Toyo Ito Designs New Mayuhana Lamp for Yamagiwa

12:00 - 8 March, 2016
Toyo Ito Designs New Mayuhana Lamp for Yamagiwa, Courtesy of Yamagiwa
Courtesy of Yamagiwa

Yamagiwa has just released a new version of Toyo Ito's popular Mayuhana lamp - Mayuhana Ma Black. "Ma," meaning "true" or "genuine," represents the new lamps darker color that is, as the company describes, "more deep and profound."

"Mayuhana Ma Black is light in darkness. It is the quintessential quality of light found in Japan that reminds me of ‘In Praise of Shadows’ by Junichiro Tanizaki," says Toyo Ito.

What Should We Be Doing To Eliminate Gender Inequality in Architecture?

08:00 - 8 March, 2016
What Should We Be Doing To Eliminate Gender Inequality in Architecture?, Denise Scott Brown in Las Vegas in 1966. Image © Robert Venturi
Denise Scott Brown in Las Vegas in 1966. Image © Robert Venturi

In recent years, there has been a significant amount of attention paid to the gender debate in architecture, with many asking why, in the 21st century, our profession can still be such a challenging career path for women. In many ways, this focus on women in architecture has seemed successful: In 2014, Julia Morgan became the first woman awarded the AIA Gold Medal, and while Denise Scott-Brown may not have been retroactively awarded a Pritzker Prize, the AIA's decision to open up its Medal to more than one person at a time finally allowed her to join Julia Morgan on the (very short) list of female winners. Over in the UK, this year Zaha Hadid was awarded the RIBA Gold Medal, making her the first woman in history to receive the prize without sharing it with a male partner. Yet despite these apparent victories for equality in architecture, we still see headlines like the recent discovery by the AR's Women in Architecture Survey that gender disparities are, in fact, increasing.

Today, on International Women's Day, we wanted to open up a discussion among ArchDaily readers to see what else could be done. What more could architects, institutions and indeed even the media do to close the gender gap in our profession? Let us know in the comments below and the best responses will be featured in an upcoming article.

NOW and Grimshaw to Design South Korean Horseracing Track

17:00 - 7 March, 2016
NOW and Grimshaw to Design South Korean Horseracing Track, © Grimshaw
© Grimshaw

NOW Architects and Grimshaw have been selected to design "LetsRun Park" - a new home for horseracing in the South Korean city of Yeongcheon. Selected through an international competition by the Korea Racing Authority and International Union of Architects, the team's masterplan calls for new racecourse and equine-themed family park on the 148 hectare site. 

La SHED Wins RAIC's Emerging Architectural Practice Award

12:00 - 7 March, 2016
La SHED Wins RAIC's Emerging Architectural Practice Award, © Maxime Brouillet
© Maxime Brouillet

The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) has selected La SHED Architecture as the recipient of its 2016 Emerging Architectural Practice Award. The small, nine-person office in Montreal is known for designing "fresh, contemporary houses inspired by the informal qualities," says the RAIC. It was founded in 2011 by University of Montreal graduates Renée Mailhot, MRAIC, Sébastien Parent and Yannick Laurin.

“This is a recently created firm that has developed a coherent and consistent body of high-quality architectural work in a rapid time frame,” said the five-member jury. “It has achieved this while often working within limited budgets.” 

These Churches Are the Unrecognized Architecture of Poland's Anti-Communist "Solidarity" Movement

09:30 - 7 March, 2016
These Churches Are the Unrecognized Architecture of Poland's Anti-Communist "Solidarity" Movement

For nearly two millennia, European architecture was closely affiliated with and shaped by Christianity. Prior to the advent of Modernism, there was scarcely a style that was not promoted, or more likely defined, by the designs of churches. Such a hypothesis makes it difficult to imagine Medieval England outside the purview of Gothic Cathedrals, or Renaissance Italy as separate from its Basilicas. But with the Industrial Revolution and the economic and population growth that ensued, infrastructure and housing became the new symbols and necessities of cultural representation, finding their ultimate expression in the ease and simplicity of Modernism. The field of architecture, so long shaped and dominated by the church, had been subsumed by the changing concerns of a commercially driven society. Of course there were still churches being built, but the typology that once defined architecture in its ubiquity became novel and rare. Or so we’ve all been lead to believe.

Surprising as it might be, in the wake of World War II and under Soviet control, Poland built more churches than any other country in Europe. The majority were built in the 1980s, at a time when church construction was neither authorized nor forbidden, and as a result played a pronounced role in Cold War politics. The construction of these churches was a calculated affront to the proletariat-minded Modernism of the Soviets. In their project Architecture of the VII Day, Kuba Snopek, Iza Cichońska and Karolina Popera have sought to comprehensively document these Polish churches and the circumstances of their construction. Unique not only in how they defied the prefabrication and regularity of the Eastern Bloc, the churches were community-led endeavors that relied on local funding and input, long before these practices became buzzwords in 21st century architectural circles.

