OMA’s Pierre Lassonde Pavilion of the Musée National des Beaux-Arts du Québec (MNBAQ) will open to the public on June 24, 2016. Increasing the museum’s space by 90 percent, the 14,900 square-meter pavilion faces Québec City’s Grande Alléee and seeks to fuse the energy of street life with the idyllic landscapes of the adjacent Parc des Champs-de-Bataille.
At the end of 2015, OMA’s first major commission, the Netherlands Dance Theater (NDT) was swiftly demolished. The once-praised building was reduced to dust and debris within a few months, without drawing much attention from the architecture world. Koolhaas had heard rumors about the demolition of the NDT over the last decade, but did not expect the lack of public outcry. “There was almost nothing, almost zero,” he said.
Using the NDT as a case study, Metropolis Magazine takes a look at how the early works of our most lauded architects are treated when they are no longer fit for purpose, and asks how we decide on the role preservation plays in the architectural profession. Is the demolition of the NDT a sign of lack of respect for OMA? Or is it a more general sign of our current era of rapidly changing styles and a need for larger buildings? Read the full story by Metropolis Magazine, here.
OMA's first building in Manhattan will be a condo project at 122 East 23rd Street, built in collaboration with Toll Brothers City Living. Designed by OMA's New York principal Shohei Shigematsu, the residential tower culminates a decade leading the office and several previous attempts to realize a project in the region.
OMA has revealed the design for its first skyscraper in Tokyo. A tower with a torqued front-facade, the building incorporates an elevated park and access to a new Hibiya Line subway station in a project that mixes hotel, office, and retail components.
Five acclaimed international guests join OMA/AMO's Reinier de Graaf and the students of the Berlage Theory Master Class for a final debate on With the Masses - Architecture and Participation this Friday Night. Expect new insights into Het Nieuwe Insituut's collection and new formats for vigorous debate designed by the students. With a.o. Françoise Fromonot, architecture critic and educator, Ricardo E. Bofill, architect, and Lucien Kroll, Atelier Kroll.
The Western Australia Government has commissioned OMA and Hassell to design the new WA Museum in Perth. The team was chosen over three shortlisted consortia for the reputation of "creating dynamic architecture" and "international reputation," according to WA Culture and the Arts Minister John Day. A schematic design is expected to be released this summer. The museum plans to open by 2020.
Two conceptual plans designed by OMA have been unveiled for the redevelopment of Washington DC's 190-acre Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) Stadium-Armory Campus site. Released by Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, the phased design concepts aim to "leverage the District's waterfront, provide neighborhood serving amenities and connect the current site with increased and sustainable green space, flexible recreational fields and natural access to pedestrian-friendly paths."
OMA has won a commission to design their first project in the United Arab Emirates. The winning proposal will transform four warehouses on Dubai's Alserkal Avenue into a new multi-purpose venue that will connect local architects and artists, and highlight the role intelligent design plays in the city.
“The main strategy for the design of the event space is to blur the boundary between interior and exterior by bringing view and daylight into the space and extending the action and events to the public space outside," said Iyad Alsaka, OMA's MEA Partner in Charge.
Five major firms have been shortlisted for the Albright-Knox Art Gallery's $80 million expansion in Buffalo, New York. Chosen for their "design intellect" and ability to collaborate, the competing firms will envision ways to expand the gallery's exhibition space and create a new public urban area that maximizes the site's potential, as the Albright-Knox campus is located on the edge of Delaware Park - one of Frederick Law Olmsted’s major works.
“The selection of the architects reflects that malleability, because none of them has a fingerprint style,” Albright-Knox director Janne Sirén said. “All of them, almost, specialize in an ability to build for a given context.”
The five practices include:
"AMO graphically reinterprets the Indefinite Hangar as a synthetic sunset fixed within a 3 dimensional blank space. The abstract hangar is populated with geometric objects and furniture. Characters move through a neutral scene between the undefined and distilled fragments of daily life. The horizon and scale constantly shifts, manipulating the frame and disrupting a linear sequence: an artificial landscape where fiction and collection collide," says the OMA research studio.
