Series of Films Explore the Past of Future of the Ubiquitous Highrise

International
Friday, October 4, 2013
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3 - NYThighrise1

(all images courtesy National Film Board of Cananda)

Highrise buildings are the most commonly built form of the last century. So says A Short History of the Highrise, an interactive documentary that is a co-production of the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) and the New York Times Op-Docs which has its premiere at the 2013 New York Film Festival and will launch on the website on October 5. It explores the 2,500-year global history of vertical living in four short films: Mud, Concrete, and Glass, which draws on the Times photo archives. The fourth, Home, is comprised of images submitted by the public. The films can be stopped at any time by swiping, pinching, pulling and tapping to dig deeper into the stories, see the backs of photos, and play games. Questions like who gets to live on the top floor and why (in Roman times, upper floors were the least desirable) are asked in rhyme: “Were these vertical experiments there for elites? Or to warehouse the poor away from the streets?” We climb the Tower of Babel, the Hakka round houses of Fujian province, and medieval Yemenese Manhattan-like mud towers before arriving at New York’s luxury-serviced Osborne, London Terrace, and Dakota built simultaneously to the multi-story tenements of the Lower East Side. All are shown in still images cleverly animated: buildings grow up, skaters glide, women wink, lights turn on, and the text is read by well-known Canadian musicians Feist and Cold Specks, as well as the series director, writer and editor Katerina Cizek. The result is a delightful, visually stunning exploration that is seemingly simple, but actually stretches both the conventional documentary form and how we depict space. Read More

Restored Ruins of Astley Castle Win UK’s Most Prestigious 2013 RIBA Stirling Prize

International
Thursday, October 3, 2013
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Restored Ruins of Astley Castle Win 2013 Riba Stirling Prize (Courtesy Bruce Stokes / Flickr)

Restored Ruins of Astley Castle in Warwickshire, England Win 2013 RIBA Stirling Prize as Best Building of the Year (Courtesy Bruce Stokes / Flickr)

A few years ago, 12th-century-built Astley Castle was no more than a fire-ravaged, crumbling medieval structure in the English countryside.

Now, since its clever restoration by Witherford Watson Mann Architects in 2012, the Landmark Trust-sponsored residence in Warwickshire has been deemed “building of the year” as the winner of the most prestigious architectural prize in the United Kingdom, the Royal Institute of British Architects’ 2013 Stirling Prize. With its fortified ruins artfully incorporated into contemporary construction as a luxury vacation home, RIBA President Stephen Hodder praised the Astley Castle restoration as “an exceptional example of how modern architecture can revive an ancient monument.”

However, this year RIBA was unable to secure a sponsor to provide the £20,000 given to winners of the past, BD Online reported. This is the first year that the Stirling Prize comes with no cash value.

Continue Reading After the Jump.

Spend the Night in the Dessau Bauhaus

International
Thursday, October 3, 2013
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Bauhaus Studio Building Converted into Boutique Hotel Dorms (Courtesy Paula Soler-Moya / Flickr)

Bauhaus Studio Building Becomes Boutique Hotel Dorms (Courtesy Paula Soler-Moya / Flickr)

Miss out on your Bauhaus opportunity because you were not an artistic youth in 1920s and 1930s Germany? Now, architecture and design enthusiasts can revive their desired pasts as students at Walter Gropius’ iconic design school, at least in sleeping accommodations. The Bauhaus School of Design in Dessau, Germany has converted one of its studio buildings into a boutique hotel with dormitory-style rooms for overnight rental. Visitors can spend the night in spaces that once housed some of the biggest names in modern architecture, when they were still just students.

Continue Reading After the Jump

Wilkinson Eyre Architects Awarded 2013 RIBA Lubetkin Prize for International Conservatories

International
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
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Cooling Conservatories, Gardens By the Bay, Singapore. (Courtesy Choo Yut Shing / Flickr)

Cooling Conservatories, Gardens By the Bay, Singapore. (Courtesy Choo Yut Shing / Flickr)

Last week, England-based architecture firm Wilkinson Eyre Architects was announced as the recipients of the 2013 Royal Institute of British Architects’ Lubertkin Prize for their recent international project Cooling Conservatories, Gardens By the Bay in Singapore. This is the second consecutive year the firm has been awarded the prestigious RIBA prize for best new international building. Last year, they won the title for the Guangzhou International Finance Centre in China.

Continue Reading After the Jump.

Video> AN Sharing Our Architectural Expertise on CNN International

International
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
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In a segment on CNN International on the ongoing work on Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia, The Architect’s Newspaper was pleased to be asked to comment on architectural icons around the world. In this abbreviated clip, executive editor Alan G. Brake said that iconic buildings should be unique but still capture the spirit of their place. Later in the segment (not included), he went on to argue that iconic buildings add to cities but don’t make cities great on their own. People return to Paris again and again because it’s a great city, not to see the Eiffel Tower repeatedly. We look forward to seeing Gaudi’s vision completed in 2026.

