Should Architects Follow a Code of Ethics?

Pelican Bay State Prison © Jelson25

In the latest episode of his 99% Invisible podcast, Roman Mars bravely takes on a very sensitive topic: the design of prisons which contain execution chambers or house prisoners in solitary confinement. More specifically, the podcast discusses whether architects have a moral duty to decline these commissions and whether, as a profession, architecture should have a code of ethics which prevents registered architects from participating in such designs.

He compares architecture to the medical profession, where the American Medical Association imposes an ethical code on its members which all but forbids them from taking part in execution by lethal injection, based on medicine’s general aim of preservation, rather than destruction of life. The American Institute of Architect’s ethical code is both generic and meager in comparison: “Members should uphold human rights in all their professional endeavors.”

Modular Box / SPSS Design

© Ricardo Oliveira

Architects: SPSS Design
Architect In Charge: José Simões
Area: 110 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Ricardo Oliveira

IE Master in Architectural Design Lecture Series: Josep Lluís Mateo

The IE Master in Architectural Design as part of the Lecture Series 2013 in conjunction with the Círculo de Bellas Artes presents “Lugar, tiempo y materia. Obra reciente, 2010 – 2013″, by Josep Lluís Mateo.

In this lecture he will manifest his continuing interest in demonstrating the links between construction, research, intellectual development and the pragmatism required to make architecture a reality, as expressed in his recent work.

Josep Lluís Mateo is currently Professor of Architecture and Projects, ETH-Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule/ Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (2002-present). Academic Advisor, Master in Architectural Design, School of Architecture and Design (2012-present). Vice President of Arquiberia (International Association of Spanish Architects) (2011-present). Founder member of the Cercle de Cultura (Culture Circle) in Barcelona (2010). Visiting lecturer, Princeton, Columbia University, the Harvard Graduate School of Design, ABKStuttgart, UP8 Paris, OAF, Oslo and ITESMMexico.

To register and receive video click here. Ticket sale can be found here.

Interior for Students / Ruetemple

Courtesy of Ruetemple

Architects: Ruetemple
Location: ,
Design Team: Alexander Kudimov, Daria Butahina
Area: 33 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Courtesy of Ruetemple

Emergency Shelter Winning Design / Nic Gonsalves + Nic Martoo

© Scott Burrows

Young Australian designers, Nic Gonsalves and from leading architecture firm Conrad Gargett Riddel, have won an international award for their innovative emergency shelter design for victims of natural and man-made disasters. Showcased in Brisbane’s King George Square last year and having recently toured to Melbourne’s Federation Square last month, their design provides ease of fabrication without the use mechanical tools; a place to house both occupants and their belongings; and the ability to control the level of engagement with the outside world through a flexible skin of solid, translucent and transparent shingles. More images and the designers’ description after the break.

39 Housing Program / José Soto García

© Imagina2

Location: Jerez,
Architect In Charge: José Soto García
Collaborators: Mercedes Salido Suárez, Lourdes Ramirez Retamal, Damián Sobral Rivas, David Castillo Falcón
Constructor: Ameconst S.L. Ejuca s.a.
Area: 6,362 sqm
Photographs: Imagina2

Merate Piazza / Archea

© Pietro Savorelli

Architects: Archea
Location: Merate, Lecco, Italy
Structures: Studio Myallonnier
Area: 5,280 sqm
Year: 2010
Photographs: Pietro Savorelli

Housing Im Forster / EM2N

© Roger Frei

Architects: EM2N
Location: Zürichbergstrasse, Zürich,
Architect In Charge:
Area: 5,925 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Roger Frei

Centre Village / 5468796 Architecture + Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited

© James Brittain Photography

Architects: 5468796 Architecture, Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited
Location: , Manitoba, Canada
Architects In Charge: and Cohlmeyer Architecture Limited
Project Manager: Hold Zone Inc.
Year: 2010
Photographs: James Brittain Photography, 5468796 Architecture

Rafi Segal to Appear in Court Over National Library of Israel

The proposal submitted by Segal, which included HyperBina’s contribution

UPDATE: Israeli architect Rafi Segal appears to have abandoned his case to be reinstated as designer of the National Library of . This decision comes after the client announced that it had signed a contract with Pritzker Prize-winning practice Herzog & de Meuron, who was initially chosen in April and triggered Segal’s demand to be reinstated. Now that the Swiss duo has officially signed onto the project, Segal has requested a withdrawal without prejudice. Before the hearing scheduled for September 12, 2013, Segal asked the court to withdraw the case. The court overruled his objections and granted HyperBina a compensation of fees and costs.

Official statement from the National Library Construction Company:

‘Rafi Segal, whose competition entry was disqualified for failure to meet the terms of the competition and who was therefore removed from being the “preferred architect”, is now trying to compel his selection through the courts. Notwithstanding his failure to meet the conditions of the competition by way of establishing his full and exclusive rights in and to the plan he submitted, and having conducted himself in ways that have resulted in his loss of credibility in the eyes of the client.

