The Multiplier Effect: How Design (and the Internet) Connects Us

Stop right there. Before I begin this post with a cliché dictionary definition, I direct you to what’s usually overlooked in these openings: the part of speech.

verb (used with object)

Without reading the definition, we know. Design is the act that connects the human being to the object outside him: the way in which intentions, thoughts, concepts take form.

On a basic level, design connects human beings through the shared experience of said object – be it functional or purely aesthetic. But it’s not just the object which connects us – it’s the idea that inspired it. On another level, and perhaps at its purest, design connects by inaugurating us into a collaborative spirit of innovation.

The AIA’s latest Design Conference, Design Connects, has invited bloggers to reflect how design connects us in a way that will build a better future. We at ArchDaily, biased as we may be, think we have the answer (it’s in the invitation): the Bloggers.

To read how design and the Internet connect us to thousands of elementary school kids, the sci-fi dsytopias of a NASA scientist, and a poverty-defying advocate looking to change the world  - all in 24 hours – keep reading after the break.  

David Assael and David Basulto, founders of ArchDaily, at Postopolis in Los Angeles, California © Courtesy of the Storefront Gallery

Institute of Optimistic Architectures / WAI Architecture

Courtesy of WAI Architecture

WAI Architecture Think Thank has completed a study for an architecture, urbanism and spatial politics laboratory in the center of . Conceived as an avant-garde institution for the education of environmental and spatial design, their design creates an educational center based on the principle of open learning and cross-disciplinarity. The building arranges the multiple programs in a sequence of open spaces and sloping floors that together form a continuous loop of learning experiences. More images and architects’ description after the break.

The Grantham / POPOVbass Architects

Courtesy of POPOVbass Architects

Architects: POPOVbass Architects
Location: Potts Point, NSW,
Practice team: Alex Popov, Brian Bass Shayne Evans, Leigh Woodley, Rob Meneses, AyaMaceda, NikDunoski
Consultant/Construction team: Fozzard’s Consulting Engineer – Structural Consultant Illias Design Group Pty Ltd – Hydraulic Consultant
Photographs: Courtesy of POPOVbass Architects


We Are Here Now / Spatial Information Design Lab / Columbia University

New York © Spatial Information Design Lab

Addicted to checking your favorite site, like , for constant updates, or checking in with Facebook or Foursquare? Don’t worry – you’re not alone, and Columbia’s Spatial Information Design Lab can prove it.  In addition to sharing your whereabouts with friends, your geographic mark provides valuable insight in examining the psycho-geography and economic terrain of the city.

More about the study after the break.

Trades North / JCY Architects And Urban Designers

© Damien Hatton

Architect: JCY Architects and Urban Designers
Location: Clarkson, Western Australia
Construction: Pindan
Quantity Surveyor: Davson & Ward
Photographs: Damien Hatton


Courtesy of Krill Architecture

New Valer Church Proposal / Krill Architecture

In the competition for the church of Våler, Krill Architecture… focused on a concept of an open ring in the woods. Tapping on a source of collective creativity in modern architecture, their design offers the chance to bring the development

Mini-Studio / FRENTE arquitectura

© Onnis Luque

Architect: FRENTE arquitecura – Juan Pablo Maza
Location: Colonia Del Valle, City,
Constructed Area: 48 sqm
Size: 27 sqm
Construction Year: 2011
Project Team: Daniel Nava, Estefanía Hoth
Photographs: Onnis Luque, Paul Czitrom

Hanok Garden / Y Design Office

Courtesy of

Hanok Garden, a landscape project in by Y Design Office, strips one of the older Korean traditional courtyard houses into its barebones with a small deck for resting. The old house is simply turned into a public garden. More is taken away than what gets added. The project asks and challenges the very basic questions about a person, a house, a city and nature. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Dynamo / diederendirrix

