Today’s News - Thursday, December 17, 2020

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the final newsletter of 2020(!). We wish everyone a happy - even though a very different - holiday season. We'll be back Tuesday, January 5(!). In the meantime: Stay well. Stay especially safe (and please don't travel!).

●  ANN double-feature to end the year: Peter Gisolfi: Consider the Place: The idea of place is a much freer, more far reaching, and potentially more inspiring understanding of setting than one that simply extols the virtues of contextual design.

●  Trahan Architects & Spackman Mossop Michaels reveal their design for the renewal of Luther George Park in downtown Springdale, Arkansas - made possible by a grant from the Walton Family Foundation's Design Excellence Program.

●  Saffron: "'When will this be over?' has become, 'When this is over...' - for all the terribleness of this pandemic, the hundreds of thousands of lives lost, we've learned some unexpected lessons - here's what we should keep."

●  Bloomberg Green invited Julien De Smedt, Casper Mork-Ulnes, and Koichi Takada, all architects known for their focus on sustainability, to envision what dream homes might look like once the EU goes net-zero (great presentation!).

●  How New Orleans-based Bryan C. Lee, Jr., founder of the nonprofit design & architecture firm Colloqate, "is using design justice to empower communities through outdoor spaces - 'the very premise of architecture is complicit in systems of racism. Public spaces present an opportunity to build community and host civic engagement.'"

●  Gamolina's (great) Q&A with Pritzker Prize laureates Yvonne Farrell & Shelley McNamara: "Architecture is a universal right. As a profession, we need to communicate that more. If we're not careful, we sound exclusive, and architecture deserves more than that" (and "advising young architects to nurture their true friendships").

●  Baldwin's (great) Q&A with Vivian Lee, Maureen Boyer, and Christiana Kyrillou, the women who head Woods Bagot studios in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles: "What do we bring to the table is not contingent on being female."; "We are not just women leaders; we are leaders, period."

●  Welton cheers Hamilton, Ontario-based Thier + Curran Architects' transformation of the town's 1850 Gasworks building into a music hall "dedicated to the concept of introducing children to music. Every city on the planet would do well to embrace that kind of concept."

●  Hickman reports that Noguchi's site-specific 1957 "Ceiling and Waterfall for the Lobby of 666 Fifth Avenue" has been removed as part of a KPF renovation; the good news: It is now "safely in the hands of the Noguchi Foundation, which is exploring ways in which it can be re-introduced into the public realm in a new location."

●  One we couldn't resist: 'Christmas Star' will be closest visible conjunction of the "planetary giants" Jupiter and Saturn in 800 years - looking like one large star on the winter solstice, Dec. 21, in the southwest sky.

●  ICYMI: ANN feature: Turan Duda & Jeffrey Paine: Predicting the Unpredictable - 2021 Workplace Trends: Several emerging trends will improve our ability to navigate the future with employee health and wellness in mind.


●  Call for entries/RFP: On Olive Residential Design Competition as a part of a residential development in St. Louis; open to Black Emerging Architects (national) & Local Emerging Architects; $30,000 to take the house through schematics, and the house will be built.

Weekend diversions & Page-turners:

●  Blake Gopnik takes issue with MoMA's "Broken Nature": "A show, and a field, that seems set to push back against our consumerist urges feels almost consumed by them" - with "the faulty message that our species can get out of its existential predicament simply by craving somewhat more earth-friendly goods."

●  "Aldo Rossi. The Architect and the Cities" opens today at the MAXXI in Rome with more than 800 models and archival documents "associated with the late lion of Italian postmodernist design" (Huxtable described him as "a poet who happens to be an architect").

●  Finbarr Toesland's Q&A with Leslie Kern re: her book "Feminist City: Claiming Space in the Man-made World": "If the majority of architects are men -.they perhaps have a limited set of life experiences that don't allow [them] to notice certain issues" facing women and other marginalized groups.

●  A fab photo-essay excerpted from "Enabling Connections to Empower Place: The Carolinas", by Kofi Boone, that appears in Hood and Mitchell's "Black Landscapes Matter."

●  Kamin offers "a rich array of design books for the holidays. They're all related to Chicago and its suburbs, but have much broader appeal" (they all sound great!).

●  In "Philip Cox: An Australian Architecture," Patrick Bingham-Hall "depicts the evolution of Australian society and architecture as a whole in the post-WWII years."


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