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In Defense of the Emoji Building and Architecture Being Fun, Sometimes

09:30 - 27 July, 2017
In Defense of the Emoji Building and Architecture Being Fun, Sometimes, © Bart van Hoek
© Bart van Hoek

It’s always fascinating when architecture breaks the bounds of the profession and becomes a topic of debate in the wider profession. Fortunately, thanks to the internet, there is no shortage of such occasions: whether it’s the click-seeking cluster of articles that found a client for an improbable cliff-hanging design or the forums that suddenly decided that most modern architecture looks “evil,” the viral trend treadmill ensures that there are plenty of opportunities for the layperson to offer their two cents on the output of our profession.

The flavor of the summer of 2017 is Attika Architekten’s Emoticon Facade. This thoroughly sensible and polite building has caught the public’s attention thanks to its inclusion of emoji-shaped decorative additions. While most of the internet has responded with heart-eyes, there’s no shortage of people for whom these carved emojis are a clear indication that architecture, and by extension society, and by extension all of life as we know it, is doomed, never to recover. Such an opinion is legitimized by articles like this one in Wired by Sam Lubell, who in reporting on the building found two experts willing to take a big old smiley poop on Attika Architekten’s work. Given the role that these experts play in directing the conversation among the public, their arguments bear analysis.

A Success Story of Architecture and Art in One of Mexico's Most Violent Cities

09:30 - 26 July, 2017
A Success Story of Architecture and Art in One of Mexico's Most Violent Cities, Cortesía de Jardín Botánico de Culiacán
Cortesía de Jardín Botánico de Culiacán

What becomes of public space once violence is normalized in a city? Though it is naive to believe that architecture by itself can present absolute solutions to complex social and political issues, it is also important to explore and understand its possibilities as an agent of social change, however small.

How Architecture Affects Your Brain: The Link Between Neuroscience and the Built Environment

09:30 - 25 July, 2017
How Architecture Affects Your Brain: The Link Between Neuroscience and the Built Environment, <a href='http://www.archdaily.com/533664/ad-classics-thorncrown-chapel-e-fay-jones'>Thorncrown Chapel / E. Fay Jones</a>. Image © Randall Connaughton
Thorncrown Chapel / E. Fay Jones. Image © Randall Connaughton

This article was originally published by Common Edge as "Sarah Williams Goldhagen on How the Brain Works and What It Means for Architecture."

Sarah Williams Goldhagen has taken a big swing. Her new book, Welcome to Your World: How the Built Environment Shapes Our Lives, is nothing less than a meticulously constructed argument for completely rethinking our way of looking at architecture. A longtime critic for The New Republic and a former lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Goldhagen has taken a deep dive into the rapidly advancing field of cognitive science, in an attempt to link it to a new human-centered approach to the built world. The book is both an examination of the science behind cognition (and its relevance to architecture), and a polemic against the stultifying status quo. Recently I talked to the author, who was busy preparing for a year-long trip around the world, about the book, the science, and the state of architectural education.

Are Your Revit Skills Up to Scratch? Find Out With This Handy Guide

09:30 - 24 July, 2017
Are Your Revit Skills Up to Scratch? Find Out With This Handy Guide

When applying for architecture jobs, it's often necessary to self-evaluate your skill at various tasks. However, with many of these tasks--especially software--it can be difficult to give an accurate assessment since you often don't know what you don't know about the skill. This article, originally published by ArchSmarter as "Where Are You on the Path to Revit Mastery?" will help you come to an objective assessment of your skill level with one of the most complex and powerful pieces of software available.

BAM! I shook my head and peeled my sore body off the mat. “Good,” the instructor said, “Now try it again but with a little more force.” My partner grabbed my arm, twisted his hips and threw me to the mat again. BAM! Fortunately, I remembered to tuck in my chin so my head didn’t slam against the mat.

“Alright, a little better that time”, the instructor commented. “Do it another ten times then take a break. You both need to master this throw for your upcoming belt test.” Just as I started to groan, thinking about how sore I was going to be tomorrow, my partner grabbed my wrist again and tossed me over his hip. BAM!

The UK’s Best Contemporary Architecture Celebrated in New Stamp Series

12:30 - 21 July, 2017
The UK’s Best Contemporary Architecture Celebrated in New Stamp Series, Courtesy of Royal Mail
Courtesy of Royal Mail

The UK’s postals service company, the Royal Mail, has launched a new special stamp series celebrating 10 buildings “that represent the renaissance of contemporary architecture in the UK of recent years,” including Zaha Hadid Architects’ London Aquatics Center, Herzog & de Meuron’s Switch House addition to the Tate Modern and Mecanoo’s Birmingham Library.

