UK start-up company The Photon Project has announced its plan to launch the Photon Space, the world’s first intelligent all-glass living unit. Motivated by the major positive benefits that natural light can have on our energy levels, sleep pattern and overall health, the goal of the Photon Space is to create a dwelling that allows its occupants a maximum connection to the outside world.
Posited as an ideal addition to hotels, spas, health retreats, medical centres, and other resorts, the skin of the Photon Space is made of smart glass supported by curving glass beams, switching from transparent to opaque in seconds with the help of an iPhone app.
Applications have opened for the Australian Institute of Architects’ 2015 Droga Architect in Residence program. The Droga residency, one of only a few architectural residencies worldwide, offers successful applicants the opportunity to engage with the Australian architecture community over a 12 week period. Submissions are invited from practitioners based outside Australia for residencies available between June and December 2015. More information, after the break.
Kjellander + Sjöberg has won first place in a land transfer competition for Uppsala Municipality. Tasked with the transformation of a city block next to Uppsala’s central square, the architects created an inviting complex of timber apartments surrounding a communal courtyard. Designed to foster a sense of community among residents, the Rosendal complex is, as the project’s architects state, “full of character and unlike anything else.”
Conceived as a natural extension of the existing pathways at Montreal’s Botanical Garden, Saucier + Perrotte architectes’ proposal for the “Espace Pour la Vie Glass Pavilion” competition was envisioned as an immersive glass shelter “eroded” within a lush landscape. The architects, who were also responsible for designing the garden’s 2001 First Nation Garden Pavilion, were among the competition finalists. You can learn more about their proposal, after the break.
In conjunction with the Contemporary Morocco exhibit (Le Maroc Contemporain) at the Jean Nouvel-designed Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris, a giant tent has been constructed on the plaza in front of the building. Designed by Tarik Oualalou and Linna Choi of KILO, the tent harmonizes contemporary design and technical innovation with traditional fabrication methods. Constructed from more than 650-square-meters of camel and goat wool woven by female cooperatives in the Saharan desert, the tent serves as an urban landmark and a symbol for the Contemporary Morocco exhibit. The rhythm and scale of the tent’s silhouette renders a topographic dimension to the structure which pays homage to the nomadic traditions of southern Morocco.
Published in London in 1884, Edwin Abbot’s amusing short novel Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions is a biting critique of Victorian social hierarchies and a canonical work of scientific and theological commentary. It is also a remarkable spatial allegory, challenging conceptions of visual reality and postulating on the existence of unfamiliar dimensions that are obscured by the learned limits of our own knowledge. The book’s narrator, A Square, lives in a two-dimensional planar world inhabited by geometric shapes that are stratified into social classes based on the number of their sides. Polygons constitute the highest classes, while the laboring isosceles triangles exist only above the women, straight lines condemned to tirelessly wiggle back and forth to make themselves visible. One day, A Square receives a strange visitor—a Sphere—from a three-dimensional place called Spaceland, who reveals to him the limits of his conceived reality. Posing enduring questions of knowledge, reason, and faith, this deeply architectural novel is simultaneously among the most entertaining articulations of a phenomenological approach to our sensory understanding of space.
The first three sections of the book are excerpted below.
The UK Government has announced £140 million in public funds will be granted to the planned “Olympicopolis“ cultural quarter in East London, in the former 2012 Olympic Park. The museum and educational district is planned to feature a new outpost for the Victoria and Albert (V&A) Museum and Sadler’s Wells theatre, and a new campus for the University of the Arts London.
The site, which is just North of Zaha Hadid‘s Aquatics Centre, is the focus of an ongoing design competition which reportedly attracted almost 1,000 expressions of interest in the contest’s pre-registration phase. The winner of the competition will be announced in March.
“Be very sensitive to where you are, in what times and in what parts of the world, and how that constitutes the artistic practice,” says Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson in this recent video from Louisiana Channel. In Advice to the Young, Eliasson deliberates on creative practice, urging young artists to take risks and produce meaningful work. “Just because you think about a work of art,” says Eliasson, “it is not necessarily a work of art.” Most recently, Eliasson has made headlines for his immersive exhibition Riverbed at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art which explores the intersection between nature and the built environment. Revered as one of the world’s leading sculptural and installation artists, Eliasson is adamant that the practice of working with art remains to be “very fierce, very strong and very robust.”