Today’s News - Wednesday, February 8, 2017
• Dickinson unravels the "uneasy relationship between architects and money": "Most of us would do it for free - and often do. We value the expression more than the compensation."
• Till takes on Trump, Brexit, RIBA, and AIA, and the "new obligations, new opportunities, for architectural activism. What roles might we play as citizen-architects?"
• King parses a panel that asks: "In the age of Trump, what do cities do?" ("thick clouds of gloom and thin rays of hope" included), but "if we're lucky, urgency might translate to a productive reaction."
• A RIBA survey shows that Brexit seems to be putting the "brakes on the architecture sector" on a number of levels.
• Park finds less to like about the U.K.'s housing white paper than Dittmar did yesterday: While "there are some welcome initiatives, too many of the proposals sound better than they are - and a lot of telling us what we already know."
• Mattern digs deep into why "urban intelligence is more than information processing" and turning the "Internet of Things into urban form. We need new models for thinking about cities that do not compute" (a great read!).
• Bliss delves into Hammond's efforts to use the High Line to "help other cities learn from its mistakes."
• Saffron cheers efforts to transform Philly's troubled Mifflin Square Park into "a peaceful commons to unite a diverse ethnic neighborhood."
• Moore has more than a few issues with the shortlisted designs for Britain's Holocaust Memorial: "They employ many of the tropes of modern memorializing, but there is too little sign of deep thought about the memorial's purpose" ("they are mostly trite" - ouch!).
• A look at why Apple's new "spaceship" campus is far behind schedule: "treating a 2.8-million-square-foot complex like a 5-inch iPhone" requiring "flawless" details may have "enhanced the final product but clashed with construction realities."
• Bevan parses the debate about how to "conserve heritage in an age of terrorism" - preserve what's left, or rebuild, which many consider "being tantamount to theme-park fakery."
• Meanwhile, M2R Arquitectos' Bamiyan Cultural Centre in Afghanistan, where the Taliban destroyed monumental Buddhas, should be ready for its close-up by next year (though UNESCO is none too pleased with some German archaeologists).
• On a lighter (and higher) note: some amusing takes by those who live in towers; on a darker note: skyscrapers may have started out as "barometers of corporate hubris," but "they now stand for personal excess."
• Five very worthy finalists now vie for the 2017 Rudy Bruner Award.
• An impressive line-up of emerging talent makes up the Europe 40 under 40 list.
• Eyefuls of the winning design for a new eco-village for orphaned and abandoned children in Kenya.
• Call for entries: ASLA 2017 Professional and Student Awards (international).
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Duo Dickinson: The Uneasy Relationship Between Architects and Money: Architecture is a missional profession. Most of us would do it for free - and often do - simply because we cannot help ourselves...salaries reflect that willingness and the relative value our culture puts on the work we provide...We value the expression more than the compensation...- Common Edge
Jeremy Till: Reality in the Balance: The era of Trump and Brexit is opening up new obligations, new opportunities, for architectural activism that blends the professional and the political: What roles might we play as citizen-architects? ...there is a prevailing mood...of cynical pessimism...If cynical pessimism puts up any fight, it is only in reaction to the last battle, when what is needed is preparation for the coming one.- Places Journal
John King: In the age of Trump, asks a Berkeley panel, what do cities do? There were thick clouds of gloom and thin rays of hope. Philosophical what-ifs and pragmatic advice...If there was a takeaway from the evening, it was that the future is murky and there are reasons to be fearful. The flip side? ...if we’re lucky, urgency might translate to a productive reaction.- San Francisco Chronicle
Brexit puts brakes on architecture sector, RIBA survey shows: More than 60% of practitioners see projects stall and close-on 40% report cancellation of schemes: ...also uncovered a picture of rising materials and construction costs [and] recruitment and retention issues...- BD/Building Design (UK)
Julia Park/Levitt Bernstein: The white paper that wasn’t worth the wait: The housing white paper promises much but does little to tackle the real issues we’re facing: ...there are some welcome initiatives...There’s a lot of telling us what we already know (repeating back most of the things we’ve been telling them for the last five years) and too many of the proposals sound better than they are.- BD/Building Design (UK)
Shannon Mattern: A City Is Not a Computer: Urban intelligence is more than information processing: We’re transforming the idealized topology of the open web and Internet of Things into urban form...appeals because it frames the messiness of urban life as programmable and subject to rational order...We need new models for thinking about cities that do not compute. -- Sidewalk Labs; Y Combinator- Places Journal
