Today’s News - Thursday, April 16, 2020
EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow and Monday will be no-newsletter days. We'll be back Tuesday, April 21. 'Til then, stay safe, please!
● Miranda minces no words re: LACMA announcing the start of demolition "three days after it had begun," which raises questions: "Where are the floor plans" and what will "this container for art actually contain?"
● Brussat cheers Ranalli's design for a theater addition in Doylestown, PA, in a style that "seems to be some sort of 'third way' between traditional and modern architecture - bending the curve toward tradition and beauty" (beware "angry Modernists," George!).
● Ray takes us behind the scenes of the "meticulous restoration" of an "exceptional" FLW office interior that has been sitting in storage at the V&A for the last 15 years - it will "become a highlight" at the DS+R-designed V&A East (sporting some "cosmetic flaws - souvenirs of the room's peripatetic life").
● Call for entries - deadline extended! Radical Innovation Awards: The Power to Shift the Hospitality Industry (fee reduced or waived for professionals; no fee for students).
● Call for entries - deadlines extended! 2020 ASLA Student Awards.
Weekend diversions + Page-turners:
● Block rounds up streaming suggestions: "10 feature films that use architecture in exciting ways to watch as a distraction from coronavirus-induced boredom."
● 10 more films "for architecture fans recommended by Dezeen readers."
● Reiner-Roth parses "Artificial Intelligence & Architecture" at the Pavillon de l'Arsenal in Paris that "seems to have been born for the internet in anticipation of the pandemic" and now lives online.
● Welton cheers the SHoP Architects-designed SITE Santa Fe presenting "Displaced: Contemporary Artists Confront the Global Refugee Crisis" that focuses on "human migrations and displacements of the past, present, and future" by 12 international artists (including Ai Weiwei) - download the great gallery guide!
● An excerpt from Juhani Pallasmaa's "The Eyes of the Skin" in which "he suggests that architectural culture has always privileged the ocular at the expense of the other senses."
● Blander cheers Blauvelt & Wilson's "Ruth Adler Schnee: Modern Designs for Living" that revisits her "enduringly Modernist legacy" - Gropius and Saarinen taught the now 97-year-old - her "works microcosmically document the ebb and flow of streams of Modernism."
● Rosenblum hails "Alan I W Frank House: The Modernist Masterwork by Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer" that profiles a rarely seen, "transcendently luxurious" house in Pittsburgh by Frank, "a lucid and engaging writer" with "remarkable vintage photos" by Ezra Stoller and new ones by Richard Barnes.
● AN's "picks for design reads to enjoy while housebound" that "thematically converge on the existential, oscillating between the bleak and the restorative" + a "shut-in's guide to must-see movies and TV!"
COVID-19 news continues:
● A call for creatives to join the Canadian COVID Creators Network (CCCn) - an initiative to create and distribute face shields that meet Canadian government requirements.
● dRMM's Lencer makes the case that "architects must stop following style or theory - Covid-19 favors a culture of reduced carbon impact, minimized waste, and increased regenerative practice - an architecture of circumstance will define our new visual language - weaning us off our unchallenged aesthetic upbringing" (commenters challenge!).
● Mithun's Guenther considers how we can design with communities" in a pandemic - "do we wait for social distancing to end or start experimenting and adapting our community outreach models?" She offers some new approaches.
● Hooper, a professor of Urban Planning at Harvard GSD, considers "pandemics and the future of urban density," and his experiment to determine if "people's attitudes to urban density might be influenced by hygiene concerns" (fart spray included).
● Youde talks to a number of small practices in the U.K. to see how they're "coping with lockdown" and "managing to keep designing and delivering their projects - they may also take a new approach to designing their own studios."
● KPMB's Marianne McKenna and Mojo Stumer's Yacobellis weigh in with their views on "how the industry will be forever altered - sparked by the pandemic that has signaled the need to reconsider all assumptions modern architecture."
