Clive Wilkinson Architects Makes a Superdesk

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Clive Wilkinson Architects designed a continuous work surface dubbed the Superdesk for New York advertisers the Barbarian Group. (Michael Moran)

Clive Wilkinson Architects designed a continuous work surface dubbed the Superdesk for New York advertisers the Barbarian Group. (Michael Moran)

Endless table materializes intra-office connectivity in plywood, MDF, and epoxy.

When Culver City-based Clive Wilkinson Architects (CWA) sat down with representatives of the Barbarian Group to discuss renovating the advertising agency’s new 20,000-square-foot office, one word kept coming up: connection. “Before, they were all in offices designed for one person, but crammed five in each, and scattered,” recalled associate principal Chester Nielsen. “It was a pain. Bringing everyone into the open, and having them feel like they were all connected was super important.” The architects elected to “surgically gut” the leased New York Garment District loft to create a central workspace for between 125-175 employees. To materialize the theme of connection, they zeroed in on the idea of a single work surface, an endless table later christened the Superdesk. With 4,400 square feet of epoxy-coated surface atop a support structure comprising 870 unique laser-cut plywood panels, the Superdesk is a triumph of programmatic creativity. “Building a big table was not an obvious solution,” said Nielsen, “but it’s a simple one.”
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Watch the last person in Los Angeles skateboard through abandoned highways and streets

City Terrain, Transportation, Urbanism, West
Thursday, February 26, 2015
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abandoned-la-01

While Los Angeles is trying to shake its image as a city of cars, it sure has a lot of roads and highways. And unless you’re behind the wheel, you probably won’t be able to play in the middle of them (unless you’re headed to CicLAvia). Then comes along filmmaker Russell Houghten, who captured an eerily abandoned LA in his short film, Urban Isolation.

Watch the video after the jump.

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Minneapolis takes a cue from the Netherlands with city’s first woonerf shared street

A woonerf street in Jimbocho, Tokyo. (Rob Ketcherside via Flickr)

A woonerf street in Jimbocho, Tokyo. (Rob Ketcherside via Flickr)

A residential development in downtown Minneapolis is set to give the city its first woonerf, a road type developed in the Netherlands that integrates vehicle traffic and parking with pedestrians, bicyclists and public amenities. Read More

Check out these five finalists named in the Mies van der Rohe Awards

Architecture, Awards, International
Thursday, February 26, 2015
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Philarmonic Hall Szczecin. (Simon Menges)

Philarmonic Hall Szczecin. (Simon Menges)

Five projects have been short-listed in the 2015 European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture—Mies van der Rohe Award. Over the next few weeks, jury members will visit each of the five buildings and a winner will be announced on May 8th at the Mies van der Rohe Pavilion in Barcelona. You can take a look at the five finalists below.

View the finalists after the jump.

As New York City builds its first micro-units, Portlandia expertly mocks the trend

Architecture, Development, East, Urbanism
Thursday, February 26, 2015
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My Micro NY. (Courtesy nARCHITECTS)

My Micro NY. (Courtesy nARCHITECTS)

The concept of micro-living is really having a moment right now. For starters, there is a TV shaw called Tiny House Nation that celebrates the trend of packing fully functioning homes into bite-sized spaces where all redundancies are removed and functionality is king. Beds become couches, kitchen counters become desks, bathtubs become second bedrooms, and so on and so forth.

Continue reading after the jump.

Are you ready for some football stadiums? Los Angeles gets even more proposals for its yet-unsecured NFL team

Architecture, West
Thursday, February 26, 2015
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Raiders/ Chargers stadium in Carson (Manica Architecture)

Raiders/ Chargers stadium in Carson (Manica Architecture)

Just when we thought Los Angeles’ football stadium craziness had cooled down, the owners of the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders have unveiled plans for a 72,000 seat, $1.7 billion stadium on a 168-acre site in Carson—which should soon be on that city’s ballot—while Inglewood City Council approved a measure to build a stadium for the (for now) St. Louis Rams, originally floated by Rams’ owner Stan Kroenke.

