New York City converted this dingy subway tunnel into a colorful underground museum of street art

(Courtesy NYC DOT)

(Courtesy NYC DOT)

For a long time, the 900-foot pedestrian tunnel that leads to the 1 train in Washington Heights was one of New York City‘s creepiest spaces. Now, it’s been transformed into one of the city’s best places to see art—or at least take some impressive Instagram photos.

Continue reading after the jump.

BOFFO honors SHoP Architects at its annual Narcissists’ Ball

Architecture, Art, Awards, Design, East
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
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Richard Chai and Snarkitecture, Building Fashion 2010. Image courtesy BOFFO.

Richard Chai and Snarkitecture, Building Fashion 2010. Image courtesy BOFFO.

Monday night in the garden of Nolita’s Elizabeth Street Gallery, the New York–based arts organization BOFFO held its annual Narcissists’ Ball, a Spring benefit in support of art, fashion, and design. SHoP Architects was honored in the “Architecture” category, and Martino Stierli, Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design at the Museum of Modern Art, gave a speech to acknowledge their work.

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Watch Herzog & de Meuron’s under-construction 56 Leonard tower rise in a New York minute

56 Leonard. (Courtesy Herzog & de Meuron via 56leonardtribeca.com)

56 Leonard. (Courtesy Herzog & de Meuron via 56leonardtribeca.com)

Herzog & de Meuron‘s New York City skyscraper, 56 Leonard—aka the “Jenga Tower” because of its stacked-cube appearance, is steadily rising in Tribeca. While the building currently has a pretty standard glass box form with some protruding balconies, its upper floors will taper dramatically, hence the nickname.

Watch the video after the jump.

New York City just made biking down cobblestone streets way more fun

The Varick bike lane. (Branden Klayko / AN)

The Varick bike lane. (Branden Klayko / AN)

Cobblestone streets are beautiful to walk around and add charm to historic neighborhoods, but biking down these bumpy thoroughfares is another story. New York City has solved that problem with a new design treatment to a block-long cobblestone bike lane along Varick Street in the city’s Tribeca neighborhood.

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New York City planning a pedestrian-safety overhaul the dangerous approach to the Manhattan Bridge

The Manhattan Bridge approach as-is. (Courtesy NYC DOT)

The Manhattan Bridge approach as-is. (Courtesy NYC DOT)

Vision Zero is coming to the dangerous and traffic-clogged Manhattan Bridge approach in Chinatown. The New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) has presented a plan to rearrange the tangle of streets that connect to the bridge, create new space for pedestrians, and update traffic flows.

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HUD Secretary Julian Castro to headline IDEAS CITY 2015 in New York City

Architecture, Design, East, News, Urbanism
Thursday, May 14, 2015
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HUD Secretary Julian Castro

HUD Secretary Julian Castro

Julian Castro, the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, has been announced as the keynote speaker for the third annual IDEAS CITY festival in New York.  IDEAS CITY is a biennial street fair that “explores the future of cities with culture as a driving force.” It will launch its third annual rendition on May 28th–30th on the Bowery. Read More

REX starts sewing a pleated-glass facade onto a brutalist Manhattan tower

The Manhattan West Development. (Courtesy Brookfield)

The Manhattan West Development. (Courtesy Brookfield)

Last year, AN explored REX’s strategy to revamp a brutalist, ziggurat-shaped tower on Manhattan‘s west side with a modern, pleated-glass facade. Since the Davis Brody Bond–designed structure was originally a warehouse, developer Brookfield Properties thought it made sense to give the building a glassy facelift before the tech companies moved in.

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Hot Tub Design Machine: New York’s Van Alen Institute launches its annual auction of out-of-the-box architectural experiences

Architecture, East
Monday, May 11, 2015
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Bid on an architecture roundtable at Charles Renfro's Fire Island's hot tub. (Courtesy Van Alen Institute)

Bid on an architecture roundtable at Charles Renfro’s Fire Island’s hot tub. (Courtesy Van Alen Institute)

If you have ever longed to explore nature with your favorite architect or discuss the built environment in your bikini, now you’ll have the chance. Well, for a few bucks, but in the good name of architecture. The Van Alen Institute has launched its online auction of Art + Design Experiences to coincide with its Spring Party, going down this Wednesday in Lower Manhattan.

Continue reading after the jump.

On View> Alma Thomas: Moving Heaven & Earth, Paintings and Works on Paper, 1958–1978

Art, East, On View
Monday, May 11, 2015
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(Alma Thomas / Courtesy Michael Rosenfeld Gallery)

(Alma Thomas / Courtesy Michael Rosenfeld Gallery)

Alma Thomas: Moving Heaven & Earth, Paintings and Works on Paper, 1958–1978
Michael Rosenfeld Gallery
100 11th Avenue at 19th Street
New York, New York
Through May 16

Focusing on the two final decades of Alma Thomas’ life, this exhibition displays the late-blooming artist’s most vibrant paintings on the monumental canvases she became celebrated for in the 1960s and ’70s. Inspired by nature, recent discoveries in the sciences, and her observation of earthly and celestial phenomena, Thomas’ experimentations with vigorous, rhythmic colors and abstraction resulted in modern art unencumbered by political and historical intentions, and vested merely in the enjoyment of art itself. This marks the second time Thomas’ work will be exhibited at the Michael Rosenfeld Gallery. Her first show, Alma Thomas: Phantasmagoria, Major Paintings from the 1970s, was held in 2001.

 

This graffiti-covered Bowery landmark is about to turn luxury, but developers plan to preserve years of spray paint on its walls

(Courtesy MdeAS Architects)

(Courtesy MdeAS Architects)

In December, AN wrote that prolific developer Aby Rosen had picked up 190 Bowery—a six-story, graffiti-covered Renaissance Revival building that had been the private home and studio of photographer Jay Maisel since 1956. Maisel purchased the building for $102,000 and repeatedly turned down offers to sell it despite its skyrocketing value. Rosen’s RFR Realty ultimately purchased the landmarked property for $55 million.

Continue reading after the jump.

May 15> AN’s Bill Menking talks architecture with SO-IL’s Jing Liu at designjunction

Architecture, East
Thursday, May 7, 2015
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SO-IL's Kukje Gallery in Seoul, South Korea. (Courtesy SO-IL)

SO-IL’s Kukje Gallery in Seoul, South Korea. (Courtesy SO-IL)

Designjunction a London-based showcase for cutting-edge design labels (including Decode, Muuto, Modus, and Another Country) and young and emerging designers will stage its first U.S. show on May 15th. The fair will take place at Art Beam (540 West 21st Street) and The Architect’s Newspaper will be there.

William Menking, AN‘s editor-in-chief, will interview SO-IL partner Jing Liu about the young Brooklyn firm’s growing portfolio of projects here and abroad. The breakfast-time conversation will begin at 9:00a.m. on May 15 at Art Beam and guests may RSVP at designjunction.

Santiago Calatrava’s World Trade Center Transportation Hub begins to open up to the public

The PATH train's Platform B will open to the public at Santiago Calatrava's World Trade Center Transportation Hub. (Courtesy Port Authority)

The PATH train’s Platform B will open to the public at Santiago Calatrava’s World Trade Center Transportation Hub. (Courtesy Port Authority)

After all these years (read: delays), the public will finally be able to check out the grand oculus in Santiago Calatrava‘s $3.9 billion World Trade Center Transportation Hub—starting next month.

Continue reading after the jump.

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