David Basulto

Graduate Architect. Co Founder and Executive Editor of ArchDaily.com. Architecture geek.

Sou Fujimoto to design the 2013 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion

Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2013 Designed by Sou Fujimoto, Interior Indicative CGI © Studio Cyrille Thomas for

Today, the Serpentine Gallery announced the architect that will design the 13th edition of the . Every year the gallery invites a renowned international architects who have not built yet in the UK, to design a temporary pavilion that hosts public activities in at the Gallery’s lawn, in London’s Hyde Park between June and October. The list of architects for the past editions includes several Pritzker laureates. More info of this program at our Serpentine Gallery Pavilion infographic.

The Japanese architect based in Tokyo established his firm Sou Fujimoto Architects  back in 2000. He graduated from the Department of Architecture at the University of Tokyo in 1994, and has been a lecturer at Kyoto University since 2007. With a solid trajectory in residential and cultural projects, the firm has consistently shown a unique and innovative approach to the spatial qualities within his buildings, exploring new ways of housing design, space and materials. Sou was also part of the team that won the Golden Lion at the 13th Venice Biennale, with “Architecture, possible here? Home-for-All”, the Japan pavilion. 

Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2013 Designed by Sou Fujimoto, Exterior Indicative CGI  © Studio Cyrille Thomas for Sou Fujimoto Architects

About the design of the pavilion Sou stated: “For the 2013 Pavilion I propose an architectural landscape: a transparent terrain that encourages people to interact with and explore the site in diverse ways. Within the pastoral context of KensingtonGardens, I envisage the vivid greenery of the surrounding plant life woven together with a constructed geometry. A new form of environment will be created, where the natural and the man-made merge; not solely architectural nor solely natural, but a unique meeting of the two.

The Pavilion will be a delicate, three-dimensional structure, each unit of which will be composed of fine steel bars. It will form a semi-transparent, irregular ring, simultaneously protecting visitors from the elements while allowing them to remain part of the landscape. The overall footprint will be 350 square-metres and the Pavilion will have two entrances. A series of stepped terraces will provide seating areas that will allow the Pavilion to be used as a flexible, multi-purpose social space.

The delicate quality of the structure, enhanced by its semi-transparency, will create a geometric, cloud-like form, as if it were mist rising from the undulations of the park. From certain vantage points, the Pavilion will appear to merge with the classical structure of the Serpentine Gallery, with visitors suspended in space.”

We are big fans of Sou’s work, and we are very excited to see this project being built at Hyde Park. As usual, expect a complete coverage of this project. You can watch our interview with Sou after the break:

AD Interviews: Ole Bouman

is an influential figure in the world of Architecture. As an architecture historian, editor, curator, teacher and lecturer, Ole has been heavily involved in contemporary architectural discourse, working for organizations such as Volume Magazine and the Archis Foundation. But it was his role as the director of the NAi – Netherlands Architecture Institute (2006-2012) where Ole played a critical role.

The NAi (which since 2012 has been fused with the Netherlands Institute for Fashion and Design, and the Knowledge Institute for E-Culture into The New Institute) has been a platform to put the challenges of our times into the agenda of architecture. Under “Architecture of Consequences”, part of the innovation agenda of the NAi directed by Bouman, the institute has (in the form of lectures and debates in the Netherlands and abroad) focused on explaining how value creation, social cohesion, energy, space, and food, among other issues that the world is facing, are part of our field’s purview.

Ole Bouman has been appointed as the Creative Director of the 2013 Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism and Architecture.

This interview was filmed at the rooftop of the Dutch Pavilion during the 13th Venice Biennale.

AD Interviews: Edouard François

Back when I was an architecture student I was very impressed by the early works of French architect and urban planner Edouard François, which introduced new ways to understand the relation between nature and architecture.

