BIG Designs Labyrinth for Atrium of National Building Museum

© . Image Courtesy of

The National Building Museum (NBM) has announced that BIG has designed a 61×61 foot maze to be housed in the building’s grand atrium from July 4th to September 1st of this year. According to the NBM’s website, the labyrinth’s Baltic birch plywood walls, which stand 18 feet high at the maze’s periphery, descend as you make your way towards the center. From the core, then, visitors receive a view of the entire layout – and a better understanding of how to get back out.

According to Bjarke Ingels, “The concept is simple: as you travel deeper into a maze, your path typically becomes more convoluted. What if we invert this scenario and create a maze that brings clarity and visual understanding upon reaching the heart of the labyrinth?” Of course, those uninterested in the challenge of figuring out the maze can peek down on it from the Museum’s second and third floors – but where would be the fun in that?

More images, diagrams and drawings after the break!

Antoine Predock and Bjarke Ingels Awarded 2014 RAIC Honorary Fellowships

Beach & Howe Tower in Vancouver. Image Courtesy of

The wisdom of the Old West, New-Mexico based architect Antoine Predock (who designed the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg) and the vitality of the New East, BIG founder and principal Bjarke Ingels (whose office is responsible for the Beach & Howe Tower in Vancouver and Telus Sky in Calgary), are being distinguished by the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada () this year with Honorary Fellowships for extraordinary achievement in the field of architecture. More on this news, here.

AD Interviews: Bjarke Ingels / BIG

At ArchDaily, we think that is one of the most inspiring architects practicing today. Having found success at a relatively young age, Bjarke has never shied away from embracing his YES IS MORE philosophy. His conspicuous enthusiasm for the potential of architecture and design sets him apart from his peers. And it is precisely this go-to attitude that has allowed him to overcome some of the significant limits that face many young architects today. An impressive portfolio of both built and upcoming projects shows that his approach to design, though sometimes criticized, is profoundly impacting the social environment of architecture. 

On running an office, Bjarke says that “you have the opportunity and the responsibility to create the work environment that you would like to work in.” He has modeled his firm as a type of organism that is able to adapt to growth and change. In the interview, Bjarke explains that not only does his own role constantly evolve, but that the success of BIG is contingent on the invaluable contributions of his partners. BIG is more than just Bjarke. 

We also asked him to define architecture (“the art and science of making sure that our cities and buildings actually fit with the way we want to live our lives”), and to give students advice about pursuing a career in architecture. Be sure to read the full interview after the break.

The School of Koolhaas

For the recent Axel Springer SE Media Campus in Berlin, ’s proposal (shown) is up against designs by two of ’s past employees.. Image Courtesy of Axel Springer SE

It is difficult to even imagine an architectural practice more influential than OMA. Not only has Koolhaas‘ practice completed high-profile buildings worldwide, but it has also been the incubator for some of the world’s most famous architects, with many striking out alone after a period working under Rem. This article in the Wall Street Journal profiles some of the latest crop of “graduates”, including Bjarke Ingels and Ole Scheeren, who have founded their own practices in the last decade and are now acting as some of OMA’s biggest competitors. You can read the full article here.

Chad Oppenheim & Bjarke Ingels in a Roundtable in Miami

Developers are using the name recognition of some of the world’s most important architects to bring in buyers for their posh towers.

The Real Deal looks at the luxury market’s newest selling point as well as other trends shaping South Florida’s new condo boom with a top-flight roundtable Nov. 7 in Miami’s Coconut Grove neighborhood. A cocktail party will follow the discussion.

Slated to speak are Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, whose latest South Florida project is Grove at Grand Bay, and Chad Oppenheim, the Miami-based architect whose work includes the celebrated Ten Museum Park. They will be joined by developer David Martin of Terra Group, plus brokers Mayi de la Vega of One Sotheby’s International Realty and Esther Percal of Esslinger Wooten Maxwell.

The evening will take place at Grove at Grand Bay, 2669 South Bayshore Drive. The roundtable starts at 6 p.m.; the party kicks off at 7 p.m. and wraps up at 9 p.m. Space is limited so reserve your seat today at RSVP@therealdeal.com.