Tate Modern Switch House / Herzog & de Meuron. Image Courtesy of Royal Mail The Eden Project / Grimshaw Architects. Image Courtesy of Royal Mail Everyman Theatre / Haworth Tompkins. Image Courtesy of Royal Mail Giants Causeway Visitor Centre / Heneghan & Peng Architects. Image Courtesy of Royal Mail + 11

When Architecture and Tourism Meet: La Grande Motte's Pyramids by the Seaside

09:30 - 21 July, 2017
When Architecture and Tourism Meet: La Grande Motte's Pyramids by the Seaside, © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ville-architecturale-de-la-Grande-Motte.JPG'>Wikimedia user Jjoulie</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a>
© Wikimedia user Jjoulie licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Given a chance to realize the architect’s dream of creating his own utopian city from a blank slate, French architect Jean Balladur was inspired by lost civilizations of the past. His designs recall the architecture of grand Mayan ruins with some added flair from the 1960s, all in the form of a seaside resort village in southern France, La Grande Motte. Balladur devoted nearly 30 years to his life’s work, which today welcomes over 2 million tourists annually.

"La Grande Pyramide". Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Grande_motte_02.jpg'>Wikimedia user Alain Caraco</a> licensed under <a href='http://https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> "Le Temple du Soleil". Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Temple_du_soleil_Grande-Motte_059.jpg'>Wikimedia user Dinkley</a> licensed under <a href='http://https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/alexbaranov/5231503058/'>Flickr user alexbaranov</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Public domain image <a href='https://pixabay.com/en/modern-architecture-france-beach-620035/'>via Pixabay user Jackmac34</a> + 16

Alejandro Aravena on Moving Architecture "From the Specificity of the Problem to the Ambiguity of the Question"

09:30 - 20 July, 2017
Alejandro Aravena on Moving Architecture "From the Specificity of the Problem to the Ambiguity of the Question", © Álvaro González
© Álvaro González

This interview with the winner of the 2016 Pritzker Prize, Alejandro Aravena, was published last year in Issue 31 of Revista AOA, a Spanish-language magazine published by the Association of Architecture Offices of Chile. The interview was conducted by the editorial committee of Revista AOA—represented by Yves Besançon, Francisca Pulido and Tomás Swettand is accompanied by photographs by Álvaro González. Aravena's openness and warmth allowed them to deliver a profound questionnaire about his thoughts and architectural projections, especially in light of Aravena's Venice Biennale which took place last year.

FR-EE's Museo Soumaya Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu

04:00 - 20 July, 2017
FR-EE's Museo Soumaya Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu, © Laurian Ghinitoiu
© Laurian Ghinitoiu

The Museo Soumaya, which opened to the public in 2011, is one of the more striking cultural landmarks on the skyline of Mexico City. Designed by FR-EE / Fernando Romero Enterprise, the space accommodates and displays a private art collection of nearly 70,000 works spanning the 15th to the mid-20th Centuries, including the world’s largest private collection of Auguste Rodin sculptures. In this photo-essay, photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu has turned his lens to this – a rotated rhomboid clad in a skin of 16,000 hexagonal mirrored-steel panels.

© Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu + 38

A Virtual Look Inside the Case Study House #3 by William W Wurster & Theodore Bernardi

09:30 - 19 July, 2017

The third Arts & Architecture Case Study House has a noticeably different sensibility to that of many of the other designs in the series. While equally engaged with the goal of maximizing enjoyment of the natural surroundings, in this design the architects show more concern for privacy and protection.

The approach from the street is somewhat forbidding; aluminum siding presents an impenetrable front. Besides the front and garage doors, the small, high kitchen windows are the only visible openings, though it is possible to peer over the fence of grape stakes into the children’s private garden.

A Letter to the Parents of Prospective Architecture School Students

09:30 - 18 July, 2017
A Letter to the Parents of Prospective Architecture School Students, via Common Edge
via Common Edge

This article was originally published by Common Edge as "A Letter to Prospective Architecture School Parents."

Is your child suddenly wearing angular clothes and pretending to need glasses and talking about things like maylines (sorry, forgot we’re not in the 90s anymore) and 3d-printing and the power of the research lab to change the world studio? Has your child started rejecting your Frank Lloyd Wright photo books and started asking for that super sweet punched-out Chora L Works thing that makes no sense to you because there are literally holes in it? Has your child refused to go on anymore holiday house tours because, seriously mom, this is what I do all day at school?

Then congratulations! You now have an architecture school student child. And as much as we have—and need—the framework of, say, Adult Children of Alcoholics, just as deeply do we need a framework for Adult Parents of Architecture Students. You may be panicking right now. You may be wondering why Bessie is suddenly hating prints (unless she’s wearing all the prints at the same time); why Mark is rolling his eyes when you say there’s a nice-looking house for sale down the block. Rest assured, these are phases that will pass.

