Today’s News - Thursday, June 16, 2016
EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow and Monday will be no-newsletter days - we'll be back Tuesday, June 21.
• The new UN Sample of Cities open-source data tool "measures the rate of global urbanization, its characteristics, and the potential effect of urban sprawl on the quality of life."
• Adjaye wins the competition to design the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art.
• FXFOWLE tapped to design a new Statue of Liberty Museum (no images yet).
• Gunts reports on another Breuer building under threat, this one in Reston, VA, and the petition to save it - the developer's application for a demolition permit is being considered today.
• Judah is quite taken with the "radical rehang" in the Tate Modern's Switch House: "Even on a dank and cloud-stoppered morning, the interior felt airy and radiant."
• Betsky files his last report on the Biennale: "architects need to stop blaming anything or anyone else for what they themselves do not achieve," and go to Biennale and learn "what they can do, and then go do it with the beauty that has the power to move our hearts and minds."
• Campbell-Dollaghan highlights some of projects in the (growing) database of refugee housing designs that is part of the Biennale's German Pavilion.
• A paper engineer designs a portable paper chapel for Australia's first art and design led funeral home.
• Murray parses the AJ100 survey that "reveals some uncomfortable truths about the profession."
• Menking parses how Trump "has transformed NYC with barely the slightest architecturally-worthy design or public service."
• Weekend diversions:
• The 2016 Architect Africa Film Festival gets underway in Johannesburg next week.
• The "controversial history of sabotage, disruption and resignations" will be immortalized in a new Swedish/Australian/Danish film "Utzon, The Man Behind the Opera House."
• Why the upcoming movie "The Architect" is "a disaster for the profession": the "public will roll their eyes at a walking personification of pompous elitism."
• Judah finds Hadid's last project, the exhibition "Kurt Schwitters: Merz" in Zurich, "is part iceberg, part cave and part shrine, created in homage."
• Wainwright cheers the V&A's Ove Arup show that "celebrates the 20th century's most influential engineer."
• Bevan x 2: he finds it a bit "discomforting that Arup has financially supported" the V&A exhibition, but it doesn't "undermine his worthy candidature for a show dedicated to his genius."
• He cheers The Hive in Kew Gardens that "brings the plight of bees to life. As a meeting of the muses and architecture, the project is more than simply charming."
• Ensamble Studio builds monumental land art in Montana "to show that it's possible to build architectural structures without disturbing the landscape."
• Christo and Jeanne Claude's "Floating Piers" spanning Italy's 62-mile-wide Lake Iseo "will allow visitors to essentially walk on water."
• Campbell-Dollaghan relishes Serraino's "The Creative Architect: Inside the Great Midcentury Personality Study" that presents "an incredibly intimate, at times uncomfortable, portrait of a group of now-legendary architects."
• An excerpt form Yoos and James's "Parallel Cities" offers a fascinating history of the urban skyway, and "a new wave of interest in the skyway as architectural form."
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UN tool will map 'science of cities' as rapid urbanization emerges as force in sustainable development: UN Sample of Cities measures the rate of global urbanization, its characteristics, and the potential effect of urban sprawl on the quality of life for city dwellers...provides open-source data to researchers to draw scientifically valid comparisons between world cities.- UN News Centre
Adjaye Associates/AB3D scoops Riga art musuem: ...€30 million Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art...the country’s first major public-private cultural initiative...to support Latvia’s growing artistic community and give the Baltic region a major attraction. -- Sauerbruch Hutton/Arhitekts Ingurds Lazdin; Henning Larsen Architects/MARK arhitekti; Caruso St John Architects/Arhitektu birojs Jaunromans un Abele [images]- BD/Building Design (UK)
New Statue of Liberty Museum Planned: ...free-standing 20,000-square-foot museum...would accommodate far more people than the current exhibition space in the statue’s pedestal...and provide additional shelter during inclement weather... -- FXFOWLE Architects; ESI Design- Wall Street Journal
Virginia’s only Marcel Breuer building threatened with demolition: ...former American Press Institute (API) headquarters...Fairfax County Planning Commission is scheduled to meet on June 16 to consider the developer’s application to rezone the land and obtain a demolition permit...An online petition has been created...asking county leaders to save the Breuer building. By Edward Gunts [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
The New Tate Modern Building Opens with a Radical Rehang: ...the broken edges of the Switch House appear surprisingly insubstantial. Lightness - both in terms of solidity and illumination - is the building's calling card. Even on a dank and cloud-stoppered morning, the interior felt airy and radiant. By Hettie Judah -- Herzog & de Meuron [images]- artnet News
Postscript from the 2016 Venice Biennale: I was especially frustrated when, at some of the discussions...architects fell back on blaming others for their failings....architects need to stop blaming...anything or anyone else...They should come to this Biennale and learn from the many techniques and hopeful examples on display to figure out what they can do, and then go do it with the beauty that has the power to move our hearts and minds. By Aaron Betsky [images]- Architect Magazine
The Race To Build Refugee Housing That Feels Like Home: Amid intense sociopolitical strife surrounding Germany's refugee policy, architects are rushing to provide more than just housing: ...the subject of Germany’s pavilion at...Venice Biennale. Part of the exhibit is a database of refugee housing designs...Here are a few solutions drawn from its growing database. By Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan -- Deutsches Architekturmuseum/DAM; Gorenflos Architekten; Gerstberger Architekten; Oliver Langhammer [images]- Fast Company / Co.Design
