Can Your 4 Year Old Make Google SketchUp Masterpieces?

4 year-old Jed's Masterpieces. via bleuscape.

According to his Architect Dad, Anthony Rigg, 4-year old Jed is no prodigy. He just really likes playing with blocks.

So when he showed his son how to use Google SketchUp (3D) for the first time, he wasn’t expecting much. He figured that his son, like any 4 year-old, would quickly lose focus and start doing something else.

Half an hour later, Jed was still happily designing away, coming up with these 6 block “mansions.” Dad was “absolutely staggered.” In his words, “I think it is incredible what the unadulterated minds of children can produce.”

Of course, you could take the position that Google SketchUp makes design so easy that even a 4 year-old can do it, but we prefer to think of it as a tool that breaks the barriers making Architecture inaccessible, that lets creativity trump technique, and lets you tap into your inner Jed.

As Picasso once said, “Every child is born an artist. The trouble is remaining an artist when you grow up.”

Thanks to Anthony Rigg of Bleuscape and his precocious son Jed for the tip! 

Green Climate Fund Headquarters / LAVA


The Federal Republic of Germany recently chose the Laboratory for Visionary Architecture (LAVA) as the designers for their bid to host the Secretariat of the Green Climate Fund [GCF] in , Germany. With a design inspired by the beautiful setting in the Rhine valley, and with curvilinear forms, nature light wells, roof top gardens and a large sunken terrace for the restaurant, the three level structure will comply with the latest energy and building ecology standards, meeting the highest demands in terms of sustainability (German gold certificate), ecology and energy efficiency (net zero energy). More images and architects’ description after the break.

Gymnasium ‘Palais des Sports de Loudéac’ / Bohuon Bertic Architectes

Courtesy of Bohuon Bertic Architectes

Located on the upper part of , , the site for the gymnasium, designed by Bohuon Bertic Architectes is a maximum space which has conserved the beauty of agricultural spaces, contained in planted trees. In the presence of a simple space, with a vast grassland which spreads throughout the south side of a hill, the choice of establishing the sports hall on the plot comes from a clear complementary relationship with the close existing sportive area. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Hilltop House / Studio HT

© Nathan Jenkins

Architects: Studio H:T
Location: Broomfield, ,
Project Completion: 2009
Building Area: 4,250 sqm
Photographs: Nathan Jenkins


Courtesy of VAUMM

Zaldibar Kindergarten / VAUMM

The proposal for Zaldibar kindergarten by VAUMM… is composed of two buildings, connected by playgrounds. The plan responds to a simple strategy of settlement on the site, which is to get the most out of this relationship between full and

Nevis Pool and Garden Pavilion / Robert M. Gurney Architect

© Maxwell MacKenzie

Architects: Robert M. Gurney, FAIA Architect
Location: , USA
Project Architect: John Riordan, Leed AP
Completion: May 2011
Photographs: Maxwell MacKenzie

Wax Revolution Polanco / ROW Studio

© Sófocles Hernández

Architects: ROW Studio – Álvaro Hernández Félix, Nadia Hernández Félix, Alfonso Maldonado Ochoa
Location: Polanco, City,
Client: Wax Revolution 
Design Team: Midori Calvo, Francisco Mota, José Manuel Garín
Built Area: 1,399 sq. ft. (130 Sq. Mts.)
Completition: May 2012
Photographs: Sófocles Hernández


Finalists of the 100 Mile House Competition

3rd Prize: Won Jin Park (New York, USA) - Courtesy of the Architectural Foundation of British Columbia

The Architectural Foundation of British Columbia (BC) has announced the five finalists of the Competition. Similar to the well-known 100 Mile Diet, the challenges participants to design a 1200-square-foot home using only materials and systems that are made, manufactured and/or recycled within 100 miles of the City of . Many have questioned whether the 100 Mile House is a plausible solution in today’s modern cities (check out: The 100 Mile House: Innovative ‘Locatat’ or Just Plain Loca?). Be your own judge and review the finalists after the break.

