In this interview, between Australian Architect Glenn Murcutt and Peter Thompson for ABC TV’s Talking Heads program, Murcutt reveals his three rules in life: simplicity, simplicity, and “of course, simplicity”. He speaks openly about his upbringing and childhood, about his inspirations and how he has grown and developed his passions as an architect. He has recieved the 2002 Pritzker Prize and 2009 AIA Gold Medal.
Follow us after the break for the rest of the interview. (more…)
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has selected the internationally acclaimed Dutch architect Herman Hertzberger as the Royal Gold Medalist of 2012. Hertzberger established his firm Architectuurstudio HH in 1958 and since has made significant contributions to the world of modern architecture. He is not only an architect, but a teacher and published writer. Hertzberger has won a great many competitions, has been made an honorary member of several cultural bodies and has been awarded international architecture prizes, both for individual projects and for his oeuvre as a whole. Continue reading for more information on Hermam Hertzberger and the video above. (more…)
RIBA President Angela Brady discusses design in 2012 with British architect Richard Rogers. Together, they discuss the important issues surrounding housing and cities, both agreeing that “intensification is critical”. Homes built within a compact city are said to be five times more efficient than those built outside the city. This realization is an important fact that should guide government officials, builders and architects to work together towards more intelligent and beneficial growth patterns.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN’s “The Next List” features the bold and innovative ideas of Bjarke Ingels, focusing on the West 57th project that is transforming Manhattan skyline. Ingels states, “In the big picture, architecture is the art and science of making sure that our cities and buildings fit the way we want to live our lives.” The video also features comments from Robert A. M. Stern, Dean at Yale School of Architecture, and Douglas Durst, the developer of West 57th. Check it out!
The 2012 Jury of Fellows from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) have elevated 105 members to its prestigious College of Fellows, an honor awarded to those who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society on a national level while achieving a standard level of excellence. The 2012 Fellows will be honored at an investiture ceremony at the 2012 National AIA Convention and Design Exposition in Washington, D.C.
Continue reading for more information and the complete list of newly honored Fellows. (more…)
Paulo David has been announced as the eleventh recipient of the Alvar Aalto Medal – a prestigious honor awarded to an architect or architectural firm that has provided significant contributions to the field of architecture. “In an era where the profession is obsessed with computer-generated patterns, ‘design’ in many practices has become greatly interested in manipulating forms rather than place making and the making of architecture.” The jury honors David for his ability to create timeless architecture that plays a significant role in his hometown island of Madeira. David’s respect for history, time, place, culture and technology has allowed him to stand out from the current trend of “desperately interesting architecture” and create a new, meaningful layer within the historic volcanic landscapes of Madeira.
Continue reading to learn more. (more…)
By David Fano and Steve Sanderson, edited by Julie Quon
A well-known and often cited truism of architecture notes that forty (as in years) is considered young for an architect and most don’t start hitting their stride until they’re seventy. This may partially explain why well-known architects seem to live forever… they’re simply too busy to die. What is often omitted from this narrative is how the architects spent the first twenty (or so) years of their careers as freshly minted graduates prior to being recognized by their peers in the profession as “making it”.
If you approach any architect about their early-career experience in the profession you will get slightly different versions of the same story. They are all, in essence, about paying your dues.
- Taking a low-paying position for an A or B-list architect, where the compensation for long hours is the privilege of anonymous design on important projects, and in return a few hours are spent outside of the studio (usually with a group of similarly indebted classmates) on open design competitions that pay trifle stipends.
- Taking a low-paying adjunct teaching position, ideally in a design studio, where compensation for long hours is the privilege of working on your design interests with students in order to become a part of the elite tastemakers and to one day be shortlisted for an exclusive cultural competition.
- Taking a slightly better paying position with a corporate firm and spending your hours outside of work designing kitchens and bathrooms for wealthy friends and family with hopes that their social reach is broad enough to lead to additional commissions that will one day be substantial enough to make a living.
- Taking a slightly better paying position with a corporate firm and slogging through the incredibly tedious intern development and professional registration process in order to move up the corporate hierarchy. The goal is to eventually become a principal or partner with an established firm or even break off on your own with some of the established firm’s clients.
In each of these scenarios, the only path to a significant commission is to spend the few hours outside of these paying jobs in the pursuit of establishing credibility and reputation through exposure in architectural publications. In any case, it seems that around the age of forty is when all of this hard work finally begins to pay off with consistent commissions. For the vast majority that never succeed by following these models, there is usually a ‘pivot’ (in startup terms, a change in approach) that leads to a stable corporate position, a full-time teaching post, or an exit from the profession altogether (we did the latter, see Fed’s post). The difficulty of ‘being’ an architect is branded about in schools (oftentimes by people with little to no actual experience in the field) as a source of pride, a perverse hazing ritual intended to weed out all but the most dedicated adherents to the ideals of architecture as a pure form of expression, a rationale which further reinforces architecture as an intellectual pursuit for the privileged (that topic is for another post).
