Video: Studio Beneath the Railway + Step Plaza

Beneath an elevated railway in the former red-light district of Kogane-cho, the city of Yokohama and NPO Koganecho Area Management Center commissioned five architects to transform a 100 to 150 square meter site into what is now a destination for local artists and residents. Each practice – Contemporaries, , Workstation, Koizumi Atelier, and Nishikura Architectural Office – was assigned a single project, providing the community with a gallery, cafe, studio, meeting hall for artists, and stepped outdoor plaza. Tour through each space with this video, provided by JA+U

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VIDEO: Design in 6 Lovely, Digestible Nutshells

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(Almost) everything you need to know about 20th century has been synthesized into 6 brightly-colored, easily-digestible (all narrated by the sweet Scottish tones of one Ewan MacGregor).

From the Gothic Revival to Post-Modernism, this series of shorts from The Open University’s OpenLearn website just touches the surface of these design movements; however, they act as a great introduction for the un-design-initiated (indeed, The Open University sees them as an intro to their free course on Design Thinking) or, for design-aficionados, a fun refresher.

We’re particular to the video on the Bauhaus (after all, we also tackled the movement in a brilliant infographic) and the Modernist video (after the break) – but you can find all 6 at OpenLearn. Enjoy!

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Video: American Design Club

The American Design Club (AmDC) was conceived in the spring of 2008. At that time, America’s relevance in the world was being questioned, with some postulating that US-based designers would never be as influential or productive as their European counterparts. Looking around, however, all they saw was talent and ambition in our fellow American designers, from close friends to former employers to recent school graduates. What was missing was an avenue for these designers to share their work with a broad audience. The AmDC’s founding members resolved to improve the situation by creating a platform from which designers could launch new ideas and connect with one another.

Dubai Timelapse

Check out this Vimeo Staff Pick, filmed by dimid, that captures the towering city of .

More images after the break…

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VIDEO: Five Great Buildings in Chicago

A short and sweet animation displaying 5 of ’s great buildings – including, the John Hancock Center, by SOM, The Willis Tower (formerly known as the Sears Tower), also by SOM, and Marina City by Bertrand Goldberg. Enjoy!

Video via Sebastian Rodriguez

Video: Teshima Art Museum / Office of Ryue Nishizawa

Designed for the artwork of artist Rei Naito, the Teshima Art Museum is a seamless, earthen form of white concrete in which responds to the rolling landscape of an island located in the Inland Sea of Japan. Architect Ryue Nishizawa created the museum to be an open gallery, exposed to the elements, that is shaped by a 25cm thick concrete shell in which spans up to 60 meters.

Video courtesy of JA+U. More images after the break…

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TED Talk: WikiHouse co-founder Alastair Parvin Speaks at TED2013

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In this talk at TED 2013, WikiHouse co-founder Alastair Parvin elaborates on some of the ideas which he presented in 2012. WikiHouse is his project to create an open-source library of houses which can be downloaded, manufactured with a machine and assembled in a day – an idea which he hopes will democratize the production of housing and the city as a whole – as he puts it, “In a way it should be kind of obvious that in the 21st century maybe could be developed by citizens”.

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Video: Pin-Up Magazine

is a New York-based architect turned editor who prefers building magazines.

AD Interviews: Charles Renfro

DS+R (Diller Scofidio + Renfro) is one of the most acclaimed architecture practices of these days. The firm was started by Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio back in 1979, and they were later joined by as a partner in 2004.

In the past years the firm has been involved in several cultural projects, including the Blur Building at the Swiss Expo 2002, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, the Julliard School, the Alice Tully Hall and the Hypar Pavilion at Lincoln Center in New York and the Center for the Creative Arts at Brown University. They are also currently working on the Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley, the Broad Museum in Los Angeles, the Museum of Image & Audio in Rio de Janeiro, the Columbia Medical Building and Business School in New York… and the list just keeps growing.

But for sure one of their most important projects has been The Highline, together with James Corner / Field Operations. This urban regeneration project has not only changed Manhattan, but also inspired cities around the world to understand their hidden value. This project is currently on its third stage, which includes a multi-use venue designed by DS+R, the Culture Shed.

In all these projects, there is a common denominator between private/public space relationships, as discussed with Charles Renfro in this interview. In this conversation you will also learn about a very important aspect of the firm’s work, one that is very hard to transmit in traditional architecture media or even on the web: the experience. The art and performance projects that the firm has been doing since its beginning has added a particular layer to their built work. After you see their installations (and the effect they create in people), and then go back to their built projects, you start to see them as a series of situations where users are not static, but part of this performance.

