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Studio Fuksas

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The New LaGuardia Airport is "Lackluster and Uninspired"

Two weeks ago, New York Governer Andrew Cuomo and Vice President Joe Biden unveiled a plan to transform LaGuardia airport into "a globally-renowned, 21st century airport that is worthy of the city and state of New York." However the redesign is not universally popular. In this article originally titled "The New LaGuardia Airport: Not Functional, Not Inspiring, Not an Icon," - the first of his regular column over at 6sqft - architecture critic Carter B. Horsley explains why "Queens deserves better."

The recent announcement by Governor Cuomo and Vice President Joe Biden of plans to “rebuild” La Guardia Airport at a cost of $4 billion was described in a Page One caption in The Post as “the end of an error,” a reference to the airport’s reputation that became tarnished over the years. Last October, Biden remarked that if someone had taken him to LaGuardia, he’d think he was in “some Third World country.”

Since its opening in 1939, when it accommodated “flying boats” at its Marine Air Terminal, the airport has not kept up with the growth of jumbo jets and air travel in general, but in the days of the Super Constellation passenger planes with their triple-tails and sloping noses, it was a very nice Art Deco place.

The published renderings that accompanied the announcement were not terribly reassuring, as they depicted a very long curved terminal with gangly tentacles raised over plane taxiways that hinted at torsos of praying mantises: an awkward rather than a graceful vault.

© Governor Andrew Cuomo © Governor Andrew Cuomo © Governor Andrew Cuomo © Governor Andrew Cuomo

Of Process And Practice: A Conversation With Studio Fuksas

Founded nearly 50 years ago in Rome, it is difficult to pin down an overarching theme in the work of Studio Fuksas: their designs have been built in North America, Asia and across Europe (with another design planned for Australia); they regularly operate at varying scales, from a colossal trade fair center and an international airport down to a small parish church; and their buildings all demonstrate huge stylistic variety. In this interview from Indian Architect and Builder's April 2015 issue, Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas discuss the process behind their work, and the role of variation, context and concept in their designs.

Indian Architect & Builder: Did you always want to be an architect? Can you share with us your journey while discovering your commitment towards this field?

Massimiliano Fuksas: No, I never thought I’d want to be an architect. My early aspirations were to become a poet. The beauty of language, various forms of expression and prose always intrigued me. This ambition then evolved in to the desire of being an artist. Architecture was really my last choice. The thought of being an architect occurred to me only when I was around twenty. I was in university when I realized that architecture is probably the easiest and simplest interpretation of art and culture. As I continued my journey in the University of Rome, I began to develop a passion for this multifaceted field of knowledge. It was in my third year of university when I found my fervor for architecture and saw myself as an individual in the practice of architecture; a field that in one or more ways satisfied my earlier ambitions of being a poet and an artist.

Ferrari Operational Headquarters and Research Centre, 2004. Image © Maurizio Marcato The Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport was designed to evoke the form of a manta ray. Image © Leonardo Finotti Tbilisi Public Service Hall, 2012. Image © Studio Fuksas New Milan Trade Fair. Image © Studio Fuksas

AD Round Up: Awesome Airports

AD Classics: Dulles International Airport / Eero Saarinen. Image © MWAA
AD Classics: Dulles International Airport / Eero Saarinen. Image © MWAA

If there is a universal truth, it is that nobody likes spending time in an airport. This article from the Financial Times corroborates this fact, pointing out that, no matter how well-designed a terminal is, people make every effort to leave it as soon as possible. While the novelty of air travel has worn off since its inception in the 20th century, the work devoted to designing airports has only increased. We’ve collected some of our favorite terminals we'd actually love to get stuck in, including works by Eero Sarinen, SOM, Fentress, J. Mayer H., KCAP, Paul Andreu, bblur architecture and 3DReid, Corgan Associates, De Bever, and Studio Fuksas. Enjoy!

Material Inspiration: 10 Projects Inspired by Glass

To celebrate the launch of ArchDaily Materials, our new product catalog, we've rounded up 10 awesome projects from around the world that were inspired by one material: glass. Check out the projects after the break...

Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas to design Cultural Center in Chengdu

© Studio Fuksas
© Studio Fuksas

Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas has been announced as winner of an international competition to design and construct the first cultural center in Chengdu, China. In their winning proposal, Fuksas combined four, elliptical shaped buildings with a spiral structure to create an inclusive artist complex that offers a center for the performing arts, a cultural center, offices Writer and Literary Association, and an apartment building for artists. Learn more about the Chengdu Tianfu Cultural and Performance Center after the break.

Tbilisi Public Service Hall / Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas

© Moreno Maggi
© Moreno Maggi

Architects:  Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas Location: Tbilisi, Georgia Client: LEPL Civil Registry Agency – Giorgi Vashadze / LEPL National Public Registry Agency Area: 42,000 sqm Project Year: 2010 – 2012 Photographers: Moreno Maggi, Studio Fuksas

© Moreno Maggi © Studio Fuksas © Studio Fuksas © Studio Fuksas

MyZeil Shopping Mall / Studio Fuksas

© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn

Architects: Studio Fuksas - Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas Interior Design: Fuksas Design Location: Frankfurt, Germany Address: Grosse Eschenheimer Strasse 10-14 Period: 2002-2009  Client: PalaisQuartier GmBH & CO., KG Surface:  Built Surface – 77,000 sq.m., Facade – 8,500 sq.m., Cover – 13,000 sq.m. Engineering:  Structures – Knippers-Helbig Beratende Ingenieure, Stuttgart; Krebs und Kiefer Beratende Ingenieure für das Bauwesen GmbH, Darmstadt | Realization of the façade and covering – Waagner Biro Stahlbau AG, Wien

© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn
© Karsten Monnerjahn

Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas Wins Competition To Create 'Greenest City in Italy'

Projects like the High LineBloomingdale Trail, and Allegheny Green Boulevard illustrate that disused, industrial infrastructure is rife with re-use potential and often can create new ways for a city to connect. However, what opportunities can this infrastructure present when it is still in use?

Read about the problem facing Bari and how it might be resolved after the break...

Armani Fifth Ave. / Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas

  • Architects: Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas
  • Location: New York, NY, USA
  • Architect: Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas
  • Design Team: Sara Bernardi, Alfio Faro, Andrea D'Antrassi, Chiara Marchionni, Rossella Mastronardi
  • Furniture Design: Ana Gugic, Farshid Tavakolitehrani, Lucrezia Rendace
  • Lighting Consultant: Speirs & Major Associates
  • Project Consultant On Site: Davide Stolfi
  • Structural Engineering: Gilberto Sarti
  • Art Work: Mimmo Paladino
  • Model Makers: Nicola Cabiati, Lucrezia Rendace, Jaim Telias
  • 3 D Model & Render: Giuseppe Zaccaria, Jaim Telias, Stratos Christofidellis, Valerio Romondia, Giorgos Machairas
  • Client: Gruppo Giorgio Armani
  • Site Area: 7.000 sqm
  • Area: 2.5 sqm
  • Project Year: 2009

Armani Fifth Ave. / Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas Armani Fifth Ave. / Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas Armani Fifth Ave. / Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas Armani Fifth Ave. / Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas