What’s the Reality of Architectural Labor in the US? Take the Survey Now

Courtesy of The Architecture Lobby

The Architecture Lobby has released a seventy-question survey that seeks to gather a broad range of data about architectural work–from firm standards and policies to worker satisfaction–which will provide open-source information about the realities of architectural labor in the US. We will publish the results in the coming months; in the meantime you can aid in the by taking The Architecture Lobby survey here (open through April).

Barclays Center to be Topped with Massive Green Roof

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Developers Forest City Ratner Companies (FCRC) and Greenland Group have decided to realize SHoP Architects’ original plan to top Brooklyn’s Barclays Center with a 130,000 square foot green roof. Though the design was first disregarded due to budget cuts, the developers have deemed it necessary to enhance the marketability the Atlantic Yards’ three residential towers – the first is currently underway – and dampen the noise from loud concerts. Little details have been released about the green roof’s design, however rumor has it that it might not be open to the public as it was originally intended. 

Launch: PROJECT’s Latest Issue

The editors of PROJECT invite you to celebrate the release of Issue Three at common room, 465 Grand St., , NY, this Wednesday, April 9 from 7pm to 9pm. investigates the possibilities for developing a a critical position in contemporary architecture. Publishing both visual and written work, the goal of is to provide a platform for disseminating ideas.

Issue Three of PROJECT features contributions from common room & Kim Förster, Reinier de Graaf (OMA/AMO), Neil Denari, Edward Eigen, Formless Finder, Adam Fure, John May, Magnus Nilsson, Valerio Olgiati Architect, Pezo von Ellrichshausen, Lola Sheppard (Lateral Office), Jill Stoner, Tom Wiscombe and more. Refreshments will be served, and issues of PROJECT will be available for sale.

Title: Launch: PROJECT’s Latest Issue
Website: http://projectjournal.org/
From: Wed, 09 Apr 2014 19:00
Until: Wed, 09 Apr 2014 21:00
Address: 465 Grand Street, New York, NY 10002, USA

SOM Chosen to Design New Learning Facility for Barnard College

John Jay College of Criminal Justice / SOM. Image © Eduard Hueber

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) has been chosen to design a new teaching and learning facility for Barnard College – Columbia University’s world-renowned liberal arts college for women. The selection committee chose SOM after deeming them the best candidate in three categories: “a history of creative and innovative architecture,” a proven recorded on similar academic projects, and “an internal commitment to woman’s leadership reflected by women holding key roles in the firm.”

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Designing for Sound In Our Everyday Spaces

The syn chron space by Carsten Nicolai was designed to combine experiences of sound and light. Image Courtesy of artcentron.com

In this interesting article in the New York Times, Allison Arieff highlights the often unconsidered importance of sound in architecture (outside of theaters and museums at least). She profiles the work of Acoustic Engineers at ARUP who have begun to work inschools and hospitals, taking into account the effects poor sound environments can have on us in our everyday lives. You can read the full article here.

International Symposium for Social and Humanitarian Architecture

Next Month, the Mackintosh School of Architecture (The Glasgow School of Art) will host its first International Symposium for Social and Humanitarian Architecture, ‘Clean Conscience Dirty Hands’, in the new Reid Building by Steven Holl Architects. The symposium focuses on the limited resources intrinsic to the provision of social and humanitarian architecture and the impact of such scarcity on the ability of organisations to ‘harness’ the learning from each built through documentation, discussion and dissemination. As such, it seeks to provide both a locus and a forum for like-minded organisations engaged in social and humanitarian building projects, in order to capture and disseminate good practice in both a -based and overseas context.

International and award-winning speakers representing a multitude of organisations, including MASS Design Group, TYIN Tegnestue, Architecture for Humanity, London Metropolitan University, Peter Rich Architects and Orkidstudio will gather to discuss a range of ideas relating to one of the three topics broadly covered by the symposium:

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Call for Submissions: Thresholds 43

Gasp! What provokes this reflex that leaves one short of breath? More than just a sudden turn of events, for discourse to move from gossip to scandal there have to be stakes. Reputations, profits, and history-by-the-winners are on the line. 

In 1939, architect George W. Stoddard understood these stakes well when writing his apology to the AIA Board of Directors. “There are times in every man’s life when he does things on the spur of the moment that he later regrets,” Stoddard implored after flouting a professional ban on advertising.  The popular newspaper tabloid from following decades trafficked in one form of scandal surrounding the crime of regrettable deeds: originating in the private sphere and then splashed in the public one. These stories trade in schadenfreude while simultaneously performing in the interest of public good.

