ArchDaily | Broadcasting Architecture Worldwide

the world's most visited architecture website

Radical Pedagogies: Tibor Weiner and the School of Architecture of University of Chile (1943-1963)

Education is changing fast all over the world. In recent decades, a great number of small local initiatives focused on the individual person, pursuing creativity, curiosity and diversity, have been disrupting through the secular traditional model of education. We have also seen an increasing number of online initiatives which expand access to knowledge to people who didn't have it before - the only requirement is a computer with internet. And the best of it: most of them are open and free. But what about architectural education? Has it experienced the same transformation?

In partnership with Radical Pedagogies, an ongoing multi-year collaborative research project led by Beatriz Colomina with a team of PhD students of the School of Architecture at Princeton University, we will be publishing a series of paradigmatic cases in architectural education. In this article, Daniel Talesnik (PhD Candidate in History and Theory of Architecture at Columbia University) presents the first radical case in Latin America: the reform led by Tibor Weiner at the University of Chile influenced by the principles of Bauhaus.

NLA and Mayor of London Select 10 Winners in "London's Housing Crisis" Competition

Following their selection of 100 ideas to help solve London's housing crisis last month, New London Architecture (NLA) and the Mayor of London have narrowed down the entrants to ten winners which they believe offer exemplary models for the UK capital. The selected designs range from radical architectural solutions, such as Floating Homes and Baca Architects' proposal to create 7,500 new homes in a matter of mere months by floating small abodes in London's canals, to radical economic solutions such as David Kroll's recommendation to separate the value of properties from the value of the land they occupy.

In addition to being displayed alongside the 90 other proposals in an exhibition put on by NLA, these ten projects will be presented to the Greater London Authority to be assessed for their feasibility as real-world solutions to the crisis. Together, these ten designs provide insights into potential solutions - but also the many different causes - of London's housing crisis. Read on for images and descriptions of all ten designs.

20 Free Productivity Apps that Architects Should Know About

Efficiency is the name of the game in the business world. And as any working architect knows, working at an architecture firm is as much about business as it is design - even if in architecture, efficiency can be hard to come by. By using applications that span platforms, though, you can remain efficient no matter where you go.

Following the success of our list of 22 Websites You Didn't Know Were Useful to Architects, we’ve assembled a list of 20 productivity apps to keep you on track. Whether you’re trying to keep your schedule in check, remember your passwords, or simply get the most out of your shrinking sleep time, there’s an app that can maximize your ability to do what you’re doing.

The Power of Photography: How Images Continue to Shape the Built Environment

In a culture dominated by smartphones and Instagram, with estimates that over one trillion photographs will be taken this year alone, it might seem impossible for photographs to make and shape issues in the ways they once did. Despite this, images still steer debates with shocking resiliency and, with luck, become iconic in their own right. As architecture is synonymous with placemaking and cultural memory, it is only logical that images of the built environment can have lasting effects on the issues of architecture and urbanism. It's never been easier for photographs to gain exposure than they can today, and with social media and civilian journalism, debates have never started more quickly.

Why Old is the New Green

When it comes to sustainable architecture, the focus has historically been on designing buildings to reduce emissions. In recent years though, this focus has expanded to take into account the full life-cycle impact of a building and its components. But is this enough? In this article from ArchitectureBoston's Fall 2015 Issue, originally titled "Old is the new green," Jean Carroon FAIA and Ben Carlson argue that not only are most green buildings not designed with the full life-cycle of their materials in mind, but that even those which are they rely on a payback period that we simply can't afford. The solution? A dose of "radical common sense" in the form of preservation.

“Radical common sense” is the term a fellow preservation architect uses to describe a mindset that values repair over replacement. Why is this radical? Because, while reuse of water bottles and grocery bags is rapidly gaining ground, reuse of buildings and building components is not. And it’s not hard to see why: It is almost always less expensive and easier to replace a whole building and almost any of its elements — doors, windows, light fixtures — than to repair and reuse. Replacement also can offer measurable and consistent quality with product certifications and warranties not available for repaired items. Theoretically, a new building can ensure “high performance” and significantly reduce the environmental impact of building operations while creating healthier spaces. What’s not to like?

Maybe the old saying applies: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. We want and need “sustainability.” We want and need buildings, towns, and cities that are not bad for the environment nor the people who live and work in them. But is “new” the solution or the problem?