Title: Starchitecture Comes to Miami: & Bjarke Ingels in a Roundtable
Website: http://therealdeal.com/miami/the-real-deal-to-host-roundtable-event-with-star-architects-nov-7/
Organizers: The Real Deal
From: Thu, 07 Nov 2013 18:00
Until: Thu, 07 Nov 2013 21:00
Venue: Grove at Grand Bay
Address: 2669 South Bayshore Drive, Miami, FL 33133, USA

SOHO China’s Zhang Xin on Balancing Design and Commercial Viability

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The list of architects that have collaborated with Zhang Xin’s development company, SOHO China, reads like the roster of an architectural dream team (which includes Zaha Hadid, Yung Ho Chang, Bjarke Ingels, Kengo Kuma, Kazuyo Sejima, Herzog & de Meuron, Thom Mayne, David Adjaye, Toyo Ito and others). So it’s no surprise that the self-made billionaire lectured to a packed house at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design last Thursday. Xin spoke about her commitment to and love of design, explaining that her company’s mission is to bring a variety of architectural languages to China. And though SOHO’s projects are certainly experimental, Xin contends that her developer mindset actually helps meliorate the architect’s propensity to take the experiment too far—all without sacrificing the impressive and iconic forms of SOHO’s building portfolio.

Watch Zhang Xin link her practice in to larger global issues and catch a glimpse of two -designs currently under construction: Wangjing SOHO and Sky SOHO.

Round-Up: The Towers of BIG

Courtesy of BIG. ImageVancouver Tower

Today’s been shaping up to be quite the day for . Not only does the BIG founder turn 39 today, but he was just announced as a finalist for the second annual FT/Citi Ingenuity Awards for his work on the award-winning urban park Superkilen. For more Bjarke to brighten up your day, we’ve decided to round-up the soaring, twisting and turning towers that BIG has waiting in store for us: from a precariously spiraling observation tower planned for downtown Phoenix, Arizona; to the two high-rise residential towers BIG has in the works for – the seemingly “ruptured” Marina Lofts and the twisting twins of The Grove at Grand Bay; to the headlines-making, mixed-use towers planned for Vancouver and Calgary. Enjoy!

The Prince: Bjarke Ingels’s Social Conspiracy

© DAC / Jakob Galtt

A version of this essay was originally published in Thresholds 40: “Socio-” (2012)

Few architects working today attract as much public acclaim and disciplinary head-scratching as . Having recently arrived in New York, this self-proclaimed futurist is undertaking his own form of Manifest Destiny, reminding American architects how to act in their own country.

While his practice is often branded by the architectural establishment as naïve and opportunistic, such criticism is too quick to conflate Ingels’s outwardly optimistic persona with the brash formal agenda it enables. In the current economic climate, there are any number of gifted purveyors of form languishing in New York City. Despite this, Ingels has somehow managed to get away with proposing a pyramidal perimeter block in midtown New York, a looped pier in St. Petersburg Florida, and an art center in Park City, Utah massed as torqued log cabin while maintaining a straight face. Why, then, is his mode of operation considered unsophisticated by so many within the discipline?

Clearly, Ingels has figured something out about harnessing and transforming “the social” that American architects would do well to identify. So, in the manner of any good conspiracy theorist in search for the hidden method, let’s go to the chalkboard, or rather, the diagram…

AD Interviews: Advice for Young Architects

Since ArchDaily started, we have interviewed close to two hundred architects to understand the diversity of our profession, and to give you insights from the most successful practices in the world.

Here is a round up with excerpts from some of these interviews, focusing on advice for the young architects.

Watch Bjarke Ingels, Charles Renfro, Einar Jarmund, Ma Yansong, Sam Jacob, Jim Eyre, and Andrew Maynard share their advice with the ArchDaily community!

Yes Is More: The BIG Philosophy

Yes is more: an archicomic on architectural evolution – presents his extraordinary architecture in cartoon-form

Anders Møller is the co-founder of GRASP Magazine, where this article was originally published.

What has the internationally awarded Bjarke Ingels Group () to do with Friederich Nietzsche and Charles Darwin? Quite a lot, according to founder Bjarke Ingels, who has created a powerful mixture of Nietzsche and Darwin as the philosophical foundation of ’s architecture.

Read Anders Møller’s fascinating article on BIG’s unusual philosophy, after the break…

LEGO® Announces BIG Commission

Courtesy of BIG

It’s official! Danish architect Bjarke Ingels of BIG has been commissioned to collaborate with Ralph Appelbaum Associates (RAA) and to design the first public LEGO® museum in the company’s hometown of BillundDenmark. The “LEGO® Brand House” and “experience centre” is intended to compliment the non-public “LEGO® Idea House”, which is also located in Billund.

Bjarke Ingles, founder of BIG stated: “It’s going to be looking at LEGO® from all its different aspects—LEGO® as an art form, its cultural impact. When we were doing the research for it [the LEGO® house], we realized, if you would consider it just an art museum, you would be able to fill it with so much user content of such a high quality…it is one of our great dreams at BIG that we are now able to design a building for and with the LEGO® group. I owe a huge personal debt to the LEGO® brick, and I can see in my nephews that its role in developing the child as a creative, thinking, imaginative human being becomes ever stronger in a world in which creativity and innovation are key elements in virtually all aspects of society.”

