The AIA sat down with famed architect Frank Gehry - recipient of the 2012 Twenty-five Year Award - to discuss his eccentric Santa Monica home that has enormously influenced both theory and practice over the last 25 to 35 years. In the late 1970s, Frank Gehry transformed an existing Dutch colonial home in a quiet Southern California neighborhood into a controversial symbol of deconstructivism by surrounding it with an unconventional new addition. As the AIA describes, “The exposed structure, chaotic fusion of disparate materials, and aggressive juxtaposition of old and new communicate a sense of real-time formal evolution and conflict, as if the building were dynamically, violently creating itself with found objects.”Towards the end of the video, Gehry advises students to “learn to be yourself and be curious about what is going on around you and respond to it.”Learn more about the Gehry Residence here on ArchDaily!via AIA National
Best know as a musician, Moby is quickly gaining lots of attention for his “weird architecture blog” that is centered around his fascination with Los Angeles architecture. In this video published by 1883 Magazine, Moby discusses his thoughts on some his personal favorites, starting with Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis House, which Moby depicts as an Incan spaceship from 100,000 years ago.
Christopher Hawthorne’s article “Atlantic on the Move“, published in the Los Angeles Times, covers the transitions taking place along LA’s boulevards and one in particular: the 5600 block of Atlantic Avenue. Hawthorne reveals the changes taking place that are “reversing decades of neglect” among LA’s roadways. Among those that have promoted a cultural association with Los Angeles: traffic, congestion and miles of roadways. The article covers the small steps that take place over time via minor interventions that combine to change the face of the boulevards to more pedestrian and bike-friendly spaces for alternative modes of transportation. Read on for more after the break.
XTEN Architecture is planning a new, 65,000-square-foot hotel in downtown Los Angeles, California. The monolithic concrete structure will be carved by a system of slots and slices that bring light, air and views deep into the building. Equipped with a performance-based lobby, two subterranean bars, restaurant and a rooftop terrace featuring an infinity edge pool, this mid-rise hotel will surely attract some attention. Continue after the break to learn more!
Taking place May 12 from 1oam-4pm, the Marin Living: Home Tours, hosted by AIA San Francisco, is an open house tour featuring five projects that showcase and celebrate the richness of our local built environment in hopes of engaging the general public about the value of good design and its impact on our daily lives. Now in its third year, Marin Living: Home Tours offers an inside look at the wealth of great design in our region. Tour-goers will have the opportunity to explore cutting-edge residential projects in Sausalito, Mill Valley and San Rafael, meet design teams, and discover innovative design solutions. Featured projects exhibit sustainable features, innovative use of materials and thoughtful integration with the neighborhood and surrounding landscape. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit here.
A mix of twenty local and internationally renowned firms have been invited to participate in a design competition seeking “creative and practical design concepts” on thirteen acres of prime waterfront real estate at the historic Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Although mostly comprised of parking lots and former military buildings, the site attracts nearly one million annual visitors with its stellar views, cultural events, historic background and well-respected restaurant. Depending on who accepts the challenge, local firms may compete with big names such as James Corner Field Operations, SANAA, Studio Gang Architects and BIG. Continue reading after the break for more.
The Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) is pleased to present “Yevrus 1, Negative Impression,” an installation designed for the SCI-Arc Gallery by alumni Benjamin Ball (B.Arch ‘03) and Gaston Nogues (B.Arch ‘94) of Los Angeles-based Ball-Nogues Studio, opening June 1 and running until July 8 at SCI-Arc. Constructed from non-architectural artifacts, Yevrus 1, Negative Impression is a disposable architecture of literal references that calls into question the contemporary architectural vogue for digital complexity and abstraction. The cast impressions of 1973 Volkswagen Beetles and speedboats unite to form a strong structural whole that serves as a lookout tower in the SCI-Arc Gallery. More information after the break.
The PUC Building on 525 Golden Gate Ave, home of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, could have been just another government administrative building. But, the City and County of San Francisco, along with KMD Architects, embraced the design challenge of achieving LEED Silver status. Now nearing completion, the building is expected to exceed LEED Platinum requirements and has been dubbed the greenest building of its kind. The architects had humble goals for the architecture as well, which included creating an “urban room” among the civic buildings in the area, creating a healthy and pleasant environment in the interior workplace to promote performance, efficiency and comfort, and represent the best value possible for the city and county of San Francisco. Join us after the break for more.
Metro officials have released six conceptual visions that suggest how the historic Los Angeles Union Station could be transformed by 2050. Preliminary “Vision Boards” were released in a public forum at Union Station last week, and although they are not part of the formal evaluation process, they have ignited an immense amount of public interest in the competition. In an article posted on The Source, Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Antonio Villaraigosa described that this competition is “about preparing for the future.” As plans for the California High-Speed Rail System evolve, it is imperative that Union Station is redeveloped to meet the standards of a 21st century transportation hub. Continue after the break to view each Vision Board provided by the six well-known practices shortlisted for the competition.