Laura Bliss: The High Line's Next Balancing Act: [It] may be a runaway success, but it’s also a symbol of Manhattan’s rising inequality. Can its founder help other cities learn from its mistakes? "We wanted to do it for the neighborhood. Ultimately, we failed.” Now he’s course-correcting....tackling a long overdue conversation about how to improve neglected neighborhoods, without pushing away the very people they intend to serve. -- Robert Hammond; Joshua David; Scott Kratz; Ryan Gravel- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
Inga Saffron: Designing Mifflin Square Park to unite a diverse ethnic neighborhood: ...should be a peaceful commons that brings this ethnic stew into the American melting pot...in 2015...it became clear that the square’s formal 19th-century design was a factor in keeping them apart...the park’s old-fashioned design accentuated neighborhood divisions... -- Damon Rich/Hector- Philadelphia Inquirer
Rowan Moore: Britain’s Holocaust memorial shortlist: right time, wrong place? The shortlist features some big names of art and architecture, but a muddled brief hasn’t made it easy for them: They employ many of the tropes of modern memorialising...but there is too little sign...of deep thought about the memorial’s purpose...They are mostly trite... -- Norman Foster; David Adjaye; Ron Arad; Anish Kapoor; Zaha Hadid Architects; Daniel Libeskind; Rachel Whiteread; Marcus Taylor; Caruso St John [images]- Observer (UK)
Apple's new 'spaceship' campus a fitting tribute to Steve Jobs's obsessions: The construction...is far behind schedule...Apple required flawlessness in every aspect...But treating a 2.8-million-square-foot complex like a 5-inch iPhone frustrated many of those brought in for the build, who said it enhanced the final product but clashed with construction realities. -- Foster + Partners- Christian Science Monitor
Robert Bevan: Ruin or Rebuild? Conserving heritage in an age of terrorism: Debate is raging about how best to respond when historic monuments are targeted by extremists, now that digital technology enables monuments to be reconstructed...How will they avoid creating zombie monuments that are brought back from the dead with no authentic life of their own? -- ICOMOS/International Council on Monuments and Sites; UNESCO; Institute for Digital Archaeology/IDA- The Art Newspaper (UK)
Bamiyan Cultural Centre gets under way: Building at Unesco World Heritage site in Afghanistan, where the Taliban destroyed the monumental ancient Buddhas, due to open to the public in summer 2018: ...German archaeologists had partially rebuilt the eastern Buddha’s feet and legs without authorisation from Unesco... -- M2R Arquitectos- The Art Newspaper (UK)
"The building creaks and sways": life in a skyscraper: From Chicago to Dubai, Manchester to Melbourne, our cities are climbing above the clouds. What’s it like to live on the 64th floor? If skyscrapers broke ground as barometers of corporate hubris, increasingly they now stand for personal excess, applying gravity to the wealth divide.- Guardian (UK)
Five 2017 Rudy Bruner Award Finalists: The Gold Medalist will receive $50,000 and four Silver Medalists will each receive $10,000 to enhance their projects...that contribute to the economic, environmental, and social vitality of American cities. -- SasakiAssociates; Mecanoo; Ross Barney Architects; Kronberg Wall Architects/Planners; John Friedman Alice Kimm Architects; KostowGreenwood Architects; WRT; Spillman Farmer Architects; URS Corporation; USA Architects; L’Observatoire International; Artefact Inc. [images]- Bruner Foundation
Europe's most important and emerging young architects and designers as Europe 40 under 40 for 2016: ...hail from across ten European nations. [exhibition opens February 24 at Contemporary Space, Athens, Greece]- Chicago Athenaeum/European Centre for Architecture, Art, Design and Urban Studies
Winner of international design competition for Kenyan children eco-village: ...to masterplan and design a new eco-village for orphaned and abandoned children...Malaysian architectural firm O2 Design Atelier (O2DA) won the One Heart Foundation competition... [images]- Architecture & Design (Australia)
Call for entries: ASLA 2017 Professional and Student Awards (international); deadline: April 17 (professionals); May 15 (students)- American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Karakusevic Carson Architects: Bacton Low Rise Estate, London, U.K.: We hear the same stories in cities everywhere - of public assets lost to developers, of families driven to the urban fringe by exorbitant rent, of long-lasting communities erased to give way to luxury apartments. Counteracting these global trends, [this] stands as a beacon of hope in our bleak housing climate. By Nina Tory-Henderson [images]
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