P!LA: SynthE-sizing Dinner

Other
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
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On Saturday, before we headed over to the Standard for my star turn on the media panel, Sam Lubell and I first swung by the Flat, home to celebrated LA restaurant Blue Velvet. We were there for an event hosted by colleague and co-panelist Alyssa Walker, part of her de Lab (design east of LaBrea) series. SCI-arc professor and hunk Alexis Rochas had installed easily the coolest green roof we’ve ever seen on top of the condo, and two dozen or so people had shown up for a tour, followed by a most-interesting lunch. Read More

Decor Out the Door

Other
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
.

In addition to their scholarly and artistic value, many historic houses and period rooms are the rescues of the nascent preservation movement. On view since 1938 at the Museum of the City of New York (MCNY), two 1880s Aesthetic Movement rooms from the Rockefeller Mansion on 54th Street are finding new homes at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and at the Virginia Commonwealth Museum. Read More

P!LA: By Car

Other
Sunday, April 5, 2009
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Downtown. (All photos Matt Chaban)

Downtown. (All photos Matt Chaban)

What better way to see LA than the way she was intended, by car. My colleague Sam Lubell was kind enough to chauffeur me around the city from time to time–when he wasn’t, the buses were surprisingly nice, far more so than in New York, I must admit. While Sam drove, I did my best to take a few pictures. Read More

P!LA: Oil, Oil-less, Fruit, Fruitless

Other
Sunday, April 5, 2009
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The party never stops at Postopolis. (All photos Matt Chaban)

The party never stops at Postopolis. (All photos Matt Chaban)

Unlike Thursday night, when inclement weather forced us inside, the party raged–or, well, spoke, Tweeted, and blogged–on the roof of the Standard on Friday night, which is as it should be at the start of the weekend, even if the party was almost over. Read More

P!LA: Beers With Benjamin Ball

Other
Sunday, April 5, 2009
.
For the love of fries. (Mike L./Yelp)

For the love of fries. (Mike L./Yelp)

After Mike the Poet finished his set Thursday night, I found Benjamin Ball of Ball-Nogues Studio still in the crowd. He had been the second to last presenter, mostly talking about the firm’s work, and he was now taking compliments from admirers and shooting the breeze with friends. I, never not working, asked about the teepee in Woodstock he’d mentioned, though Ben was more interested in chatting me up about the paper, Venice, and my bowtie. Soon enough, a group of us found ourselves in the lobby, but the drinks being overpriced, we hit the street. Read More

P!LA: Painting Sound, Ben Ball, Vampires, & MMOs, Oh My!

Other
Saturday, April 4, 2009
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Welcome to LA. (All photos Matt Chaban)

Welcome to LA. (All photos Matt Chaban)

Though I already gave Mike the Poet pride of place, he was far from the only show in town Thursday night at Postopolis! LA. When I walked into the conference room–things had moved inside because the roof bar had been buffeted by a freezing wind all day–I saw a cluttered screenshot from World of Warcraft, something that had my inner-geek (aren’t we all?) terribly excited. Read More

P!LA: Putting the Urban into Planning

Other
Saturday, April 4, 2009
.

Thursday night was my first at Postopolis! LA, and while I saw lots of cool presentations from cool people, I couldn’t help but start with the most unexpected, unusual, and exciting. Mike the Poet is a tour guide by day and a spoken word poet/rapper/genius by night. (Here‘s a nice profile from the LAT.) And while it’s true that discussions about gentrifying vampires and planning for World of Warcraft is cool, can you really top a dude rapping about urban density? Or SOM!

Michelle, Meet Maggie

Other
Friday, April 3, 2009
.

Architecture's ambassadors. (Courtesy BDOnline)

Since the Obamas moved to Washington, we’ve been waiting for the administration to make good on its promises for new government policy on architecture and planning. There may be hope yet: While the president spends his days in Europe with politicians, Michelle has been making the rounds of innovative social centers. Building Design caught the first lady with Ivan Harbour and Richard Rogers at their Maggie’s Centre in Hammersmith, London. Let’s hope she was as impressed with the architecture of the centre—promoted by its co-founder Charles Jencks—as with its innovative programming for women with cancer.

Other Talents

Other
Thursday, April 2, 2009
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One of Eric Kahns Other Works

One of Eric Kahn's "Other Works"

LA’s A+D (Architecture and Design) Museum is hosting its final exhibition at its current space at 5900 Wilshire Boulevard. The museum leaves its digs on April 15, and will move to a new (still undisclosed) location in the fall. The show, called Other Works, features the artwork of LA architects Wes Jones, Eric Kahn and Gary Paige. All three explore complexity, color, abstraction, and layering, and in general appear to enjoy getting to play in a less constrictive environment than architecture. This is especially true of  Jones, whose childlike, floating red buildings are the antithesis of his carefully studied architectural drawings. Kahn and Paige, meanwhile, have both managed to evoke spirituality and rich depth from apparently (but not really) simple collages of color, texture, and in Kahn’s case, letters and symbols. More info on the future of the A+D Museum coming soon… And more pictures after the jump.. Read More

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Postopolis, Here We Come

Other
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
.

    

Postopolis! LA is onto the second day of its second year now, and from the looks of the streaming video, things are off to a great start. But the fun doesn’t really start until tomorrow. Why? Because that’s when we arrive!

I’ve been invited to join the media panel Sunday, along with my beautiful Cali colleague Alissa Walker. Not exactly sure what we’ll be talking about–*gulp*–but it’s something along the lines of print-web integration/the future of media/doomsday/etc. After all, I was invited on Twitter. Read More

Stimulus, Coming to a Street Near You

East Coast, Other
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
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New York City's stimulus projects. (WNYC)

New York City's two-dozen stimulus projects. (WNYC)

First Recovery.gov, now the NYC Stimulus Tracker. Yesterday, when Mayor Michael Bloomberg unveiled the $1.1 billion in new infrastructure spending resulting from the city’s cut of the federal stimulus bill, he also announced the creation of a special website to lend transparency to the process, not unlike the model set out by our dear mayor. (Judging by WNYC and ProPublica’s Shovelwatch map, though, everyone’s getting in on the act, with all but five states and numerous municipalities launching such sites.) Read More

Shovel Oh So Ready

Other
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
.

Architect and friend of AN Jeremiah Joseph writes in with this report of the March 27 WORKac lecture, “Shovel Ready,” at Parsons.

Amale Andraos and Dan Wood, of the 2008 PS1 Warm-Up pavilion fame, tag team presented their work to a standing room only crowd. With a range of projects, from buildings to urban proposals, the duo showed the office’s penchant for both intelligence and wit. Like many young offices most of WORKac’s work is still in the realm of unbuilt projects, but with five competitions already completed in 2009 this office has no intention of waiting around casually for the work to knock on their door. Read More

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