The international development and disaster relief charity Article 25, named after the 25th article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, asked 100 of London’s artists and architects to take part in ‘10×10 Drawing the City‘. Zaha Hadid, Will Alsop, Eric Parry and Tim Makower have all created artwork inspired by an individually allocated 10×10 squared section of London’s urban landscape. The one-off pieces, which together are an impressive showcase of British architectural heritage, will be exhibited at the newly revamped West Wing of Somerset House on 14 November before all work is auctioned to the public.
Last weekend, in the heart of Beijing, the unveiling of the amorphous globes of Zaha Hadid’s Galaxy SOHO stunned visitors with the office and retail complex’s radical aesthetic. Beijing’s rapid economic growth has thrust the cityscape into a continuous battle between ever-climbing modern high rises, and the traditional, winding alleyways, unique to the capital city. Crane.tv meets Hadid to hear about her newest structural feat, and collect the thoughts of the building’s wide-eyed neighbours.
Marc Newson is one of the most accomplished industrial designers of our time. A self-confessed control freak, Newson’s innovative perspective has been applied to everything from cutlery to spaceships. He regularly lends his skills to brands such as Nike, Ford and Qantas. His numerous international accolades include receiving a CBE for services to design and being appointed “Royal Designer for Industry” in the UK. Examples of his work are housed in most major permanent museum collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and one of his earliest pieces, The Lockheed Lounge, holds the record for the world’s highest price paid for a piece of furniture. A complete catalogue of his works to date has also recently been released by Taschen books. Married to the prominent fashion editor and stylist, Charlotte Stockdale, Newson’s family life has had a profound influence on his attitude to design. Though he compares our current design climate to the industrial revolution he also seems nostalgic, lamenting both his daughter’s affinity for the iPad and the fact that the future is simply not as optimistic as he imagined.
Ellen Van Loon is an architect at the forefront of her field. Alongside six partners, including Rem Koolhaas and Reinier de Graaf, her work at the Dutch architecture practice, OMA, has encompassed some of the most iconic modern buildings in the world, including the award-winning Casa da Musica in Portugal. Two of her projects, The Rothschild Bank headquarters and Maggie’s Centre near Glasgow, were recently nominated for the RIBA Stirling Prize. She joined the practice in 1998 to lead the design for the headquarters of Universal Studios in Los Angeles. Her specific expertise lie in the balance of business acumen and an in-depth understanding of all technical and operational aspects. Here we profile Ellen, with The Rothschild Bank as a backdrop, learning about the strong bond that forms between architect and building.
Widely accepted as one of the most beautiful and architectural capitals in the world, Moscow is the heart of Mother Russia, radiating Slavic grandeur and a sense of things to come. Here, TV presenter Martyn Andrews takes Crane.tv on a tour of the Red Square, which houses everything from St Basil’s Cathedral to Lenin’s Mausoleum.
Designer and maker Rupert Blanchard creates bespoke furniture from discarded drawers, secondhand pieces and scrap material, but is adamant that his work should not be considered part of the upcycling trend. In 2011 Blanchard won ‘Best Product Design’ at The British Design Awards, and during London Design Festival he opened up his East London studio as part of the Shoreditch Design Triangle. Blanchard takes Crane.tv on a day out to visit some of his favourite local haunts around Brick Lane and Bethnal Green including a welder, a junkshop and a scrapyard.
In collaboration with Veuve Clicquot, British-Japanese designer Keiichi Matsuda created multimedia sculpture ‘Prism’ in one of the V&A’s best kept secrets. The cupola at the top of the museum was transformed into a 47-panel geometrical construction feeding into London’s pool of readily available data. Anything from energy use at 10 Downing Street to a live route map of TFL’s transport network highlight the Internet’s force as the all encompassing source of information. Whilst Prism reflects the intricate networks of the virtual world, the cupola gives visitors a 360 degree view of real-time London.
With over half a million visitors a year, the Tempeliaukkio or ‘Rock Church’ is one of Helsinki’s most treasured landmarks. Designed before the Second World war in 1930, and built in 1968 by by brothers Timo and Tuomo Suomalainen, the Lutheran church was constructed within an excavated rock formation. Apart from its impressive architectural features the glazed dome hovering above the church ensures the structure is bathed in natural light throughout the day. Crane.tv speaks to Timo Suomalainen about winning the architectural competition for Temppeliaukio in 1961, Helsinki’s modernist movement and how he was inspired by growing up on a Finnish Island, surrounded by natural landscapes.
This year as part of London Design Festival’s Landmark Projects Japanese design studio Nendo have installed Mimicry Chairs, a series of sporadically placed chairs, in the Victoria and Albert Museum. Rising stars of Japanese design, Nendo have already exhibited in Madrid, Milan, Paris, Tokyo and New York. Crane.tv follow the installation of Mimicry Chairs before speaking with head designer Oki Sato about the project and why Japanese designers always think with their heads, not their hands.
In light of B&B Italia’s debate for London Design Festival, ‘Can Design Save Europe’, we speak to Architecture and Design Critic for the FT Edwin Heathcote, Director of the V&A Martin Roth and Olympic Torch designers Jay Osgerby and Edward Barber about the power of design as a force of change on the European economy. The recent recession and subsequent arts spending cuts has sparked debate around the fate of the arts and craft industry, locating it a time of change and redevelopment. While the major manufacturing powers continually look to the East we question what the future holds for European design and manufacture, and if designers themselves should focus on functional products made available to the masses rather than luxury products for the minority.