Edouard has always been an innovator, experimenting with green façades and constantly challenging the housing typology, making architecture a response of the times (which otherwise, as he mentions, would be just construction). These aspects, how to push innovation with clients and into the market, are discussed with Edouard in this interview, recommended to young architects who could learn from his experience running his practice.

Edouard studied at the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts in Paris and the Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées, and has taught around the world. His work and career have been highly recognized, being appointed with the RIBA International Fellowship in 2011 and Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres by the French Minister of Culture in 2012.

Works by at ArchDaily:

ArchDaily Building of the Year Awards 2012: The Finalists

After two intense weeks, with 40,000 nominations, the collective intelligence formed by the readers of ArchDaily has scrutinized close to 3,000 projects, creating the shortlist that now moves into the final voting stage.

As in previous years, we have to congratulate our readers, as the finalists are outstanding. Buildings from all over the world, by firms of all sizes and trajectories, ranging from social buildings with no budget to state of the art buildings. But they all have something in common: good architecture that can improve people’s lives.

You can vote for your favorite projects starting today and until February 13th, 2013 (read the complete rules).

Remember that the project with the most votes will receive an HP Designjet T520 ePrinter and the project with the 2nd most votes will receive an HP Designjet T120 ePrinter from our sponsor HP.

The winners of the iPad Minis that we are giving away during the nomination process are: Sunil Bald and Susana Carls (you’ll receive an email shorty). And remember that we are giving away two iPads during the final voting round!

Meet the finalists:

AD Interviews: Ma Yansong / MAD

While we were in Beijing, we had the opportunity to visit an architect who we have been following for quite some time: , founder of MAD.

Ma Yansong graduated from the Beijing Institute of Civil Engineering and Architecture, and went to Yale thanks to the AIA Scholarship for Advanced Architecture Research, where he received his masters degree in Architecture in 2001. Afterwards, Ma Yansong worked at Zaha Hadid’s office in London, and started MAD in 2004.

His strong research background is mixed with a deeper understanding and interpretation of traditional Chinese architecture, inspired by urban typologies such as the hutong and the siheyua. This can be seen in projects such as the Hutong Bubble, the Wooden Sculpture Museum (under construction) and the recently opened Ordos Art & City Museum. MAD’s vision for Beijing 2050 is a bold proposal that opens up debate, challenging what the future of the CBD (Central Business District, an area populated by tall generic buildings) could be.

Another interesting project is his Absolute Towers in Canada (2006-2012). Not only did the project make Ma Yansong the first Chinese architect to build abroad, it also put his practice on the map.

 Ma Yansong represents a new generation of Chinese architects who have the important task of shaping a forward-looking architecture while at the same time understanding their rapidly growing country’s past. MAD also sponsors a travel scholarship.MAD’s office is located in a hutong neighbourhood in Beijing, where Ma Yansong works with principals Dang Qun and Yosuke Hayano.

Video available at Youku for our Chinese readers.

Projects by MADat ArchDaily:

ArchDaily 2012 Building of the Year Awards

For the 4th consecutive year, we are proud to announce the Awards. During the past year we continued to grow, reaching over 280,000 daily visitors and close to 70 million page views per month. We also expanded our ever-growing network of architects on social media: 640,000 fans on Facebook, 105,000 followers on Twitter, 40,000 followers on Instagram and more than 100,000 photos contributed to our Flickr group.

But ArchDaily is more than numbers. The world faces fundamental problems, related to health, energy, climate, and more. And almost all these problems are related to the built environment.

We launched ArchDaily Mexico this year, which joins ArchDaily, ArchDaily Brasil and Plataforma Arquitectura in our mission to improve the quality of life for the 3 billion people who will live in cities in the next 40 years. How can we do this? By providing the inspiration, tools and knowledge to the architects who will face this challenge. By connecting the traditional hot-spots of architectural production with emerging economies (where a lot of innovation is happening). We believe that, in this way, the constant iteration of architecture will accelerate and result in better and faster solutions to the world’s issues.