I would like to offer you the Phases of Architectural Education, so that you may feel calmer as you embark on this new journey:

Fabrizio Barozzi on Barozzi/Veiga's Obsessions, Process, and Position Within the Architectural Landscape

04:00 - 18 July, 2017
Fabrizio Barozzi on Barozzi/Veiga's Obsessions, Process, and Position Within the Architectural Landscape, Fine Arts Museum / Barozzi/Veiga. Image © Simon Menges
Fine Arts Museum / Barozzi/Veiga. Image © Simon Menges

In this episode of GSAPP Conversations, Fabrizio Barozzi—who co-founded the Barcelona-based practice Barozzi/Veiga with Alberto Veiga in 2004—discusses the practice's process and obsessions, including how they position themselves in the architectural landscape and why they are sceptical of defining their own architectural "language". For Barozzi, research and an engagement with history are integral to the way his practice works operates.

11 Things You Learn at Your First “Real” Architecture Job (Lessons from a Recent Graduate)

09:30 - 17 July, 2017
© Megan Fowler
© Megan Fowler

You did it! You finished those grueling years of architecture school, perfected your portfolio and your interview pitch, and you landed your first job with an architecture firm. Everyone told you that working in a firm would be lightyears different from what you were used to doing in school, but until you get out there yourself, there is really no way to know just what that might entail. Once you’ve tackled life’s bigger questions about surviving outside of architecture school, you still have to learn to function in a day-to-day job. The learning curve is steep and it can certainly be overwhelming, but you’ve made it this far and there are a few lessons and skills you are sure to gain quickly as you start your career.

7 Game of Thrones Locations You Can Visit in Real Life

09:30 - 16 July, 2017
7 Game of Thrones Locations You Can Visit in Real Life, © <a href='http://www.geograph.ie/photo/5221846'>Geograph user Colin Park</a> licensed under <a href='http://https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a>
© Geograph user Colin Park licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Is your life lacking in dragons? Do you long for the excitement and danger of a constant, treacherous struggle for governing power? If you find yourself simply biding your time waiting for new seasons of Game of Thrones to air (or for George R.R. Martin to finally write another book) one option is to spend some time traveling to the real-life locations used in the filming of the show! From Iceland to Morocco, the show’s creators have traveled all over the world to bring the mythical world Martin describes in his novels to life on screen. While much of the filming is done in a studio, and of course there’s plenty of CGI involved, many of the landscapes and buildings seen throughout the show’s 6 seasons are real places open to the public. We can’t promise you dragons or control of the Iron Throne, but what you will get are some spectacular sights that might just make you feel like a real Westerosi.

In honor of the show’s seventh season beginning later today, here’s a list of 7 Game of Thrones filming locations you can visit! (This list is mostly spoiler-free, but you may want to read with caution if you’re not caught up!)

Castle Ward: Winterfell. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Castle_Ward_Castle,_June_2011_(01).JPG'>Wikimedia user Ardfern</a> licensed under <a href='http://https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Dubrovnik City Walls: King's Landing. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Casco_viejo_de_Dubrovnik,_Croacia,_2014-04-13,_DD_18.JPG'>Wikimedia user Diego Delso</a> licensed under <a href='http://https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/'>CC BY-SA 4.0</a> Stradun, Dubrovnik: King's Landing. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Main_street-Dubrovnik-2.jpg'>Wikimedia user László Szalai</a> licensed under <a href='http://https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Alcázar of Seville: Sunspear and the Water Gardens. Image © Megan Fowler + 13

Three Principles of Architecture as Revealed by Italo Calvino's 'Invisible Cities'

08:00 - 15 July, 2017
Three Principles of Architecture as Revealed by Italo Calvino's 'Invisible Cities', Fedora. Image © Karina Puente Frantzen
Fedora. Image © Karina Puente Frantzen

Ah, Invisible Cities. For many of us, Italo Calvino’s 1972 novel reserves a dear place in our libraries, architectural or otherwise, for its vivid recollections of cities and their curiosities, courtesy of a certain Marco Polo as he narrates to Kublai Khan. And while the book doesn’t specifically fit the bill in terms of conventional architectural writing, it resists an overall categorisation at all, instead superseding the distillation of the cities it contains into distinct boundaries and purposes.

For though there is a certain kind of sensory appeal that is captured in the details of places, the real beauty of Invisible Cities lies in the masking of underlying notions of time, identity and language within these details – a feat that is skillfully accomplished by both Marco and Calvino. With this in mind, here are three of many such principles, as revealed by the layered narrative of Invisible Cities.

How Sustainable Is Apple Park's Tree-Covered Landscape, Really?

