Video> Take a Fly-By Tour of Renzo Piano’s New Whitney Museum

East, Newsletter
Monday, January 30, 2012
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Ever since Renzo Piano‘s design for the new Whitney Museum was unveiled back in 2008, we’ve been obsessed with just about anything we could find about the new boat of a museum perched along the High Line on Manhattan’s west side. AN alum Matt Chaban at the Observer spotted this snazzy fly-by video tracing the museum’s progress from its founding in 1931 to its move into its iconic Breuer outpost and finally to its future Meatpacking District home. If you need even more of a Renzo fix, be sure to check out his recently completed addition to the Gardner Museum in Boston and his planned Opera-House-slash-Library in Greece.

On View> Layered SPURA: Spurring Conversations Through Visual Urbanism

East
Monday, January 30, 2012
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(Courtesy Parsons)

(Courtesy Parsons)

Layered SPURA: Spurring Conversations Through Visual Urbanism
Sheila C. Johnson Design Center
Parsons The New School
66 Fifth Ave.
Through February 25

The Seward Park Urban Renewal Area (SPURA) that occupies 14 square blocks on the Lower East Side has remained one of the largest underdeveloped city-owned parcels of land for more than 40 years. Very few of the originally-planned buildings came to pass, and vast parking lots created by slum-clearance on the south side of Delancey Street symbolize a hotly contested renewal plan. Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani and students of the New School’s City Studio have spent three years investigating the complex issues surrounding the site, and in an exhibition highlighting their research and artwork they propose to instigate a new grassroots conversation rather than a top-down planning vision.

SHFT+ALT+DEL: January 27

Shft+Alt+Del
Friday, January 27, 2012
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Stephen Cassell, principal of Architecture Research Office, has been elected Chair of the Van Alen Institute Board of Trustees. Cassell takes the reins from Abby Hamlin, president of the real estate development company Hamlin Ventures.

Gretchen Bank, who currently serves as the Marketing & PR Committee Co-Chair at AIA New York, steps into the position of Director of Business Development & Marketing at Cosentini Associates, effective February 6.

Architect and New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) alumnus Peter J. Romano has joined NYIT’s Board of Trustees. With his wife, Jane, Romano established an endowed scholarship fund for students attending NYIT’s School of Architecture and Design.

The bathroom fixtures company Duravit has appointed Frank Richter to succeed Franz Kook as  Management Board Chairman; Kook has retired after 41 years with the company.

 Have news on career moves in the architecture & design universe for SHFT+ALT+DEL? Send your tips to people@archpaper.com!

Too Warm for Winter Jam, says NYC Parks.  Too Warm for Winter Jam, says NYC Parks Hang up those snowshoes. The NYC Parks Department has officially canceled this year’s Winter Jam, an annual event that invites New Yorkers to come try out an array of snow sports in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. What gives? Not only is there no snow in the forecast for the planned February 4 date, but average temperatures are too high for the city to even fake it. “It is simply too warm to make snow, and the long-range weather forecasts and current ground temperatures make it extremely unlikely that snow could be made,” said Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe.

 

Three World Trade Tower Could be Lopped Off

East
Monday, January 23, 2012
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Richard Rogers' 3 World Trade Center. (Courtesy Silverstein Properties)

Richard Rogers' 3 World Trade Center. (Courtesy Silverstein Properties)

Richard Rogers’ planned 80-story Three World Trade Center could come in a little short—okay, 73-stories short—if office tenants aren’t found for the under-construction tower by the end of the year. Crain’s reports that developer Larry Silverstein plans to cap the tower at seven floors and fill the podium with retail uses. If an anchor tenant is later found—as late as 2020—the building’s cap can be removed and construction resumed to reach its original height.

Continue reading after the jump.

Sox Populi.  Charles Renfro models J. Crew's Ludlow Suit. (Courtesy Archidose) Times are tough for architecture, but is it time for starchitects to begin taking on other jobs on the side?  John Hill over at A Daily Dose of Architecture spotted architect Charles Renfro’s newest gig—J. Crew model—which is helping Renfro to become a household name. Appearing in a two-page ad running in the latest issue of Fast Company, Renfro is sporting a trim, tailored outfit of fine Italian fabrics, otherwise known as the Ludlow Suit, and some dazzling multi-colored socks. “This is what they mean by style with substance,” says the copy. (Oh, that’s what they mean…) Who should J. Crew pick for its next architecture model?

