Today’s News - Wednesday, November 20, 2019
● Filler minces no words about the "Megalo-MoMA" make-over: "Despite DS+R's formidable metamorphic powers, it was unable to turn this architectural sow's ear into a silk purse, and has instead given us a supersized MoMA tote bag. They have acquitted themselves decently enough, with the possible exception of having accepted the job in the first place."
● Dorris's finale to his MoMA makeover review: "There's much to argue over. And indeed, protestors are taking advantage of the new space. They remind us that who funds these expansions - and who keeps them running - matter as much as who designs them and whether they succeed.
● Saffron cheers "Philadelphia's legacy art museums work to attract a woke generation," making them more welcoming and accessible: "Although the architects for both projects are well-known museum designers - there is very little ego in the two designs."
● Pedersen's Q&A with William Leddy re: "the three-track approach by AIA California to convince the state government to embrace a Zero Code": "This is a historic opportunity that architects must seize, for many reasons. If architects don't take a leadership role - others will - China, India, and the EU are all looking to California to take the next step."
● Green tours Georgia Tech's Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design: "The Southeast's greenest is a marvel of efficiency and spare parts" that "should meet Living Building Challenge certification standards, and then some" (but no mention of design team - Lord Aeck Sargent & The Miller Hull Partnership).
● McKeough takes a deep (and fascinating) dive into how some "architects and designers are finding new workplace and household uses for the stuff polluting our oceans. Others are finding uses for plastic before it reaches the water. These are early days, however."
● Fazzare explains why Quito, Ecuador, is "quickly becoming a crane city" and starchitects' "next frontier - the phenomenon is entirely new."
● Reiner-Roth x 2: For the second time, Seattle is defunding "a tiny house village program without providing an alternative housing solution for its formerly homeless residents" (because Low-Income Housing Institute "members were made to feel unwelcome"??!!?).
● On a brighter note, he reports that Oscar Niemeyer's last structure, "a 40-foot-diameter sphere hanging off the corner of a 19th-century red brick building in Leipzig, Germany," will be complete next spring.
● McKnight, meanwhile, reports that Niemeyer's 1966 Tea House in Brasília, now a tourist information center, has a refreshed interior by Bloco Arquitetos and Equipe Lamas that is more "sympathetic to the original design."
● Stephens delves into what China's Belt and Road Initiative, "arguably the biggest collection of construction projects in human history" - but "projects are unlikely to result in lavish Xanadus to stoke the architectural imagination."
● Frearson picks "10 of the most interesting ideas" at the Oslo Architecture Triennale, "Enough: The Architecture of Degrowth" (it closes this Sunday!).
● Metropolis has been acquired by SANDOW, a design media and tech company that will help the magazine "build on its 38-year legacy as a leading storyteller for the architecture and design community."
● An executive summary of the recent A/E/C THRIVE executive summit: "Diversity, proposal activity & nurturing next-gen leaders were among firm leaders' hottest issues + Call for Presentations for 2020 summit.
● The soon-to-be-finalized Pune Declaration "focuses on architecture education to make it more relevant -.in view of the challenges of urbanization and related environmental, ecological and social challenges" in India.
● ICYMI: ANN feature: Mathias Agbo, Jr.: Lesson Plan #6: Teacher, Don't Teach Them Nonsense: Reforming Architecture's Broken Education: A curriculum overhaul alone cannot fix the problem; rather, the practice of architecture must first reform itself for any pedagogical reforms to make sense.