More on LEGO®’s BIG commission after the break…

BIG’s Waste-to-Energy Plant Breaks Ground, Breaks Schemas

© -Bjarke Ingels Group

There are many things that set BIG’s latest project, Amager Bakke, apart. The plant, which broke ground yesterday, will be the cleanest waste-to-energy plant in the world. It will be the tallest and biggest building in . It will house Denmark’s first ski-slope (on the roof of the plant, no less). It will emit its CO2 emissions – not as a continuous stream of smoke, oh no – but in sudden, bursting smoke rings. 

However, the Amager Bakke waste-to-energy Plant is far more than the sum of its rather remarkable features. As an urban “destination in itself” and a landmark in environmental design, it’s one of the most radical representations of architecture as a means of public engagement of our time. And, what’s more, it’s a signal that BIG has finally reached maturity, truly coming into its own as a firm.

Read more about BIG’s remarkable Amager Bakke waste-to-energy plant, after the break….

Jury Announced for Lisbon Architecture Triennale 2013: Close, Closer

Courtesy of closecloser.com

The Lisbon Architecture Triennale has announced the panel of judges for this year’s projects. The panel will be composed of important architects like Bjarke Ingels of BIGMinsuk Cho of Mass Studies of Philippe Rahm Architects and Luis Santiago Baptista of the journal Arqa.

The theme of the Triennale this year is “Close, Closer” and it intends to initiate a discussion regarding the changing role of the contemporary architect. There will be three exhibitions, a lecture program, a series of electronic publications, student awards, a Debut Award for young architects and a career achievement award.

Bjarke Ingels in Sydney for HASSELL and AIA

Slussen in Stockholm / Courtesy of

Bjarke Ingels, who heads up the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), was in Sydney recently and did a talk at the Australian Institute of Architects, which was sponsored and organized by HASSELL. With the common design values and easy fit between BIG and HASSELL, they make a powerful team. So BIG, whose projects we have published here, visited Sydney to explore the potential for future project collaborations. More information and a video after the break.

“My Playground: A Film about Movement in Urban Space” Documentary

A couple of years ago, we mentioned an interesting documentary about Parkour, and how such contemporary discipline is able to make reading the urban space in a different way.

The film was recorded mainly in , using locations such as the Mountain Dwellings designed by BIG. It also includes some conversations with Bjarke Ingels, discussing about his understanding of urban space. It has been selected as part of the films program of the RIBA 2012. If you’re in London, you will have the chance to watch it next June 26th.

More info after the break

ArchDaily at the Center for Architecture! Going Viral: Blurred Borders

Via AIANY

Mark your calendars! In less than three weeks, ArchDaily founders David Basulto and David Assael will join Bjarke Ingels of BIG, Toru Hasegawa of Morpholio and Columbia University, and of eVolo for a lecture and panel discussion that will explore the impact of social media, technology and device culture on the way we design and practice. Moderated by Ned Cramer, editor-in-chief of Architect, Going Viral is part of the AIANY 2012 Global Dialogues that has been dedicated to “uncovered connections” with the intention to investigate issues that are similarly impacting multiple regions, cultures and individuals. In addition, selected game changing blogs and websites will be exhibited as Voices Going Viral on the evening of the .

Going Viral will take place at the NY Center for Architecture on May 21st at 6:00 pm. It is free to join, but please RSVP. Continue after the break for more information.

Video: Bjarke Ingels Exposes His Roots

As we have shared with you earlier, CNN’s The Next List has profiled the young, Danish architect Bjarke Ingels. Originally aspired to be a cartoonist or graphic novelist, Ingels quickly became fascinated with architecture when a Fall storm rolled through his hometown in North , knocking over trees and leaving him a surplus of lumber. It was then that he was inspired to design his first project, the ultimate childhood “fantasy fort” with a moat, drawbridge and all.  In Ingels first experience with value engineering, he quickly learned that “unless you really begin with the perimeters of reality you’ll end up sort of amputating your ambitions quite quickly.” Enjoy the video and be sure to check out CNN’s recent video focusing on the bold ideas behind BIG.

Additionally, Ingels contributed an essay entitled Rethinking social infrastructure” on CNN’s What’s Next blog. You can check it out here.

Reference: CNN, Archinect

Video: Bjarke Ingels, BIG


Danish architect Bjarke Ingels of -based group BIG tells Crane.tv that yes is more. His design philosophy, which he outlines in his latest graphic book, Yes is More, states that incorporating input from all elements of society, both elite and popular, allows the extraordinary to shine through in the everyday.