Marble Quarrying Looks Even More Awesome Than You Imagined

In this from NOWNESS, an excerpt from Yuri Ancarani’s documentary “Il Capo” (The Chief), the filmmaker captures the mesmerizing business of extraction in the hills of Northwest Italy. The prized delicacy of the Carrara stone’s surface is juxtaposed against the dramatic size and weight of the blocks they are removing, which eventually fall with an earth-shattering thud. Similarly the rugged power of the excavators is in marked contrast to the precise, understated gestures of the chief himself, who directs his workers with a complex series of predetermined hand signals.

“Marble quarries are places so unbelievable and striking, they almost feel like they are big theaters or sets,” explains Yuri Ancarani. “I was so taken by the chief, watching him work. How he can move gigantic marble blocks using enormous excavators, but his own movements are light, precise and determined.”

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Video: Tour Through Trahan Architects’ Sculpted Louisiana Sports Hall and Museum

A contemporary museum set within the oldest settlement in the Louisiana Purchase, Trahan Architects’ Louisiana State Sports Hall of Fame and Regional History Museum is distinguished for its sculpted interior and contrasting copper facade. Watch the short film above as Spirit of Space tours through the building, capturing the museum’s historic context and central pathway.

“Having spent several days in the space observing the museum patrons and their experiences, it is clear that the museum’s architecture is an exhibit itself. And while visitors point at and caress the exquisitely crafted cast stone, they are simultaneously guided by it without the need for any signage or wayfinding devices,” says Adam Goss of . “This is a space about movement. In cinematic form, this film attempts to capture that fluid experience, and at the same time, to illustrate how the past can complement and inspire compelling and forward-thinking architecture.”

Follow Spirit of Space on Instagram to stay up-to-date with their work. 

Arquitectura à Moda do Porto: Episode 4, Natural Porto

We have teamed up with Building PicturesFilipa Figueira and Tiago Vieira to feature weekly episodes of their video series “,” which highlights ’s most significant buildings over the last two decades.

The series launched in 2013 and is comprised of 10 episodes, each focusing on a different theme: light, stairs, balconies, nature, textures, doors, windows, skylights, pavements and structures.

Last week we featured the series’ third episode about Porto’s balconies, and now we present Episode 4 – Nature. Read the producers’ description of Episode 4 after the break.

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Oscar-Nominated Film Captures Life with Modernist Architect Parents

Minimalism has its challenges and for this seven-year-old sibling of two, it’s not for children. Nominated for Best Animated Short Film at the 87th Academy Awards, Me and My Moulton captures the unconventional life and struggles of three kids with modernist architect parents. Watch the trailer above and see what director Torill Kove believes are five sure signs your parents were architects, after the break.

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Arquitectura à Moda do Porto: Episode 3, On Top of Porto’s Balconies

We teamed up with Building PicturesFilipa Figueira and Tiago Vieira to feature weekly episodes of their series “,” which highlights Porto’s most significant buildings over the last 20 years.

The series is comprised of 10 episodes, each focusing on a different theme: light, stairs, balconies, nature, textures, doors, windows, skylights, pavements and structures.

Last week we presented the series’ second episode on the stairs of Porto, and now we present Episode 3 – Balconies. Read the producers’ description of the video after the break.

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Animated Film Envisions BIG’s Manhattan “Dry Line”

A vision to protect post-Sandy Manhattan against future superstorms, Bjarke Ingels Group’s (BIG) “Dry Line” seeks to form a continuous storm barrier around lower Manhattan by transforming underutilized waterfront spaces into a “protective ribbon” of public parks and amenities. Though ambitious, the project is not impossible; it was one of six winners in the US’ Rebuild by Design competition that is envisioning ways can protect its edge.  

Watch the film above, by Squint/Opera, to see what Manhattan could potentially look like in the future, and read more about the project here. The Dry Line is also on view at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C as part of BIG’s exhibition HOT TO COLD: an odyssey of architectural adaptation.

