage systems" and will fit 80% of the lots in Los Angeles County.

●  Bernstein calls on critics and journalists to start asking architects about embodied energy (the energy used for construction), and not just buy into their "spin" that "their projects as sustainable - journalists should dig to expose the real truth" (so far, he's "been disheartened").

●  Plans are afoot to revive FLW's massive 1921 A.D. German Warehouse in Richland Center, "one of his largest buildings in Wisconsin," thanks to a Saving America's Treasures grant.

●  Brussat takes issue with Beatriz Colomina's article "Far From Being a Temple to Rationality, the Bauhaus Was a Cauldron of Perversions": Having read Stevens Curl's "Making Dystopia" led "me (for some demented reason) to expect more."

●  One we couldn't resist: Kamin reports on CTBUH's 50th anniversary fete ("fittingly held on the night before Halloween"): "Evoking a celebrated 1930s ball where architects dressed as likenesses of their skyscrapers," architects from 15 countries came to the party dressed as their own skyscrapers (check out the pix!).

●  ICYMI: ANN feature: Lesson Plan #5: Letter from an architect to the gurus [teachers] and chelas [disciples] of architecture: From India, Shirish Beri writes this special letter out of a restlessness that arises from a genuine concern for the present state of architectural education and profession, as well as that of our society.


●  Call for entries: Harvard GSD Loeb Fellowship for Class of 2021: open to mid-career practitioners.

●  Call for entries: One Drawing Challenge to "create a computer-generated visualization that powerfully communicates an architectural form or space and the experience of those that would inhabit it."

●  Call for entries: The Forge Prize: 2020 AISC Vision in Steel for Architectural Excellence and Speed Conceptual Design Competition, open emerging architects who are working professionals based in the U.S.


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