The design proposal for the extension to the National Library of Austria by Prechteck is to be seen as an extension of the bordering park and takes off at its northwest end to cross over the drop-off lane on 4.5m with a twist. The design then arches back to the ground level to blend into the landscape. More images and description after the break.
Architects: Architectural Resources Group
Location: St. Helena, California, USA
Client: Napa Valley Vintners
Civil: Degenkolb, The Engineering Partnership, Ray E. Slaughter, RGH
Consultants: Riechers & Spence
Landscape: Jonathan Plant & Associates
Furniture: Julie Drechsel with Workspace Solutions
Project area: 7,960 sqm
Project year: 2009
Photographs: David Wakely
Intended as a catalyst and model for the ongoing redevelopment of Cairo, Egypt, ZELLNERPLUS, OLIN, PACER, MR+E, and Nelson Nygaard proposed a scheme that seeks to bridge the gap between the medieval, or Islamic, and the axial, or European Cairene cities. They would do so through the evacuation of the competition zone of its current disconnected fabrics. In their place, they proposed a green urban archipelago made up of a new connective tissue that will weld together the competition site’s disparate functions, flows and neighboring fabrics. More images and architects’ description after the break.
This was the third time we attended the event (after 2009 in Buenos Aires and 2010 in New York) and it was a special evening, not only because of the renowned architects attending the event, but also for the presenting speech by President Barack Obama. Obama, a friend of the Pritzker family, delivered a short but interesting speech to Souto de Moura and the architects. Obama’s interest in architecture goes way back as we’ve heard him state that he thought he could be an architect, but as he said at the speech “I expected to be more creative than I turned out, so I had to go into politics instead”.
It’s worth mentioning that Obama referred to the Pritzker Prize as the Nobel of architecture, a common comparison that puts the importance of this recognition in context.
After several mentions to architecture, his hometown Chicago, Mies (his campaign HQ was in a Mies building), Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Jefferson’s Monticello, he mentioned that architecture is about “creating buildings and spaces that inspire us, that help us do our jobs, that bring us together, and that become, at their best, works of art that we can move through and live in. And in the end, that’s why architecture can be considered the most democratic of art forms“.
About Souto de Moura’s work he mentioned that it was “effortless and beautiful”, and he highlighted the fact that the Braga Stadium was a democratic building, as he not only served the audience but people on the outside.
After Obama and Lord Palumbo (chairman of the Pritzker jury) Eduardo Souto de Moura accepted his recognition, and said something very interesting that made me understand contemporary Portuguese architecture. He developed his work during the 1974 revolution in Portugal, after which the country required to give housing to millions of people. At that time post modernism was starting strong in the country, but that wasn´t the way to do housing (with columns and arches), which led to a late modernism that we see on his works, which in my opinion became a legacy to the new generation of Portuguese architects. More photos after the break:
Photographer Franck Bohbot recently shared his photos of Anish Kapoor’s Leviathan-Monumenta with ArchDaily. Organized by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, MONUMENTA annually invites an internationally renowned artist to transform the 13,5000 sqm of the Grand Palais Nave with an artwork especially created for the event. Leviathan-Monumenta will be on display until June 23rd.
Follow the break for additional photographs.