Share Your Tactical Urbanism Ideas with MoMA

© Uneven Growth

Along with rapid urban expansion comes uneven growth - one of the largest threats that face our society. Determined to combat this issue, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) sparked an international debate with the opening of Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities. The exhibition, a culmination of a 14-month initiative, highlights emergent modes of tactical urbanism from around the globe that offer ideas on how to mitigate inequality and preserve livability within an increasingly-expanding world. 

Now, at the height of Uneven Growth, MoMA wants you to join the conversation. No matter how small or modest your intervention may be, MoMA is encouraging the public to contribute examples of tactical urbanism – “bottom-up interventions that aim to make more livable and participatory” – on the exhibit’s online forum. All submissions will be considered for inclusion in the exhibition’s presentation at the : Ideas for Change. Submit your idea, here. 

How MoMA PS1 Yap Winner Andrés Jaque Plans to Politicize Water

Courtesy of Office for Political Innovation

In the grand tradition of PS1′s Young Architects Program winners, Andrés Jaque’s plan for “COSMO” addresses an ecological need through installation architecture. While 2014′s “Hy-Fi” by explored organic bricks and 2012′s “Wendy” by HWKN addressed airborne pollution, Jaque has set his targets on something that is apparently much more political: water. This article, originally published by Metropolis Magazine as “The Politics of Water: Andrés Jaque on His 2015 MoMA PS1 YAP Winning Design,” examines how Jaque hopes to turn his installation into a political talking point.

At first glance, Bill Gates’s robotic Janicki Omniprocessor and Andrés Jaque’s winning proposal for the 2015 MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program (YAP) share a similar goal—they each tackle the problem of global water scarcity, which has become exacerbated by climate change, political strife, and a host of other factors. But while the Omniprocessor looks like a cement factory in miniature, Jaque’s project melds its profoundly social objective—to change the way we understand contemporary water infrastructure—to an almost psychedelic aesthetic.

Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980

Affonso Eduardo Reidy. Museum of Modern Art of Rio de Janeiro (MAM), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1934-1947. ©Núcleo de Documentação e Pesquisa – Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo da Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

In 1955 the Museum of Modern Art staged Latin American Architecture since 1945, a landmark survey of modern architecture in . On the 60th anniversary of that important show, the Museum returns to the region to offer a complex overview of the positions, debates, and architectural creativity from Mexico and Cuba to the Southern Cone between 1955 and the early 1980s.

More about Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980, opening at on March 29th, after the break. 

Andrés Jaque Named 2015 MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program (YAP) Winner

© Cosmo / Andrés Jaque/Office for Political Innovation

Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation’s project COSMO has been selected by the Museum of Modern Art and MoMA as winner of Young Architects Program’s (YAP) 16th edition in New York. Scheduled to open in late June, just in time for ’s 2015 Warm Up summer music, COSMO will serve as a “moveable artifact” with a mission to provide clean water for the world’s population. 

“This year’s proposal takes one of the Young Architects Program’s essential requirements – providing a water feature for leisure and fun – and highlights water itself as a scarce resource,” said Pedro Gadanho, Curator in MoMA’s Department of Architecture and Design. “Relying on off-the-shelf components from agro-industrial origin, an exuberant mobile architecture celebrates water-purification processes and turns their intricate visualization into an unusual backdrop for the Warm Up sessions.”

MOMA Partners with Instagram for Largest-Ever Latin American Architecture Exhibition

Iglesia del Cristo Obrero, Atlántida, Uruguay, Eladio Dieste. Image © Leonardo Finotti

MoMA’s largest-ever Latin American architecture exhibition will feature an official partnership with Instagram. The project invites the Instagram community to share their photos of buildings as part of the  in Construction: Architecture 1955–1980 exhibition.

One of the year’s most awaited exhibitions,  Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955–1980 will display key architectural works for understanding modernism in Latin America, featuring remarkable buildings from all over the continent, designed by prominent architects like Oscar Niemeyer, Clorindo Testa, Luis Barragán, Vilanova Artigas and Eladio Dieste.

Inequality and Informality in New York: SITU Studio’s Proposal for MoMA’s Uneven Growth Exhibition

© SITU Studio

When it comes to discussing informal , it’s usually cities in developing nations that take the spotlight – however, as revealed by SITU Studio’s contribution to MoMA’s Uneven Growth exhibition, issues of informal are indeed present in cities across the spectrum of development. In this interview, originally posted on Arup Connect as “Inequality and informality in New York,” Sarah Wesseler speaks to SITU Studio principle Bradley Samuels about their unconventional proposal to address an issue that is frequently overlooked in  city policy.

Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities, a newly opened exhibit at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, focuses on the complex relationship between urbanization and inequality. Over the 14-month period leading up to the launch, six interdisciplinary teams explored how these issues are playing out in different parts of the world, each developing an architectural response for a specific city.

Architecture firm SITU Studio (together with Cohabitation Strategies [CohStra]) was tasked with studying its home city, New York. (Arup transport planner Michael Amabile also consulted with the team.) We spoke with SITU principal Bradley Samuels about the project.

2015 YAP Istanbul Modern Shortlist

2013 YAP Modern Winner: Sky Spotting Stop / SO?. Image © Muhsin Akgün; Courtesy of Modern

Istanbul Modern has announced five finalists to compete in the 2015 Young Architects Program (). Now in it’s 2nd edition, the competition will challenge a group of emerging architects to design a temporary installation within the confines of Istanbul Modern’s courtyard that will host a series of events and visitors throughout the summer of 2015.

The 2015 shortlist includes Ali Sinan &  (Ankara), Architecture for All (Herkes İçin Mimarlık, Istanbul), FLAT C (Selim Bayer & Bulut Cebeci, London-Istanbul), PATTU (Cem Kozar & Işıl Ünal, Istanbul) and Young & Ayata (Michael Young & Kutan Ayata, New York).

YAP Istanbul Modern is part of the YAP International competitions carried out at MoMA PS1 in New York, the National Museum of XXI Century Arts (MAXXI) in Rome, CONSTRUCTO in Santiago, and the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) in Seoul.

Six Teams Studying Uneven Growth to Exhibit Proposals for Expanding Megacities at MoMA

Lagos Tomorrow. 2014. Water. Image © NLÉ and Zoohaus/Inteligencias Colectivas

As the culmination of a 14-month initiative to examine new architectural possibilities for rapid growth in six megalopolises – Hong Kong, Istanbul, Lagos, Mumbai, New York, and Rio de Janeiro – the Museum of Modern Art is preparing to open Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities on November 22. The exhibition will present mappings of emergent modes of tactical urbanism from around the globe alongside proposals for a bottom-up approach to urban growth in the highlighted by six interdisciplinary teams made up of local practitioners and international architecture and urbanism experts.

Curator Pedro Gadanho, in collaboration with the Austrian Museum of Applied Arts (MAK), states: 

“The exhibition features design scenarios for future developments that simultaneously raise awareness of the prevailing inequalities in specific urban areas and confront the changing roles of architects vis-à-vis ever-increasing urbanization. Each team in the exhibition was asked to consider how emergent forms of tactical urbanism can respond to alterations in the nature of public space, housing, mobility, spatial justice, environmental conditions, and other major issues in near-future urban contexts.” 

A synopsis of each team’s work, after the break.

Jean Nouvel’s Tower Verre Finally Ready to Break Ground

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Jean Nouvel‘s long-awaited 53 West 53rd Street, also known as the Tower Verre or the MoMA Tower, may finally be ready to move ahead with construction after the project’s developer Hines purchased $85.3 million worth of air rights from its neighbors MoMA and the St Thomas Episcopal Church and arranged the $860 million construction loan required for the project.

Originally proposed in 2007, the design has been plagued by problems, including significant delays due to the financial crisis and a difficult approval process which resulted in the building’s height being slashed from 1,250 feet to its current planned height of 1,050 feet. However, according to a statement from Hines groundbreaking on the project is now “imminent.”

Spatial Relations Take Centre Stage in MoMA’s Newest Architectural Exhibition

Herzog & de Meuron’s National Stadium, Beijing. 2008. Image © Iwan Baan

What influence do art and space have on the contemporary architectural design process? MoMA‘s most recent on architecture and design Conceptions of Space strives to answer this question. Themed under the umbrella of spatial relations, Curator Pedro Gadanho ruminates on the subject in a broad and philosophical sense. The exhibition delves into the topic using an interdisciplinary approach, incorporating research from French philosopher Michel Foucault on the subject of the expanded field. The exhibition aims to explore the relationship between the development of space and its deep-seated roots in the creative arts.

MOMA Announces Barry Bergdoll’s Successor for Chief Curator of Architecture & Design

Martino Stierli, The Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design, . Image Courtesy of

Martino Stierli, a Swiss architecture and art history professor interested in ”how architecture is represented in the media and intersects with art,” has been named Barry Bergdoll’s successor as the chief curator of architecture and design at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).

In a Press Release, Stierli comments upon his appointment: ”Since its inception, MoMA has presented groundbreaking exhibitions that promote and critically reflect upon modern and contemporary architecture. By continually expanding its comprehensive collection, the Department of Architecture and Design has been pivotal to the preservation of modernism for the future, and to making that heritage accessible to scholars and the broader public alike. I am excited to continue this tradition at MoMA and look forward to working with the Museum’s extraordinary team to contribute to shaping the current discourse on architecture and the city—locally, nationally, and globally.”

He will begin his new role in March 2015. Learn more about Stierli, and how his appointment will influence the MoMA’s exhibitions, at The New York Times’ Arts Beat Blog.

Hy-Fi, The Organic Mushroom-Brick Tower Opens At MoMA’s PS1 Courtyard

Last night, the organic brick structure known as ‘Hy-Fi‘ opened in the courtyard of MoMA’s PS1 space in New York. Designed by David Benjamin of New York architects The Living, the tower was designed as part of MoMA’s Young Architects Program, and its construction centers around the use of an innovative building material: organic, biodegradable bricks consisting of no more than farm waste and a culture of fungus that is grown to fit a brick-shaped mold.

Acting as the centerpiece for MoMA‘s Warm Up music festival on Saturdays throughout the Summer, the temporary structure will provide shade, seating and water until September 7th. Read on after the break for more on the design.

Exhibition / Conceptions of Space: Recent Acquisitions in Contemporary Architecture

Herzog & de Meuron’s National Stadium, Beijing. 2008. Digital C-print, 36 x 54″ (91.4 x 137.2 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of the artist. Photograph © Iwan Baan

Focusing on recent acquisitions in MoMA’s Department of Architecture and Design, Conceptions of Space addresses how contemporary architects continue to embrace spatial creation as a fundamental focus of their work. The reveals how, beyond formal traits and functional needs, the conception and articulation of architectural space still defines architecture as an artistic endeavor, and a response to wider cultural issues.

In the early and mid-20th century, the concept of space was critical in defining the modern movement in architecture. Notions of architectural space related to the coherence between the interior and exterior of buildings emerged as a new feature. Counteracting previous understandings of architecture as a progression of styles, space became a privileged quest of architectural practice. In time, however, space was actively reclaimed by artists, geographers, sociologists, and others as their domain of intervention and reflection. As proposed by French philosopher Michel Foucault, ours is the epoch of space, an expanded field imbued with complex meanings.

Twenty international projects by architects and artists, in large-scale models, drawings, photographs, videos, and even a room-sized installation, survey how architecture addresses this expanded field. Spatial conceptions in the exhibition range from “assemblage” and “envelope” space, to “fictional” and “performative” space. Participants offer a global panorama of architectural practice today, from acclaimed architects such as Herzog & de Meuron, Álvaro Siza, and Kengo Kuma, to young, emergent practices such as Pezo von Ellrichshausen, Chile; Ryue Nishizawa, Japan; Ensamble Studio, Spain; and the New York-based SO-IL and MOS Architects.

Title: Exhibition / Conceptions of Space: Recent Acquisitions in Contemporary Architecture
Website: http://www.moma.org/visit/calendar/exhibitions/1485
Organizers: Pedro Gadanho, Phoebe Springstubb
From: Fri, 04 Jul 2014 
Until: Sun, 19 Oct 2014 
Venue: MoMA
Address: 11 West 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019, USA

Moon Ji Bang Wins Inaugural MMCA Young Architects Program in South Korea

2014: Shinseon Play / Moon Ji Bang. Image Courtesy of

The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 has announced a partnership with the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) in Seoul that has expanded the international Young Architects Program (YAP) to South Korea. Just as YAP presents opportunities for emerging architects to design and build temporary installations in New York, Chile, Rome and Istanbul, YAP Korea will offer the MMCA’s outdoor Museum Plaza as the summer installation site.