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Martin Filler: Megalo-MoMA: Some commentators have attempted to draw parallels between Jean Nouvel's 53W53 and William Van Alen’s Chrysler Building...to compare the two is laughable...If Goodwin and Stone’s MoMA was not quite great architecture, it was unquestionably a great idea...despite [DS+R's] formidable metamorphic powers, it was unable to turn this architectural sow’s ear into a silk purse, and has instead given us a supersized MoMA tote bag...They have acquitted themselves decently enough, with the possible exception of having accepted the job in the first place... -- Jean Nouvel; Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Gensler; Philip L. Goodwin; Edward Durell Stone; Philip Johnson; César Pelli; Yoshio Taniguchi- New York Review of Books
Jesse Dorris: At MoMA’s New Expansion by DS+R, “There’s No Perfect Circulation Route”: The project’s first phase, completed in 2017, was a statement of intent: Let there be light and air...If the first phase was a statement, its newly-opened successor is a manifesto, boldly jettisoning much of Taniguchi’s efforts (and, sadly, the entirety of Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architect’s American Folk Art Museum)...There’s much to argue over. And indeed, protestors are taking advantage of the new space...They remind us that who funds these expansions - and who keeps them running - matter as much as who designs them and whether they succeed. -- Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Gensler- Metropolis Magazine
Inga Saffron: Philadelphia’s legacy art museums work to attract a woke generation: The profound changes taking place across American society help explain why two of the city’s most important museums [Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Penn Museum]...are both in the middle of major projects to reorganize their interior spaces and rethink how their collections are presented...It’s no accident that both museums started by installing new entrances that make it easier to walk in off the street and head straight for the galleries...Although the architects for both projects are well-known museum designers...there is very little ego in the two designs. -- OLIN; Wilson Eyre; Gluckman Tang Architects; Frank Gehry- Philadelphia Inquirer
Martin C. Pedersen: California Architects Push the State for Emissions-Free Buildings: William Leddy discusses the three-track approach by AIA California to convince the state government to embrace a Zero Code: "... it’s critical to do this...at the latest by the 2022 code cycle...our climate emergency is so pressing...this is a historic opportunity that architects must seize, for many reasons, not the least of which is the business reason. If architects don’t take a leadership role...others will...Since they all know nothing is happening at the federal level, China, India, and the EU are all looking to California to take the next step." -- Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects; Ed Mazria/Architecture 2030; Charles Eley- Common Edge
Josh Green: Georgia Tech’s Living Building, the Southeast’s greenest, is a marvel of efficiency and spare parts: Now finished, metro Atlanta’s most environmentally advanced structure aims to be a self-sustaining launchpad for big ideas: The Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design...a modern wonder amid Tech’s leafy campus that’s not satisfied with being merely the Southeast’s greenest structure...Nothing like it has ever been attempted in this climate zone...should meet Living Building Challenge certification standards, and then some. -- Lord Aeck Sargent; The Miller Hull Partnership- Curbed Atlanta
Tim McKeough: A Sea Change for Plastic: Architects and designers are finding new workplace and household uses for the stuff polluting our oceans: At Snohetta...Stian Alessandro Ekkernes Rossi began Plast...aimed at finding new uses for recycled plastics...made his own machines to grind, melt and mold different types of plastic trash into strangely beautiful new materials......Snohetta partnered with Nordic Comfort Products, a furniture company...in talks with other companies about bolder applications...Others are finding uses for plastic before it reaches the water...These are early days, however... -- ByFusion; Lonely Whale; Humanscale; Interface; Studio Inma Bermúdez; IKEA; etc.- New York Times
Elizabeth Fazzare: Why Quito, Ecuador, Is the Starchitect’s Next Frontier: New urban shifts are seeing five-star architect-designed buildings rising in the traditionally low-density capital: ...declared a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site in 1978...quickly becoming a crane city...the phenomenon is entirely new...Towers have dotted the bustling downtown...since the 1970s, but the first starchitect-designed structure rose only in 2017...previous location of the airport...now allows towers...up to 40 stories...the hope is that upper-class residents who currently drive from the suburbs to work...will ditch their cars for mass transit and move back to the city center. -- Jean Nouvel; BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group; Moshe Safdie/Safdie Architects; Carlos Zapata; Arquitectonica; Philippe Starck- Architectural Digest
