Karissa Rosenfield

In Residence: Joseph Dirand

NOWNESS‘ latest In Residence series takes us into the Parisian home French architect . Adorned with an eclectic mix of vintage relics backdropped by a simple pallet of raw materials, the apartment reveals Dirand’s taste for minimalism. “I always want to get inspired by different things and I realize there is no end to learning,” says Dirand.

Open Call: Inside 2015

Inside 2015 invites students and young professionals to submit a collection of their “inside” work comprised of up to three digital images. By submitting your work, we invite you to share your voice with the collective intelligence of a community of visual thinkers. The competition is open to all design disciplines including architects, interior designers, furniture designers, digital fabricators, graphic designers, lighting designers, product designers or any other creative field that creates for the inside. The competition is free to all entrants. Learn more, here.

First Images of David Adjaye’s £600 Million Piccadilly Redevelopment Plan

© Adjaye Associates

Images have been released of what will be one of Adjaye Associates’ largest commissions – London’s £600 million Piccadilly . The competition-winning scheme, selected over proposals by Rem Koolhaas, Jean Nouvel and Frank Gehry, will replace a post-war office building on 70-73 Piccadilly with a mixed-use project designed for Crosstree Real Estate Partners.

More images after the break…

London’s Battersea Arts Centre Goes Up in Flames

Image via BBC

UPDATE: Within 24-hours after the Battersea Arts Centre’s March 13th fire, the building re-opened and reconstruction efforts began. A fundraising campaign has been launched, aiming to help the rebuild the center’s Grand Hall and Lower Hall – both destroyed by the fire. Learn how you can donate, here

A major fire has broken out at the Battersea Arts Centre. The tower of the Grade-II listed building, known as a leading independent theater and arts venue in South , has reportedly collapsed. Thankfully no one has been injured.

Firefighters are working tirelessly to save the building. A cause is unknown, though it seems the blaze started in the building’s roof above its main hall in an area that is currently undergoing a 10-year-long, £13 million refurbishment led by Stirling Prize laureate Haworth Tompkins.

Michael Graves Dies at 80

© & Associates

Michael Graves died Thursday at the age of 80. Famous for his bold, symbolic references to classical architecture and his use of geometry, Graves is also known as one of the Five. His work bridged the abstraction of Modernism and the Postmodernism of the current era.

“No one has made a bigger impact on the world of architecture, certainly from Mercer County, than Michael Graves,” Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes said. “Some people think architects are just people who draw up buildings. They are artists in themselves, and Michael was clearly an artist. He will be greatly missed by the Mercer County community.”

A statement from his practice and an interview with Graves, after the break.

RSHP Unveils Plans for Two Tower Development in Bogotá

© RSHP

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners (RSHP) has unveiled a massive commercial development planned for central Bogotá. The mixed-use project, ATRIO will be comprised of a 200-meter North Tower and 268-meter South Tower that will be connected by a large, open public space that will take up two thirds of the project’s site in the area of Centro Internacional on Avenida El Dorado and Avenida Caracas.

“The clients brief was not only to deliver class office accommodation but also to create a new public space at the heart of the city. The project is a really exciting opportunity to contribute to the resurgence of a civic society in Bogota,” says Simon Smithson, Partner and lead designer at RSHP.

David Chipperfield Chosen to Expand New York’s Met Museum

The Met. Image Image via Wikipedia

The in New York has tapped British architect David Chipperfield to design its new Southwest Wing for modern and contemporary art. The commission, a result of an international competition, aims to increase gallery space, double the size of the museum’s popular roof garden, and establish accessible on-site storage. “The new design will also enhance gallery configuration and visitor navigation throughout the Southwest Wing, and support a more open dialogue between the Museum and Central Park,” says the architects.

Foster + Partners Reveal Plans for Toronto’s Second Tallest Tower

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Foster + Partners has unveiled plans for an 80-story mixed-use tower that will rise 318-meters on a prominent site in downtown Toronto at One Bloor West. The city’s second tallest building, “The One” skyscraper aims to “pioneer a new model of vertical retail” with an expansive, 60-meter commercial base that will anchor dense housing.

12 Things You Didn’t Know About Pritzker Laureate Frei Otto

Hall at the International Garden Exhibition, 1963, Hamburg, © Atelier Frei Otto Warmbronn

Frei Otto passed away this past Monday, a day before being internationally celebrated as the Pritzker Prize’s 40th laureate. The first architect to ever receive the Prize posthumously, Otto was a brilliant inventor, architect and engineer who pioneered some of history’s most ambitious tensile structures.

In honor of his legacy, we’ve complied 12 fascinating facts about Otto’s life that influenced his career and shaped the profession. Read them all, after the break.

Frei Otto Posthumously Named 2015 Pritzker Laureate

© Ingenhoven und Partner Architekten, Düsseldorf

Frei Otto has just been named the 40th recipient of the Pritzker Prize - two weeks prior to the expected official announcement. The abrupt news has been released early due the unfortunate passing of the German architect and structural engineer, who was best known for the 1972 Munich Olympic Stadium. The pioneering tensile structure, which stood in considerable contrast to the strict, authoritarian stadium that was its predecessor, was meant to present a different, more compassionate face for Germany.

“Throughout his life, Frei Otto has produced imaginative, fresh, unprecedented spaces and constructions. He has also created knowledge. Herein resides his deep influence: not in forms to be copied, but through the paths that have been opened by his research and discoveries,” says the Jury.

“His contributions to the field of architecture are not only skilled and talented, but also generous. For his visionary ideas, inquiring mind, belief in freely sharing knowledge and inventions, his collaborative spirit and concern for the careful use of resources, the 2015 Pritzker Architecture Prize is awarded to Frei Otto.”

