Danish architecture firm, BIG - led by Bjarke Ingels - has been announced as the winner of an international invited competition for the design of Europa City, a 800,000 square meter cultural, recreational and retail development in Triangle de Gonesse, France. Combining city development with an open landscape, Europa City creates a dynamic center of activity for visitors and residents, appealing to the variety of functions of city life. Europa City is situated along the route from Charles de Gaule Airport to Paris and has a wide range of programs that is part of a larger initiative to attract international tourism into the northern parts of Paris.
Designed by Leeser Architecture their design concept for the Polytechnic Education Center takes its cues from the rich history of modern Russian architecture of the early part of the twentieth century. Located in the Lenin Hills section of Moscow, which play an important role in the history of Moscow as a place of radical experimentation, the new institute symbolizes this incredible energy and conflation of future inventions with past achievement as a new symbol of global importance. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The Architecture Foundation recently launched their annual international Open Call for innovative independent exhibitions and installations for its central London Project Space. Intended as an incubator for independent positions and architectural experimentation, projects selected through the Open Call will punctuate the AF’s ongoing curated program. This program, competitively selected through a jury process, will give space to individuals or organizations to activate the AF Project Space as a testing ground for modes of exhibition and 1:1 scale spatial experimentation, an open studio, a public residency or other diverse formats. The foundation's recent initiative, 'We Made That', was a project selected through the 2012 Open Call. The deadline for submissions is May 10. For more information, please visit here.
A 1970 graduate of Cooper Union's architecture program, world-renowned architect Daniel Libeskind will be delivering 'The Art of Memory' lecture, a free event, on Tuesday, April 30th, at 6:00pm. The master planner for Ground Zero and the architect of one of Europe’s most visited museums, the Jewish Museum Berlin, will discuss the role that memory played in his work on those projects and others, such as the Danish Jewish Museum in Copenhagen, Denmark; the Imperial War Museum in Manchester, England; the Military History Museum in Dresden, Germany; and the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco. He will also talk about the acute sense of responsibility he feels, when accepting commissions for projects addressing Jewish history, to create work that honors not only the harsh realities, but also the resilience of the Jewish spirit. For more information, please visit here.
A glass house in the desert? Was it an architectural caprice, a folly, or was it a solution to the problems of desert living whose appropriateness is still not recognized? Having had the experience of living in The Dome for a full year, through all the seasons, I felt it incumbent upon myself to take a fresh look at this remarkable work of architecture.
Paolo Soleri, its designer, was born in 1920 in Turin, received a PhD in architecture from the Torino Politecnico, and in 1947 came to America to study with Frank Lloyd Wright, remaining with him for just over a year. Mark Mills, who assisted Soleri in the construction of The Dome, was born in 1921, received an architectural engineering degree from the University of Colorado, and studied with Wright for four years. It was at Taliesin that Soleri and Mills became friends. In 1948, when they and two other apprentices were working on an experimental structure at Taliesin West, which became what is known as the Sun Cottage, there was a misunderstanding with Wright that led to all four of them leaving. Soleri and Mills went to work with a developer, providing design work for some condominiums at the base of Camelback Mountain, below the north face in Paradise Valley. Soleri developed a scheme that involved a tower element supporting a hex form canopy and he and Mills built a mockup of Camelback out of concrete block and wood. It was shortly after this that “the Cli,” as she was fondly called, came along.
Peter Wilson, co-founder and director of Bolles+Wilson, was awarded the Australian Institute of Architects Gold Medal, their highest accolade, at a ceremony last month in Canberra. The Institute bestows the medal upon architects who have designed, or executed, exceptional buildings, promoted the knowledge of architecture, or have made some defining contribution to the field.
There are many sustainable technologies designers can utilize these days to make a project more Earth- and people-friendly, but smog-eating cement isn't the most talked-about - until now. The City of Chicago is pioneering the use of a revolutionary type of cement that is capable of eradicating the air around it of pollution, potentially reducing the levels of certain common pollutants by 20 - 70% depending on local conditions and the amount of exposed surface area.
TEX-FAB recently announced the SKIN International Digital Fabrication Competition which asks designers and researchers to speculate, or if they so choose - to present existing research - on the role of the building envelope by exploring new methods to enable the performative and aesthetic qualities of a façade. A building’s skin has the potential to synchronize form and illustrates the totality of the project, while driving how the building responds to its context, its role and ultimately its utility. Design submissions may develop any context they choose, real or virtual, at any scale and on any building type so to present a complete thesis. The deadline for entries in June 30. For more information, please visit here.
In 2010, SMoCA initiated a series of three exhibitions exploring the trajectory of Paolo Soleri's art, architecture and philosophy. Paolo Soleri: Mesa City to Arcosanti is the second in the series. This exhibition begins in the early 1960s when Soleri shifted his focus from bridges and residences to large-scale urban planning based on environmental accountability. Soleri's first comprehensive vision of a community is Mesa City, an example of what he calls an “arcology,” or an architectural project based on the synthesis of architecture + ecology. In Mesa City, Soleri combines the goals of high-density living, a vibrant urban space, respect for natural resources and a commercial sector based upon creativity. The exhibition will end with Arcosonti (arcology + Cosanti), a project built in the 1970s near Mayer, Arizona.