New York based architect and writer, Luca Farinelli, has met with 22 architects, critics and historians between February and August of last year to present them with an identical sequence of questions revolving around clichés and recurring themes within architectural discourse. Each meeting was captured on video, generating an interesting compilation of 265 answers by some of the most well-known architecture professionals. The first interviews, published in Log 23 this past fall, included Emilio Ambasz, Peter Eisenman, Steven Holl, Bjarke Ingels and Thom Mayne. Check out Farinelli’s website and visit Anyone Corporation for more information.
Architecture press is buzzing with recent Bureau of Labor Statistics reports on unemployment and self-employment figures for those in the architecture field. The media have taken this data and made a plentitude of fearful predictions about the dark future of the architecture profession: there are more too many graduates, seemingly few positions, higher educational requirements and less prestige for the profession as a whole. They paint a somewhat dismal picture, both for those entering the field and those in mid-career, who are looking to start a firm.
The BLA Statistics and a recent study from Georgetown University’s Center on Education offer the following as signs of difficulty and doom:
- Licensing requirements (for architects) include not only a professional degree in architecture (4-6 years of schooling), but also at least 3 years of practical work, training, and passing all divisions of the Architect Registration Examination
- Architecture graduates face stiff competition, especially for jobs in the most prestigious firms
- Undergraduate architecture students are facing 13.9 percent unemployment rates
- About 21 percent of architects are self-employed—almost 3 times the proportion for all occupations
While these statistics could take one down a road of despair, there is more to the story. The reality is that the architecture field has naturally changed with a changing world. All professions are undergoing a profound evolution on several fronts: demographic, education and economic. These changes are not all bad, and actually may provide the basis for optimism.
“Architecture was historically a gentleman’s profession,” said Michael Porter, AIA during an interview we conducted for Success by Design. He went on to say, “Even as recently as 50 years ago, architects were almost always male, came from wealthy families and pursued the career as a symbol of philanthropy more than for financial gain.”
American architect Peter Bohlin, FAIA discusses his life work and design philosophy at the 2011 September AIA Chapter Meeting, held in the Cartwright Auditorium at Kent State University. Bohlin founded Bohlin Cywinski Jackson in 1965 and has since gained a reputation for creating exceptional designs that are committed to the individuality of place and user. Bohlin has been awarded over 500 regional, national and international awards for design. In 2010, he received the national AIA Gold Medal, the highest award given by the institute. Enjoy the lecture and view ArchDaily’s exclusive interview with Peter Bohlin here.
Bohlin Cywinski Jackson projects at ArchDaily:
- Dry Creek Outbuildings
- Uniqlo Shanghai
- Creekside Residence
- Shanghai Apple Store
- Lorry I. Lokey Graduate School of Business
- Ballard Library and Neighborhood Service Center
- Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center
Reference: AIA Akron
Learning from Ricardo: an unpublished recent talk with Ricardo and Victor Legorreta by Carlo Ezechieli
In memory of Ricardo Legorreta (May 7, 1931 – December 30, 2011), Carlo Ezechieli (Ph.D., Adjunct Professor of Architecture Politecnico di Milano, Principal of CE-A Architects) has shared with us his story of discovering Ricardo Legorreta’s work and his recent interview with Ricardo and his son, Victor Legorreta.
The first time I came in contact with Ricardo Legorreta’s work, was back in 1998. Of course I was familiar with his name, particularly due to Kenneth Frampton’s “Critical Regionalism” writings, but I actually did not know much about his architecture. One day I happened to visit the Camino Real Hotel in Mexico D.F. which, according to my hosts, it was something that had to be seen, although none of us was really knew what architect had designed it. I was totally amazed. The entrance, an extraordinary space, was filled up by the sound and movement of an unconventional fountain that resembled the ocean waves. The interior was a huge, astounding introverted and essential translation of Pre-Hispanic monumental spaces. I was surprised to learn, later on, that this very contemporary building dated back to 1968 and was completed when Legorreta was not even 40.
I did not have many chances to meet Ricardo privately, nevertheless I believe that the few meetings we had, were sufficient to learn something really important from him in terms of ethics, approach to work and, eventually, attitude towards life in general. Ricardo Legorreta was the author of incredible works and was a great innovator exactly because he was able to move and orient himself, with complete freedom, within the coordinates of a culture and a tradition that he knew deeply and to which he felt he belonged totally. He did this always avoiding “architect’s” bizarre and unneeded brain-waves and remembering “not to take oneself too seriously”. A set of values, too often forgotten, that emerge from his narration in this interview and which finds full continuity in his son Victor. His death, last December 30, leaves a deep sense of sorrow and loss.
