London is engrossed in a vigorous debate over recently unveiled plans for the South Bank Centre, the cluster of Brutalist concrete buildings on the River Thames including the Queen Elizabeth Hall (QEH) and Hayward Gallery.
Today, the Centre has as its neighbour one of the city’s biggest tourist attractions – The London Eye – and this, with the addition of retail and other leisure-led developments in and around the South Bank, has refocused both commercial and cultural attention on the complex.
Last month, British architects Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios (FCBS) unveiled their vision for a “Festival Wing” on the site, focussing on the QEH and the Hayward Gallery. It isn’t the first time an architect has been asked to look at these buildings in recent decades. However, it is the most likely to come to fruition.
Read more about the Southbank Centre and its future development, after the break…
SBA International’s concept of a sustainable development among industry, business and residential in the Chinese city of Shenyang just won the first prize in the in the “Tiexi Waterfront Area” competition. Their ‘Clean City Concept’ includes a reduction of CO2 emissions, environmental green areas and office buildings which comply with the latest standards of a ‘Green Building’. The planning area is divided in three theme areas and in total covers an area of 90 square kilometers. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Mandaworks and Hosper Sweden… were just awarded this past week with the third prize in the open international architectural competition in Mikkeli, Finland. From 107 proposals submitted last October, Mandaworks and Hosper Sweden were one of five teams selected to
Designed by Kjellander + Sjöberg Architects…, their ‘Paradiset 19-21′ housing project creates a distinctive residential infill on Western Kungsholmen in central Stockholm. A distinctive addition with a strong urban identity, the project is a pliable mini-Manhattan, landing in the city block and building
From innovative mud and bamboo schools to state of the art “green” high-rises, the Master Jury for the 2013 Aga Khan Award for Architecture has selected 20 deserving nominees to be in the running for the prestigious, US$1 million prize. Since the award was launched 36 years ago, over 100 projects have received the prize and more than 7,500 building projects have been documented for exhibiting architectural excellence and improving the overall quality of life in their regions.
Farrokh Derakhshani, the Director of the Award, remarked: “The Master Jury, which includes some of the most prominent architects of our time, made interesting choices this year. For example, they chose schools in Afghanistan and Syria, but they also chose a hospital in Sudan, a high rise in Bangkok and the reconstruction of a refugee camp in Lebanon. In many ways, the choices reflect a central preoccupation of the Award: the impact of buildings and public spaces on the quality of life. Now this seems fairly mainstream, but we must remember that the Aga Khan Award has been talking about ‘human scale’ and ‘sustainability’ since 1977”.
The 2013 Aga Khan Award for Architecture Shortlist includes:
Architects: Studio Insula
Location: Rome, Italy
Designer Architects: Eugenio Cipollone, Francesco Cellini , Roberto Lorenzotti (Pavilions 6 & 7), Eugenio Cipollone, Paolo Orsini, Roberto Lorenzotti (Pavilion 2B)
Design Team: Nicoletta Marzetti, Renzo Candidi, Lusilla Voci, Fabrizio Bonatti (Pavilion 2B)
Photographs: Insula srl, Stefano Cerio
Ada Louise Huxtable was a renowned architecture critic who started at The New York Times in 1963. Her probing articles championed the preservation of buildings regarded as examples of historic design still imperative to the life of the city. Her arguments were leveraged by research and an in-depth understanding of architecture as an ever-relevant art form (“the art we cannot afford to ignore”). Alexandra Lange of The Nation points to the connection between Ada Louise Huxtable’s writing and its influence on the culture of preservation that eventually resulted in the establishment of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) in 1965.
More after the break…
Pedro Gadanho is a Portuguese architect, curator, teacher and writer, appointed as the Curator for Contemporary Architecture at the MoMA in January last year.
Pedro is a prolific writer, who uses a blog as a laboratory for his ideas about architecture and urbanism (sharing his views on the current states of cities and how architecture can transform them), and will surely have an impact on what the Department of Architecture of the Museum focuses on in the future.
During this past year Pedro has been involved in the YAP (Young Architects Program), a platform to discover young architects and foster new ideas through installations at the MoMA PS1 (Queens, NY), the MAXXXI Museum (Rome, Italy), the Istanbul Modern Museum (Istanbul, Turkey) and with CONSTRUCTO (Santiago, Chile).
He also curated the exhibit “9 + 1 Ways of Being Political: 50 Years of Political Stances in Architecture and Urban Design” (open until Jun 9th, 2013; Architecture and Design Galleries, third floor), where his views of city and architecture come together in the form of a selection of fresh ideas and examples of architects who actively shaped our cities. The opening of the exhibit included the architectural performance “IKEA Disobedients” by Andres Jaque.
Pedro was also a jury for the 2013 Mies van der Rohe award.
In today’s world, where we have access to everything at the the tip of our fingers, the role of the curator becomes more and more relevant for us to understand our new context.
You can follow Pedro on Twitter @pedrogadanho.
At 71, the 2013 Pritzker Prize winner Toyo Ito is not content with settling down just yet, at least not architecturally-speaking. Where many architects have established distinct styles, Ito is known for constantly shifting, experimenting, questioning and developing his approach to architecture. As one member of the Prtizker jury put it “he has been working on one project all along – to push the boundaries of architecture. And to achieve that goal, he is not afraid of letting go what he has accomplished before.”
In this video entitled Learning from Laureates - which comes courtesy of the good folks at ARCHITECT magazine - fellow experimentalist and Pritzker Prize recipient (not to mention 2013 AIA Gold Medalist) Thom Mayne gets to grips with Ito’s motivation. The pair of laureates converse via Skype examining the drive behind Ito’s evolutionary approach, before getting down to discussing how they think architecture is being affected by society’s biggest change yet – the advent of the post-digital age.
See more of Ito’s work along with some of our previous coverage after the break…