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Cool Spaces! Premiers Tomorrow, Puts Architecture in the Spotlight

00:00 - 31 March, 2014
Cool Spaces! Premiers Tomorrow, Puts Architecture in the Spotlight, Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts / Moshe Safdie. Image © Tim Hursley
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts / Moshe Safdie. Image © Tim Hursley

Stephen Chung's new PBS show Cool Spaces! hopes to engage the general public’s perception of design by "demystifying" contemporary architectural practice. You can tune in to the hour-long premier tomorrow (April 1) as Chung investigates the sports and performing arts spaces of Moshe Safdie (Kauffman Center for Performing Arts), HKS (Dallas Cowboys Stadium), and SHoP (Barclays Center).

Shenzhen Maritime Base and Sports Schools / 2A2 Design Department, Beijing Institute of Architectural Design (BIAD)

01:00 - 31 March, 2014
Shenzhen Maritime Base and Sports Schools / 2A2 Design Department, Beijing Institute of Architectural Design (BIAD), © Yang ChaoYing
© Yang ChaoYing

© Yang ChaoYing © Yang ChaoYing © Yang ChaoYing © Yang ChaoYing +43

The Indicator: Thank You, Patrik Schumacher

00:00 - 31 March, 2014
The Indicator: Thank You, Patrik Schumacher, "Architects are in charge of the FORM of the built environment, not its content. We need to grasp this and run with this despite all the (ultimately conservative) moralizing political correctness that is trying to paralyse us with bad conscience and arrest our explorations..." - Patrik Schumacher. Above, the MAXXI Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects. Image © Iwan Baan
"Architects are in charge of the FORM of the built environment, not its content. We need to grasp this and run with this despite all the (ultimately conservative) moralizing political correctness that is trying to paralyse us with bad conscience and arrest our explorations..." - Patrik Schumacher. Above, the MAXXI Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects. Image © Iwan Baan

First off, I would like to thank Patrik Schumacher for taking to Facebook on March 17 at 9:45pm to let off steam -- thus starting a meaningful discussion on the role of the architect in society and culture. We could deconstruct it line by line, but I don’t think that will yield much in the way of enlightenment. What I take from it is that architecture creates form and should be free to do so without being restricted by ethical or moral imperatives to be social or political. But, as Benjamin Bratton remarked in reply to Schumacher, “To set the political to one side and at the same time make grandiose claims for how architectural form can in fact ‘remake civilization’, is a self-defeating program.”

Perceptions on the role of architecture in society can easily fall along class, race, and national lines. Coming from a place of privilege, it is easy to assume an apolitical, form-making agenda for the profession. The argument that architecture has nothing to do with the social domain, or the “content” as Schumacher calls it, is an argument for political conservatism, a hands-off, sink or swim argument for social Darwinism, that limits the range and impact of high architecture. Why can’t the best and most challenging forms of architecture penetrate through all social strata? Why shouldn’t it serve the poor? And why shouldn’t this be one criteria among others for judging the value of architecture? 

House Sømme / Knut Hjeltnes

01:00 - 30 March, 2014
House Sømme  / Knut Hjeltnes, Courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes
Courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes

Courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes Courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes Courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes Courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes +25

Xan House / MAPA

01:00 - 30 March, 2014
Xan House / MAPA, © Leonardo Finotti
© Leonardo Finotti

© Leonardo Finotti © Leonardo Finotti © Leonardo Finotti © Leonardo Finotti +20

  • Architects

  • Location

    Xangrilá, Venâncio Aires - RS, Brazil
  • Authors

    Luciano Andrades, Maurício Lopez, Rochelle Castro, Matías Carballal, Andrés Gobba e Silvio Machado
  • Area

