Greening Grand Central

Other
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
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Today, the MTA replaced the last of Grand Central Terminal’s 4,000 incandescent bulbs. Here’s a video and some photos from the event. Read More

Ciao, Milano!

Other
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
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Lamp shades on Montenapoleone get the Milanese into the swing of the ubiquitous fair. CLICK TO VIEW SLIDESHOW.

Lamp shades on Montenapoleone get the Milanese into the swing of the ubiquitous fair.

CLICK TO LAUNCH SLIDESHOW.

We recently returned from Milan, having taken in the annual Furniture Fair and biannual Euroluce. Click the picture above for a slideshow of the proceeding, or read our full report here.

Earth-sized Mural

Other
Monday, April 27, 2009
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The Long Beach Press-Telegram and Curbed LA report that on Earth Day marine artist Robert Wyland painted a 2.8 acre mural of planet earth, called “Earth: The Blue Planet,” on the roof of the Long Beach Arena. Wyland did the work for free, but in corporate fashion, the mural is “inspired” by the new Disney film Earth, according to Wyland’s web site. The same week he  finished a renovation of his 1992 whale and marine life mural, “Planet Ocean,” on the arena’s exterior walls. That 116,000 square foot, 10-story-tall work was declared the largest mural in the world when completed. Not bad Long Beach. Now if they could only replace one of the chain restaurants on the Harbor with a local eatery…

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Graffitigate

Other
Friday, April 24, 2009
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A worker painting over graffiti adjacent the High Line. (Gothamist)

A worker painting over graffiti adjacent the High Line. (Gothamist)

As Gothamist and Curbed have pointed out today, workers up on the High Line have begun removing one of the elevated track cum park’s dozens (hundreds? thousands?) of graffitos, as seen in the picture above. Everyone seems to be worried about this one mediocre piece, but it’s our sorry job to report that the tragedy goes far deeper than that. Read More

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Go Green On the Go

Other
Friday, April 24, 2009
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(photos courtesy of Mapos)

As part of Earth Day New York’s annual festival, taking place today and tomorrow at Grand Central Terminal, Brooklyn-based eco-friendly buildings products supplier Green Depot is debuting their new Pop-Up store, which promotes the company’s Do-It-Yourself motto while providing sustainable building materials, products, and accessories to an commuter consumer-base on the go. Read More

Take a Whiff of This!

Other
Thursday, April 23, 2009
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Nose-drunks gather outside of Alcoholic Architecture for a little inhalation intoxication. (Courtesy aroundbritainwithapaunch.blogspot.com)

Nose-drunks gather outside of Alcoholic Architecture for a little inhalation intoxication. (Courtesy aroundbritainwithapaunch.blogspot.com)


But please, only in moderation. Inhaling too deeply at a new London bar may leave you, well….drunk. 2 Ganton Street, once an unused storefront, has reopened as a self-contained, walk-in gin and tonic. Imbibers at Alcoholic Architecture simply slip into provided plastic jumpsuits, breathe, and enjoy the buzz. The creators of the bar, Bompas and Parr, have effectively revolutionized the bar experience by removing the traditional, and oh so painstakingly boring, order and sip protocol.
Read More

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Do Not Overlook This!

Other
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
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On Saturday LA residents and park rangers alike celebrated the opening of the Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook in Culver City. Located on a hill 500 feet above the city, the new 50 acre state park has probably the most complete view of Los Angeles that exists, with close to 360 degree vistas that stretch from Downtown LA to the Pacific Ocean. Read More

Inside Out, Outside In

Other
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
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The Pembroke Hill School campus before Gisolfi's redesign.

Peter Gisolfi’s oeuvre is diverse enough to merit five separate categories in his new book Finding the Place of Architecture in the Landscape: townscape, campus, landscapes and buildings, gardens and houses, and transformation. Read More

LA Investigates Firing of Planner

Other
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
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The LA Times has reported that Los Angeles County Auditor-Controller Wendy Watanabe is investigating the January 16 firing of former LA County Planning Chief Bruce McClendon. According to the paper, McClendon has said he was fired for protecting his staff from the efforts of County Supervisors’ aides to influence zoning and development decisions in the county. The results of the investigation should be released “in the coming weeks.” One possible conflict: Watanabe was appointed by the board of supervisors only months ago. But, she assured the Times that her office would be able to carry out an independent investigation. “My integrity and reputation are at stake,” she said.

Awards Season

Other
Monday, April 20, 2009
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First the Pritzker, now the Pulitzers. This year’s journalism awards were announced today, and a few of the awards and nominees might be of especial note to the architectural community. First up is the prize for public service journalism–the industry’s highest honor–which was awarded to the Las Vegas Sun for a series exploring a chilling spate of construction deaths on the Strip, including at the starchitect-laden City Center. Elsewhere, Inquirer architecture critic Inga Saffron was named a finalist for the criticism prize for “her fascinating and convincing architectural critiques that boldly confront important topics, from urban planning issues to the newest skyscraper.” (We think she should have won out over Times art critic Holland Carter.) There were even flashes of impressive architectural photography in the breaking news photo category. And who knew editorial cartoonist Steve Breen was such a capable renderer?

Wishful Blinking

Other
Monday, April 20, 2009
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A Bird's Eye View of Amsterdam, Jan Micker (1652 or after). (All images courtesy the National Gallery of Art.)

In the 17th century, the Dutch republic was booming, and the public clamored for paintings celebrating the iconic forms of their cities. The art world’s response to that demand is on display in the National Gallery of Art’s Pride of Place: Dutch Cityscapes of the Golden Age , a captivating collection of paintings that is less like a window on cities of the past, and more like a lens, distorting and idealizing its subject in fascinating ways. Read More

Ritorniamo

Other
Monday, April 20, 2009
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The good life.The good life. (Courtesy Riva) 

Last fall, the editors of The Architect’s Newspaper spent a week in Venice reporting on the architecture biennale. One of our fondest Venetian memories—the few times we could afford them—was moving around La Serenissima in water taxis.  As we’ve noted before, the Venetian water taxi is the world’s most elegant form of public transportation: hand-made wooden motor boats with tuck-and-rolled leather seating, customized canvas hoods, and spit-shined wooden hulls and decks. Well, the editors are headed back to Italy, this time for Milan’s Saloni di Mobile.

Read More

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