For years, the Pritzker PrizeÂ has been the gold-standard in architectural recognition. Itâ€™s like the Super Bowl ring, or the Oscar for Best Picture, or whatever Joey Chestnut wins for downing 60-some hot dogs at Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. (Itâ€™s gotta be a sash, right? Itâ€™s probably a sash.) This is the hallowed ground where the Pritzker lives. But it could soon be trumped in a big way. In a big enough way that even knighthoodÂ can’t quiteÂ compare. Hear that, Sir Norman Foster?
Residents of Barcelona had the opportunity to see Antoni Gaudiâ€™s 120-year-old La Sagrada Familia in a new light recently as Montreal-based media studio and light artistsÂ Moment FactoryÂ projection mappedÂ a multimedia display over the cathedral’s facade. While Gaudi’s signature stone carvings portraying dripping stone, fanciful plant forms, and intricate religious displays in their normally sand-colored hue are usually enough to dazzle the viewers eye, the gaudy splash provided one psychedelic experience.
Watch for Falling Libeskinds. The breaking news of the day from Building Design: Daniel Libeskind’s $555 million Westside retail center in Bern, Switzerland has collapsed for a second time in three years. An elevated swimming pool fell into the building injuring two people. An investigation is pending. In 2008, shortly after the building was completed, the roof of a fast food restaurant inside the center collapsed, injuring two children.
Transporting Chicago. Transportation Nation reports today that Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has tapped Gabe Klein to head up the city’s DOT. Widely viewed as a pro-bike kind of guy in his former role as head of Washington D.C.’s DOT, Klein helped launch a bike-share program, expand bike lanes, and install electric car charging stations across the city. Could more alternative transportation be in store for the Windy City?
Gaudi Burns. An arsonist set fire to Antoni GaudÃ’s Segrada Familia in Barcelona said the Guardian. The cathedral’s sacristy was destroyed and the crypt heavily damaged during the attack. Some 1,500 tourists were evacuated and four treated for smoke inhalation.
Wisconsin Bamboo. Sarah F. Cox talks with NYC-based architecture firm Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis for Curbed about a recently completed student center at the University of Wyoming which includes a stunningly intricate bamboo-lattice screen.
This week, the second World Architecture Festival is taking place in one of the most design-conscious cities in the world: Barcelona. Sadly, the festival is located in the Diagonal Mar district on the cityâ€™s waterfront, along with the hotel that WAF sponsor emap provided to jurors (I am here serving on the jury for the festivalâ€™s Civic and Community award). At first glance, this entirely new district of the city seems to have more in common with Grand Rapids than the Catalonian capital. I mentioned this to a British colleague, who replied, â€œAre American cities this nice?â€ Heâ€™s right: We canâ€™t even do modern urbanism better than the Europeans. Read More