09:30 - 14 July, 2017
How Sustainable Is Apple Park's Tree-Covered Landscape, Really?, Courtesy of Duncan Sinfield
Courtesy of Duncan Sinfield

This article was originally published by The Architect's Newspaper as "How green are Apple’s carbon-sequestering trees really?"

Apple is planting a forest in Cupertino, California. When the company’s new headquarters is completed later this year, 8,000 trees, transplanted from nurseries around the state of California, will surround the donut-shaped building by Foster + Partners. The trees are meant to beautify Apple’s 176 acres (dubbed Apple Park). But they will also absorb atmospheric carbon.

That’s a good thing. Carbon, in greenhouse gases, is a major cause of global warming. Almost everything humans do, including breathing, releases carbon into the atmosphere. Plants, on the other hand, absorb carbon, turning it into foliage, branches, and roots—a process known as sequestration.

Model-Making in Miniature: Ali Alamedy's Nostalgic and Painstakingly Precise Tiny Worlds

04:00 - 14 July, 2017
Model-Making in Miniature: Ali Alamedy's Nostalgic and Painstakingly Precise Tiny Worlds, Ali Alamedy's miniature worlds. Image via The New York Times
Ali Alamedy's miniature worlds. Image via The New York Times

Although trained as a Control and Computer Engineer, Ali Alamedy has since turned his hand to manufacturing scaled, miniature dioramas. After being forced to leave his home in Iraq, he and his family are now based in Turkey – and it is here that he has honed a skill in constructing these tiny, intricate worlds from a broad range of ordinary materials. All scaled at 1:12, these complex and often hyper-realistic models are inspired by the environments around him, complemented by his experiences and, of course, his imagination. In this study of Alamedy's work, ArchDaily asks: how do you do it?

"Italian Façade". Image © Ali Alamedy "New York City". Image © Ali Alamedy "Kid's Room". Image © Ali Alamedy "Pipes Warehouse". Image © Ali Alamedy + 24

The Best Student Design-Build Projects Worldwide 2017

09:30 - 13 July, 2017

For the third year in a row, in June we asked our student readers to submit the design-build projects which they have recently worked on. And, for the third year in a row, the response we received was excellent. With hundreds of submissions to ArchDaily, ArchDaily Brasil and all four ArchDaily en Español sites, in 2017 our readers gave us more projects to choose from than ever before; we’ve narrowed this selection down to bring you the 34 best student design-build projects around the world from the past year.

© ICD/ITKE © Philip Tidwell © Monica Nouwens Courtesy of Rick Sommerfeld + 172

A Different Kind of Sharing Economy: How the REAL Foundation is Building Social Equity Into the Nuts and Bolts of Architecture

04:00 - 13 July, 2017
A Different Kind of Sharing Economy: How the REAL Foundation is Building Social Equity Into the Nuts and Bolts of Architecture, Interior design by REAL Foundation for Common Stock: Sharing as Luxury, the fourth tower in the Derivative Architecture series. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation
Interior design by REAL Foundation for Common Stock: Sharing as Luxury, the fourth tower in the Derivative Architecture series. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation

The Chicago Architecture Biennial is the largest platform for contemporary architecture in North America, and the blog invites designers and other contributors to express their perspectives in a range of formats. The 2017 exhibition, entitled Make New History, will be free and open to the public between September 16, 2017 and January 6, 2018.

Courtesy of Real Foundation
Courtesy of Real Foundation

Chicago Architecture Biennial (CAB): We want to start by noting that REAL foundation, which stands for "Real Estate Architecture Laboratory," is not a typical design practice. You design spaces, but you also make books, exhibitions, a magazine, and tools for advocacy. Why?

Jack Self (JS): The REAL foundation is an unusual model for an architectural firm. We're a normal architectural practice, but we are governed by a very strict set of conditions that allow us to pursue certain political and economic ideologies. We see the social role of the architect, as well as the structure of the architectural firm, as a subject for design as much as buildings.

The Ingot, a proposal by the REAL Foundation for The Ingot, a gold-plated tower sited next to London Bridge, and designed to house low-paid, precarious workers. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation Interior view of Default Grey, a proposal for a domestic tower that provides inhabitants autonomy from debt and enough anonymity to shield them from surveillance. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation Installation view of Home Economics, the British Pavilion curated by Jack Self with Finn Williams and Shumi Bose at the 2016 Venice Biennale. Each room in the pavilion addressed a different facet of the contemporary crisis of living. Photo by Cristiano Corte. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation Installation view of Home Economics, the British Pavilion curated by Jack Self with Finn Williams and Shumi Bose at the 2016 Venice Biennale. Each room in the pavilion addressed a different facet of the contemporary crisis of living. Photo by Cristiano Corte. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation + 6