At Home in Dystopia

Other
Thursday, May 7, 2009
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J.G. Zimmerman, Dystopia Series: Suburbia (all images courtesy of the respective artists.)

Friend of AN Jeremiah Joseph visited an exhibition of interest in New York’s gallery district.

Et in Arcadia Ego, a new exhibition at the Thornton Room in Chelsea, examines the intersection and overlap of natural and man-made landscapes. With the title, roughly translated from Latin, “I am in pastoral utopia,” the show, curated by Blanca de la Torre and Juanli Carrion, could easily devolve into a Nature equals Good, City equals Bad equation. Instead, the way the six artists explore the topic is not so divisive or stale. The work tends to engage the subject from the side, generating surreal results. At the end any answers are farther off than before viewing the work, and this ambiguity is show’s strength. It prevents the viewer from standing too sure-footed and jumping ahead to conclusions and prejudices. Read More

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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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

Artists to Redesign Biennale Facilities

Other
Monday, March 30, 2009
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The bar and cafeteria designed by Tobias Rehberger. (all images courtesy Fondazione La Biennale di Venezia)

The Venice biennale was founded in 1895 in one of La Serenissima’s few green spaces, the Giardini di Castello. It has occupied a random series of buildings in the park, which include national pavilions (the Belgians built the first in 1907 and the U.S. joined the party in 1930) and an undistinguished hall called the Italian pavilion since the late 1930s. Today the organization that operates the biennales (art, architecture, film etc.) announced plans to change the name of the Italian pavilion in the giardini to the Palazzo delle Esposizioni della Biennale and upgrade its aging infrastructure. While these changes will be welcome by the public, the spaces are all being designed by artists, not architects. Read More

Legoland, NY

East Coast, Other
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
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(Courtesy NYTimes.com)

(Courtesy NYTimes.com

For those of you who haven’t already seen Christoph Niemann’s great blog for the Times, “Abstract City”–the expat illustrator renders the city we love in terms of its subway lines and coffee stains–today’s post proves to be his best work yet. Read More

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Texas Tea

Other
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
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Permian oil field in Odessa, Texas

Permian oil field in Odessa, Texas (Courtesy CLUI)

It’s hard to imagine an industry by which humans could have changed the natural landscape more so than through the business of getting crude out of the ground, refining it, and shipping it around the globe. Which makes the oil industry a perfect subject for the Center for Land Use Interpretation (CLUI), a Culver City, California-based research organization that conducts studies into the nature and extent of human interaction with the earth’s surface. And where better to examine what oil hath wrought than in Texas? Beginning on January 16th and running through March 29th, the CLUI will exhibit just what it has learned in the Lone Star State with Texas Oil: Landscape of an Industry at the Blaffer Gallery, The Art Museum of the University of Houston. Read More

Brilliant Bamboo

Other
Friday, January 9, 2009
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Morigami Jin’s Reclining II

It’s hard enough to see all the gallery exhibitions devoted to architecture in any given New York City week, but if I also try to visit design shows, it takes every waking moment. (I missed the top floor of MoMA’s Home Delivery show, for god’s sake, even though I caught the prefabs on West 54th Street.) New Bamboo: Contemporary Japanese Masters at the Japan Society is a show I read about in the A/N diary and kept thinking: “I should run up and see this.” Well, it closes on Sunday, Read More

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Pop Art

Other
Friday, January 9, 2009
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George Michael and Kenny Goss enjoy the limelight. (Courtesy Dallas Observer)

George Michael and Kenny Goss enjoy the limelight. (Courtesy Dallas Observer)

While pop singer George Michael spent 2008 loitering in public restrooms, making cameo appearances on British television, and touring the world, he somehow found time to join his boyfriend, Kenny Goss, in planning a foray into architecture. The Art Newspaper reported in December that the couple announced that they will be building a 10,000-square-foot gallery in Dallas, Texas, in which to display their extensive collection of contemporary British art. Read More

Voluntary Prisoners of Downtown Miami

Other
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
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CIFO's urban jungle mosaic facade, garden, and entry patio.

Contemporary art curator and AN colleague Leanne Mella has organized a potent and compelling exhibition entitled The Prisoner’s Dilemma for the Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation, known as CIFO, in downtown Miami.

With noble intentions, given the socio-political climate of the recent past, the work in Mella’s exhibition showcases the ways in which artists respond to the exercise of power in contemporary life. The politics of the show are highly nuanced, visually stunning, and often quite poetic. Read More

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Miami Vices

Other
Friday, December 12, 2008
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The trading floor.

The trading floor.

Designer and AN friend Ken Saylor, of saylor+sirola, reports from Art|Basel|Miami Beach:

For the seventh year in a row, the international art world descended upon Miami Beach to instantly transform the city into a galaxy of cultural production, salesmanship, and hopefully, with this year’s delicate economy, elite consumption. If you add cars, champagne, mojitos, and cigars, provided by the current corporate sponsors, one’s experience of Art|Basel|Miami Beach was a decadently over-the-top trip to the beach.

With 24 auxiliary fairs attaching themselves to the main event, it is impossible to see everything, although everyone runs around the city in frantic abandon—entourages in tow—to openings, parties, parties, and, yes, more parties. Read More

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How Much Is That Building Really Worth To You?

Other
Thursday, December 11, 2008
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Shigeru Ban sketch on the block for SCI-Arc

Shigeru Ban sketch on the block for SCI-Arc

If you’ve got some extra cash this year—and really, who doesn’t?—why not invest in architecture? Not the pricey, unlikely-to-be-built, brick-and-mortar kind. We’re talking about 2D architecture, the kind you can hang on your wall. Shigeru Ban, Daly Genik, Hodgetts + Fung and Michael Maltzan are just a few of the architects you could have in your home by Christmas, thanks to this auction where you can bid on their drawings and renderings, with all the proceeds going to SCI-Arc.

Read More

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