Already, a winner has been chosen from 26 submissions to serve as the inaugural YAP Korea installation. With completion planned for July 8, winning team Moon Ji Bang (Threshold) is amidst the final preparations for mystical, mythology-inspired installation that will transcend visitors from the daily hustle into a cloud-like landscape of air balloon structures.

The Future of Brick: Biodegradable And Bacterial

Biodegradable Brick Is The Featured Material In This Years MoMA PS1 Exhibit, But Is It Suitable For Housing? . Image Courtesy of The Living

MoMA’s PS1 exhibit in Queens is a showcase for young architects with lofty ideas. This year’s winning firm “The Living” designed “Hi-Fy” – a biodegradable brick tower. Although the idea might seem far-fetched for housing, the idea is gaining traction. North Carolina start-up bioMason, recently won the Cradle to Cradle Product Innovation Challenge for their “biodegradable bricks.” So Kieron Monks at CNN had to ask the question, would you live in a house made of sand, bacteria or fungi? Find out the benefits of these modern bricks here.

What If MOMA Had Expanded Underground (And Saved The American Folk Art Museum)?

Sculpture Garden, MOMA. Image © Andrew Moore, http://andrewlmoore.com/

In January of this year, the latest work by Smiljan Radic, the Chilean architect chosen to design the next Serpentine Pavilion, opened to public acclaim. The Museum of Pre-Columbian Art (Museo de Arte Precolombino), located in Santiago de Chile, is a restoration project that managed to sensitively maintain an original colonial structure  – all while increasing the space by about 70%.

Two days before the The Museum of Pre-Columbian Art opened, the Museum of Metropolitan Art (MOMA) in issued a statement that it would demolish the American Folk Art Museum (AFAM), designed by Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects, in order to accomplish its envisioned expansion. Two weeks ago, preparations for demolition began.

Some background: MOMA had hired Diller Scofidio + Renfro a year earlier to design the expansion. The office asked for a period of six months to consider the possibilities of integrating the American Folk Art Museum into the design. After studying a vast array of options (unknown to the public) they were unable to accommodate MOMA’s shifting program needs with the AFAM building. They proposed a new circulation loop with additional gallery space and new program located where the AFAM is (was) located.

What appears here is not strictly a battle between an institution that wants to reflect the spirit of the time vs a building that is inherently specific to its place. It represents a lost design opportunity. What if the American Folk Art Museum had been considered an untouchable civic space in the city of New York, much like the The Museum of Pre-Columbian Art is for the city for Santiago? Then a whole new strategy for adaptive reuse would have emerged.

MoMA PS1 YAP 2014 Runner-Up: Underberg / LAMAS

Looking back from the stage to the barrel vault, the party’s in full swing. Image © LAMAS

Wouldn’t it be nice to save a little cold for when it’s hot (and maybe a little warmth for when it’s cold)? This was the premise of LAMAS’s PS1 runner-up proposal, UnderbergUnderberg is an urban iceberg. Though it isn’t a native New Yorker, it has adapted to its new home in and its crevasses take on the form of the avenues and streets of the gridiron.

Underberg was one of five proposals shortlisted for the annual MoMA PS1 Young Architect’s Program (YAP) competition, which was won by the Living’s compostable brick tower. More on this proposal, after the break…

MoMA PS1 YAP 2014 Runner-Up: Mirror Mirror / Collective-LOK

© Collective-LOK

A vision by Jon Lott (PARA-Project), William O’Brien Jr. (WOJR), and Michael Kubo (over,under)Collective–LOK’s compelling proposal to reimagine MoMA ’s triangular courtyard with a billowing “urban mirror” was one of five finalists shortlisted for the annual competition’s 15th edition. Though the Living’s compostable brick tower was ultimately crowned winner, the Collective-LOK’s Mirror Mirror was an intriguing proposal that transcended the boundaries of the site.