MATT Construction is utilizing an innovative new slab technology called BubbleDeck, which replaces a significant percentage of a slab’s concrete mass with hollow or foam-filled plastic balls, made from recycled plastic material. The Teaching and Learning Building at Harvey Mudd College (HMC), designed by Boora Architects with structural engineering provided by kpff, will be the first above-ground building in the United States to employ the technology. HMC has enthusiastically embraced this project on their campus. More images and project description after the break.
The American Institute of Architects, Los Angeles Chapter recently announced their 10th Annual 2×8 Student Exhibition which features a display of 16 of the major architectural school programs in California. Although based in LA, they have extended their invitations to the region and are opening the door to more schools. Taking place at the A+D Museum, each of the participating academic programs selects two projects that exemplify its core vision. The students’ design work will be judged by a noteworthy panel of architects and designers. The panel will then announce the winners at the exhibition opening and convene in a forum to discuss the award-winning projects. The exhibition will be on view from June 5 till June 30. For more information, please visit here. More images of past exhibitions can be viewed after the break.
Founder and principal of Studio Gang Architects, Jeanne Gang, FAIA, LEED AP, will be delivering a lecture at LACMA on May 8th at 7:30pm. Reveal, the first volume on Studio Gang’s projects and processes, was released in 2011 from Princeton Architectural Press. Recent projects include a proposal reimagining the suburb of Cicero, Illinois, as a part of MoMA’sexhibition Foreclosed: Rehousing the American Dream; Reverse Effect, a book intended to explore and spark a radically greener future for the Chicago River and Great Lakes; Aqua Tower, an Emporis Skyscraper of the Year; and Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo, an educational project demonstrating how nature and city can coexist. The event is presented by LACMA and organized by Francesca Garcia-Marques, with an introduction by Christopher Hawthorne, Los Angeles Times architecture critic. For more details and information on the event, please visit here.
The project by Morris Architects for a new information technology and media center for Santa Monica Community College in California includes 12,000 square feet of new space and approximately 6,000 square feet of renovation to the existing campus library. The college currently has an enrollment of 30,000 students and is experiencing rapid growth that requires a major upgrade to its current information technology department and computing infrastructure. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Future Cities Lab’s HYDRAMAX Port Machines project, which is currently on exhibit at SFMOMA until July 29, proposes a radical rethinking of San Francisco’s urban waterfront post sea-level rise. The proposal renders the existing hard edges of the waterfront as new “soft systems” that would include aquatic parks, community gardens, wildlife refuges and aquaponic farms. A synthetic architecture is introduced that blurs the distinction between building, landscape, infrastructure and machine. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Breaking Ground: Chinese American Architects in Los Angeles (1945-1980) at the Chinese American Museum (CAM) is an exhibition that focuses on four Chinese American architects that have transformed parts of Los Angeles with iconic buildings and distinct design styles. The work will be on display until June 3rd 2012 and feature architects such as Eugene Choy, Gilbert Leong, Helen Liu Fong and Gin Wong. Breaking Ground is part of Pacific Standard Time, a collaboration created by Getty in which sixty cultural institutions will tell the story of the birth of LA art scene over the course of six months beginning October 2011. Breaking Ground at CAM LA tells the story of the skyline and the changing built environment through the perspective the four prominent Chinese American Architects. More after the break.
Pedro E. Guerrero: Photographs of Modern Life at Woodbury University Hollywood Gallery (WUHO) is on view through April 25. The show is the first extensive exhibition on the West Coast of Guerrero’s career as an architectural photographer. Curated by Anthony Fontenot and Emily Bills, JSI director, Pedro E. Guerrero: Photographs of Modern Life will highlight the diversity of Guerrero’s subjects taken over seven decades. During that time, he captured the architecture of Marcel Breuer, Philip Johnson, Edward Durell Stone and Eero Saarinen. His wide ranging work included portraits of architects as well as commercial work for House & Garden, Vogue, the New York Times Magazine and Architectural Record. He is perhaps best known for his close relationship with Frank Lloyd Wright. The exhibition will feature Guerrero’s illuminating portraits of Wright, including twelve photographs of the architect’s hands demonstrating the difference between organic and conventional architecture at the Plaza Hotel in New York. Continue reading for more.
For architecture students, the Modern Movement is typically the most recent and most defined architectural style movement that history classes focus on. We appreciate the architects and artists of that time and respond to their buildings and ideas with reverence. Despite our appreciation for the buildings that came out of this era, conservation methods are meeting new challenges in conserving these buildings that have not aged well as they have reached their 50-year heritage protection eligibility. This is where the Conserving Modern Architecture Initiative (CMAI) comes in. A “comprehensive, long-term, and international program” that is part of the Getty Conservation Institute (GCI). CMAI aims to enhance conservation methods that in response to these aging buildings and create a knowledge data base of training programs and publications that reflect the advancement of these strategies. More on the GCI and its initiative after the break.
If you are in the Bay Area this weekend, we recommend you stop in at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and check out their current exhibit The Utopian Impulse: Buckminster Fuller and the Bay Area. This exhibition is the first of its kind, featuring Buckminster Fuller’s most iconic projects as well a focus on his local design legacy in the Bay Area. Though he was never a resident, Fuller’s ideas inspired many local experiments in the realms of technology, engineering and sustainability. Continue reading for more information.