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Carolina A. Miranda: LACMA has begun demolition. Where are the gallery plans? The museum didn’t address the demolition...until April 9, via a blog post...three days after it had begun...described the controversial project as “an important source of job creation"...raises the question of where exactly things stand with the building’s design...no final floor plan has been released...floor plans should never have been affected by coronavirus to begin with. The museum should have released them...months ago...a year ago....questions remain...Namely, what this container for art will actually contain. -- Peter Zumthor; Michael Govan; Greg Goldin; Joseph Giovannini; William Pereira; Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates; Save LACMA; Citizens’ Brigade to Save LACMA- Los Angeles Times
David Brussat: Eyed by Ranalli’s theater: Do the citizens of Doylestown, Pennsylvania, feel as if the new addition to their County Theater is giving them the eye...If so, then [they] probably like [it]...designed by George Ranalli in a style different from his firm’s usual fare...classical? Surely not. Traditional? Well, hardly...seem to be some sort of “third way” between traditional and modern architecture, but...bending the curve toward tradition and beauty...Doylestown now has a building that can stand tall among the historical buildings that make it a beautiful town.- Architecture Here and There
Debika Ray: A Forgotten Frank Lloyd Wright Masterpiece Is Finally Getting Its Due: An exceptional office interior has been hidden away in the V&A’s storage for the last 15 years...behind the scenes of its meticulous restoration: Edgar J. Kaufmann tapped Wright to design a private office for his sprawling department store...it will become a highlight of the [Diller Scofidio + Renfro-designed] V&A East...the freestanding Wright-designed furniture and Loja Saarinen textiles...did not require conservation treatment...the team maintained some of the office’s cosmetic flaws...souvenirs of the room’s peripatetic life.- Architectural Digest
Call for entries - deadline extended! Radical Innovation Awards: The Power to Shift the Hospitality Industry; fee reduced or waived for professionals; no fee for students!); $10,000 in prizes; deadline: April 30- The Hardy Group
Call for entries - deadline extended! 2020 ASLA Student Awards; new fee deadline: May 15; new submission deadline: May 31- American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
India Block: 10 films with amazing architecture to stream during coronavirus self-isolation: ...feature films that use architecture in exciting ways to watch as a distraction from coronavirus-induced boredom.- Dezeen
10 films for architecture fans recommended by Dezeen readers: In response to our story highlighting films with interesting architecture to stream during coronavirus self-isolation...commenters have recommended 10 more...- Dezeen
Shane Reiner-Roth: "Artificial Intelligence & Architecture" at Paris’s Pavillon de l’Arsenal goes digital: ...currently closed...One of its current main exhibitions, however, seems to have been born for the internet in anticipation of the pandemic...begins with a button that reads “Visit Start"...bilingual wall text introducing the four categories...Modularity, computer-aided design (CAD), parametrics, and artificial intelligence (AI)...includes interviews with Yona Friedman, Ivan Sutherland, Frank Gehry, Patrik Schumacher, and members of the Architecture Machine Group. thru May 5- The Architect's Newspaper
J. Michael Welton: SITE Santa Fe and the Global Refugee Crisis: ... in its new digs by SHoP Architects...“Displaced: Contemporary Artists Confront the Global Refugee Crisis.” It will focus on human migrations and displacements of the past, present and future...in a range of media, artists from around the globe will ask us to witness the highest levels of human displacement on record, and imagine futures where migration is essential for survival...will include the work of 12 internationally acclaimed artists – Ai Weiwei among them. thru September 6- Architects + Artisans
Juhani Pallasmaa: Design for Sensory Reality: In "The Eyes of the Skin" he suggests that architectural culture has always privileged the ocular at the expense of the other senses. Here, he expands that argument to encompass the whole metabolism, proposing that we literally embody architecture. [excerpt]- Reading Design.org
Akiva Blander: Revisiting Ruth Adler Schnee’s Enduringly Modernist Legacy: Gropius and Saarinen taught Adler Schnee - 97 next month - whose works microcosmically document the ebb and flow of streams of Modernism: Based on the 2019 exhibition at Cranbrook Art Museum..."Ruth Adler Schnee: Modern Designs for Living"...[shows] how features of the design matriarch’s personal life - the influences of her Bauhaus-adjacent family, intertwined American, Jewish, and female identities - shaped her career...One aspect...that set [her] apart...is her business acumen...what sticks with the reader more enduringly is [her] full-throttled welcome of the notion of progress itself. -- Andrew Blauvelt & Ian Gabriel Wilson, editors- Metropolis Magazine
