P!LA: Beers With Benjamin Ball

Other
Sunday, April 5, 2009
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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

Postopolis, Here We Come

Other
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
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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

LA Park Re-Revamped

Other
Thursday, March 12, 2009
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Curbed LA reports that designs for the 12-acre, Rios Clementi Hale-designed downtown Civic Park, connecting City Hall with the LA Music Center, have been updated (drawing above). The new designs, they find, will overhaul and lengthen the park’s fountain, remove a series of trellises, enlarge the park’s community terrace, and remove the “viewing bridge” at the foot of City Hall. Read More

Ray Kappe Remembers Marvin Rand

Other
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
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(Courtesy the Rand family

(Courtesy the Rand family

We ran a rememberance of Marvin Rand yesterday by Larry Scarpa of Pugh+Scarpa. Here’s another from Ray Kappe, the founding director of Sci-Arc: Read More

Postopolis! Comes to LA

Other
Thursday, February 5, 2009
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Architecture bloggers in La La Land

Architecture bloggers in La La Land

You remember Postopolis! don’t you? The reality show-worthy architecture blog-a-thon that sequestered five bloggers for five days at the Storefront for Art and Architecture two years ago? Well, hold onto your laptops, kids, because Postopolis! is back and promises to be bigger, better, bloggier and more exclamation-pointy than ever before…because it’s coming to LA, baby!

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Another Planner Down

Other
Thursday, January 22, 2009
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Just weeks after LA City Planning Commission President Jane Usher resigned, Southern California is down another major planner: The LA Times has reported that LA County’s chief planner Bruce McClendon (pictured) was just fired by County Chief Executive Officer William T. Fujioka.

McClendon told the Times that he believed the firing was likely in retaliation for becoming a whistle-blower against the Board of Supervisors. He said he had told Fujioka that supervisors’ aides often tried influencing hearing officers’ decisions on whether to permit development plans. “It was illegal, and they can go to jail for doing it,” McClendon told the Times. Read More

Your Chance To Fix LA’s Transit Mess!!!!

Other
Thursday, January 15, 2009
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image courtesy Benny Chan

Isn't she beautiful? NOT! (Courtesy Benny Chan)

What do Thom Mayne, Eric Owen Moss, Neil Denari, LA Planning director Gail Goldberg, and Aspet Davidian,  engineering director at the LA County Metropolitan Transportation Authority have in common? They’re all on the jury for The Architect’s Newspaper and SCI-Arc’s new competition, A NEW INFRASTRUCTURE: Innovative Transit Solutions for Los Angeles. Read More

The Scarlet Letter

Other
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
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The board of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) today made a formal proposal to merge with the financially struggling Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA). According to a press release (top portion, above) issued today by LACMA, the goal of the move would be to to “preserve the independence and integrity of both institutions while combining their operations and infrastructure.” To save money MOCA has already shut down its Geffen Contemporary for six months, and is said to be pondering the sale of some of its artworks.
According to the release if a merger were to occur MOCA’s collections would not only be exhibited at LACMA’s Grand Avenue location and at the Geffen, but also at the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM), and at LACMA’s planned Stewart Resnick Pavilion. LACMA’s $68.2 million budget is more than three times that of MOCA’s $20 million. According to the L.A. Times, MOCA’s trustees met today to discus proposals, including a $30-million bailout offer from Eli Broad. According to Curbed LA, LA City Council President Eric Garcetti and Councilwoman Jan Perry introduced a motion to allocate $2.8 million in Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) funds to the struggling MOCA, provided the museum adheres to its stipulations. Stay tuned….

DJ Thommy Mayne and the Pritzker-Making Hits

Other
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
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KCRW DJ Tom Schnabel and the Mayne Event

KCRW DJ Tom Schnabel and the Mayne Event

Widely accepted as the greatest public radio station on the planet, KCRW is famous for its groundbreaking music played by DJs who are smarter, cooler and infinitely better dressers than you. But last week was a bitter one for LA as the station’s great Nic Harcourt hung up his headphones as music director. For those of you who are already missing Harcourt’s esoteric taste (sometimes a bit difficult to take at 9:03am even after a visit to Intelligensia), never fear: Thom Mayne has stepped into the booth.

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LA Live! (ugh)

Other
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
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A hopeful rendering: L.A. Live excitement

A hopeful rendering: L.A. Live excitement

LA Times critic Christopher Hawthorne yesterday summed up the problems with L.A. Live!, the behemoth development in Downtown LA’s South Park district, whose second phase is now opening. Hawthorne decries its “placelessness,” its buildings that “have almost nothing to say to or about downtown Los Angeles,” and worst of all, its inability to help the rest of the area.

“When we trap the energy of an urban crowd inside this sort of self-contained world,” he writes, “and when we allow developers and their architects to heighten the differences between that world and the streets around it so dramatically, we help keep the rest of our blocks underused and, as pieces of the city, undernourished.”

Amen brother. While the development, with its mix of residences, hotels and entertainment venues, should certainly bring activity and money downtown in tough times, it is still a wasted opportunity.

Noshing In Style

Other
Friday, October 24, 2008
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Without further ado, here are the winners of the AIA LA’s 4th Annual Restaurant Design Awards. The awards were announced on October 16, and judges included architects David Montalba and Michael Hogdson, Joachim B. Splichal, founder of the Patina restaurant group, and LA Weekly writer Margot Dougherty.

JURY WINNERS:

RESTAURANT
Blue Velvet designed by Tag Front

Eric Axene

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