    350.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2013
  • Photographs

A Theory of Architecture Part 2: The Adaptive Design Method

00:00 - 30 March, 2014
A Theory of Architecture Part 2: The Adaptive Design Method, Image of Torre David in Venezuela, an unfinished skyscraper that has become a (modified/adapted) slum settlement. "The human need to make a building adapt through form, surface, and ornament is innate. Everyday people who own and build their own homes definitely apply a pattern language (albeit unknowingly) because they want their dwellings to be as comfortable as possible. Here we have an adaptive design method, which, were it not for the miserable conditions of life represented by the overcrowded slums of the world, is an excellent example for architecture schools to study". Image © Iwan Baan
Image of Torre David in Venezuela, an unfinished skyscraper that has become a (modified/adapted) slum settlement. "The human need to make a building adapt through form, surface, and ornament is innate. Everyday people who own and build their own homes definitely apply a pattern language (albeit unknowingly) because they want their dwellings to be as comfortable as possible. Here we have an adaptive design method, which, were it not for the miserable conditions of life represented by the overcrowded slums of the world, is an excellent example for architecture schools to study". Image © Iwan Baan

As you may have seen, ArchDaily has been publishing UNIFIED ARCHITECTURAL THEORY, by the urbanist and controversial theorist Nikos A. Salingaros, in serial form. However, in order to explain certain concepts in greater detail, we have decided to pause this serialization and publish three excerpts from another of Salingaros’  books: A THEORY OF ARCHITECTURE. The previous excerpt explained the difference between “Pattern Language” and “Form Language.” The following excerpt will establish how these languages can combine to form the “Adaptive Design Method.”

Proposition: An adaptive design method arises out of a complementary pair consisting of a pattern language and a form language.

I have indicated very briefly what a pattern language and a form language are; we still need to understand what an adaptive design method refers to. Out of many contemporary approaches to design, there are very few that result in structures and environments that are adapted both to physical human use, as well as to human sensibilities. In the past, the opposite was true. Human use is straightforward to understand: the physical dimensions and geometry have to accommodate the human body and its movement. 

By accommodating human sensibilities, I mean that environments should make human beings feel at ease; make them feel psychologically comfortable so that persons can carry out whatever functions they have to unselfconsciously, without being disturbed by the built environment in any way. This imposes a strong constraint on the design process to adapt to the many factors (both known and unknown) that will influence the user on many levels, including emotion. An adaptive design method should accommodate all these criteria, and this Chapter shows how this may be accomplished.

2014 AIA|DC Unbuilt Award Winners

01:00 - 30 March, 2014
 2014 AIA|DC Unbuilt Award Winners , Courtesy of AIA|DC
Courtesy of AIA|DC

The Washington Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA|DC) has announced the 2014 Unbuilt Award competition winners. The annual award, now in its sixth edition, was created as a response to the global economic crisis that brought many architectural projects to a halt. Thus the awards are designed to recognize both delayed and theoretical projects that are deemed imaginative and thought-provoking.

The 2014 winners are...

VIDEO: Jonathan Segal’s "The Cresta" Through the Lens of Breadtruck Films

00:00 - 30 March, 2014

Jeffrey Durkin, director of Breadtruck Films, has shared with us this insightful short film on Jonathan Segal’s new concrete and glass house in La Jolla: The Cresta. According to Durkin, “The film explores the relationship between nature and architecture, father and son, and how clean minimal design can save us from the suburbs.”

Mixed use infill 3 houses and an office / Collectief Noord

01:00 - 30 March, 2014
Mixed use infill 3 houses and an office / Collectief Noord, © Filip Dujardin
© Filip Dujardin

© Filip Dujardin © Liesbet Goetschalckx © Liesbet Goetschalckx Courtesy of Collectief Noord +17

  • Architects

  • Location

    Antwerp, Belgium
  • Design Team

    Erik Wieërs, Dirk Somers, Sarah Poot, Peter Wils, Christopher Paesbrugghe, Elke Hoendervangers
  • Project Year

    2011
  • Photographs

    Filip Dujardin, Liesbet Goetschalckx, Courtesy of Collectief Noord

A Mini Marble Manhattan

00:00 - 30 March, 2014
A Mini Marble Manhattan, Courtesy of David Zwirner Gallery
Courtesy of David Zwirner Gallery

You've never seen Manhattan quite like this: Metropolis Magazine's Komal Sharma takes a look at "Little Manhattan", a sculpture by Yutaka Sone which renders the famous island in 2.5 tons of solid marble. The power of the artwork lies in the play with scale: the initial impression of a huge marble block contrasts with the tiny, intricately detailed skyline forming a mere skin on top; the subsequent realization that this skin corresponds to the familiar vertical city brings you to a more complete understanding of Manhattan's scale. You can read the full article here.

The American Academy of Arts and Letters' Award Winners Announced

00:00 - 30 March, 2014
The American Academy of Arts and Letters' Award Winners Announced, Massimo Scolari, "Beyond the Sky," 1982. Courtesy of Yale
Massimo Scolari, "Beyond the Sky," 1982. Courtesy of Yale

The American Academy of Arts and Letters has announced the recipients of its 2014 architecture awards. Recognized as an architect who has made a significant contribution to architecture as an art, Massimo Scolari was awarded the Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture - a $20,000 award whose laureates include Peter Zumthor and this year’s Pritzker Prize winner Shigeru Ban

House in Komae / Makoto Yamaguchi Design

01:00 - 30 March, 2014
House in Komae / Makoto Yamaguchi Design, © Daici Ano
© Daici Ano

© Daici Ano © Daici Ano © Daici Ano © Daici Ano +18

Night Flight / Studio MODE

01:00 - 30 March, 2014
Night Flight / Studio MODE, Courtesy of Studio MODE
Courtesy of Studio MODE

Courtesy of Studio MODE Courtesy of Studio MODE Courtesy of Studio MODE Courtesy of Studio MODE +19

  • Architects

  • Location

    Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Area

    1000.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2014
  • Photographs

    Courtesy of Studio MODE

TED Talk: How to Build with Clay... and Community / Diébédo Francis Kéré

00:00 - 29 March, 2014

In this TED Talk, Aga Khan Award-winning architect Diébédo Francis Kéré explains how to build a community with clay. With his firm Kéré Architecture, the Burkina Faso native has achieved international renown by using local building materials and techniques to engage and improve local expertise. Watch as explains how he applied his personal success to benefit the small African village he grew up in.

Deborah Sussman: Breaking the Boundaries Between Architecture & Graphic Design

00:00 - 29 March, 2014
Deborah Sussman: Breaking the Boundaries Between Architecture & Graphic Design, © Flickr CC User David Cobb
© Flickr CC User David Cobb

In this delightful article on Metropolis Magazine, Christopher Hawthorne recounts his meeting with Deborah Sussman, the one-time protégé of Charles and Ray Eames whose work breaks the boundaries between graphic design and architecture. From her collaboration with Frank Gehry to her iconic designs for the 1984 LA Olympics, Sussman has come to define a curiously Californian style. You can read the full article here.

V House / Paz Gersh Architects

01:00 - 29 March, 2014
V House    / Paz Gersh Architects, © Amit Giron
© Amit Giron

© Itay Sikolsky © Itay Sikolsky © Amit Giron © Itay Sikolsky +21

Construction Trailer Transformed Into Small Dwelling / Karel Verstraeten

01:00 - 29 March, 2014
Construction Trailer Transformed Into Small Dwelling / Karel Verstraeten, Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten
Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten

Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten +10

  • Architects

  • Location

    Vlimmeren, 2340 Beerse, Belgium
  • Project Year

    2014
  • Photographs

    Courtesy of Karel Verstraeten

2014 U.S. Wood Design Award Winners

00:00 - 29 March, 2014
2014 U.S. Wood Design Award Winners, Federal Center South Building 1202 / ZGF Architects © Benjamin Benschneider
Federal Center South Building 1202 / ZGF Architects © Benjamin Benschneider

WoodWorks, an initiative of the Wood Products Council, has announced the winners of its 2014 National Wood Design Awards. Recognizing “outstanding projects that bring to life wood’s natural beauty and versatility in building design,” 13 projects have been selected from over 140 submissions for demonstrating “ingenuity in design or engineering.” 

The 2014 National Wood Design Award Winners are...