World’s Tallest Vertical Garden Planned for Sydney’s One Central Park Tower

City Terrain, International
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
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Rendering of Sydney's One Central Park tower. (Courtesy Atelier Jean Nouvel)

Rendering of Sydney’s One Central Park tower. (Courtesy Atelier Jean Nouvel)

Defying the standards of conventional landscaping, living walls take vegetated ground cover to the vertical extreme. For the past 30 years, French botanist and green enthusiast Patrick Blanc has made a quantum leap forward in the art of gardening by designing and building these living walls all over the globe. Blanc’s latest project—One Central Park Tower—is in Sydney, Australia, where nature’s tranquil features join forces with dynamic city life. The project is a collaborative effort between Blanc and Jean Nouvel. When completed, the major mixed-use urban renewal housing plan will boast the world’s tallest vertical garden.

More after the jump.

The Architect’s Newspaper Discusses Iconic Buildings on CNN

International
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
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AN Executive Editor Alan G. Brake discusses iconic architecture on CNN.

AN Executive Editor Alan G. Brake discusses iconic architecture on CNN.

If you tuned in to CNN’s broadcast of “Connect the World” today, you would have seen AN‘s Executive Editor, Alan G. Brake, discussing iconic architecture and city making with host Max Foster. Alan weighed in on ongoing construction at Gaudi’s La Sagrada Familia  in Barcelona, the Eiffel Tower and why people visit Paris, the lasting nature of architecture including the pyramids at Giza, and whether the Burj Khalifa will continue to be revered once it loses its title as world’s tallest skyscraper. We’ll post a video of the segment when it becomes available.

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Japanese Artist Unzips Our Perception of Reality with New Installation

International
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
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Image via Spoon & Tamago

Image via Spoon & Tamago

Since long before Adolf Loos published his seminal Principles of Cladding, architects have pondered the relationship between the surfaces of our environment and the secrets that lie beneath them. With his new installation at the Rokko Meets Art festival in Japan, street artist Jun Kitagawa has playfully un-zipped our curiosity.

Read More

Zaha Hadid Puts her Curvilienear Spin on the Serpentine’s New Sackler Gallery

International, Newsletter
Monday, September 30, 2013
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Serpentine Sackler Gallery (Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects)

Serpentine Sackler Gallery (Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects)

Architect Zaha Hadid is finally putting her stamp on the city she has called home for over 30 years with one of her signature curvaceous designs. The London-based architect has designed the new Serpentine Sackler Gallery in Kensington Gardens consisting of both a $14.5 million curvilinear extension and the renovation of the The Magazine, a brick building originally built as a Gunpowder Store in the early 19th century.

Continue reading after the jump.

Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries Commissions Third Chair in 400 Years

International
Monday, September 30, 2013
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Bodleian Library Chair Winner (Courtesy Jamie Smith)

Bodleian Library Chair Winner (Courtesy Jamie Smith)

Designing for a specific space can be a challenge, but try designing a chair predestined to become a contemporary statement in the newly-refurbished Weston Library, part of the Bodleian Libraries at Oxford, which has commissioned only its third new chair in 400 years. Earlier this year, three partnerships—Amanda Levete and Herman Miller, Barber Osgerby  and Isokon Plus, and Matthew Hilton and SCP Ltd—were shortlisted to compete for the prestigious prize, which has officially been awarded to Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby with Isokon, for their low, round-backed design.

Continue reading after the jump.

British Council Selects First Lina Bo Bardi Fellowship Recipient

International
Thursday, September 26, 2013
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Folly for a Flyover (Courtesy Assemble Studio)

Assemble’s “Folly for a Flyover.” (Courtesy Assemble Studio)

Noted Brazilian architect Lina Bo Bardi now has a travel fellowship in her name. Jane Hall, founding member of Assemble, a Stratford, UK–based architecture and design collective, has been selected as the inaugural winner of the British Council’s Lina Bo Bardi Fellowship that will allow her to travel to Brazil this year to study Bo Bardi’s work for six weeks this fall.

Hall, an architectural assistant at Studio Weave, will investigate how society, culture, and the idea of “Brazilianess” influence the country’s contemporary architectural practices. The fellowship is part of the British Council’s Transform series—a sequence of arts programs between the United Kingdom and Brazil leading up to the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

SANAA’s Billowing Design Wins Taichung City Cultural Center Competition

International, Newsletter
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
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SANAA's winning Taichung Cultural Center entry (SANAA)

SANAA’s winning Taichung Cultural Center entry. (Courtesy SANAA)

SANAA, together with Taiwanese studio Ricky Liu & Associates Architects + Planners, have won a competition to design the Taichung City Cultural Center. The competition, which was announced last May, asked  participants to design a complex that would not only include a new public library and fine arts museum, but would form a dramatic entryway to the the city’s Gateway Park.

Continue reading after the jump.

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