In his TED Talk filmed at TEDGlobal London in September 2015, Ole Scheeren eschews what he describes as the “detrimental straightjacket” of the modernist mantra “form follows function” in favor a phrase he attributes to Bernard Tschumi, “form follows fiction.” While Tschumi was referencing how cultural artifacts, such as literature, impact architecture, Scheeren reinterprets the phrase, imagining the stories of building users in order to inform the design process. Scheeren recounts, for example, how the daily activities of CCTV employees, the lifestyles of residents of a Singapore housing block, or the traditional tools of Thai fishermen have informed his various designs for OMA and Büro Ole Scheeren.
Of course, this “fiction” that Scheeren describes, these stories, are not really fictions at all, but the real experiences of the people who live or work in his buildings. In that sense, the fiction that drives his forms is really just another type of function, albeit a more human approach to function. Nevertheless, for Scheeren the stories of these designs goes beyond just the users, also encompassing the stories of the hundreds of people it takes to make such buildings a reality, and even how architecture can become a character in the narratives of our own lives.
OMA has been selected to renovate Kaufhaus des Westens (KaDeWe), a historic department store in Berlin – and the biggest in continental Europe. Its giant size “makes it akin to a city: a three dimensional network of paths, squares, neighbourhoods, activitiies and views unfolding through its large extensions and providing opportunities for commercial, social and cultural encounters,” writes OMA.
To address the size, their design divides the department store into four quadrants, breaking “the original mass into smaller, easily accessible and navigable components.” Each quadrant will target different audiences and act as an independent department store. Learn more about the design after the break.
When it comes to the modern-day fashion show, the internet has fundamentally changed the way audiences interact with models and designers, say OMA/AMO, arguing: "The assemblage of recorded impressions and digital reactions inserts itself into the once autonomous narrative of the fashion show. The statement of the collective spreads. The mass of fragmented instant data is uploaded and critiqued by a multitude of voices."
With their latest fashion show design for Prada, which was used to showcase the designer's upcoming fall/winter menswear collection in Milan yesterday, the firm sought to enhance this sense of public judgement. "This consumption of images is like a public trial, a contemporary transposition of the Auto-da-fé," explains their press release, referring to the ceremonies of public penance which took place in the Portuguese and Spanish Inquisitions in the 15th-17th centuries.
As part of OMA co-founder Rem Koolhaas' sixth interview with Charlie Rose, the Rotterdam-based Architect discusses why the Dutch port-city is his practice's base – and why he switched from journalism and scriptwriting to architecture. In the discussion, of which four snippets have been made available, Koolhaas also explains why he feels that smart technology has a "sinister dimension," and on how he—and his practice—have a tendency to "resist aesthetic."
In the latest video from the youtube channel #donotsettle, architects Wahyu Pratomo and Kris Provoost explore OMA’s recently opened Timmerhuis in Rotterdam. The duo compare the conceptual design and renderings to the finished building, look at the impact the new building is having on the cityscape, and with some good fortune find their way through some locked doors.
#Donotsettle was started to reconcile the disparity between film as architectural representation and as an experiential medium. For more #donotsettle, check out their youtube page, where they walk through the Markthal, designed by Rotterdam-based practice MVRDV and the train station in Delft, designed by Delft-based practice Mecanoo, among many other sites.
A new exhibition, opening later this month in London, aims to examine the varying ways that cities and communities have been re-imagined in the aftermath of natural, or man-made, disasters. Including work by Yasmeen Lari, ELEMENTAL, OMA, Shigeru Ban, NLÉ, Toyo Ito, Metabolism (Kenzo Tange and Kurokawa Kisho) and Sir Christopher Wren, who redesigned London in the aftermath of the Great Fire of 1666, the exhibition will primarily explore contemporary responses to earthquakes and tsunamis. Posing questions about the fragility of architecture, our relationship to nature, and the power of architects to instigate change, it will ask whether we are facing a paradigm shift in the way that cities and communities recover from destruction.
In the coming months, OMI is entirely devoted to OMA, the Office for Metropolitan Architecture. With the reopening of the Kunsthal, the completion of De Rotterdam and Timmerhuis this is a perfect opportunity to profile the work of OMA. OMI publishes a special map, organises excursions, and an accompanying exhibition at OMI’s own location gives insight into the work of the office in Rotterdam and The Hague.
LocationMeent 119, 3011 JH Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Partner in Charge
Associate in ChargeAlex de Jong, Katrien van Dijk