Today’s News - Friday, June 12, 2009
• Trying to figure out why New Urbanism has become "the object of hostility and condescension."
• A proposed New Urbanist waterfront community in the Bay Area is a prime example.
• A surprise score in the Chelsea Barracks battle, it's now Charles - 1, Rogers - 0 (even though Westminster Council approved it yesterday; adding salt to the wound: Prince's Foundation will be involved in the redesign).
• Mo' bad news: Jahn no longer designing Salvation Army's Kroc Center in Chicago: his design is being "swapped" for a more economical one (just whose we don't know yet).
• On a happier note, Wilkinson lends his expert eye to pick "The World's Coolest Buildings."
• Let's hope their architects won't have to join the Rubble Club any time soon.
• A floating McMansion bringing American suburbia to the Venice Biennale - oops - maybe not...it sank! (definitely catch the video!)
• Weekend diversions: A Vienna zoo presents "Trouble in Paradise" - putting animals side-by-side with symbols of humanity's trashing of the environment (great slide show, too).
• Architecture Foundation Australia brings Murcutt show to Sydney.
• "Mix: Nine San Diego Architects" does just what the architects wanted it to do: make us think.
• Heathcote and Bizley have two (sort of) different takes on "Super Contemporary" at London's Design Museum: "There is much nonsense here, but also glimpses of real intelligence" vs. "Don't the designers feel faintly embarrassed to be showing their work in this way?"
• In NYC, MoMA x 2: "What Was Good Design?" speaks "even more resonantly to our shopped-out, overequipped times"; and "In Situ" may signal a greater appreciation for landscape architecture - and for sustainability in the new century.
• "Reef" at Storefront "occupies a grey area between sculpture and structure."
• Webb is wowed by Neutra show in L.A.: "an inspired selection...handsomely installed and thoughtfully explained."
• Chicago Architecture Foundation's displays the city in miniature (it's still pretty big).
• On screen: "A Girl is a Fellow Here" shows that Frank Lloyd Wright, "whose personal relationships with women were famously rather scandalous, was a progressive employer"; and in "Synecdoche, New York, a man builds a second Manhattan in a warehouse; it's "an unflinching and often bleak look at mortality, made palatable - indeed, unforgettable - by once-in-a-lifetime imagery" (it's a Charlie Kaufman flick - would you expect anything different?).
• Page turners: re-issue of Malcolm Wells' "The Earth-Sheltered House" is a manifesto for underground building that "feels very personal, very intimate"; "Second Holcim Awards - Sustainable Construction" offers inspiring examples.
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New Urbanism: Very Misunderstood: ...I am going to try to understand how and why it happened that this movement of architects and planners trying to make the places where people live better became the object of hostility and condescension. By Frank Gruber -- Andrés Duany; Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk; Stefanos Polyzoides; Elizabeth Moule; Peter Calthorpe; Daniel Solomon- Huffington Post
Split Decision: Bay Area divided over major new waterfront community: ...a site currently covered by glittering salt ponds in Redwood City could become a residential community of as many as 12,000 units...also coveted by environmentalists, who dream of restoring it as tidal wetlands. The next couple of years will show how this struggle between the two interests—contributing to a healthy Bay or adding much-needed housing stock— plays out. -- Peter Calthorpe; ROMA design; Biohabitats [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Prince Charles in shock over Chelsea Barracks victory: Plans for the £3billion development were scrapped today in an astonishing victory...owner will invite architects and urban planners to submit new designs for the site... Prince's Foundation for the Built Environment said he was "delighted" it will be involved in the redesign. -- Rogers Stirk Harbour; Dimitri Porphyrios; Robert Adam; SOM- Evening Standard (UK)
Helmut Jahn no longer designing Salvation Army's Kroc Center on Far South Side; project reduced in size...swapped the project's earlier design...for a more economical one. -- Murphy/Jahn Architects [image]- Chicago Tribune
The World’s Coolest Buildings: ...Chris Wilkinson lent his expert eye to our selection. Commence drooling now. -- Jurgen Mayer; Durbach Block; Ross Lovegrove; Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF); McBride Charles Ryan; Oscar Niemeyer; Hagy Belzberg; Frank Lloyd Wright; Paul Andreu; Rem Koolhaas/OMA [images]- ShortList magazine
Architects of demolished buildings seek solace online: Rubble Club support group highlights 'unnecessarily' high level of demolition...To qualify for membership, architects must be alive and not party to the destruction of the building in question.- Building (UK)
Down The Drain In That Other Venice: Mike Boucher was excited to bring American suburbia to the Venice Biennale, constructing a floating McMansion...Unfortunately the house...sank [link to video]- The Architect's Newspaper
Rhino with a Mercedes: Vienna Zoo Combines Wild With Waste: The Schönbrunn Zoo has launched "Trouble in Paradise" - an art installation that puts its animals side-by-side with symbols of humanity's trashing of the environment -- including abandoned cars, rusty bathtubs and toxic waste. [slide show]- Der Spiegel (Germany)