© Maciej Lulko © Maciej Lulko © Maciej Lulko © Maciej Lulko +78

6 Teams Reimagine New York’s MetLife Building

06:00 - 7 March, 2016
6 Teams Reimagine New York’s MetLife Building, Courtesy of Gabrielle Brainard
Courtesy of Gabrielle Brainard

Metals in Construction Magazine and a jury of architects and engineers have announced the winners of the “Reimagine a New York City Icon” competition. The 2016 Design Challenge, which was sponsored by Metals in Construction magazine and the Ornamental Metal Institute of New York, called for submissions from architects, engineers, students, and designers from around the globe to reimagine the cladding of 200 Park Avenue (formerly the Pan Am Building, now the MetLife Building), with a “resource-conserving, eco-friendly enclosure” that simultaneously creates transparency and preserves the building’s original aesthetic.

Anish Kapoor Now Owns the Rights to the World's Darkest Material

16:00 - 6 March, 2016
Anish Kapoor Now Owns the Rights to the World's Darkest Material, via Wikipedia
via Wikipedia

Anish Kapoor, a British-Indian sculptor, now owns the exclusive rights within the field of art to Vantablack, currently the world’s darkest material. Developed by a team of scientists at Surrey NanoSystems in 2014, Vantablack absorbs all light and creates a crease free abyss which is often compared to a black hole. Other artists, such as Christian Furr, had intended to use Vantablack in a series of paintings, but no longer can due to Kapoor’s monopolization. “All the best artists have had a thing for pure black — Turner, Manet, Goya,” he told Daily Mail. “This black is like dynamite in the art world. We should be able to use it. It isn’t right that it belongs to one man.”

“My Detroit” Postcards to be Displayed at US Exhibition at the 2016 Venice Biennale

12:00 - 6 March, 2016
“My Detroit” Postcards to be Displayed at US Exhibition at the 2016 Venice Biennale, Penobscot Block, 2015. Image © Ben Nowak, Oak Park, MI.
Penobscot Block, 2015. Image © Ben Nowak, Oak Park, MI.

Twenty postcards depicting Detroit have been selected for “My Detroit,” part of The Architectural Imagination,” the exhibition for the US Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Biennale. Selected from among 463 entries by curator Cynthia Davidson and sociologist Camilo José Vergara, the 20 winning postcards --- taken by 18 different individuals -- were selected as a group, for helping to tell the story of Detroit today. Ten of the 18 winners are Detroit-area residents.

House Fire, 2013. Image © Geoff George, Detroit, MI. Glimmers of the past (Michigan Theatre), 2010. Image © Harrell Scarcello, Southfield, MI. Belle Isle Aquarium, 2013. Image © Derek Chang, New York, NY. Belle Isle Bridge, 2012. Image © Salvador Rodriguez, Saint Clair Shores, MI. +20

12 Architects to Receive AIA Young Architects Award

16:00 - 5 March, 2016
12 Architects to Receive AIA Young Architects Award, Courtesy of American Institute of Archtiects
Courtesy of American Institute of Archtiects

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has selected 12 recipients for the 2016 AIA Young Architects Award. The award, now in its 23rd year, recognizes architects who have been licensed for 10 years or fewer. These young architects have shown exceptional leadership and have made significant contributions to the profession. The recipients will be honored at the 2016 AIA National Convention in Philadelphia. Click here to see the winners and their profiles.

In Residence: Carlotta de Bevilacqua

14:00 - 5 March, 2016

“Objects, colors, every artwork, every light, everything is linked to our history—everything is a perception of the meaning of our personal life, and also, of course, an aesthetical way of living.”  

In the latest installation of NOWNESS’ In Residence series, designer, entrepreneur and university lecturer Carlotta de Bevilacqua uses the context of her home to delve into ideas of what makes a home, the role design plays in her life, and how design requires risks, among other topics. Learn more about de Bevilacqua’s perspective by watching the video above.

Debate Over the Future Site of George Lucas Museum Heats Up

12:00 - 5 March, 2016
Debate Over the Future Site of George Lucas Museum Heats Up , Courtesy of Lucas Museum of Narrative Arts
Courtesy of Lucas Museum of Narrative Arts

Over the past few months, Chicago Mayor, Rahm Emanuel, has been caught in the crossfire between two groups who have very different opinions on the future home of the George Lucas Narrative Art Museum. The site in question is a 1,500-space parking lot situated north of the McCormick Place’s Lakeside Center and just south of Soldier Field. The commission for the museum was won in July of 2014 by MAD Architects. Their design proposes a large, white, sculptural “mountain” which rises up from the site and is topped by a “metallic crown”.

White Arkitekter Named Finalist in Nordic Built Challenge

08:00 - 5 March, 2016
White Arkitekter Named Finalist in Nordic Built Challenge, Courtesy of White Arkitekter
Courtesy of White Arkitekter

White Arkitekter has been selected as one of four finalists in the open Nordic Built Challenge competition for the Faroe Islands in Denmark, with their proposal, “The Eyes of Runavik.” Developed in collaboration with Norwegian engineering company DIFK / Florian Kosche, the design centers on a new “landmark building typology adaptable to a variety of steep terrains, and specifically designed for the climatic conditions of the Faroe Islands.”