© Arthur Bagen

Architects: diederendirrix
Location: , The Netherlands
Project Team: Bert Dirrix, Timo Keulen, Remco Mulder, Tom Kuipers, Quyen Dang, Iwan Westerveen.
Advisors: Adviesbureau Tielemans, Bouw constructies bv, advies- en ingenieursbureau dhv bv, Jansen Raadgevend Ingenieurs Bureau
Contractor: Bam Utiliteitsbouw bv
Interior Architecs: Bert Dirrix, Timo Keulen, Remco Mulder, tribe productions bv
Photographs: Arthur Bagen


University of Indonesia Central Library / Denton Corker Marshall

Courtesy of Denton Corker Marshall

Selected in an open design competition, the scheme by Denton Corker Marshall for a new library for a university of international standing deftly bridges the past and the present. Located in a highly visible and central site on the side of the campus lake, its circular form responds to the strong circular buildings and roadways that distinguish the campus pattern. Conceived as earth architecture, it cleverly integrates building and landscape to become an occupied tropical landform. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Stadshuis Nieuwegein / 3XN

© Adam Mõrk

Architects: 3XN
Address: Nieuwegein,
Completed: September 2011
Size: 27,000 sqm
Price: 49 mio. euro
Client: Gemeente Nieuwegein, Projectbureau Binnenstad
Local Architect: ABT
Photographs: Adam Mõrk  


Bird Watching Spot / Pedro Barrail + Marcelo Barrail + Lourdes Mendez

Courtesy of , , Lourdes Mendez

Architects: Pedro Barrail + Marcelo Barrail + Lourdes Mendez
Location: Asuncion, Paraguay
Client: Fundacion Milenio & Hsbc Bank Paraguay
Built Area: 57 sqm
Completion: April 2011
Collaborators: Ing. Martin Barrail
Materials: Wood and Steel. graphite color paint.
Photographs: Courtesy of Pedro Barrail, Marcelo Barrail, Lourdes Mendez

Update: Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture


We have been covering the progress of the National Museum of African American History and Culture over the last several months, our most recent being President Obama’s speech at the ceremony for the official ground breaking. Adjaye Associates recently shared with us some insight into the inspiration for the design and its grounding principles. We also have several new perspective renders illustrating the internal experience. More details after the break.

Templestowe Reserve Sporting Pavilion / Phooey Architects

© Peter Bennetts

Architects: Phooey Architects
Location: , Australia
Year Competed: 2009
Project Team: Peter Ho, Emma Young, Lucy Williams, Rob Chittleborough, Chris Evans, James Baradine
Structural Engineer: Perrett Simpson Stantin
Services Engineer: Umow Lai
Photographer: Peter Bennetts

Download the “From Mad Men to Mies” Wallpaper to your Tech Device

After receiving a lot of compliments on our “From MadMen to Mies” graphic, we decided to let you take a little piece of Mies (the original Mad Man) with you wherever you go. Click through the gallery below to find the wallpaper for the technological device of your choosing – iPad, iPhone, Android phone, MacBook, or Samsung Tablet. Take one, or heck, take all. In this case, less isn’t more.

SACH / Herszage & Sternberg Architects

© Shai Epstein

Architects: Herszage & Sternberg Architects
Location: ,
Landscapte Architect: David Gat
Photographs: Shai Epstein

Color Light Time + Scale / Steven Holl

Last week, we received copies of two of Steven Holl’s newest publications, Scale and Color Light Time.  Published by Lars Müller, the books examine Holl’s preoccupation with light and color as ways to inform the shaping of space.  Holl’s architecture has consistently defined itself with formal gestures grounded in light and meaningful applications of textures and colors.  While accurate to associate Holl with water color, the books shows the range such a medium has had over Holl’s career, as it has afforded the flexibility to serve as both an exploratory and explanatory tool.

More about the books after the break.

Bureau Newteam / Steinmetz De Meyer

Courtesy of

Architects: Steinmetz De Meyer
Location: Niederanven,
Contractor: Newteams.àr.l., InCAs.àr.l.
Design Team: Nathalie Jacoby, Jil Streitz, Arnaud De Meyer, Gérald Deplus, Kristina Zöbel
Budget: 1,500,000 Euro
Surface: 2,100 sqm
Volume: 14,889 m3
Photographs: Courtesy of Steinmetz De Meyer