Glenn Murcutt Honoured at Museum of Sydney: "Glenn Murcutt: Architecture for Place" opens June 13: Originally presented at the Gallery Ma in Tokyo, the exhibition has been brought to Sydney by the Architecture Foundation Australia.- ArtDaily.org
Architecture as art makes for a constructive 'Mix': ...“Mix: Nine San Diego Architects"...even when an architect creates an engrossing installation made specifically for a museum space...your mind is constantly thinking about how what you see inside has impacted what happens outside. That is what all of these architects want you to do. -- Teddy Cruz; Lloyd Russell; Jonathan Segal; Rinehart Herbst; Luce et Studio; Sebastián Mariscal; Public [images]- San Diego Union-Tribune
Glimpses of a better city: The brief for the Design Museum’s “Super contemporary” was to come up with interventions in London’s cityscape that would lighten or enhance the everyday experience of the streets...A brief as vague and fantastical as this one should have thrown up a cocktail of the fun and the functional – and so it has. By Edwin Heathcote -- David Adjaye; Thomas Heatherwick; El Ultimo Grito; Paul Smith; Paul Cocksedge; Barber Osgerby; Nigel Coates- Financial Times (UK)
Design Museum’s "Super Contemporary" seems stuck in the past: ...offers 15 new design ideas for London, but lacks coherency...Such vacuous one-liners do little to promote the benefits of good design...Don’t the designers feel faintly embarrassed to be showing their work in this way?...Even the title is meaningless... By Graham Bizley/Prewett Bizley Architects- BD/Building Design (UK)
The Ordinary as Object of Desire: “What Was Good Design? MoMA’s Message 1944-56”...This may speak even more resonantly to our shopped-out, overequipped times...exhibition suggests that when it comes to standards of living, a bit less in the way of consumables could result in a lot more spiritually. [images]- New York Times
Tabula Roses: "In Situ: Architecture and Landscape" [at MoMA] takes a non-dogmatic view of architecture’s relationship to landscape, and the importance of landscape architecture in general, in the 20th century...may signal a greater appreciation for the discipline - and for sustainability - in the century to come. By Alan G. Brake -- Richard Neutra; Superstudio; Bernard Tschumi; Zaha Hadid; James Wines/SITE; Yona Friedman;Andrea Branzi; Roberto Burle Marx; Teddy Cruz [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Welcome to Biodome: "Reef"...at the Storefront for Art and Architecture, exists at the intersection of “the super-exclusive and the trite"...occupies a grey area between sculpture and structure...represents a new model for architecture: sidestepping usefulness, it is a study for environment as companion, or at least co-presence. -- Rob Ley/Urbana; Joshua G. Stein/Radical Craft [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Artistry on the Line: "Richard Neutra, Architect: Sketches and Drawings" at the LA Central Library...an inspired selection from the UCLA archives to portray an architect who was also a gifted artist and a modernist with a strong romantic streak. Handsomely installed and thoughtfully explained... By Michael Webb [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
A model city: Chicago displayed in miniature: Chicago Architecture Foundation shows a scale model of the Loop and nearby areas...portrays more than four square miles of the city...accompanied by other displays and interactive exhibits that explore how the city was built, its transportation networks, the impact of urbanization and urban renewal. [slide shows]- Chicago Tribune
Wright by Women: Marion Mahoney and five of the 100 women that worked with Wright are the subject of the short film "A Girl is a Fellow Here" directed by Beverly Willis...apparent that Frank Lloyd Wright, whose personal relationships with women were famously rather scandalous, was a progressive employer.- Metropolis Magazine
"Synecdoche, New York": A man builds a second Manhattan in a warehouse and wrestles with the big questions of death, truth and reality in Charlie Kaufman’s new film.- Icon magazine (UK)
Malcolm Wells: Dreamer of an Underground Utopian Architecture: "The Earth-Sheltered House:
An Architect's Sketchbook"...serves as both a manifesto for underground building and a review of Wells’s career, as recalled by the architect himself...The book feels very personal, very intimate. [images]- The Chronicle of Higher Education
Inspiring examples of sustainable construction: "Second Holcim Awards – Sustainable Construction 2008/2009"...features in-depth articles, photographic presentations and interviews...- Holcim Foundation
Engaging Students in Smart-Building Design: Illinois Institute of Technology New Student Residence Halls: Performance-calibrated building design and student-centric spaces will give students control over their environment and generate performance data to be shared with university and architectural communities beyond the IIT campus. -- Dirk Denison Architects [images]- ArchNewsNow
-- Álvaro Siza: Iberê Camargo Museum (ICM), Porto Alegre, Brazil
-- Zaha Hadid: Lacoste Footwear Capsule Collection
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