Charles Rosenblum: A Bauhaus Masterpiece [in Pittsburgh]: “Alan I W Frank House: The Modernist Masterwork by Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer"...Frank...primary author and current resident, was 5 years old...when his parents...commissioned [it]... An unconstrained budget allowed...a total work of art in landscape, architecture and industrial design...retains much of the geometric severity of the European projects. Yet it is transcendently luxurious...12,000 square feet...9 bedrooms, 13 baths [and] a swimming pool...Alan Frank remains a lucid and engaging writer...house went for decades without being published, even though it was [an] example of work by two of the world’s most influential architects...Fortunately, remarkable vintage photos by Ezra Stoller and newer ones by Richard Barnes do the job for you. -- Barry Bergdoll; Kenneth Frampton; Charles Birnbaum- Pittsburgh Quarterly
AN’s picks for design reads to enjoy while housebound: As befits our time of crisis, the following picks thematically converge on the existential, oscillating between the bleak and the restorative...fillips to cozy domesticity, incitations toward household intrigue, bleak invocations of abandoned cityscapes, historical reckonings of queasy illness, and implicated in all of them are buildings, interiors, objects...Need something more visceral than a book?...our complementary shut-in’s guide to must-see movies and TV!- The Architect's Newspaper
Call for for creatives to join the Canadian COVID Creators Network (CCCn) - an initiative to create and distribute face shields that will protect front-line community workers from COVID-19. PARTISANS and Puncture design studio have created a website from which anyone can download a 3D file/pattern and printing specs that meet Canadian government requirements.- Canadian COVID Creators Network / PARTISANS
Jonas Lencer/dRMM Architects: The coronavirus crisis calls for a new moral and aesthetic code for architecture: Architects must stop following style or theory: Our context both before and after Covid-19 unequivocally favours a culture of reduced carbon impact, minimised waste, and increased regenerative practice...If we work to create an architecture of circumstance as opposed to one led by style or theory, then buildings will inevitably look different...Different does not mean worse...Authenticity will define our new visual language, breaking down preconceptions and weaning us off our unchallenged aesthetic upbringing..- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Deb Guenther/Mithun: How Can We Design with Communities While Apart? In the era of the COVID-19 pandemic, do we wait for social distancing to end or start experimenting and adapting our community outreach models? Does the pandemic actually present an opportunity to widen audiences and level the playing field? As we adjust our short- and long-term approaches, here are a few considerations:- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Pandemics and the future of urban density: Michael Hooper on hygiene, public perception, and the “urban penalty”: The Covid-19 pandemic has raised many challenging questions for planners, architects, and policymakers around the issue of urban density...many efforts to control the spread of virus have explicitly focused on strategies of “de-densification"...there is a substantial body of fascinating tangential evidence that suggests people’s attitudes to urban density might be influenced by hygiene concerns...absence of any direct research...led me to design an experiment...indicates that density preferences may be more stable [and] efforts to change densities will likely have to be accompanied by extensive efforts to win over skeptical publics.- Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD)
Kate Youde: Coronavirus: How are small practices coping with lockdown? As architects adopt new ways of working...how small practices are managing to keep designing and delivering their projects: ...could enforced confinement actually lead to an uptick in domestic projects when the restrictions are lifted? Dalston Architecture Collective, a collaborative group of 14 practices...shares knowledge, experience and staff. In response to Covid-19, DAC is offering 45-minute online consultations to potential clients...drawing on different expertise...from across the group....architects may also take a new approach to designing their own studios. -- Lisa Raynes/Pride Road Franchise; Max Dewdney Architects; Nick Hayhurst/Hayhurst & Co; Sophie Griffiths/Campbell & Co; Russell Curtis/RCKa; Keith Carver/Studio Carver; Tim Gibbons/Fieldwork; Annabelle Tugby Architects- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Jeffrey Steele: Architects Forecast Change For Design In Wake Of COVID-19: The health and economic crisis sparked by the pandemic has signaled the need to reconsider all assumptions modern architecture, say Marianne McKenna/KPMB Architects, and Joe Yacobellis/Mojo Stumer Associates: [They] weighed in with views on how their industry will be forever altered...- Forbes
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