Video: Neri Oxman Discusses How Design is Technology Plus Biology

Architect and designer Neri Oxman, head of the Mediated Matter research group at MIT and developer of the “Material Ecology” approach, has given a TED Talk on design as the intersection of technology and biology. Oxman begins her talk by introducing the juxtaposition of left- and right-brain thinking in the design world, noting that her work seeks to marry the two by making design less about assembly of parts, and more about growth. Learn more about Oxman’s distinct work and views by watching the video above.

HOK Designs Apple's Newest Silicon Valley Campus

Plans for Apple's newest California "spaceship" has been unveiled. Named after its bordering streets, Central & Wolfe hopes to transform a 1970s office park in Sunnyvale into a "futuristic office campus." The 19 acre site, located just five miles from Apple's main Cupertino campus (currently underway), was designed by HOK and is currently under review.

If built, it will replace nine aging buildings with a clover-like design comprised of three interconnected structures - each rising six stories.

Critics Take On "The State of the Art of Architecture" in Chicago

Last week, the Chicago Architecture Biennial opened to over 31,000 visitors and much fanfare, and for good reason - it is the largest architecture event on the continent since the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, featuring over one hundred exhibitors from over thirty countries. With a theme as ambiguous as "The State of the Art of Architecture," and with the hope of making the biennial, according to directors Joseph Grima and Sarah Herda, "a space for debate, dialog and the production of new ideas," the event was sure to generate equally wide-ranging opinions. Read on to find out what the critics had to say about the Biennial.

Interview with Ensamble Studio: "The New Generation Will Not Accept Standard Solutions. We Need an Entirely Different City"

Founded in 2000 by Antón García-Abril and Débora Mesa, Ensamble Studio represents that rare and highly sought-after ideal of 21st century architecture: a firm whose work is as intellectually rigorous as it is visceral and viral, with work that is equally at home in both the 2010 Venice Biennale and on the popular website Viralnova. In this interview - the first installment in his column for ArchDaily "City of Ideas" - Vladimir Belogolovsky visits the studio's founders at their unconventional home, the Hemeroscopium House in Madrid, to talk about their experimental approach to design and their conception of the city of the future.

Vladimir Belogolovsky: Let’s start with a question that you would want to ask yourselves.

Antón García-Abril: What moves you?

Débora Mesa: What is architecture for you?

Big Bang Towers, Miami. Image Courtesy of Ensamble Studio The Truffle. Image © Roland Halbe SGAE Headquarters in Santiago de Compostela. Image © Roland Halbe SGAE Headquarters in Santiago de Compostela. Image © Roland Halbe

15 Must-See Installations at the Chicago Architecture Biennial

What is the state of architecture today? What motivates different architects from around the world to improve the conditions of the planet's inhabitants? If you find yourself in the City of Chicago in the next few months, you will be submerged in a discussion of what architecture is, and what it can and should be in the future.  

The ArchDaily team spent the end of last week at the opening of the Chicago Architecture Biennial, an anticipated celebration of architecture at a scale previously unseen in North America. Supported in large part by the city of Chicago itself, Mayor Rahm Emanuel expressed that he wanted his city "to be dead center" in a conversation about how architecture can positively impact cities around the world. In response, curators Joseph Grima and Sarah Herda reviewed the work of over 500 architects worldwide and selected over 100 architects from more than 30 countries to "demonstrate that architecture matters at any scale."

Under the title "The State of the Art of Architecture," Grima and Herda looked to the architects themselves to reveal not one theme in particular, but to highlight the built forms, strategies and speculations that emphasize the "agency of the architect." Spread over seven venues (The Chicago Cultural Center, Millennium Park, Stony Island Arts Bank, Graham Foundation, 72 E. Randolph, Water Tower Gallery and IIT), world-renowned, well-known architects exhibit projects alongside up-and-coming instigators. Some of the installations are serious, others are more light-hearted and provocative; on the whole, however, they provide an inviting global snapshot of the challenges facing architecture production today. 

Is There a European Identity in Architecture?

“There is a certain tradition, history, and continuity that you can read in European architecture”
- Spela Videcnik, OFIS arhitekti

A product of context and history, Europe has influenced the architecture world in a way that perhaps no other continent has. The continent is the topic of the latest video from the Fundació Mies van der Rohe, produced in relation to their European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture, in which prize-nominated architects from 16 European cities are interviewed on what they believe brings them together, and what makes them different.