Milan-based artist Kris Ruhs has designed shoes, illustrated for Italian Vogue and crafted furniture, but is best known for his long standing partnership with gallerist Carla Sozzini and Milan’s concept store 10 Corso Como. Ruhs’ new exhibition, the eerie Landing on Earth, opens today at the Wapping Project and runs through London Design Festival and Frieze Art Fair, drawing inspiration from aspects of his three studios in Milan, Morocco and Paris. Ruhs tells Crane.tv why his materials always dictate his work, and why he doesn’t feel the need to differentiate between art and design.
At their home in Hejlskov, Denmark Jacob Jensen and Timothy Jacob Jensen, father and son, tell us about their design history, dating back to the 1940s. Since starting work in 1947 Jacob Jensen has become somewhat of a living legend in industrial design, best known for his work at Bang & Olufsen. Here, he and his son Timothy Jacob Jensen tell us why good design always has to turn you on.
As 2012′s Design Capital of the World, Helsinki has positioned itself as one of the most rapidly expanding and innovative centres for design and architecture. Crane.tv embarks on an early-morning fishing trip from the city’s harbour with one of the last remaining fisherman to sail out every day. On the trip we are joined by Finnish design legend Harri Koskinen, also known for his work at renowned glass and ceramics company Iittala. Inspired by his heritage and growing up on the Finnish countryside, he talks us through natural surroundings as an inspiration and the importance of looking back at Finnish traditional housing for the country’s unmistakable slick and minimal design language.
After the raging success of the REDDRESS exhibit at The London Design Festival in 2011, Aamu Song and Johan Olin have spent the past year traveling through Russia and working on several new projects. This summer they’ve also given birth to Salaukkapa or ”Secret Shop’, a mini retail point near the Helsinki harbour selling some signature COMPANY items. Song and Olin swear by localism in design. From woven slippers to wooden puppets representing the varied Finnish fauna, all products are made by locals who continue to practice traditional techniques. And when they are not traveling through Russia or Europe, the design duo love to pick and cook mushrooms in the middle of the Finnish forests, a must for every visitor of ‘the land of one thousand lakes’.
Sir Terence Conran transformed Britain’s homes with Habitat. Here, the much-loved high priest of British design opens up to Crane.tv at his home in Berkshire about his long and varied career. Credited with helping in the regeneration of the Shad and Tower Bridge area in London, including the Design Museum, Conran has also built a restaurant empire, with institutions like Bibendum and the Boundary under his belt. We talk to the man about all things design, including his advice for young designers.
This year’s 13th Venice Architecture Biennale provided the backdrop to the British Pavilion’s Venice Takeaway exhibition. Commissioned by the British Council and curated by Vanessa Norwood and Vicky Richardson, Venice Takeaway responds to Biennale director David Chipperfield’s theme of Common Ground. The project began in April this year when ten teams went to ten countries to gather ideas to change British architecture. Crane.tv interviewed the ten teams, including Aberrant Architecture and Smout Allen, to hear about their findings and their proposals for the future of British architecture. The exhibition will run in Venice until 25 November 2013 before relocating to London where it will be housed at RIBA from 25 February-27 April 2012.
Award-winning landscape gardener, Andy Sturgeon, creates natural spaces with a strong design aesthetic. One of the top ten landscape designers in the UK, we talk to Andy about the ways in which he works with nature and is inspired by other forms of design outside his field. Crane.tv travels to Surrey to visit one of his current projects – a private garden halfway through the building process.
Architectural firm Populous specialises in monumental sporting and entertainment structures and was responsible for the Olympic Stadium at the London 2012 Games. The structure has changed the face of East London and is the focal point of the world’s biggest sporting activity until 13 August. We meet Rod Sheard, the architect behind the build at Populous’ studio to discuss how they approached the project with legacy and sustainability in mind, and why sport is one of the few tools left that still brings people together.
Secret Garden Party is known as one of the more playful of English summer festivals. Speckled with coquettish nooks and crannies to party the night away in and plenty of installation art, this year delivered plenty for the discerning festival-goer. Rope House, an idea conceived by artist Rosie Jackson, Rhys Jones of the Bartlett School of Architecture and fellow architect Matt Shaw, is a performance space constructed entirely out of 3 kilometres of rope. Crane.tv documents the building stages in an old MOD torpedo shed in Canterbury and the structure in situ at this year’s Secret Garden Party festival.
As part of our Soho House ‘In Conversation With’ series Crane.tv last night spoke with architects Rod Sheard of Populous, Kathryn Findlay of Ushida Findlay and Asif Khan and Pernilla Ohrstedt. Focused on designing the Olympics, each architect discusses their London 2012 specific project. Sheard tells us of the mammoth task involved in designing an Olympic stadium, Findlay discusses one of the only permanent structures to stay in Stratford, the Orbit, her co-project with Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond, while Khan and Ohrstedt fill us in on how, as an emerging architecture duo, they worked with global brand Coca-Cola to amplify their message, creating Beatbox, a structure fusing design and music. While each structure serves a different and specific purpose, the architects all share one mindset: changing the face of London while keeping the spirit of sustainability intact.