Iwan Baan’s curiosity for the built environment has led him to be one of the world’s most preeminent photographers whose skills are in constant demand by architectural elites worldwide. Constantly on the move, Baan has found himself documenting fascinating testaments to human ingenuity. From the informal vertical community of Torre David in Caracas to the floating Niagara slum of Makoko, Baan’s encounters with thriving communities in some of the most unexpected places has led him to believe that there is “no such thing as normal” and humans can truly adapt to anything.
Janette Sadik-Khan demonstrates how paint, lawn chairs and a bit of imagination can quickly transform city streets, creating immediate public and commercial vitality. Sadik-Khan, listed as one of Business Insider’s “50 Women Who Are Changing the World,” is responsible for re-purposing 26 acres of dense New York City car lanes into pedestrian-friendly space. “More people on foot is better for business,” she says. Despite commanding a two billion dollar budget, her economical approach as commissioner of NYC’s Department of Transportation are testaments to her design sensitivity, relying on rapid-testing and regular iteration to expand the city’s public domain.
The view was produced by Taller de Casquería; Luis Rodriguez Carnero plays the protagonist.
From the architect. Through travellings, point perspectives, a main character and a plot trick, the film creates a catalogue of experiences that open up a path to describing architectural spaces without conventional cliches, without still photos, and amplifies the importance of the human scale in the communication of architecture.
You can see more of the house here.
32BNY in collaboration with Spirit of Space has released its fifth videopolemic, entitled Firminy: José Oubrerie. In this video José Oubrerie, a French architect and protégé of Le Corbusier, currently teaching at the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State University, remembers his time working for Corbu, working on the Church in Firminy.
32BNY was launched in February 2013 as a website dedicated to the potential of cinematic architectural discourse. Previous videopolemics included Steven Holl and Sanford Kwinter on Lebbeus Woods, Vito Acconci on Art and Architecture, Drawing as Thought, and Existential Sensitivity: Jeffrey Kipnis and Steven Holl. Although 32BNY admit they do not know what the terms ‘cinematic architectural discourse’, or ‘videopolemic’ mean, they are undeterred from their exploration. You can find out more about them and their work on their website.
In the year 1940, Armour Institute and Lewis Institute merged in Chicago to create the Illinois Institute of Technology. The merging of these two schools called for a new master plan for the university, and Mies van der Rohe was commissioned for the job. Mies’ plan for the IIT campus was one of the largest projects he ever conceived and he developed it for twenty years. Today the campus contains 20 of his works, including the famous Crown Hall. Enjoy the video and don’t forget to check our AD Classics on the IIT Master Plan and Buildings.
Last year, we showed you two short videos on the progress of this new flea market in Barcelona. This time, prompt made a small documentary on the old market of Encants Vells, the construction and the transfer to the new market Encants Barcelona Fira de Bellcaire, designed by b720 Fermín Vázquez arquitectos. We can also see the opinion of everyone involved in the project, from the customers and workers of the old market, to the mayor of Barcelona and the architect.
The Oslo Architecture Triennale opened to the public last week, under the title “Behind the Green Door – Architecture and the desire for sustainability”. Rotor, the curators of the Triennale, collected over 600 objects carrying claims of sustainability from over 200 architecture offices, companies and environmental organizations across the world (read our interview with Rotor about the curation).
Experts from different fields share with us which the objects from the collection caught their attention and why. In this first part Kjetil Trædal Thorsen (Snøhetta co-founder), Carolyn Steel (architect, author of The Hungry City and TED speaker), Karl Otto Ellefsen (Dean of Oslo School of Architecture and Design) and Arjen Oosterman (ARCHIS, Volume Magazine) tell us their what they think. From glass technology to filter light, to locally produced food and more.