As a US citizen who has previously lived in Europe for two years, I was struck by the essential question prompted by the video: “Is there a European identity in architecture?” And if so, what exactly is it? To try to answer this question, I sat down with ArchDaily’s managing editor Rory Stott - a Brit - to debate differing perspectives.

2015 Prize Winner - Philharmonic Hall Szczecin / Barozzi / Veiga. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu Gym Hall TNW / NL Architects. Image © Luuk Kramer Metropol Parasol / J. Mayer H + Arup. Image © Javier Orive 2013 Prize Winner - Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre / Henning Larsen Architects & Batteriid Architects. Image Courtesy of Henning Larsen Architects

What It’s Like to Be an Architectural Consultant for Assassin’s Creed II

In the following article, originally published in Spanish on MetaSpace as "Assassin's Creed 2 - Arquitectos que hacen videojuegos"(Architects Who Make Video Games), Spanish architect Manuel Saga interviews María Elisa Navarro, a Professor of Architectural History and Theory, who worked with Ubisoft Montreal as a historical consultant on the design team for the video game Assassin's Creed II, from the first rough drafts up to its launch in November of 2009.

While getting her PhD at McGill, María Elisa Navarro was a consultant for the entire development process of the game as part of a research project between the university and Ubisoft Montreal. She worked on the project in complete secrecy with "a small team of 20 people and then later more than 400 in a huge basement in Montreal." Navarro worked on everything from late 15th century wardrobes to the correction of architectural errors in the recreated cities, going over the look and ornamental details of the buildings.

"Sometimes, for gameplay purposes, they needed to have walls with a lot of texture so that Ezio could climb them, but when the time came to lay those parts out, there were some inaccuracies. For example, I remember a balcony with a wrought iron railing that couldn't have existed in that time period. I was responsible for detecting those issues," Navarro noted in her conversation with MetaSpace.

Read the full interview with Navarro after the break.

Ezio Auditore da Firenze jumping from four story buildings. Image © Ubisoft Montreal Scene from Assassin’s Creed II. Image © Ubisoft Montreal Carnival in Venice: wardrobes and masks. Image © Ubisoft Montreal Welcome (sic) to Venecia. Image © Ubisoft Montreal

BIG Designs New Apartment Building in Stockholm

Oscar Properties has unveiled a collaborative project with BIG that will bring 140 new apartments to Stockholm's Gärdesfältet area. The project, 79 & Park will be comprised of a mountainous stack of prefabricated wood-clad units that are designed to "harmonize" with the neighboring Royal National City Park. Lush terraces, connecting to units that range from one to six bedrooms, aim to soften the "boundary" between park and building.

Are 3D Renderings Deceiving Architects and Clients?

"The Rendering View," is a monthly column on ArchDaily by PiXate Creative founder Jonn Kutyla which focuses on hints, tips, and wider discussions about architectural rendering.

Digital architectural renderings and their hand-drawn counterparts both serve the purpose of allowing clients and investors to envision a building or space well-before ground has even been broken on a project.

But while renderings can provide amazingly accurate depictions of buildings, a rendering done in the wrong style can create unrealistic expectations for the end client, leaving them disappointed with the architect and the builders, creating tension and distrust. For that reason, among others, many people in the architectural profession have condemned the use of renderings, especially digital renderings. However, renderings are simply tools and nothing more; if you ask two separate rendering artists to create a rendering for your project, the results would also depend upon the skill and vision of that person. Today I am going to show you that when used correctly, digital architectural renderings should be an architect’s best friend.

6 Essential Time Management Tips for Architects

It's a familiar story: with so much work to do and architecture's client-focused nature, many architects struggle to divide up their time effectively. But did you know that there are some simple time management techniques that might appeal to your architect mindset? In this post originally published on ArchSmarter, Michael Kilkelly shares some techniques such as designing your time and learning to effectively single-task that might help you to take control.

Has this ever happened to you?

You get to work and review your to-do list. You’ve got a deadline in a few days and you’re ready to get some stuff done. But before you dive in, you take a quick look at your email. In your inbox you find an email from a client asking for a quick study of one area of the building. “I’ll take care of this right away” you say to yourself. “It shouldn’t take long.”