Architects Dressed As Buildings At The 1931 Beaux Arts Ball

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With the celebration of Carnival upon us, venues around the world are bound to be filled with the merriment of masked and costumed figures at extravagant parties, partaking in the century’s old tradition of masquerading. While most participants aspire to facilitate the movement of dance in their costumes, a smaller group of revelers consider structure and shape instead. These architects of iconic structures from decades past celebrated the 1931 Beaux Arts Ball by masquerading in these sky-high replicas of their buildings. If you’re looking to make a statement during the final night of Carnival, perhaps a Guggenheim Museum headdress or Eiffel Tower hat is the perfect party accessory.

Read on after the break to learn more about the Beaux Arts Ball.

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Video: The Northparker / Jonathan Segal

“The beauty of [architecture] is the payoff. That building has created a better place for people to live and a better lifestyle for people.” A mixed use building that brings together craft beer, street tacos and modern housing, California developer Jonathan Segal‘s “The Northparker” has helped transform the once blighted area Northpark into one of San Diego‘s most up-and-coming neighborhoods. Breadtruck Films shares just how a single building created community and changed a city in the video above.

Video: Agence Chartier-Corbasson Talks Organic Skyscrapers

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The latest video from Crane.tv takes viewers into the Paris practice of Agence Chartier-Corbasson, where Thomas Corbasson, one half of the founding duo, explains the firm’s ongoing “competition of ideas” for developing an organic skyscraper

Envisioned for what Corbasson describes as the “very dynamic city” of London, the “self-growing” tower is an exercise in biomimicry, drawing inspiration from coral and fractals to create “a sort of organic scaffolding.” As yet, the project has no client, but Corbasson is confident that the concept will be met with interest.

“It’s the social role of an architect to create something beautiful,” he told Crane.tv, “And if we can use something ugly like pollution to create beauty then I think we, as architects, are useful.”

VIDEO: Stunning Time-Lapse Captures Life in Rio de Janeiro

It’s no wonder that the beautiful city of Rio de Janeiro is one of the most visited cities in the southern hemisphere. From Copacabana’s Balneario Beach to the iconic Cristo Redentor atop Corcovado, Rio is a “cidade maravilhosa” (marvelous city) with one of the most spectacular urban settings in the world. Capturing its mystic, the pros of Scientifantastic have posted a stunning time-lapse that captures life in the coastal Brazilian megalopolis.

Another, revealing the favelas of Brazil and more, after the break.

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Archiculture Interviews: Phil Bernstein

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“Our industry moves really, really slowly, and it’s generational.” This latest interview from Arbuckle Industries‘ groundbreaking documentary Archiculture features a discussion with architect, Autodesk vice president, and Yale professor Phil Bernstein. In the interview, Bernstein focuses on the technological aspects that have shifted the methodology and possibilities of architecture today, and how Autodesk is contributing to its advancement through educational interventions. Additionally, he addresses the cultural issues that have arisen as bi-products of technology, as a disconnect between teachers and students has developed due to their different media focuses.

Video: vPPR on Working in a Male-Dominated Industry

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Fresh from their appearance on the AJ’s Emerging Woman Architect of the Year shortlist, London-based vPPR Architects spoke to Crane.tv about working in a male-dominated industry as a practice helmed by three women. “Our identity stands out, so it’s easy for people to remember us,” said co-founder Catherine Pease. “We do bring something different to the company than three male directors.”

Another of the firm’s co-founders Tatiana von Preussen described vPPR’s overall approach to design as being “interested in clusters of buildings… in a way it’s not really so much about the certain sector.”

“It’s more about the approach to different kinds of use,” von Preussen said, “…the spaces in and around them and how these two things relate to each other.”

“Classic Japan” Episode 2: Sachio Otani’s Kyoto International Conference Center

The second episode in “Classic Japan” features the 1966 Kyoto International Conference Center by Sachio Otani. The site of the signing of the Protocol in 1997, Otani’s waterfront conference center unfurls onto nearby Lake Takaragaike via a series of concrete pathways that offset the centre’s Brutalist weight. Filmed and edited by Vincent Hecht, a French architect and film maker currently living in Tokyo, the series focuses on Japanese architecture from the 1950s to the 80s.

Before working on the conference center, Otani had previously worked in the office of Kenzo Tange, whose Yoyogi National Gymnasium was featured in the first episode of the “Classic Japan” series.

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Arquitectura à Moda do Porto: Episode 2, Climbing the Stairs of Porto

ArchDaily has teamed up with Building PicturesFilipa Figueira and Tiago Vieira to feature weekly episodes of their series “Arquitectura à Moda do ,” which highlights Porto’s most significant buildings over the last two decades.

The series launched in 2013 and is comprised of 10 episodes, each focusing on a different theme: light, stairs, balconies, nature, textures, doors, windows, skylights, pavements and structures.

Last week we featured the series’ first episode about Porto’s shimmering lights, and now we present Episode 2 – Stairs. Read the producers’ description of Episode 2 after the break.

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Video: ZAO/standardarchitecture’s Zhang Ke on “Contemplating Basics”

In conjunction with “Contemplating Basics,” the 35th Aedes Architecture Forum’s exhibition of work by Beijing-based ZAO/standardarchitecture, Reframe presents an interview the firm’s founder, Zhang Ke, and Dr Eduard Kögel, an Urban Planner and critic from Berlin.

Since its establishment in 2001, ZAO/standardarchitecture has produced a diverse portfolio of projects responding to the specific nature and local culture of their sites, and mediating between traditional values and contemporary means of production. Keenly engaged with social issues, Ke recognises the importance of designing in a manner that is cognisant of broader context and bridges the gap between tradition and modernity.

“Every generation of course needs to go back to the original questions… ‘Okay, what architecture can grow out of this place in our time, and with our interaction with the local people and local techniques?’” he asks, “The results could be striking but the departure point is basic.”

ZAO/standardarchitecture has been responsible for large urban museums and small scale rural interventions alike, adopting in all cases this democratic approach to design.

“I learnt neither to look up nor to look down,” Ke said, “But to look straight in the eye, which means that you truly respect the culture.”

The Destruction of a Classic: Time-Lapse Captures Demolition of Chicago’s Prentice Women’s Hospital

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Following the extensive preservation battle over Bertrand Goldberg’s iconic Prentice Women’s Hospital, the Chicago landmark was demolished a few months ago to pave the way for Perkins+Will’s new Biomedical Research Building for the Feinberg School of Medicine. The four year preservation struggle was marked by repeated appeals to the Commission on Landmarks and Mayor Rahm Emanuel with attempts to place the building on historic registers, proposals to adapt it for modern use, and design competitions to gain public opinion on the future of the building. Ultimately, the outpouring of global support by architects and preservationists to save Prentice fell short of the political agenda of progress, prioritizing future development over preserving the city’s past.

In the wake of the loss of this icon, the National Trust for Historic Preservation has released a video documenting the demolition process of Prentice from start to finish. This incredible footage memorializes the one-of-a-kind building so although the new Biomedical Research Building will soon take its place, a piece of its predecessor will always be remembered.

“Classic Japan” Episode 1: Yoyogi National Gymnasium / Kenzo Tange

From Tokyo-based French architect and film maker Vincent Hecht comes “Classic ,” a series of short films focussed on Japanese architecture from between the 1950s and 80s. 

The first installment takes viewers into Kenzo Tange‘s 1964 Yoyogi National Gymnasium in Shibuya, built to house the swimming and diving events of the 1964 Summer Olympics. Completed in less than two years and seating upwards of 15,000 spectators, the Gymnasium is renowned for its suspension roof, and will host the handball competitions during ’s 2020 Summer Olympics.

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Arquitectura à Moda do Porto: Episode 1, The Shimmering Lights of Porto

We’ve teamed up with Building PicturesFilipa Figueira and Tiago Vieira to feature weekly episodes of their video series “Arquitectura à Moda do ,” which highlights Porto’s most significant buildings over the last 20 years.

The series is comprised of 10 episodes, each focusing on a different theme: light, stairs, balconies, nature, textures, doors, windows, skylights, pavements and structures.

(more…)