Stoddard’s delinquent act barely raises the contemporary pulse. Today, shocking headlines proliferate. If scandal shapes and reflects the historical moment, what does this de-sensitization say about our current condition? Many artists and architects operate fully conscious of an anaesthetized public. Thresholds 43: Scandalous seeks to investigate the relevance of scandal in creative practice. Content should confront a history of devious schemes, spectacular headlines, and pulp fictions by engaging them in critical conversation.

Scandal, we believe, is the red flag of every cultural movement. Sin segues into standards. Take Corbusier’s Plan Voisin and subsequent tower in the park offshoots, or Mapplethorpe’s The Perfect Moment that opened a new era of artistic provocations concerning public funding and censorship. This potential for transition, from shocking to ubiquitous, leads the editors of Thresholds to subvert a pursuit of the ‘goods’ and instead ask: what is ‘bad’? How does scandal emerge from or act counter to institutional and social contracts? How do changing forms of media, from the catchy hashtag to the news alert, incite slander or even revolution? Why does scandal destroy some while elevating others? Which sites are labeled crime scenes?

Submission Guidelines 

Submission Deadline: April 30, 2014 

Thresholds is an annual, peer-reviewed journal that accepts original material for publication.

Thresholds is looking for three types of content: Scholarly articles, projects, and shorts.

1. Scholarly articles: Text should be in English, limited to 3,000 words, and formatted in accordance with the Chicago Manual of Style. Images should be included separately at 300 dpi print quality, with captions and credits.

2. Projects: Image-based content of creative practices formatted for print publication. Thresholds is formatted with an individual page size of 6.5” x 9.5”  (portrait) and spread size of 13” x 9.5”.

3. Shorts: Brief creative content, such as a sketch, rant, or overheard, to serve as a break between featured articles and projects. Guidelines are open.

Submissions should include a cover letter, contact information and brief bio of under 50 words for each author. Text as MS Word, images as TIFF files. All material should be submitted to thresholds@mit.edu

More info can be found here.

Nathan Friedman and Ann Lui, Editors
Thresholds, MIT Architecture
77 Massachusetts Ave, Room 7-337
Cambridge, MA 02139
thresholds@mit.edu 

Choose Your Final Four in “Arch Madness”

Courtesy of Good Fulton & Farrell, Inc.

UPDATE: The results from the Elite 8 have been announced, and the time to vote for the Final Four has arrived! Do you think “Less Is More” should take the crown? Voting’s open until Friday afternoon (EST). 

In honor of the NCAA “March Madness” basketball tournament, Dallas-based architecture firm Good Fulton & Farrell has created an “Arch. Madness” tournament to crown the Best of Architecture. “The tournament pits 64 of the greatest in architecture stereotypes, culture, tools, and ideas against each other. From things architects like, to misconceptions people have about architects (or undeniable truths), this will be a fun way to determine what is the best thing (or most ridiculous thing) about the architects we work with every day.” The winner will be crowned on April 8th. CLICK HERE to vote for your “Arch Madness” champion now!

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ACADIA 2014 Call for Submissions

UPDATE: Deadline for submissions extended to April 14, 2014!

Submissions are invited for the 2014 ACADIA ‘DESIGN AGENCY’ conference at University of Southern California, , California on October 20-25, 2014. Architects, designers, fabricators, engineers, media artists, technologists, software developers, hackers, researchers, students and educators and others in related fields of inquiry are invited to submit proposals.

The conference theme is intended to highlight experimental research and projects that exhibit and explore new paradigms of computing in architecture. The theme is a purposeful instigation of work that looks at re-defining the term “Agency” through the lens of computational design strategies such as simulation, fabrication, robotics, and novel integrations from science and the media arts.

For more information, including the specific themes and topics, please go to the event’s official website.

Morphosis, Zaha Hadid Design Eggs for NYC’s ‘Big Egg Hunt’

Egg designed by Morphosis. Image Courtesy of http://thebigegghunt.org/

Fabergé’s Big Egg Hunt, the world’s largest egg hunt (according to their site), launched today in . Over 200, three-foot tall eggs have been hidden across the city as part of a charity event; you can download a free smartphone app to try and locate them yourself. Architecture enthusiasts may want to head out to Soho & Hudson Square, where eggs designed by Grimshaw and Morphosis have been hidden, or the Upper East Side to find Zaha Hadid’s. All of the eggs will be on display in Rockefeller Center from April 18 through 26.