 

Zoning and you.  Zoning and youGreen markets, bike lanes, the design of street life—New York City zoning aims to impact your quality of life. “In the Bloomberg administration, as wielded by the New York City Planning Commission and its director, Amanda Burden, zoning has assumed a more activist role than ever before,” writes AN Executive Editor Julie Iovine about the ambitions of zoning 50 years after the New York Zoning Resolution was passed. Read the full article, “Zoning Grows Up,” in The Wall Street Journal.  

 

AIA Billings Index Stays Positive.  Billings (blue) and inquiries (red) for the past 12 months. (The Architect's Newspaper)Today the AIA released the December results of its Architecture Billings Index (ABI), and we’re happy to report that the overall score is holding steady in positive territory for the second month in a row. Like November, December’s score came in at 52 (anything over 50 is positive). But AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker remains circumspect, noting “We saw nearly identical conditions in November and December of 2010 only to see momentum sputter and billings fall into negative territory as we moved through 2011, so it’s too early to be sure that we are in a full recovery mode.”

 

And…we have a winner!.  And...we have a winner! As Ice Cube said, the Eames “were doing mash-ups before mash-ups existed,” and the winner of our giveaway contest–featuring a limited edition poster of Ice Cube celebrating the Eames–was admiring the Eames before she knew who they were. Congratulations to AN reader/commenter Lori who proclaimed, “My grandparents collected mid-century furniture, and I loved the Eames before I had any idea what design was. Now that I know, I so appreciate that early introduction to clean, functional beauty.” As a consolation prize, we suggest rewatching archi-drafter-rapper Cube give a tour of an Eames Case Study House, catching up with the exhibition at Pacific Standard Time, or tuning in to the PBS documentary on the Eames’ life and work.

 

Eavesdrop> A Very Gehry Opera.  Walt Disney Concert Hall by Frank Gehry.Walt Disney Concert Hall by Frank Gehry. Frank Gehry will return to Walt Disney Concert Hall this spring—as a set designer. He’s at work on a “moving still-life on the stage” for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s May production of Don Giovanni. The plans call for moving the orchestra upstage on raised lifts, about four feet above the action taking place downstage. Meanwhile, in a recent Q&A with Wallpaper* magazine, Gehry revealed that things are “getting slow” for his firm, to the point that he is considering—gasp!—proactive PR efforts. “We’ve got enough things for the next year, but it’s not the same as it was a few years ago,” he said. “I’m old enough to quit, though, you know what I mean? I’m 82.”

 

On View> 1976: Movies, Photographs and Related Works on Paper

East
Monday, January 16, 2012
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Still from Pendulum, 1976. (Courtesy the Artist / Paul Kasmin Gallery)

Still from Pendulum, 1976. (Courtesy the Artist / Paul Kasmin Gallery)

1976: Movies, Photographs
and Related Works on Paper
Paul Kasmin Gallery
515 West 27th St.
Through February 11

British-born James Nares has lived in New York since the mid-1970s, when Lower Manhattan was “a beautiful ruin,” according to the artist. While most celebrated for his large, single-stroke kinetic paintings, the artist has a long track record of documenting his fascination with movement and bodies in motion dating back to the days when he delved into many other media such as films and chronophotographs. The exhibition features five films including Pendulum (1976), in which Nares clocks a large spherical mass swinging from a footbridge, against the industrial backdrop of downtown Manhattan—evocative of the foreboding, dreamlike qualities also seen in Giorgio de Chirico’s surreal paintings.

More photos after the jump.

SHFT+ALT+DLT> January 13, 2012

Shft+Alt+Del
Friday, January 13, 2012
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SHFT+ALT+DLT

SHFT+ALT+DLT

SOM returns to LA with a new office to be led by Michael Mann, Paul Danna, and Jose Palacios, all coming en masse from AECOM. The new studio will start out with ten to 40 people in a temporary office, with plans to eventually find a permanent home in downtown LA.

The Boston Society of Architects announced the departure of executive director Margaret Wigglesworth. Wigglesworth, who only assumed the ED role in February 2011 and oversaw BSA’s move to a new home, will be returning to the commercial real estate sector.

In Chicago, Crain‘s reports that FGB, an architecture firm based in Oak Brook, has acquired Deerfield-based  SRBL, specialists in schools and institutional work, to create a 95-person strong office.

On January 18, John Hatfield will join Socrates Sculpture Park in Queens as executive director. Hatfield leaves the New Museum of Contemporary Art, where he has served as deputy director since 2008.

Fore Solutions, a green building consulting firm, has joined Thorton Thomasetti to create the Thorton Thomsetti Building Sustainability practice area, to be led by Gunnar Hubbard.

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