Shane Reiner-Roth: Seattle will shutter tiny house village after resident lockout: ...shutdown comes seven months after the perimeter gates of the 19-bed village were locked by residents against the city and its contractors over fears of a takeover. This marks the second time the city has defunded a tiny house village program without providing an alternative housing solution for its formerly homeless residents...Low-Income Housing Institute states that its members were gradually made to feel unwelcome in the village by members of Northlake...- The Architect's Newspaper
Shane Reiner-Roth: Oscar Niemeyer's last structure is nearly complete: ...a 40-foot-diameter sphere hanging off the corner of a 19th-century red brick building in Leipzig, Germany...to be completed...in Spring 2020. The design is based on a sketch drawn by Niemeyer in 2011, a year before his death...“Niemeyer Sphere"...in the center of the Techne Sphere Leipzig campus...factory site...will function as a cafeteria, bar, and lounge for on-site staff. The project was an opportunity to demonstrate impeccable manufacturing through notable methods...- The Architect's Newspaper
Jenna McKnight: Oscar Niemeyer's Tea House in Brasília gets refresh by Bloco Arquitetos and Equipe Lamas: The Tea House sits within Praça dos Três Poderes, or Three Powers Plaza, and serves as a tourist information centre. Partially sunken below ground...opened in 1966, has undergone various changes over the decades. Local studios...were hired to refresh the interior in a way that was sympathetic to the original design.- Dezeen
Josh Stephens: China’s Belt and Road Initiative is tying the world together - but what's the end game? ...includes hundreds of infrastructure projects...and even entire new cities...they aim for nothing less than the unification of almost all of Asia and Africa...projects are unlikely to result in lavish Xanadus to stoke the architectural imagination. With the exception of some impressive new cities...As arguably the biggest collection of construction projects in human history...the initiative has already alarmed environmentalists...BRI is as much a geopolitical experiment as it is an economic development strategy.- The Architect's Newspaper
Amy Frearson: 10 ways architecture could support a degrowth economy: Oslo Architecture Triennale looks at...an economic strategy that calls for a reduction of both production and consumption, and asks what architecture could do to support it...."Enough: The Architecture of Degrowth"...explores different ways that architecture could respond to "a time of climate emergency and social division"...proposes that a degrowth economy, rather than a capitalist economy, offers the answers...Here are 10 of the most interesting ideas. -- Phineas Harper- Dezeen
Metropolis Acquired by Design Media and Tech Company SANDOW: ...will help Metropolis build on its 38-year legacy as a leading storyteller for the architecture and design community. -- Horace Havemeyer III; Eugenie Cowan Havemeyer; Susan S. Szenasy; Avinash Rajagopal- Metropolis Magazine
A/E/C Executive Summit Reveals Concerns for 2020 - And Opportunity: Diversity, Proposal Activity & Nurturing Next-Gen Leaders among A/E/C Firm Leaders’ Hottest Issues: ...A/E/C THRIVE 2019...growth and profitability summit recently wrapped up its three-day event in New Orleans...provided hard data on current A/E/C market conditions - and what they mean to ambitious, growth-oriented firms + 2020 A/E/C THRIVE Call for Presentations - deadline: January 31, 2020- PSMJ Resources
‘Pune Declaration’ focuses on architecture education to make it more relevant: ...in view of the challenges of urbanisation and related environmental, ecological and social challenges, the role of architecture and future architects needs to be deliberated upon...“We are thinking of ways that prepares and galvanize the community of 70,000 working architects, plus 18,000 that the country now produces each year, for a more meaningful contribution to the human settlements development sector in India...,” said architect Shirish Beri- Hindustan Times (India)
ANN feature: Mathias Agbo, Jr.: Lesson Plan #6: Teacher, Don't Teach Them Nonsense: Reforming Architecture's Broken Education: A curriculum overhaul alone cannot fix the problem; rather, the practice of architecture must first reform itself for any pedagogical reforms to make sense.- ArchNewsNow.com
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