“Rem Koolhaas: A Kind of Architect” (2008) filmed by Markus Heidingsfelder and Min Tesch, and produced by Arthouse Films, Rem Koolhaas: A Kind of Architect offers a “thought-provoking portrait of the architect”.
Rooted in theory, Koolhaas, a creative genius, has produced work that completely takes the field of architecture to the next level. At his best, Koolhaas’ projects are so conceptually compelling that his approach, aesthetic and building performance are unmatched. By constantly questioning the norm, Koolhaas can critically analize the existing to create a theoretical model that can be manifested into the physical realm. Although architecture came later in his life, Koolhaas has an innate ability to utilize every componenet of architecture, from circulation to structure, to strengthen his vision.
The documentary, featuring interviews from other architects and friends about Koolhaas, provides a look into his process and his influence on the field.
You can watch the full documentary on the above embed.
Enjoy this interesting footage captured by Tomas Koolhaas – son of Rem Koolhaas – in February 2012 of the recently completed China Central Television (CCTV) Headquarters in Beijing. The monumental structure took eight years to complete and is OMA‘s first major building in China, as well as their largest project to date. The building is planned for occupancy later this year to broadcast the London 2012 Olympics. Check out our previous coverage for more building information.
Continue after the break to view a short clip inside the CCTV building during construction!
As Metropolitan Monk noted in Archinect.com, to appear in The Simpsons episode is the most unchallengeable proof that you have achieved Starchitect status.
The Scene, described by Archinect.com: “Rem Koolhaas is working – on a cruise ship notabene – as an instructor – probably in iconographic buildings – in KIDZONE ELITE. The ship, just like CCTV, is an emblem of closure. The architect is holding a couple of lego-bricks in his left hand while seeming to fix something to the back of the tower”.
With the excitement of seeing Koolhaas on television, which architect would you like to see on a future episode?
Created by Reiser + Umemoto for the Hong Kong & Shenzhen Bi-City Biennale, “Manhattan Memorious” explores what Manhattan could have been. The film visualizes several unrealized projects from Manhattan, including Buckminster Fuller’s dome over Midtown, Rem Koolhaas’ City of the Captive Globe, RUR’s East River Corridor, Paul Rudolph’s Eastside Redevelopment Corridor, Morphosis’ West Side Yard and others.
Jesse Reiser, Principal of Reiser + Umemoto, explains; “Before a city becomes a thing of steel, concrete and glass it is a theater of visions in conflict. As a city ages, the visions do not die but come up against the physical and ideological resistance of the place and its people. The city we see today is the direct result of radical visions, gradually changing the way the future is realized. This is an account of a Manhattan that could have been – might have been. A phantasmagorical Manhattan where the visionary meets the everyday – the absurd and the sublime. The island as we know it is but a pale reflection of a city designed by visionaries – a city of mad, incongruous utopias.”
Architect Rem Koolhaas – author of Delirious New York – and curator Hans Ulrich Obrist – known for his exhibitions and his “endless conversation” with hundreds of artists and thinkers, racking up 2,000 hours of interviews since 1990 – will discuss their new book Project Japan, part oral history and part documentation of Japan’s radical mode of nation building. The event will take place March 8th at 7:00pm at the NYPL (New York Public Library) in the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building. More information on the event after the break.
OMA recently completed their first building in London. The new 21,000sqm building is located in the narrow medieval alley of St Swithin’s Lane, in the heart of the City, a dense context where OMA’s precise intervention is able to blend and become an active urban piece.
The building, thanks to its structural steel design, is lifted from the ground exposing new situations, connections and views, detonator of a new streetscape where the public realm is as important as the office space above.
You can see Rem Koolhaas and Ellen van Loon discussing this project on a video posted earlier at ArchDaily.
More information courtesy of OMA after the break:
Project: Rothschild Bank Headquarters
Client: NM Rothschild & Sons
Location: St Swithin’s Lane, City of London
Site: New Court, enclosed in cluster of buildings, adjacent to the 17th century St. Stephen Walbrook church; with main entrance on the narrow St. Swithin’s Lane
Program: Office headquarters: 13,000m2
Partners in charge: Rem Koolhaas, Ellen van Loon
Rem Koolhaas and Ellen van Loon discuss their design of the Rothschild Bank headquarters in London. Viewing the bank as a “dynamic system”, the main task was to create an “always efficient and always pleasant” machine that will accommodate all of the Bank’s London staff and reunite its connections with the city, including the St. Stephen’s Walbrook. OMA’s design for the New Court is the fourth iteration of NM Rothschild & Sons’ headquarters, all of which have been built on the dense and narrow medieval alley of St. Swithin’s Lane.