‘In December 2012, The Jerusalem District Court denied his request for an ex parte temporary injunction barring the selection of another architect for the project. The evening before the date of the hearing on the request for an injunction, Segal withdrew his petition – following submission of the Company’s reply. Segal also filed a lawsuit asking the Court to declare him the “Winning Architect”. The court denied Segal’s requests to expedite the process and set a preliminary hearing for May 2013.

‘In April, following a three months process, an international selection panel chaired by Prof. Luis Fernandez-Galiano, selected the 2011 Pritzker Prize winners Herzog & de Meuron to design the new Library building.

‘In the preliminary hearing on 8 May, Segal asked to add Herzog & de Meuron as a respondent in what seems to be an attempt not to lose legal grounds for his claim. Herzog & de Meuron have no involvement in the saga and have no obligation to defend their award.’

Just when it seemed that Herzog & de Meuron was the final choice for the design of the new National Library of Israel in Jerusalem, the initial competition winner, Israeli architect Rafi Segal, has launched a legal challenge against the project backers’ decision in hopes of being reinstated.

The Traditional versus the Modern in Church Design

Church in Foligno, Italy / Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas

“Space, lines, light and sound” are the essential components of the experience of architecture and the most profound buildings have captured these moments through thoughtfully orchestrated design.  Recently, architects that have designed with these primary elements in mind have come under criticism by the Vatican for diverting from the traditional form and iconography of .  According to a recent article in The TelegraphMassimiliano and Doriana Fuksas’ design for a church in Foligno, Italy has been labeled as problematic by the parish and Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, head of the Vatican’s Pontificial Council for Culture, for its resemblance to a museum instead of a place of worship – based on traditional Catholic values placed on the altar and imagery. Regardless of the Vatican’s criticism of the aesthetic approach of architects that break with tradition, this seems more of an issue of miscommunication between the architects and the congregations that have commissioned the projects that are being criticized.

More on this after the break.

PA_House / atelier dnD

© Sebastian Zachariah

Architects: atelier dnD
Location: ,
Area: 20000.0 ft2
Year: 2012
Photographs: Sebastian Zachariah

A Tribute to Ada Louise Huxtable

, photographed in the 1960s by her husband, L. Garth Huxtable. Image via Hyperallergic.

“Even though I wished for her attention, I was scared of it.”

These words, spoken by Frank Gehry about the inimitable Ada Louise Huxtable, may be his alone, but you can be sure that their sentiment was – at some point or other – shared by almost every person in the architecture world.

Huxtable’s writing walked that unusual, and oh so difficult line, between impassioned opinion and critical voice. As a result she managed to achieve the holy grail of : respect from architects and the general public alike. She for ever changed the world of , and as her successor Paul Goldberger, said of her in 1996: “She has made people pay attention. She has made people care. She has made architecture matter in our culture in a way that it did not before her time.”

Blogger for The New York Times Arts Beat, Danny Dunlop attended Huxtable’s “memorial tribute” this past Tuesday at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York; his post provides a lovely summary of those who attended and spoke in honor of Ms. Huxtable, from Gehry to Goldberger. You can find it here.

And 5 articles that, according to HyperAllergic, best show Huxtable’s critical prowess (all well worth reading) here.

A:LOG : A Notebook Designed Just for Architects

Courtesy of A:LOG

Three graduate architecture students at Columbia University have developed a revolutionary notebook designed specifically for architects. “A:LOG is not just a nifty architect’s notebook,” they say. “It is a thoughtful collection of design and architectural standards packaged into a minimal soft-cover notebook with beautiful dotted paper for drawing. It’s an architectural reference guide that you can bring with you on the go, in the office, or at meetings.”

Learn more about A:LOG after the break!

House M / Keiko Maita Architect

© Yoshiharu Matsumura

Architects: Keiko Maita Architect
Location: Shunan,
Architect In Charge: Keiko Maita
Area: 107 sqm
Year: 2010
Photographs: Yoshiharu Matsumura

Courtesy of Inside2013 Competition Team
Courtesy of Inside2013 Competition Team

Inside2013 Design Competition

Inside 2013 invites students and young professionals of all design disciplines to submit a collection of their “inside” work comprised of up to three digital images. By submitting your work, you are invited to share your voice with the collective intelligence…

Redevelopment of the New Coast of Thessaloniki / Prodromos Nikiforidis – Bernard Cuomo

Courtesy of Prodromos Nikiforidis – Bernard Cuomo

Architects: Prodromos Nikiforidis – Bernard Cuomo
Location: ,
Architect In Charge: Prodromos Nikiforidi, Bernard Cuomo
Area: 28,000 sqm
Year: 2009
Photographs: Courtesy of Prodromos Nikiforidis – Bernard Cuomo

Courtesy of Alberto Campo Baeza
Courtesy of Alberto Campo Baeza

Exhibiting in New York in the Air: Alberto Campo Baeza Exhibition

Exhibited at the American Academy of Arts and Letters in New York until this month, the work of Alberto Campo Baeza is on display to celebrate the awarding of the Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture 2013. In a…