Cool Spaces! Premiers Tomorrow, Puts Architecture in the Spotlight

Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts / Moshe Safdie. Image © Tim Hursley

Stephen Chung‘s new PBS show Cool Spaces! hopes to engage the general public’s perception of design by “demystifying” contemporary architectural practice. You can tune in to the hour-long premier tomorrow (April 1) as Chung investigates the sports and performing arts spaces of Moshe Safdie (Kauffman Center for Performing Arts), HKS (Dallas Cowboys Stadium), and SHoP (Barclays Center).

Symposium: Interpretations / Critical Shifts

Critical Shifts is a one-day, student-organized symposium dedicated to exploring the ongoing transformations of critical practice in architecture. The event brings together a diverse group of practitioners in order to investigate how their work (which often combines the activities and approaches of curation, editing, writing, design, teaching, and research) can begin to trace a nuanced map of the fieldʼs current critical terrain.

Critical Shifts will be held at Studio-X NYC in downtown Manhattan on Saturday, April 5th, 2014 from 1-6pm and confirmed guests include Aaron Levy, Adam Bandler, Cynthia Davidson, Felicity D. Scott, Justin McGuirk, Ligia Nobre, Marina Otero Verzier, Mark Wasiuta, Mark Wigley, Matteo Ghidoni, and Tina Di Carlo.

More information can be found here.

Title: Symposium: Interpretations / Critical Shifts
Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/234124760109047/
Organizers: Columbia University GSAPP
From: Sat, 05 Apr 2014 
Until: Sat, 05 Apr 2014 
Venue: Studio-X New York
Address: 180 Varick Street, New York, NY 10014,

RIBA Future Trends Survey Indicates An “All-Time High” for Workloads

Courtesy of

The latest Future Trends Survey, published by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), indicates an “all-time high” for architects’ workload with “confidence levels about future workloads continuing to rise.” The February report shows +41 in the Future Trends Workload Index, up from +35 in January, with the highest balance figures coming from London (+54) and Scotland (+60). The optimistic report suggests that there “still appears to be significant spare capacity within the profession,” noting that many practices actually under-employed in the last month.

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Lecture Series: Japanese Architecture at at Cologne University

The Faculty of Architecture at the Cologne University of Applied Sciences will host a lecture series on Japanese architecture. The program will start April 8 with Junya Ishigami and will continue until June 24 with lectures by Shin Takamatsu & Takeshi Katagiri, recent Pritzker Prize winner Shigeru Ban, Ryusuke Kojio, Sou Fujimoto, Hitoshi Abe and Hiroaki Kimura.

For more information, you can click here (website in German).

Title: Lecture Series: Japanese Architecture at at University
Website: http://architecturaltuesday.wordpress.com/
From: Tue, 08 Apr 2014
Until: Tue, 24 Jun 2014
Venue: Faculty of Architecture, Cologne University of Applied Sciences
Address: Betzdorfer Straße 2, 50679 Cologne, Germany

A Mini Marble Manhattan

Courtesy of David Zwirner Gallery

You’ve never seen Manhattan quite like this: Metropolis Magazine‘s Komal Sharma takes a look at “Little Manhattan“, a sculpture by Yutaka Sone which renders the famous island in 2.5 tons of solid marble. The power of the artwork lies in the play with scale: the initial impression of a huge marble block contrasts with the tiny, intricately detailed skyline forming a mere skin on top; the subsequent realization that this skin corresponds to the familiar vertical city brings you to a more complete understanding of ’s scale. You can read the full article here.

The American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Award Winners Announced

, “Beyond the Sky,” 1982. Courtesy of Yale

The American Academy of Arts and Letters has announced the recipients of its 2014 architecture awards. Recognized as an architect who has made a significant contribution to architecture as an art, Massimo Scolari was awarded the Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture – a $20,000 award whose laureates include Peter Zumthor and this year’s Pritzker Prize winner Shigeru Ban.

See who else was awarded one of the Academy’s prestigious architecture awards, after the break…

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Deborah Sussman: Breaking the Boundaries Between Architecture & Graphic Design

© Flickr CC User David Cobb

In this delightful article on Metropolis Magazine, Christopher Hawthorne recounts his meeting with Deborah Sussman, the one-time protégé of Charles and Ray Eames whose work breaks the boundaries between graphic design and architecture. From her collaboration with Frank Gehry to her iconic designs for the 1984 LA Olympics, Sussman has come to define a curiously Californian style. You can read the full article here.

U8 International Competition: The Unknown Porto

Revista Unidade recently announced their international competition “The Unknown Porto”. The main goal is to convert an industrial ruin into a service station, serving the national road of Portugal.

Registration for the competition will end May 17 and the jury includes Eduardo Souto de Moura, Valerio Olgiati, Jonathan Sergison and Camilo Rebelo. For more information, please go to the competition’s official website.