Paper chapel: finding beauty in death: Renowned paper engineer Benja (Paperform), has created...a “cross between architecture and poetry”, for Australia’s first art and design led funeral home. The House was developed as an alternative to traditional funerals...portable paper chapel...to host services and create a unique space within existing locations. [images]- Australian Design Review
The AJ100 survey reveals some uncomfortable truths about the profession: Despite a booming workload, architects failed to get a pay rise this year. Should they go on strike? It is sad that practices have failed to share the wealth and make meaningful change during this buoyant period...Perhaps young architects...need to take a stand on pay. By Christine Murray- The Architects' Journal (UK)
How Donald Trump transformed New York without any regard for design quality: ...designs...are driven solely by profit...Trump...has no idea of the difference between architecture and building...[he] has transformed the city with barely the slightest architecturally-worthy design or public service. By William Menking -- Philip Johnson; Costas Kondylis; Herbert Muschamp; Ada Louise Huxtable; Paul Goldberger; Der Scutt; Poor, Swanke, Hayden & Connell; Gruzen & Partners; Murphy/Jahn Architects; Michael Sorkin [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
2016 Architect Africa Film Festival: selected films have raised pertinent issues, encouraged discussion, and facilitated interaction between audience members and filmmakers since 2007; at The Bioscope in Maboneng, Johannesburg, June 23-26- Architect Africa Film Festival
Jorn Utzon’s fight for Sydney Opera House to be immortalised in feature film: Behind one of the world’s most recognisable architectural structures, lies a controversial history of sabotage, disruption and resignations..."Utzon, The Man Behind the Opera House"...release date has not been revealed.- Architecture & Design (Australia)
No Joke: Upcoming Movie “The Architect” Is a Disaster for the Profession: ...the supposed mystique of architect...disintegrates into one of the most tired clichés the film industry has ever seen...While those within the profession know better, many members of the wider public will...roll their eyes at...a walking personification of pompous elitism...the profession is painted as frivolous, unorganized and self-indulgent.- Architizer
Zaha Hadid’s Last Project: A Tribute to a Dada Master: Cocooning the entire lower floor of Zurich’s Galerie Gmurzynska, an installation...opens this week that is part iceberg, part cave and part shrine, created in homage...“Kurt Schwitters: Merz"... By Hettie Judah -- Patrik Schumacher [images]- New York Times
"Engineering the World: Ove Arup and the Philosophy of Total Design" - the man who built modernity: He was the structural brain behind Sydney Opera House and the Pompidou Centre, and his empire now numbers 12,000 people. Three decades after his death, a new show celebrates the 20th century’s most influential engineer; at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. By Oliver Wainwright -- Dyvik Kahlen [images]- Guardian (UK)
Ove Arup: the man who made engineering creative: From the Sydney Opera House to London Zoo’s penguin pool, Arup’s philosophy of ‘total design’ led to some of the 20th century’s most illustrious projects, as a new exhibition shows: ...it is discomforting that Arup has financially supported the show rather than just supplying exhibits and information...That’s not to undermine [his] worthy candidature for a show dedicated to his genius. By Robert Bevan- Evening Standard (UK)
The Hive in Kew Gardens will bring 17,000 aluminium bars, immersive sound and LEDs to London: ...brings the plight of bees to life...As a meeting of the muses and architecture, the project is more than simply charming. Wolfgang Buttress wants us to know that the fate of the world’s bees matters. By Robert Bevan -- Simmonds Studio; BDP- Evening Standard (UK)
Architects Built This Monumental Land Art By Imitating Geological Processes: The structures, part of Tippet Rise Art Center [in Montana], were created by man-made versions of erosion, fragmentation and sedimentation..."Structures of Landscape"...to show that its possible to build architectural structures without disturbing the landscape. -- Antón García-Abril/Débora Mesa/Ensamble Studio [images]- Fast Company / Co.Design
Christo and Jeanne Claude’s “Floating Piers” Nears Completion: ...will span Italy’s 62-mile-wide Lake Iseo...“Floating Piers”...at the base of the Italian Alps will allow visitors to essentially walk on water...starting on June 18 and ending on July 3. [images]- Architect Magazine
The Long-Lost Study That Tried To Quantify Creative Personalities: In the 1950s, a group of scientists set out to study creativity. Their subjects? Great midcentury architects: What resulted was an incredibly intimate, at times uncomfortable, portrait of a group of now-legendary architects..."The Creative Architect: Inside the Great Midcentury Personality Study" by Pierluigi Serraino...resurfaces those results. By Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan -- Richard Neutra; Louis Kahn; Eero Saarinen; Philip Johnson; George Nelson [images]- Fast Company / Co.Design
The Multilevel Metropolis: On the radical origins - and mundane deployment - of the urban skyway: Urban skyways have radically altered the form and spatial logic of cities around the world, from Minneapolis to Calgary to Hong Kong...we see a new wave of interest in the skyway as architectural form. By Jennifer Yoos and Vincent James/VJAA [adapted from a chapter in "Parallel Cities"] -- Steven Holl; MVRDV; Zaha Hadid Architects; Foreign Office Architects; Future Systems; James Corner Field Operations; Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Peter Eisenman; Norman Bel Geddes; Eero Saarinen; Victor Gruen; Vincent Ponte; Allied Works Architecture; SOM; etc. [images]- Places Journal
Snøhetta: SFMOMA Expansion: Media attention may be polarised, but there is no doubt that the...expansion offers a quirky and iconic addition to the San Francisco skyline...The ambitious, iconic expansion navigates a complicated relationship with the 1995 Mario Botta building with reverence, but more importantly, with a confident deftness. By Jason Dibbs -- EHDD [images]
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