Today’s News - Thursday, September 10, 2020

EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow and Monday will be no-newsletter days - we'll be back Tuesday, September 15. In the meantime: Stay well. Stay safe.

●  We lose Bill N. Lacy, FAIA: "In a remarkable 50-year career ascending through the ranks of leadership - he achieved top positions in academia, government, non-profits," and more (president of the Cooper Union, Pritzker Prize executive director, National Endowment for the Arts Director of Architecture and Design, etc.).

●  DC-based architect and author Melvin L. Mitchell says that fixing the "chronic" affordable housing problem for Black Americans "must involve Black individuals from every aspect of the building industry" - he calls for African American architects to "catalyze a Black-controlled housing industry and develop/build one million affordable new houses over next 10 years."

●  Litt reports that Cleveland throttled public input over a bridge replacement, "quietly" announcing "that it had eliminated the best solution for redirecting industrial truck traffic" away from a public housing complex - "a glaring example of environmental injustice" that "appears to be a clear example of systemic racism in city planning, but it didn't start out that way."

●  Gehry releases his designs for "an expansion of the Colburn School campus that includes a glass-enclosed, 1,100-seat concert hall and a 700-seat studio theater" joining "the lineup of cultural centers that currently span Grand Avenue" in Los Angeles.

●  Former NYC Park Commissioner Adrian Benepe is departing the Trust for Public Land to be President and CEO of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

●  Zoë Ryan is leaving her post as Chair and Curator of Architecture and Design at the Art Institute of Chicago to lead the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania.

●  Marani's Q&A with Omar Khan re: "his transition to leading the Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture after nearly two decades at the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning - and how ideas he forged there have translated to his vision for CMU": "We want to unapologetically align architectural design to specific societal and design concerns."

●  ICYMI: ANN feature: RKTB's Carmi Bee parses the firm's Infill Housing Prototype that offers a model for developing affordable urban housing on a neighborhood scale, and that also addresses health and safety measures.


●  Expressions of Interest/EOI: The Camden Highline international competition for London's park in the sky - a 15-minute green walking route inspired by the iconic New York High Line.

●  Call for entries: "Q-Village - Gangtou" International Young Designer Competition: revive the village with the power of design; cash prizes.

●  Call for entries (deadline looms!): Hyperloop Desert Campus international ideas competition; cash prizes.

Weekend diversions + Page-turners:

●  The London Design Festival 2020 kicks off on Sunday: "With very little, if any, international travel, it will be a Festival for Londoners" + Heartiest congrats to Paola Antonelli who's won the London Design Medal!

●  Betsky's review of "Designs for Different Futures" when it was in Philly, now about to open at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis: It "evokes nostalgia and dread as much as it inspires - strangely enough, there is a whiz-bang exuberance" and "works like an avant-garde science fair."

●  Sitz brings us eyefuls of what's on view at Chicago's Wrightwood 659, now hosting "Balkrishna Doshi: Architecture for the People" that highlights the Pritzker Prize-winning "visionary Indian architect, urbanist, and educator's skillful melding of Modernism with the forms and techniques of his home country."

●  Holland Cotter cheers the "big, beautiful wall" on the roof of NYC's Metropolitan Museum of Art: "Héctor Zamora's 'Lattice Detour' is a monument to openness over enclosure, lightness over heaviness, transience over permanence. It's also fraught with political meanings" (great pix!).

●  Brendan Cormier on the V&A Dundee's "Now Accepting Contactless" that explores how the pandemic is restructuring curatorial practice, "entirely conceived and created during the lockdown" - and what went into gathering an amazing collection of "pandemic objects."

●  Betsky's take on Diana Darke's "Stealing From the Saracens: How Islamic Architecture Shaped Europe": "The title alone is meant to provoke - based on Darke's obsession with proving that Syria is the heart of civilization. I found the book to be a bit of a mess. Its argument, however, is worth rehashing."

●  Moore's take on Drake's "Stealing from the Saracens": "Sometimes Darke overstates her case. Some of the connections she makes don't convince - but she assembles overwhelming evidence that extensive exchanges of ideas and knowledge took place - a useful reminder of the interconnectedness of civilization."


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