Take for example the sunken auditorium at the Highline, a place that is meant to be seen by the cars driving below, who get a glimpse of the active urban life above. Or the hanging media center at the ICA, that uses the sea as a facade. Or The Art of Scent exhibit at the MAD Museum, where they exhibit the intangible. Or at the Blur Building, where you enter into a cloud.

DS+R’s work is very clear and bold at first glance, but with many underlaying moments and situations that reflect the careful design of each project.

Thanks to UNIACC Architecture School for making this interview possible. Projects by DS+R at ArchDaily:

Video: Future Focus

We poll some of the best and brightest in the world about one hot topic…

With special thanks to BE OPEN.

Cathleen McGuigan: “Women and the Changing World of Architecture”

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In this video, Cathleen McGuigan, editor-in-chief of Architectural Record, discusses gender within the professional setting, specifically within the world of architecture at the Harvard GSD.  As she begins, she addresses the question that most people have when such a topic is approached.  ”Why are we still talking about this?”  McGuigan lays out the position of women in architecture and the rational that still supports inequality, however subconscious, within the profession.  Referencing Sheryl Sandberg’s new book Lean In, McGuigan shows how this topic is still unresolved and still needs to be discussed in the public forum.

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Strelka Talks: Architecture and Community / Reinier de Graaf

“The ” might be the most frequently used term over the last 50 years of Architectural and Urban discourse. For decades, “the ” has served as a legitimization for anything from Team X to New Urbanism, from Celebration to “vancouverism”. But what is “the ”? Where should we look for the proper definition? How did communities appear in the past and how do they form today? Can ‘the ” influence the design of its own space, territory or context? If yes, what could be the relationship between the and architecture in the future?

In his Strelka talk is trying to answer these and other, even more complex questions.

Via the Strelka Institute.

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Charles Correa in Conversation with RIBA President Angela Brady

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After generously donating an archive of over 6000 drawings and 150 projects, architect sat down with RIBA President to discuss his life and work as one of “India’s greatest architects.” The short interview touches on a wide range of topics, from the inspiration behind some of his greatest projects to advice for future architecture students.

“The thing about architecture is that you cannot teach it. You can learn it, but you cannot teach it. And a good school is a school which makes you passionate about architecture and that teaches you how to ask questions. [...] If you know how to ask the right questions, you will develop your own philosophy and your own visual vocabulary.”

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Alexander Brodsky at Architekturzentrum Wien in 2011

For this architect, there is an indiscernible line between art and building.   studied architecture in Moscow, while working on art installations and drawings both independently and in collaborations with other artists. Brodsky admits that his career path was unconventional, that he felt unready to take on the responsibility of building.  Instead, Brodsky’s approach to architecture is through the lens of art: occupiable, room-sized installations that test spatial and sensory boundaries.

More after the break.

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Video: Existential Sensitivity / Jeffrey Kipnis and Steven Holl

In this fascinating conversation, critic and theorist Jeffrey Kipnis and architect Steven Holl discuss modern architecture, from competitions to cantilevers, courtesy of our friends at 32BNY.

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Video: Rafael de Cárdenas

Video: archiDUTCH Documentary

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Conducted by a group of Canadian students, archiDUTCH is a 19-minute documentary about how the Dutch build and the cities we live in, including a collection of interviews of Dutch architects and designers. The footage was shot and edited by first-time student filmmakers from Simon Fraser University’s Interactive Art and Technology program. OMA‘s , Inside Outside‘s Petra Blaisse, and MVRDV‘s Jacob van Rijs (along with dutch model maker Vincent de Rijk) comment on the Dutch point of view of designing for the architectural and urban scale, both in the Netherlands and worldwide in this film. Detailed interviews and more information about the students involved in this field study can be found here. More images can be viewed after the break.

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In Residence: Claudio Silvestrin

Free of clutter but filled with light, shadow and sculptural forms, filmmaker Matthew Donaldson takes you inside the minimalist masterpiece that Italian architect calls home. As part of NOWNESS’ In Residence series, this video sheds light  Silvestrin’s “reductive, contemplative, near-ecclesiastical spaces” that can be found across the globe – from Moscow to Majorca, and soon-to-be in Miami, where Silvestrin is currently designing a home from Kanye West that will undoubtedly exhibit many of his signature components.  (more…)