Though he sadly passed away before the award ceremony, Otto was informed of his win by the Pritzker Prize’s Executive Director Martha Thorne, who traveled to his home in Warmbronn to inform him of his prize. Speaking shortly after her visit, he said: “I am now so happy to receive this Pritzker Prize and I thank the jury and the Pritzker family very much. I have never done anything to gain this prize. My architectural drive was to design new types of buildings to help poor people especially following natural disasters and catastrophes… You have here a happy man.”

Read the Jury’s full citation after the break…

Mei and Felixx Propose Housing for Postwar Residential Area in Munich

© Team Mei and Felixx

The largest housing association in Munich, GEWOFAG has awarded Mei Architects & Planners and Felixx Landscape Architects & Planners one of three prizes for their proposal to redevelop of a residential area of 340 dwellings around the Ludlstrasse in Munich.

“It is refreshing to see how the Dutch have dealt with this design task,” says the jury in regards to the team’s community-centric, winning scheme. “The Dutch are one step further in thinking about how neighborhoods should function.”

More about their winning entry ”Neue Nachbarschaften,” after the break.

ADEPT Wins Competition to Design “Small Piece” of Flensburg

The green interior courtyard. Image ©

ADEPT has won a competition to design a new city gate in the German city of along Bahnhofstrasse – a central urban axis leading to the city’s main station. Designed as a “small piece of the city,” the winning proposal adapts itself to the existing typology by combining different types of “facade expressions” that creates a “playful synergy between new and old.”

“The proposal gives us a unique chance to transform and influence our future city at a very high level of quality and creativity – Bahnhofstrasse can really become a real and vibrant piece of city,” says the client.

Frank Gehry to Redesign the “Gateway to Sunset Strip”

AD Classics: Walt Disney Concert Hall / Frank Gehry. Image © , LLP

An overlooked strip mall at the corner of Sunset and Crescent Heights boulevards will soon be replaced by a mixed-use, walkable community designed by Frank Gehry. Known to be the “gateway to the ,” the West Hollywood site will be comprised of 249 apartments, restaurants, retail storefronts and a central plaza – all within “an environmentally sensitive building that complements and contributes to the historic architecture in the neighborhood.”

“Frank Gehry’s deep understanding of the property, its history and the context will elevate the project to the iconic and timeless status that it deserves,” said Townscape partner and project developer Tyler Siegel.

Ennead Tapped to Design Shanghai Planetarium

© Thomas Wong /

Ennead Architects has won an international competition to design the Planetarium. The “celestial” design hopes to elevate the Science and Technology Museum’s (SSTM) “scientific and technological capacity” while redefine the district Lingang upon its completion in 2018. 

“Drawing inspiration form astronomical principles, our design strategy provides a platform for the experience of orbital motion, and utilizes that as a metaphorical reference and generator of form,” says Ennead Architects.

Foster Chosen to Design Qatar 2022 Centerpiece Stadium

© Foster + Partners

Foster + Partners has been chosen ahead of David Chipperfield Architects, Mossessian & Partners and Mangera Yvars Architects to design the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar centerpiece – the Lusail Stadium. The British practice will now move forward with its competition-winning scheme (first proposed in 2010) with the help of stadium experts ARUP and Populous.

“It is an honor to design this centerpiece stadium – we are delighted to have won the international competition. This is an exciting step forward in stadium design – it will be the first to break the mould of the free standing suburban concept, and instead anticipates the grid of this future city, of which it will be an integral part,” said Norman Foster, founder of Foster + Partners.

This Plastic Bottle House Turns Trash into Affordable Housing in Nigeria

YouTube Preview Image

In the United States alone, more than 125 million plastic bottles are discarded each day, 80 percent of which end up in a landfill. This waste could potentially be diverted and used to construct nearly 10,000, 1200-square-foot homes (taking in consideration it takes an average of 14,000 plastic bottles to build a home that size). Many believe this process could be a viable option for affordable housing and even help solve homelessness.

The idea isn’t new. In Nigeria, the plastic bottle house has proven to be a success, turning trash into an affordable (and beautiful) housing material. By packing plastic bottles with soil or sand, and then stacking and bounding them with mud and string, one can build an earthquake-proof home that is 18 times stronger than regular bricks. Watch the video about to learn more.

Marc Fornes / THEVERYMANY Installations Transform INRIA

© / THEVERYMANY – Sous Tension

Marc Fornes / THEVERYMANY has realized two permanent installations – “Under Stress” and “Sous Tension” – in the public areas of the Department of Computer Science at the French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (INRIA). Both structures “utilize programming techniques inherent in computer science to optimize the form and creating a pattern on the surface.”

“The structures engage the spaces with their intricate and gestural movements that effortlessly travel over the areas,” says the practice. “They provide visitors with iconic hubs for informal and spontaneous social gatherings while expressing the tension between the dynamic interactions from the multi-directional and converging paths within the public spaces. More than a signal for the school, they become elements of enhancement for the school’s identity.”

Preservationists Lose Battle to Save Orange County Government Center

© Matthew Carbone for Architect Magazine

Yesterday Orange County legislators decided to “take no action” against blocking the “destructive” rebuild of Paul Rudolph’s Orange County Government Center. The plan, deemed by architecture critic Michael Kimmelman to be “vandalism,” will remove one of the building’s three sections and replace it with a “big, soulless glass box.”

The 44-year-old brutalist landmark has been the center of a preservation debate for years; lawmakers argue that the building is “not easy to love” and expensive to maintain, while preservationists declare the building is an important piece of modern history and blame its state of disrepair on neglect. The council vetoed an offer last summer to allow a New York architect to purchase the property and transform it into artist studios. More on the decision, and more of Matthew Carbone’s images for Architect Magazine, after the break.