That’s why the Building of the Year Awards are so important for us. It is a peer-based award process that identifies and recognizes projects with impact. It will be up to you, the architect, to nominate and choose the winners for each category. It will be up to you to be a part of a collective intelligence that will judge more than 2,700 projects – a scope we think is unprecedented in the world of architecture.

The task is up to you.

For the next 4 weeks, you’ll be in charge of nominating buildings for the shortlist, and then voting for the winners. We will give away iPad Minis and 4th Generation iPads for voters, and will include amazing plotters (courtesy of our friends from HP) for the firms behind the two projects with the most votes.

Rules at a glance: During the nominating stage, each registered user of the My ArchDaily platform will be able to nominate once per day for their favorite projects (published between Jan 1st 2012 and Dec 31st 2012), the counter resets at midnight EST. This stage starts on Jan 15th and ends on Jan 29th at 11:59PM.  After this, five projects per category will move into the voting stage, starting January 30th and ending on February 13th. The winner will be announced on February 14th. Start voting here.

You can review last year’s awarded projects in our free iPad App.

Detailed rules after the break:

AD Interviews: Richard Hassell / WOHA

During the 2012 World Architecture Festival held in Singapore, we had the opportunity to interview Richard Hassell, one of the founders of the highly acclaimed practice WOHA.

We were excited about this interview, as I have been very interested on WOHA’s work after featuring them extensively at ArchDaily,  given their approach to the important issues of density and sustainability in South Asia, mixing particular programmatic needs with the local identity.

The Singaporean firm was started in 1994 by Wong Mun Summ (Architect from the National University of Singapore) and Richard Hassell (Architect from the University of Western Australia), and has been involved in projects that range from tall residential towers, to hotels, commercial buildings, transport infrastructure, and also urban research projects such as their vision for Singapore 2050.

In this interview Richard digs deeper into how WOHA operates and his views about the profession.

WOHA’s work has been recognized with important awards, including the RIBA Lubetkin Prize (2011), several RIBA International Awards (2010 and 2011), the World Architecture Festival Awards (2009 and 2010) and the prestigious Aga Kahn Award for Architecture (2007).

As of today, several projects from WOHA are under construction: Oasia DowntownPARKROYAL and Skyville @ Dawson. See the completed projects by WOHA at ArchDaily:

AD Interviews: WE Architecture

WE Architecture is a young firm based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Started by partners Marc Jay and Julie Schmidt-Nielsen in 2009, the practice is focused on public competitions and consultancy, along with teaching at the Royal Danish Academy. The partners studied in Denmark, but shaped their professional career working abroad in New York and Barcelona.

The firm maintains a young spirit, working with architect from around the world, never more than 12 people. acknowledges the role of the architect in a collaborative and diverse society, incorporating not only architecture on their practice, but also planning, logistics, engineering,  and economy. With this multi disciplinary approach, the firm provides services that go from construction management on maintenance operations to advising families who have recently bought a house.

Their work has been included in the “New Wave of Danish Architecture” book, the recent A+U “Super Danish” edition and on the “Show me your model” exhibit at the Danish Architecture Center.

Interview by Soledad Undurraga.

Projects by WE Architecture at ArchDaily:

AD Interviews: Andrew Grant

During the World Architecture Festival, held this October in Singapore, we had the opportunity to interview one of the UK’s most succesful landscape architects: Andrew Grant. On the occasion, the project, Gardens by the Bay, in collaboration with Wilkinson Eyre Architects, was awarded the World Building of the Year Award.

Andrew Grant, who was recently named Royal Designer for Industry, formed Grant Associates in 1997. The practice has been focused on the blurry boundary between architecture and nature, using landscape design as a tool for sustainable innovation on different scales, from sub-regional planning to the smallest detail of a new landscape.

A perfect example of this is the Cooled Conservatories at the Gardens by the Bay project, where architecture and nature become one to produce a naturally breathing machine.

More about Gardens by the Bay in the following video:

Happy Holidays from the Architects!

