By UNanimous Decree, Urban is Green

Other
Thursday, May 21, 2009
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(Ezra Stoller/ESTO)

A sublime piece of modern architecture, the United Nations Headquarters is a time capsule that preserves almost intact the spirit of the 1950s. From the head sets to the tapestries, which hide the most breathtaking views of Brooklyn and the East River, everything has the air of an early James Bond movie. On May 13th, however, the UN was looking forward to pressing environmental challenges and their urban solutions, as the host of the second part of the “Conference on Sustainable Urbanization in the Information Age,” entitled “The Role of Infrastructure in Metropolitan Development.” Read More

Best. Video. Ever.

Other
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
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Our friends at Architecture W in Portland recently completed this masterfully low-tech stop-action video— entitled House of Cards—depicting their plans for a new sustainable house made only out of structural wood panels. “We’ve become bored with glossy computer generated imagery,” explains firm partner Brian White. There’s not much more we can say besides check it out. And notice the strategic use of the Yoda action figure, of course.

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ICFF: The Winners Are

Other
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
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Council's Drake chairs, 2009

Wrapping up a design-filled weekend of parties, openings, lectures, and events, this year’s ICFF did not disappoint. In fact, it left us up to our necks in piles of work that we have been neglecting from all that party hopping! Thankfully for us, a panel of U.S. and international editors sorted through all the furniture, lighting, and accessories at the Javits Center and selected their picks for the best-of-show at ICFF. Comprised of editors from AbitareArchitectural Record, Azure, Domus, Dwell, Interior Design, Interni, Intramuros, Metropolis, and Metropolitan Home, the prestigious ICFF Editors Award was bestowed on16 designers and manufactures, some of which you might remember from our very own ICFF Preview. The winners are: Read More

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A Standard Affair (VIDEO)

East Coast, Other
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
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André explains the world to Julie and the crowd. (All photos Matt Chaban)

André explains the world to Julie and the crowd. (All photos Matt Chaban)

Last Thursday, AN hosted the kick-off event for Meatpacking District Design ’09, a conversation between executive editor Julie V. Iovine and hotelier André Balazs at his latest creation, the Polshek Partnership-designed Standard, New York (which Julie wrote about back in February). If you couldn’t make it, though, no sweat. For your vicarious pleasure, we’ve posted a highlight video, plus the full talk, both in video and audio formats–here at AN we’re platform agnostic–plus a slew of photos of the party, the swanky new digs, and the now-in-bloom High Line. Read More

Heading West

Other
Friday, May 15, 2009
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We’re hitching the wagons this weekend to head to the 30th annual Venice Art Walk & Auctions, which include artist studio tours, gallery visits, a silent art auction, live music, and the yummy “food faire”. Of course our first stop will be the Art and Architecture tours of some of Venice’s coolest houses. We can’t wait to see Dennis Gibbens’ Multi-Use Townhouse (above). Here are a few more we’re excited about:

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Pieces Of History

Other
Friday, May 15, 2009
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One of Benjamin Dominguezs La Laguna de San Gabriel historic structures

One of Benjamin Dominguez's La Laguna de San Gabriel historic structures

Yesterday the Los Angeles Conservancy held its annual Preservation Awards at a packed ballroom in the Biltmore Hotel in Downtown LA. Some interesting tidbits we picked up about the winners: The Biscuit Factory Lofts Downtown used to be a Nabisco bakery, making Oreos and other treats. Cole’s, the famous French Dip restaurant Downtown that opened over 100 years ago, is located in a former terminal for red car street cars. The day prohibition ended Cole’s served 2,000 gallons of beer. Griffith Park’s application for landmark status was 400 pages long. And the La Laguna De San Gabriel Park Historic Structures include Stella the Starfish, Peanut the Green Dolphin, and Ozzie the Octopus. The winners were all impressive. Here’s the list:

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Healthy Development

Other
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
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The new condo tower, seen from Seventh Avenue looking south. The new hospital would rise just out of frame to the right. (Courtesy FXFowle)

The new condo tower, seen from Seventh Avenue looking south. The new hospital would rise just out of frame to the right. (Courtesy FXFowle)

We’ve been following the proposed hospital cum condos plan for St. Vincent’s rather closely as its percolated through the LPC the past year-and-a-half, but due to conflicting plans and just a smidge of St. Vincent’s fatigue, we couldn’t make it to yesterday’s latest hearing on the Rudin condo proposal. As we understand it, though, it was no different than the proposal unveiled 51 weeks prior. What was on view, however, were some fancy new renderings of those same old buildings, which you can find here. Read More

Calatrava Publicly Speaking

Other
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
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The World Trade Center Transportation Hub. (courtesy Queen Sofia Spanish Institute)

At the opening of the exhibition on his World Trade Center Transportation Hub, on view now at the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute though August 31, Santiago Calatrava’s presentation was impeccably well mannered. He juggled questions with ease, balancing the answers on the tip of his nose, before finally pulling the “child releasing a dove” formal metaphor out of his sleeve. Like his work or not, he is a magician, charming the public with form, feats of engineering, impossibly white compositions, and notions of public service. Read More

New Practices on the Horizon

Other
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
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Edmonds + Lee, Marblehead Residence

Edmonds + Lee, Marblehead Residence

After spending a while at the AIA convention in San Francisco, we’re excited about new architecture there. One of the highlights of the trip was the AIA SF’s announcement of the winners of New Practices San Francisco, a juried competition based on the work of firms who have been practicing in the Bay Area since 1999 or later (yours truly, AN editor Sam Lubell, was on the jury, which also included Ila Berman, Director of Architecture, California College of the Arts, as well as architects Anne Fougeron,  Jim Jennings, and Cathy Simon).

The winners will be featured in an exhibition at the Center For Architecture in New York from June 4-September 19, and then the exhibition will be on display at the AIA San Francisco Center For Architecture + Design Gallery from November 12-January 29, 2010.

And without further ado, here they are below, along with snippets of their amazing work:

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Perfect Fit

Other
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
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Here at AN there is no shortage of talk about how buildings are designed, but it is rare indeed that we actually get to show architecture in the course of one of its most important processes: construction. Lucky for us (and you dear reader) Robert Adrian Pejo filmed and edited the above video of a group of ornamental ironworkers from W&W Glass installing the James Vincent Czajka-designed glass link at the American Academy of Arts & Letters. The project is the subject of my In Detail piece in the current issue. Now, watch in amazement as these trained professionals crane lift 10-foot-wide-by-16-foot-high pieces of laminated glass (perfect golden rectangles mind you) over 40 feet into the air and insert them, in windy conditions, between the stone walls of two Beaux Arts edifices.

The British Noninvasion

Other
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
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Richard Rogers, Norman Foster, and James Stirling in 1986. Better luck next time, chaps. (Courtesy BD Online)

Richard Rogers, Norman Foster, and James Stirling in 1986. Better luck next time, chaps. (Courtesy BD Online)

As Jonathan Glancey gamely points out in his piece today (a piece which ANN gamely pointed out to us), British architects–namely lords Foster and Rogers–have had a bit of a hard time building in New York. For proof he points to the speculative story from yesterday’s Daily News that has the PA nixing both architects’ towers. Read More

Through The Channel, Darkly

Other
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
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We’ve blogged about the oil infrastructure in and around Houston, Texas, a couple of times: here and here. But we hadn’t managed to get a level view of the massive installation until stumbling across ship pilot Louis Vest’s time lapse video of a nighttime trip down the Houston Ship Channel aboard a 600-foot-long Panamax tanker. Vest strapped his NIkon D700 camera to an outside rail and programmed it to capture an image every six seconds, documenting a 3 1/2-hour journey cruising at 5 to 10 knots through this gloaming industrial landscape of exhaust stacks, burning lights, and gas flares. Mmmmm… Creamy!

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