Continue reading for Ezechieli’s exclusive interview with Ricardo and Victor Legorreta.
During these days we have received close to a thousand seasonal greetings from architects, photographers and editorials around the world. We are very grateful to have collaborated with an amazing group of professionals, who mixed creativity and humor on their e-cards.
Enjoy a selection of these e-cards, including this nice Ginger Bread Vitra Haus, along with Snøhetta, SOM, Richard Meier, BIG, CEBRA, and more!
For those of you still in search for some last minute gift ideas, we present to you part three of the 2011 ArchDaily Holiday Gift Guide. We hope this provides you with that last bit of inspiration to finish your holiday shopping. In case you missed our previous guides, view Part One and Part Two for more gift ideas that is guaranteed to please any architect. (more…)
Architecture is all about passion. Sometimes it can be very complex, slow, even painful… but our passion will make us push until the end, to see our creations come to reality no matter what. This passion turns into an entrepreneurial spirit, collaboration and the desire to use our knowledge to influence our society and to improve our built environment. For me, one of the best living examples of the passionate architect is the Brazilian master Oscar Niemeyer.
Today the master turns 104 years old, and he is still working at his office in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, from where we interviewed him, delivering projects in Brazil and around the world. So passionate about his work, that he can’t stop.
Devoted to architecture and women, he was able to express his passion for both.
mountains/waves/women = curves
It is not the right angle that attracts me. Nor the straight line, tough, inflexible, created by man. What attracts me is the free, sensual curve. The curve I find in the mountains of my country, in the sinuous course of its rivers, in the waves of the sea, in the clouds of the sky, in the body of the favorite woman. Of curves is made all the universe.
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Board of Directors and the Association of Collegiate Schools for Architecture (ACSA) has selected George Baird, Intl. Assoc. AIA recipient of the 2012 AIA/ACSA Topaz Award for excellence in architectural education. Baird is known for his extensive association with the University of Toronto’s architecture school and for being one of Canada’s most celebrated architects. His award-winning firm Baird Sampson Neuert was founded in Toronto in 1972. (more…)
Lets be honest, being an architect results in a whole lot of sitting. Whether we are sitting down with a client or sitting in front of the computer, the chairs we surround ourselves with are an important detail in the everyday routine of an architect. ArchDaily has created a list of a few favorite chairs we wouldn’t mind spending our life with. We feel it is important that every architect has a well designed chair that keeps the legs from falling asleep as well as some designer eye-candy for the office. There are many fantastic chairs in this world, so please, share with us your favorite! (more…)
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Board of Directors has awarded Steven Holl, FAIA with the annual AIA Gold Medal. The Gold Medal represents the highest award an architect may receive, honoring their “humanist approach to formal experimentation.” The world renowned architect and Columbia University professor continues to inspire and influence the practice and theory of architecture.
In a recommendation letter, Harry Cobb, FAIA, of Pei Cobb Freed stated, “What, in my view, especially commends him as a candidate for the Gold Medal is his brilliantly demonstrated capacity to join his refined design sensibility to a rigorously exploratory theoretical project.”
The AIA highlighted two of Holl’s projects – Linked Hybrid in Beijing and Vanke Center in Shenzhen – stating they are “emblematic of his approach to architecture and his innovative method of design inquiry.”
“I am grateful, I am still beginning and I consider this award shared with all my collaborators. I feel this award is a positive advocacy to make theoretical explorations and experimental works. I was on the way to my final review at Columbia University when I received the call from Washington D.C. and felt it connected to my teaching and efforts toward education. I remember John Hejduk’s statement that teaching is a social contract, and I remain committed to teaching.”
- Steven Holl, FAIA
The award will be presented at the AIA Convention in Washington D.C. in May, 2012.
You can watch our interview with Steven Holl and see his projects here.
Let’s face it, finding that perfect gift for an architect can be a difficult task. We are a unique breed with particular taste. This is why ArchDaily has put together a series of three holiday gift guides for architects. We have included the gifts we use, love, and hope to find under our Christmas tree. What’s on your holiday wish list this year?
Continue reading for product details. (more…)
Ron Arad and Asa Bruno welcome BD to their studio for an exclusive view into the inner workings of their practice. In 1981, Ron Arad established his first design studio ‘one off ltd”. Over the years, the practice has evolved into Ron Arad Architects and has become known for their unique ethos that challenges the relationship between form and function.
You may have noticed Ron Arad’s unusual hat. He is also known for his eccentric hat designs that are undoubtedly consistent with his signature style.