Continue reading after the jump.

Brooklyn’s 56 Bogart is at the center of the New York City art world

Art, East, On View
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
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Henry Khudyakov's Environmental Motif, 1985-1994. (Courtesy Henry Khudyakov)

Henry Khudyakov’s Environmental Motif, 1985-1994. (Courtesy Henry Khudyakov)

 

If the address 56 Bogart in Brooklyn means nothing to you then you’re missing the center of the art world in New York City in 2015. Forget about Chelsea and the Bowery, Bushwick and East Williamsburg are the most exciting exhibition outposts in the city and maybe in the country. It’s Soho 40 years ago as any Saturday afternoon stroll along Bogart Street will make clear with its cafes, bars, restaurants and working artists lofts on every block.

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PlanPhilly leaving PennPraxis for WHYY

East, Media, Urbanism
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
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(Flickr / tracktwentynine)

(Flickr / tracktwentynine)

PlanPhilly, the non-profit site that covers all things planning and urbanism in Philadelphia, is leaving PennPraxis at the University of Pennsylvania for WHYY, a public media outlet that brings the world Terry Gross. The site was launched in 2006 and has been reporting on the city’s dramatic evolution ever since.

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Bjarke Ingels and Thomas Heatherwick are reportedly designing Google’s new headquarters

Architecture, Media, Newsletter, West
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
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Bjarke Ingels, left, and Thomas Heatherwick, right.

Bjarke Ingels, left, and Thomas Heatherwick, right.

Presumably not wanting to be outdone by Facebook and its Frank Gehry–designed digs or Apple and its Norman Foster–designed doughnut, Google has tapped two architectural big hitters for its new Mountain View, California headquarters. According to the New York Times, the company is expected to announce that the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) and Heatherwick Studio are behind the yet-to-be-seen design, which given the two firms’ portfolios, should be pretty dramatic. But all we know at this point is that the headquarters will be comprised of “a series of canopylike buildings.”

Continue reading after the jump.

The Pied Piper of park benches draws visitors to a French museum with music

Other
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
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(Courtesy Isabelle Daeron)

Musical bench designed to better connect the community by French designer Isabelle Daeron (Courtesy Isabelle Daeron)

Like a functioning plumbing system, park benches are one of those fixtures we take for granted—until they aren’t there. But an out-of-the-ordinary iteration of the ho-hum park bench by French designer Isabelle Daëron is drawing double takes by the dozen.

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These surfaces are flat, but Peter Kogler’ space-time warp artwork will have you losing your balance

Newsletter, Other
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
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(Courtesy Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb, Croatia)

(Courtesy Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb, Croatia)

Despite being completely inanimate, artist Peter Kogler’s optical illusion paintings can induce vertigo and even claustrophobia in the viewer. Dramatic, geometric whorls from floor to ceiling envelope one in a dizzying vortex that visibly stretches the room in every possible direction, resulting in the effect of a space-time warp.

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Des Moines Dialogue by Substance Architecture

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Substance Architecture's pavilion and pump stations are part of Des Moines' Principal Riverwalk development. (Paul Crosby)

Substance Architecture’s pavilion and pump stations are part of Des Moines’ Principal Riverwalk development. (Paul Crosby)

Zinc and glass unite riverfront pavilion and pump house.

In 2009, just as construction on its Principal Riverwalk pavilion was about to begin—and following years of funding-related stops and starts—Des Moines-based Substance Architecture received some unexpected news. The firm was commissioned to design a second building, a pump house, on an abutting plaza. At that point, recalled Substance’s Paul Mankins, it had been about three years since the firm started work on the pavilion. “There was some discussion in the office about whether the pump house should be an independent piece, or whether it should be formally related to the pavilion,” he said. “Our decision was that the pavilion would be stronger if it had this piece as a foil.” Using a limited material palette of zinc and glass accented by Jun Kaneko‘s artwork, Substance succeeded in creating a dialogue between the two small riverfront buildings, despite their differing programs and dates of origin.

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