The project draws inspiration from traditional Faeroese agriculture, in which an outfield, or “hagi,” is used for summer grazing, while cultivated land—“bøur”—is used for growing crops. Thus, each building ring, or “eye,” of the design “can be seen as a settlement in itself, with the outfield ‘hagi’ as the wild landscape all around, and the infield ‘bøur’ as the cultivated microclimate in the center.”

AL_A's MPavilion Gifted to Melbourne, Relocates to Public Park

16:00 - 4 March, 2016
AL_A's MPavilion Gifted to Melbourne, Relocates to Public Park, MPavilion 2015 / AL_A. Image © John Gollings
MPavilion 2015 / AL_A. Image © John Gollings

AL_A's MPavilion 2015 has been gifted to the City of Melbourne. It will be relocated from the Queen Victoria Gardens to a permanent site at Collins Street park in Docklands, says Naomi Milgrom, chair of the Naomi Milgrom Foundation. 

“In its new permanent home, Amanda Levete’s MPavilion 2015 will continue to inspire and be part of our city’s cultural heritage as a public amenity of Melbourne. Amanda’s magical, forest-like structure joins a growing family of architectural masterpieces to be enjoyed by the people of Melbourne for years to come,” Milgrom said.

Vasily Klyukin Proposes Asian Cobra Tower

14:00 - 4 March, 2016
Vasily Klyukin Proposes Asian Cobra Tower, © Vasily Klyukin
© Vasily Klyukin

Russian designer Vasily Klyukin has envisioned the "Asian Cobra Tower." Just as its name suggests, the gold-plated tower takes the shape of a snake, offering offices and apartments in its body and a restaurant, night club and terrace in its jaws. 

"In Japan telling someone that he is a snake means a compliment. In China snakes and dragons often mean the same," says Klyukin. "The symbol of wisdom and eternal life, this tower would embellish any Eastern city."

Jeanne Gang Named Architect of the Year in AR's 2016 Women in Architecture Awards

10:30 - 4 March, 2016
Jeanne Gang Named Architect of the Year in AR's 2016 Women in Architecture Awards, Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership / Studio Gang. Image © Steve Hall for Hedrich Blessing
Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership / Studio Gang. Image © Steve Hall for Hedrich Blessing

The Architectural Review has announced the final winners in its 2016 Women in Architecture awards, awarding Mexican architect Gabriela Etchegaray with the Moira Gemmill Prize for Emerging Architecture, and Jeanne Gang with the Architect of the Year award. In honoring Gang and Etchegaray, the AR noted that both "have demonstrated excellence in design and a commitment to working both sustainably and democratically with local communities." The pair join other Women in Architecture Award winners Odile Decq and Julia Peyton-Jones, who last week received the 2016 Jane Drew Prize and Ada Louise Huxtable Prize, respectively. Read on for more about the awards.

World Architecture Festival to Move to Berlin After Four Years in Singapore

06:00 - 4 March, 2016
World Architecture Festival to Move to Berlin After Four Years in Singapore

The World Architecture Festival (WAF), the largest annual international gathering of architects, is decamping from its four year home in Singapore for Berlin later this year. The annual event, consisting of awards, a conference, and an exhibition, recognizes outstanding projects in a variety of categories, and is attended by over 2,000 visitors from 65 countries. The venue for this year’s festival is the Berlin Arena, a bus terminal designed by Franz Ahrens in 1927 and repurposed as an event space in the 1990s. This is the ninth edition of the festival and the first to occur in Europe since 2011.

Moscow's Strelka Institute and the HSE Graduate School of Urbanism Launch a New Course in Advanced Urban Design

04:00 - 4 March, 2016
Strelka Institute, Moscow. Image © Olga Ivanova
Strelka Institute, Moscow. Image © Olga Ivanova

The Moscow-based Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design and the HSE Graduate School of Urbanism have launched a new collaborative international Masters programme entitled Advanced Urban Design. The two-year English language program, specifically designed for Bachelors, researchers and young professionals, intends to guide students through best practices in the area of urban planning. Under the guidance of a collection of tutors from Russia and around the world, the course aims to investigate conditions of growing cities by focusing on unstable socioeconomic contexts. 

2016 Venice Biennale Will Begin a "Crusade Against Indifference"

14:15 - 3 March, 2016

Yesterday, and for the first time in La Biennale's history, the press tour included a stop in the Southern Hemisphere. From his home city of Santiago, Alejandro Aravena shared more details about the upcoming exhibition in Chile's presidential palace (La Moneda) alongside the president of the Biennale and the president of Chile. 

The main information to emerge from the press conference was the presentation of the lone image that represents this year's Biennale and the announcement of the participants. In the video above, Aravena gracefully explains how Bruce Chatwin's image of German archaeologist Maria Reiche encapsulates "the Biennale as a whole." 

Aravena stressed that he wanted the disclaimer for the exhibition to be the exact opposite of "Don't Try This At Home." He explained, "Given the complexity and variety of challenges that architecture has to respond to, 'Reporting from the Front' will be about listening to those that were able to gain some perspective and consequently are in the position to share some knowledge and experiences with those of us standing on the ground."