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During the past few days, we have received many e-cards from the offices, architects and photographers that are part of the ArchDaily network. Images from their offices, new buildings, ongoing projects, and even a video, are part of the many xmas greetings we selected to share with you.

After the break, 85 architectural ways of saying: Merry !

Oscar Niemeyer, Brazil’s Modernist Icon, Dies

in front of the Palazzo Mondadori. Photo via Mondadori.com

After complications from a previous kidney condition   Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer has passed away at Rio de Janeiro’s Samaritano Hospital.

For 104 years, Oscar Ribeiro de Almeida Niemeyer Soares (December 15, 1907 – December 5, 2012) lived a life of “intensity.” Born in Rio de Janeiro, he is best known for helping to design the United Nations Headquarters in New York in 1947 and for designing much of the city of Brasilia. As he described his style:  “I consciously ignored the highly praised right angle and the rational architecture of T-squares and triangles in order to wholeheartedly enter the world of curves…” He received the Pritzker Prize in 1988.

Niemeyer was one of those few architects who is recognized and admired by people from all walks of life, especially by those in his native Brazil, where he is considered an icon. Indeed, always motivated to design for his fellow man, Niemeyer was a Brazilian first, and an architect second.

In Niemeyer’s words: “It is important that the architect think not only of architecture but of how architecture can solve the problems of the world. The architect’s role is to fight for a better world, where he can produce an architecture that serves everyone and not just a group of privileged people.”

More about the legacy of the Master of Brazilian Architecture:

The work of Oscar Niemeyer, by Patricia Parinejad

©

Our friend and architectural photographer Patricia Parinejad , shared with us photos of her extensive Niemeyer archives  showing the works of the Brazilian master with a particular and personal focus, capturing textures, materials, context, and the people in his architecture.

More after the break.

Tribute to Oscar Niemeyer by Norman Foster

Courtesy of

Yesterday, Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer passed away at 104 . We share with you a tribute to the master written by Lord Norman Foster:

I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Oscar Niemeyer. He was an inspiration to me – and to a generation of architects. Few people get to meet their heroes and I am grateful to have had the chance to spend time with him in Rio last year.

Quotes from Oscar Niemeyer (1907-2012)

To honor the great Brazilian architect , who died today, we’ve selected few of his inspiring quotes. Take a moment to read his words, which truly advocate architecture’s higher purpose, and remember the great work he accomplished…

Perhaps his most famous quote, which not only describes his work but also his way of life: “I deliberately disregarded the right angle and rationalist architecture designed with ruler and square to boldly enter the world of curves and straight lines offered by reinforced concrete. […] This deliberate protest arose from the environment in which I lived, with its white beaches, its huge mountains, its old baroque churches, and the beautiful suntanned women.”

More after the break:

The architect at work: 425 Park Ave

YouTube Preview Image

A few months ago we informed you about a competition to re develop the massive “wedding-cake” style building at 425 Park Ave in NY, near Mies’ Seagram Building and SOM’s Lever House. The objective of the developer, L&L Holding, was to turn this project into the next iconic building of the city, and for that they invited a group of eleven renowned practices, including ten Pritzker laureates.

The shortlist was announced in October, and included OMA, , Zaha Hadid Architects and , which was later announced as the winner of the competition a few weeks ago.

Over the last days, the presentations of the architects to the clients appeared on YouTube, and now we have the opportunity to see these interesting group of architects doing a fundamental part of their work. In the videos we see each architect using their own presentation style, either a PPT, video or just physical boards, connecting it to the practice’s research and discourse, projecting their passion about certain features of their projects and engaging with the client around their main objective: to turn this into an iconic project.

Four videos that take us further into how we understand projects, showing insights that we often don’t have access to, turning the competition into a particular moment of architecture this year.