Passive House Plus / Onix & Kunst + Herbert

© IBA GmbH / Martin Kunze

Architects: Onix & Kunst + Herbert
Location: Hamburg,
Photographs: IBA Hamburg GmbH/Martin Kunze

Kukje Gallery / SO-IL

© Iwan Baan

Architects: SO-IL
Location: ,
Design Team: Florian Idenburg (partner), Jing Liu (partner), Iannis Kandyliaris, Cheon-Kang Park, Sooran Kim
Architect Of Record: Jong Ga Architects
Total Floor Area: 1,260 sqm
Site Area: 800 sqm
Photographs: Iwan Baan

Les Amandiers / Bohuon Bertic Architectes

© Stephane Chalmeau

Architects: Bohuon Bertic Architectes
Location: Nantes,
Photographs: Stephane Chalmeau


Construction begins on OMA-designed G-Star RAW Headquarters

On the plinth - Courtesy of

Today, in the industrial Zuidoost area of , construction begins on the new OMA-designed headquarters for the fashion brand G-Star RAW. Led by OMA partners Reinier de Graaf, Ellen van Loon and Rem Koolhaas, the project will consolidate G-Star RAW’s existing disparate facilities into a single 27.500m2 horizontal building.

Continue after the break to learn more.

The Indicator: AIA2012 and the Pastoral Ideal

Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902), Looking Down Yosemite Valley, , 1865, oil on canvas, via Wikipedia

In the haze of Los Angeles it was impossible to feel the sunshine of optimism that emanated from the 2012 AIA Convention in .

I should have been there because, as you have probably noticed, I could use a dose of that sunshine. I have not been able to conjure any feelings of optimism since 2008.

It’s not that I am morally or ethically opposed to optimism. I just require valid evidence for having it. Perhaps I am simply one of those unhappy individuals who tend to view optimism with suspicion. In the face of real problems, mere optimism somehow seems too simplistic.

Video: Aberrant Architecture, Clerkenwell Design Week 2012

As part of Clerkenwell Design Week 2012, Aberrant Architecture, a multi-disciplinary studio and think tank have created a mobile theatre. The Small Coal Man’s Tiny Travelling Theatre is based on the story of Thomas Britton, one of Clerkenwell’s more eccentric historical figures, who, in 1678 built a music hall on top of his coal shed. From the 22nd-24th of May the unusual structure will move around Clerkenwell, hosting performances and events and providing visitors with an interactive platform for discovery. Watch as we follow the team throughout their design process, from the initial planning stages to its final installation.

Video: Gehry Residence, 2012 AIA Twenty-five Year Award Recipient

The sat down with famed architect Frank Gehry - recipient of the 2012 Twenty-five Year Award - to discuss his eccentric Santa Monica home that has enormously influenced both theory and practice over the last 25 to 35 years. In the late 1970s, transformed an existing Dutch colonial home in a quiet Southern California neighborhood into a controversial symbol of deconstructivism by surrounding it with an unconventional new addition. As the AIA describes, “The exposed structure, chaotic fusion of disparate materials, and aggressive juxtaposition of old and new communicate a sense of real-time formal evolution and conflict, as if the building were dynamically, violently creating itself with found objects.”

Towards the end of the video, Gehry advises students to “learn to be yourself and be curious about what is going on around you and respond to it.”

Learn more about the Gehry Residence here on ArchDaily!

via AIA National

The BH2 Programme / Philippe Gazeau

Courtesy of Philippe Gazeau Architect

Architects: Philippe Gazeau Architect
Location: ,
Building owner: SNI Grand Ouest
Developer: Territoires
Completion: 2011
Building owner: SNI Grand Ouest
Surface area: 6,400 sqm gross area – 5,300 sqm net floor area
Cost: 7,317,000 euros excl.
Photographs: Courtesy of Philippe Gazeau Architect


Head of the Roads Department of Georgia / J. Mayer H

© Jesko M. Johnsson - Zahn

Architects: J. Mayer H. Architects
Location: , Georgia
Design Team: Jürgen Mayer H., Paul Angelier, Danny te Kloese
Completion: 2012
Client: PM Motors Ltd.
Photographs: Jesko M. Johnsson – Zahn


Gas Station / Atelier SAD

© Tomáš Souček

Architects: Atelier SAD
Location: Matúškova cesta 887, ,
Design Team: MgA. Adam Jirkal & MgA. Jerry Koza & Ing. Tomáš Kalhous  & Koen Huyghe & Ing. Arch. Vít Markvart & Dušan Sinetar
Collaborators: Pro Global
Project Management: C-Partners
Area: 3,322 sqm
Completion: 2011
Photographs: Tomáš Soucek