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And the Curators of the US Pavilion at the Biennale Will Be...

The U.S. Department of State has selected Storefront for Art and Architecture and PRAXIS Journal to organize the US Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Architectural Biennale, “Fundamentals,” curated by Rem Koolhaas.

PRAXIS 11+12

For their latest PRAXIS, Eleven Architects/Twelve Conversations, the editors moved away from organizing the issue around a single theme to, instead, focusing on a variety of architectural aspects.  The result is a rather cohesive reading, as the different ideas are fused into a continuous conversation.   The issue still highlights great projects from the featured architects, yet the projects take more of a supporting role, as the real focus is the conversation that jumps from sustainability to design influences and materials to even the broader implications of design on the built environment.

More about the issue after the break.


We shared PRAXISninth issue with you a few days ago, and we are excited to feature their tenth issue today. Entitled Urban Matters, this issue focuses on the challenges hyper-metropolises present  – specifically, as editors Amanda Reeser Lawrence and Ashley Schafer comment in their introduction, how “to mediate between expansion and liveability” to define and shape the ever changing, and ever growing, urban condition. Architecture and the urban are encouraged to be in constant dialogue; an interconnected network which balances the macro “environmental, topographic, social/political, and technological” to form, and potentially, uplift the micro urban quality of our metropolises.


We featured a review of PRAXIS’ eighth issue, and within the next few weeks, we’d like to bring you up to speed with their most recent publications.  Today, we’ll take a look at their ninth issue which focuses on the surface.  The issue is particularly interesting as we cannot deny that the term “surface” has been tossed around in many projects, and yet the meaning behind the word can become so general and all-encompassing that it soon becomes meaningless.  The editors’ note expresses the division of architects based on the concept of surface; those who designed formally expressive buildings with materially mute surfaces versus those where the materiality was fully developed on a formally mute surface.  The issue seeks to highlight projects of our era that reach a compromise.  The projects presented illustrate formal projects with articulated surfaces, and materially intensive projects manifested on a developed form.

More about the issue after the break.


The eighth issue of PRAXIS focuses on the idea of program, reflecting on the different opportunities it presents for architects.  The projects featured question the received architectural understanding of program, and elaborate different strategies for organizing and accommodating matter and information as program.  Beginning with an essay by editors Amanda Reeser Lawrence and Ashley Schafer, the notion of program serving as a mere list of specific users and requirements is questioned.  “The more we tried to clarify what program is and how it operates in contemporary discourse, the more elusive its definition became…  Beyond this simple denotation of program lies a complex, ambiguous and ultimately paradoxical set of ideas,” explained the editors.

More on the issue after the break.