Zaha Hadid Architects, OMA and Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners presentations after the break:

AD Interviews: San Rocco at the 13th Venice Biennale

During the 13th Venice Biennale we had the chance to interview the team behind San Rocco: Matteo Ghidoni, Giovanni Piovene and Pier Paolo Tamburelli.

is a very particular architecture magazine, described by its creators as something that “does not solve problems. It is not a useful magazine […] is neither serious nor friendly”, a curated selection of writings around particular topics related to the current state of architectural thinking and criticism. has a five year plan, a limited time frame where 20 editions will be published with topics that range from “Scary Architects” and “Collaborations”, to “What’s wrong with the primitive hut” or “Houses for billionaires”.

Book of Copies at Museum of Copying, Venice Biennale © Nico Saieh
Book of Copies at Museum of Copying, Venice Biennale © Nico Saieh

During the 13th Venice Biennale, San Rocco was present in two exhibits at the Arsenale, including the launch of their project “Book of Copies” at the “Museum of Copying” exhibit curated by FAT. ”Books of Copies” is an online database comprised of images that can be copied in order to produce architecture. As such, “Books of Copies” are receptacles of a collective form of knowledge that we can provisionally call “architecture”. During the Biennale, visitors can photocopy and remix their own magazines.

San Rocco can be found online, or as part of the itinerant Archizines exhibit. You can connect with San Rocco on Facebook for more updates.

AD Interviews: Jordi Badia / BAAS

We had the chance to interview Catalonian architect Jordi Badia at the Vogadors: Architectural Rowers exhibit at the 13th Venice Biennale.

Jordi Badia is the principal of BAAS, the Spanish practice founded in 1994 with a strong background in public buildings. Remarkable examples of this office are the Tanatorio de León and the Can Framis Museum.

Jordi graduated from the ETSAB (Barcelona School of Architecture)  in 1989, where he is has been an associate lecturer since 2011. He is also a Professor at the Architectural Projects Department of the Escuela técnica superior de arquitectura at UIC.

 Jordi is commited with the new generations, supporting young architects at HIC, and also reflected on his curator role of Vogadors, also discussed on this interview.

Projects by Jordi Badia at ArchDaily:

Venice Biennale 2012: Vogadors, Architectural Rowers / Catalan and Balearic Islands Pavilion

© Nico Saieh

The 13th Venice Biennale, which closes its doors on November 27th, sparked an interesting debate during its opening given the highly political focus of some of the exhibitions, which for some diverged from architecture itself and entered on a discussion on its own.

In this context we find Vogadors: Architectural Rowers, the Catalan and Balearic Islands Pavilion curated by Jordi Badia and Félix Arranz, an exhibit that focused on the built project which uses the common ground theme to define the new generation of Catalonian architects: David Sebastian and Gerard Puig, SMS arquitectos, Arquitecturia, Jaime Ferrer, Meritxell Inaraja, Blancafort Reus Arquitectura, Núria Salvadó and David Tapias, Francisco Cifuentes and Bosch.Capdeferro Arquitectures (more details about the projects).

© Nico Saieh

In the exhibit, nine projects from this generation are displayed in high detail, including extensive drawings, textures, constructive systems, videos of the buildings in use, and other forms of representation that put the visitors closer to the origins of the project, the relation with the site and the inhabitants, the research and most specially, the tradition.

And tradition is what closes the exhibit, presenting the works of the masters of Catalonian architecture such as Enric Miralles, as their influence is the common ground that the new generation shares. Looking back to understand the present and the future, as a rower who advances looking backwards reflected on Jorge Oteiza’s quote “He who forges ahead creating something new does so like an oarsman, moving forward but back-paddling, looking behind him, towards the past, towards what exists, so as to be able to reinvent its underpinnings.”

The exhibit, taking place at the Isola San Pietro between the Arsenale and the Giardini, extends its reach and presence thanks to a joint venture with Spanish publishing house Gustavo Gili, with the digital editions of the Vogadors catalog available at the iBook Store or at the GG website.

More fromt he curators after the break: