A recent graduate from London’s Bartlett School of Architecture, Richard Hardy has produced a fascinating animation for Nic Clear’s Unit 15 that pushes futuristic architecture to a new level. Using David Foster Wallace’s ‘Infinite Jest’, a novel that questions certain aspects of Americans’ obsessive behavior – in terms of the intense fascination with entertainment, materialism, technology etc – the studio challenged students to analyze the implications of society’s “obsessive/addictive behavior…to develop tactics to cope with the difficulties of creating an architecture in uncertain times.”
More about the project after the break. (more…)
Last night, as Christopher Hawthorne reported for the LA Times, the Hammer Museum played “Koolhaas Houselife”, a comical and witty documentary by Ila Bêka and Louise Lemoîne that follows Guadalupe Acedo, the cleaning woman, as she maintains the 1998 masterpiece.
Although architects, designers and engineers may look at the House of Bordeaux and admire its dramatic cantilever, the conceptually thrilling idea of the central lift for the handicapped client, and the circular windows that vary in size and placement according to the heights of the different residents, what is it like to occupy that space on a daily basis? After all, it is a house, and what is it like to do some of the most basic chores in an award winning building?
More including a short trailer after the break. (more…)
Check out the latest video of Santiago Calatrava’s transit hub at the World Trade Center site, courtesy of the Wall Street Journal and funded by Brookfield Properties. Back in 2004, Calatrava first unveiled his vision for the transportation hub – a “mega-station” which will include PATH services and 12 subway lines – and it seems that we’ll still have to wait until 2014 for the project to be fully completed. Although certain aspects of the design have been modified since 2004, the overall vision embodies Calatrava’s original conceptual ideas. At $3.2 billion dollars, the station is an expensive, but vital, component of the new WTC complex. Millions of commuters, tourists, and residents pass through the station every day, filtering in and out of one of the most powerful financial districts in the world. The video’s alluring imagery of the main concourse piques our interest as Calatrava has opened the roof to allow natural light to flood the interior. This strategy creates a more transparent and open space, which is unusual for a New York subway station, that can also be enjoyed from above as people in the towers look down upon the hub. We are anxious to wait on the sleek platforms and walk down the commercial connection between the hub and the Winter Garden, but we’ll just have to patiently wait to see the final result!
What do you think of this TED talk by Mitchell Joachim and his discussion about growing homes? The strategy he proposes for creating “green villages”, pleaching – which is where vegetation is fused together to then create desired geometries – makes an architecture that is the landscape. We could potentially “pre-grow” a community, as Joachim puts it, providing homes for millions of people that instead of harming the environment, will just eliminate carbon from the air. Things get even more interesting when Joachim shares how his own studio is growing extracellular matrix from pigs, and can print geometries to make objects. Check out his new wall section idea for a meat house which replaces standard wall construction with fatty cells for insulation and cilia for tackling wind loads. Joachim is doing some interesting things in his studio and we want to know what you think of his ideas.
Check out this video from metacafe of an amazing piece of architecture….an ant hill! After pouring a ton of cement into the ground (actually – make that ten tons) to take to the shape of all the tunnels, a team removed about 40 tons of soil to reach the ant hill. The underground network is an intense system of main tunnels and branching side routes with short connections to decrease circulation time. The planning, as the video states, is so cohesive that it seems to have been designed by an architect. It is phenomenal that thousands of ants could design and construct this system that extends over 50 sqm and 8 meters down. It makes you wonder what other architectural masterpieces are hidden from view…
If you like this, be sure to check out The Truffle, another natural creation, yet this one is man made.
Check out this great video we spotted over at The Architect’s Newspaper Blog by Urban Omnibus. The video’s subject, Mitch McEwan, speaks about Superfront, a space for architectural experimentation located on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. Throughout the video, McEwan emphasizes that the collaboration between the architect and interdisciplinaries is the way for architecture to break out of its isolated shell and affect the broader public. As McEwan points out, architecture cannot become a contained subject that is purely debated and discussed by architects. After all, in order to create places that suit the public, a vital relationship must be fostered between the designer and the community. McEwan also calls to attention the fact that if we want to expand the influence of the architect, we have to, basically, make our “architecture not just about architecture all the time”. We have to create something real and meaningful; our architecture must speak to the site, the local culture, and most importantly, those who will be occupying the space. What do you think of the video and McEwan’s ideas?
In the middle of June, we shared Nicolas Dorval-Bory and Raphaël Bétillon’s Paysages en Exil, an experiential journey that was part of the Imaginez Maintenant in France. We just received word that the project is completed, and we have a new set of photos to share. By viewing the video, one can better understand how the dense mist that blankets visitors on their path from the greenhouse to the ending garden can alter their environment. The “cloud” brings a level of abstraction to those wandering on the path to the garden, almost containing people in this experience and separating them from the rest of the world for the duration of the walk.
Photographs of the project after the break. (more…)
Stefan Krische shared with us his proposal for an information pavilion competition for the Universalmuseum Joanneum, which has it’s 200th anniversary soon. The main points said construction should be made out of wood, it shoul be transportable and it couldn’t cost more than 40.000€.
On the occasion of the Settimana milanese del Design 2010, during which the Japanese architect presented an impressive installation anticipating the new work of architecture, Kengo Kuma himself gave a video-interview on the meaning of the very “CCCWall” (photos here / video here), its conception and tangible character. The image and voice of the Japanese architect allow the viewers to approach the ceramic masterpiece which will be inaugurated in Casalgrande, Reggio Emilia.
3dCom have shared with us an animation of a new bridge that, if built, will become the UK’s tallest structure.
We shared the news of Jean Nouvel’s Serpentine Gallery with you as soon as it was completed at the beginning of July. Today, we’re featuring Jonathan Glancey’s talk with Nouvel about his red ‘sun machine’, the 10th design to grace the Serpentine’s grounds. Nouvel describes the pavilion as a “simple place” that can accommodate the needs of its users, from providing a place to sit down to the amenities for a friendly game of ping-pong.
More about the pavilion after the break. (more…)
A couple of days ago we featured the first BIArch Open Lecture by Yung Ho Chang. The second of the BIArch Open Lectures of the Spring 2010 cycle was delivered on June 11th by Stan Allen, principal of Stan Allen Architect and Dean of the Princeton University School of Architecture (SOA). The lecture was titled “From Object to Field (and back).” Stan Allen will be part of the faculty for the first edition of the Institute’s MBIArch Master’s Degree in Architecture program.
Here’s another great time lapse video from Seppe, this time walking us through the German Pavilion in Shanghai designed by Schmidhuber + Kaindl GmbH (more Shanghai coverage here). Entitled Balancity, the pavilion is designed by Lennart Wiechell and at 6,000 m2, it is the country’s largest structure at any exposition. The building’s geometric mass was conceived as a three dimensional sculpture and the form wraps certain spaces which showcase different aspects of Germany. As you can see in the video, the pavilion includes a central energy source, a factory-like section, an opera and cultural section, and even a park. The areas show Germany’s technological progressions and products meant to help solve urbanization problems, and visitors slowly glide past certain installations on moving walkways. Unlike other countries’ pavilions that seem to work off of one cohesive theme, the German pavilion seems much more “busy” – it is a conglomeration of many different ideas and products with lots to see at each turning corner. What do you think of Balancity?
The Bartlett’s BSc degree programme aims to develop a creative, diverse and rigorous approach to architecture and design from the outset. Year 1 is centred on the design studio and is taught to the year as a whole. Students observe, draw, model and design, based in the School’s design studios and workshop from the first week onwards.
You can now see three videos of the Year 1 program, including a sketchfilm by Brook Lin, who sketched for 13 hours, transformed in a 10 minute film. For more information click here. See the other two videos after the break. (more…)
Yung Ho Chang, founder of Atelier FCJZ, China’s first private architectural practice and head of the Architecture department at the MIT, delivers the first BIArch Open Lecture of the Spring 2010 cycle: “China, Carb, City, China”.
The film highlights the theoretical building’s construction technique, specifically how the shipping container module can be subtracted to create space. What begins as a solid mass is soon defined by the carved out voids that become the main interior spaces.
Watch the video after the break. (more…)
A while ago we told you about Rebuilding a Sustainable Haiti, a symposium on planning strategies that can lead to a more socially, environmentally, and economically sustainable future in Haiti, hosted by the Institute for Urban Design on June 4.
The organization have recently added videos of the entire symposium to their website. You can see the various presentations, panel discussions, and Q&A sessions that took place. The videos are also timestamped to allow viewers to skip ahead to highlights within the individual videos. You can see all the videos right here.
Check out this video we found by Yellow Line Pictures and the 2010 MoMA/MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program. We’ve been documenting SO-IL’s Pole Dance quite extensively and we feel that this video is a good addition to our coverage. We hope the film’s fun take on demonstrating how to use the project will make you even more excited to visit the PS1 schoolyard if you find yourself in the New York area. What do you think of the noise making poles? And, how about the fact that the project can be affected by an iPhone app ?
When you’re interested in the field of architecture, it basically consumes your entire life from how you look at things, to what you read to even what you watch. Over the years, different films have portrayed some of the inner reflections of architects – there’s a piece on Khan entitled My Architect, there’s Maya Lin: A Strong Clear Vision, and even Sketches of Frank Gehry, just to name a few. Now, as Architectural Record reported, there’s a new film to add to your collection. Filmed by Markus Heidingsfelder and Min Tesch, and produced by Arthouse Films, Rem Koolhaas: A Kind of Architect offers a “thought-provoking portrait of the architect.”
More about the video after the break. (more…)
George is also a partner at Pei Cobb Freed & Partners. Given his position as a partner on one of the most recognized firms in the US and as the voice of the architects through the AIA, George has a very good idea on the current state and future of the profession. We did our usual set of questions, but also included two things that I find very important: The importance on pushing IPD and the role of the AIA during the financial crisis (and what lessons can be learned after it). We also recommend you to read our article on his position regarding small business taxes, part of his efforts to improve the way architects practice in the US.
We published each question as a separate video so you can easily watch them. On a side note, there is some audio noise due to a bad mic placement. My fault, won´t happen again.