The Triennale is open until December 1st, full programme here. Check the rest of the videos below:
In his TedxTalk, Australian-born, Tasmanian-raised architect Ross Langdon begins by reading from the book The Rabbits, a children’s tale which depicts Australia’s colonizers as an invasive, destructive species: rabbits. “I realized I didn’t want to be a rabbit any more,” Langdon explains. “So I thought it might be better to be like a chameleon, able to adapt and change and blend with our environment, rather than conquer it.”
It was this impetus that drove Langdon, who had worked for John McAslan and David Adjaye in London, and even started his own London-based firm, Regional Associates, to Uganda, where he was completing an HIV Center; unfortunately, Landon and his partner, Elif Yavuz, were among the victims killed in the siege of the Westgate Shopping Centre this weekend. According to the Architect’s Journal, the “couple had relocated to be closer to Nairobi’s hospitals because Yavuz – who worked as a vaccines researcher in Tanzania for the Clinton Foundation – was expecting her baby within two weeks.”
To remember Langdon’s life and work, we’ve included the video of his TedxTalk, which closes with the inspiring philosophy behind “chameleon” architecture. In Langdon’s words: ”We believe that to create architecture that is born of the place, in both developing and developed worlds, that we need to source materials locally, we need to use construction methods that are available locally, wherever possible, to recycle, to upcycle, and to be resourceful, and, most importantly, be present in order to discover beauty in unexpected places.”
On September 20, 2013, TEDCity2.0 took place at the TimesCenter in New York City. Co-curated and co-hosted by Chris Anderson, John Cary, and Courtney Martin, the event surfaced stories of urban ingenuity and interdependence from across the globe, and featured an unexpected mix of over 20 speakers, including several 2012 City 2.0 Award winners.
On session 4 (videos after the break), you’ll find speakers Enrique Peñalosa (former mayor of Bogotá), Alan Ricks (MASS Co-Founder), Francis Kere and Iwan Baan. More information on all the speakers can be found here.
On the twelfth anniversary of September 11th, we would like to share with you this incredible time-lapse capturing the progress of the One World Trade Center between October 2004 and September 2013. The 1,776 foot tall skyscraper, which is expected to be the tallest in Western Hemisphere, topped out earlier this year and is slated for completion in 2014.
We know that Tokyo won the race and that is why today we invite you to take a virtual tour of the Olympic Stadium project designed by Zaha Hadid, which involves the refurbishment of the former Japan National Stadium, originally built for the 1964 Games. Once complete, the expanded sports complex will be able to accommodate 80,000 spectators.
In the latest video from Nowness, director Thomas Rhazi documents the complicated architectural scene in China – focusing on how the country holds onto its identity despite the “frenetic” pace of its expansion and globalization. Shaway Yeh sums up the situation nicely: “what does China really look like, what does China represent? No one knows, because it’s a place that’s still in flux, it’s constantly reshaping.” Lyndon Neri, however, points to Pritzker Prize winner Wang Shu as a possible answer, saying that he “created something quite amazing in Ningbo, it had a new way of looking at a building in a Chinese way… what he actually did was a modern interpretation of Chinese architecture.” No matter where you stand on China’s modernization, the video is a beautiful depiction of the historical meeting the modern. (more…)
Rio de Janeiro has become one of the most popular destinations right now, hosting some games of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. Joe Capra shared with us this timelapse video he made on the Brazilian city. Besides the fantastic natural settings that surround the city, you can also see the contrast with a few shots of the popular favelas.
The students of the MSArch in Landscape and Urbanism program at Woodbury University in San Diego have shared this video on Proyecto Experimental de Vivienda (PREVI): a late 1960s social housing experiment in Lima, Peru, which, backed by the Peruvian government and the UN, involved the best social housing architects of the day.
The designs, part of the later, more humanist strain of modernism, were intended to allow families – who were used to holding complete control over the construction of their own homes – to appropriate the houses. However, they were also designed to imply how future construction might prevent the proliferation of chaos present in previous slums. The video asks how residents feel about their experimental homes today, questioning the success of this design strategy, 40 years after the project’s completion.
Find out more about the outcome of the PREVI experiment, after the break…