Five hours, three phone calls and six emails later, you reply back to the client with the information they requested. It’s now early afternoon and you’re ready to get to work. But you take another quick look at your email and see that the client is now asking for you to look at another option. Two hours, one phone call and three emails later, you email back. “Thanks,” they reply. “Let’s just stick to the original option.”

It’s now early evening and you haven’t gotten a single thing done off your to-do list. You still have a deadline in a few days and there’s a stack of drawings next to you just begging to be reviewed. Looks like another late night and vending machine dinner.

How can you avoid a similar fate? Here are 6 essential time management tips for the busy architect.

ArchDaily Readers Debate: Superstar Architects, 3D Printing, Floating Farms and More

In the introduction to her essay "Losing My Illusions About Open-Source Criticism" in Volume's 2013 edition "Critical," Naomi Stead writes: "There was a time not so long ago when many of us, myself included, thought that a brave new world of architectural commentary and criticism was about to open, by virtue of the democratizing capacities of web 2.0." She goes on to describe her former hope that a diverse and networked discussion would overthrow "the tyranny of the cultural gatekeepers" in the same way that Rotten Tomatoes or TripAdvisor revolutionized reviews of film or travel destinations, respectively. But she concludes: "By and large the blogs didn't eventuate, the comments didn't come, or if they did, they were likely to be in the form of a flippant one-liner or a nasty unfounded attack."

Since I read Stead's piece, this attitude has concerned me. Are we really ready to dig the grave of collective criticism? What steps, if any, have been taken to remedy this situation? At ArchDaily, we believe there is still hope for the comments section, and I've written about the importance that our readers play in shaping architectural culture before - we even consider this collective criticism an important part of our editorial strategy, as implied by my introduction to Mark Hogan's article about shipping container housing. That's why in the discussion in the comments of Hogan's article, Hisham's suggestion that it would "be interesting to 'post-post' a second comment article... so that your readers get hinted to the broader public discussion" caught my eye. It's an idea that we've had before, but the timing was never right... until now.

The Apple and the Leaf: On How in Architecture There Are No Indisputable Truths

For many centuries, the demands of gravity appeared to give architecture one requirement that was largely unquestionable: that structures must rise vertically. However, with the advent of steel it was revealed that this limit had not been provided by gravity but by our own limited technologies. In this text, originally published by Domus Magazine in Italian and shared with ArchDaily by the author, Alberto Campo Baeza reflects on the architectural freedom offered by steel structures and the arbitrariness they bring to architectural space.

Isaac Newton was resting under an apple-tree in his garden when an apple fell on his head. Being endowed with such a privileged head and thoughts faster than lightning, he rose forthwith from his afternoon nap and set about calculating the acceleration of gravity.

Had Sir Isaac Newton had a little more patience and had he taken his time in getting to his feet, he might have noticed how, following the apple, a few leaves also fell from that same apple-tree, and while they fell, they did so in quite a different manner to the apple.

"I am writing this text in honor of the architect Valerio Olgiati, after seeing his very beautiful house in Portugal". Image © Archive Olgiati Leutschenbach School / Christian Kerez. Image Courtesy of Christian Kerez Rufo House / Alberto Campo Baeza. "But I, who have always defended orthogonal structures, also argue that structures do not always necessarily have to be orthogonal". Image © Javier Callejas Apartment Building on Forsterstrasse / Christian Kerez. From the architect's description: "The concrete wall slices are placed one above the other, suspended under each other or cantilevered. They form the loadbearing structure... their structurally essential organization remains hidden behind the appearance of a free, open-ended design". Image © Walter Mair

25 Architecture Instagram Feeds to Follow Now (Part III)

In 2013 and 2014, we published two posts rounding up some of the best architectural Instagrammers out there. Now, with the #ArchDaily hashtag recently surpassing 500,000 posts across the whole of Instagram, we thought it was high time for an update. Our latest list, of course, includes many very talented photographers that are sure to fill your stream with great architectural images. Also included though are a number of photographers who fill more niche areas of interest: from updates on major New York construction projects from field_condition, to updates from filmmaker tomaskoolhaas as he creates his documentary on his father Rem; and from dailyoverview's captivating images of our Earth from above, to sejkko's charming photographs of Portugal's "Lonely Houses," there's something to interest everyone.