The film was created by Miguel Santa Clara.
De Rotterdam is a unique multifunctional building on the shores of the river Maas on the Wilhelminapier in Rotterdam designed by Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) of Rem Koolhaas. Its remarkable mix of functions makes this building a true vertical city.
By following the construction for 4 years (January 2010 – end of 2013), Ruud Sies presents a photographic report on a very special project in the development of Rotterdam, one that also forms a link to the Wilhelminapier as a historic spot. The full report can be viewed here. More images after the break.
The annual AIAS FORUM meeting for 2011 will take a break from the snow of the past two years (2009 Minnesota, 2010 Toronto) and be held in sunny downtown Phoenix, Arizona. FORUM is the annual meeting of the AIAS and the premier global gathering of architecture and design students. The conference provides students with the opportunity to learn about important issues facing architectural education and the profession, to meet students, educators, and professionals with common interests, and to interact with some of today’s leading architects through keynote addresses, tours, workshops and seminars, last years FORUM was attended by over 1,000 young and ambitious architecture students and AIAS members. This years Keynote Speakers will be Jeffrey Inaba, founder of C-Lab and former project manager with Rem Koolhaas and OMA, Brad Lancaster, author of www.harvestingrainwater.com, and University of Californa, San Diego architect and professor Teddy Cruz.
Just recently, the author of architectural videos blog shared with us a video on OMA’s founding partner Rem Koolhaas‘ lecture which he gave at Cornell University on October 20th. His lecture was given on the occasion of opening Milstein Hall, the new extension to the faculty of Architecture, Art and Planning designed by OMA.
On October 19th Charlie Rose interviewed OMA founding partner Rem Koolhaas (his fifth appearance on the show). The discussion ranges from Koolhaas’ current interest in the countryside, rather than the city, his firm’s newly completed Milestein Hall project at Cornell University, and the launch of the book Project Japan: Metabolism Talks written with Hans Ulrich Obrist and edited by Kayoko Ota. Watch the interview here.
Milstein Hall, the new 25,000 sqf flexible studio space at Cornell’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning (AAP) in upstate New York, was opened last month for students. The first new building in over 100 years for the AAP, the design by OMA was led by partners Shohei Shigematsu and Rem Koolhaas in collaboration with associate Ziad Shehab.
“Not only is this going to be our new home, but everyone has a new attitude,” AAP student Ben Waters told the Cornell Sun. “Everyone has this new-found sense of pride for the program.” The excitement from students and the AAP surrounding the new hall comes with no surprise considering the danger that the program faced in early 2009 – threatening both their accreditation and the hopes of a new OMA designed building eliminated from the campus.
Featuring a unique hybrid truss system of 1,200 tons of steel to support two dramatic cantilevers Milstein Hall provides a must needed connection between the existing Sibley and Rand Hall. Professor Mark Cruvellier shared, “We have a couple of buildings here on campus that were always divided, and we’d always have to run back and forth in the middle of winter. Here, we have a building that not only connects Rand Hall and Sibley Hall together, but one that also embodies architecture and design ideas.”
Enclosed by floor-to-ceiling glass and a green roof with 41 skylights, this “upper plate” cantilevers almost 50 feet over University Avenue to establish a relationship with the Foundry, a third existing AAP facility. The truss system allows for a wide-open upper plate that will house sixteen design studios.
“The upper plate of the box was a direct response to the need for interaction that the art field entails, though we realize this cannot be perfectly achieved or designed by architecture,” Shigematsu commented. “Our ambition for the upper plate was for it to serve as a pedagogical platform for the architecture, art and planning departments – an open condition that could trigger interaction and discussion. I am sure the students and faculty will generate unexpected uses and conditions that go beyond what we have planned for it.”
Thanks to architectural photographer Matthew Carbone for the amazing photos of this project!
Location: Ithaca, New York, USA
Client: Cornell University, College of Architecture, Art and Planning (AAP)
Project Area: 47,000 sqf addition to the College of Architecture, Art and Planning – Studios, Crit spaces, Auditorium, Exhibition, Exterior Workspace and Plaza.
Project Year: 2009-2011
Photographs: Matthew Carbone
This video features an exclusive interview with Rem Koolhaas by BD online discussing the launch on October 6th of ‘OMA/Progress Exhibition’ at the Barbican Art Gallery. Curated and designed by Rotor, a Belguim-based collective, member Maarten Gielen and OMA founding partner Rem Koolhaas discuss the importance of this major retrospective, the stories being told, and the discoveries Rotor made after having a unique and unheard of ‘behind the scenes access’ to OMA – asking candid questions and reviewing materials from the archives of OMA offices.
The launch of the exhibit coincides with last weeks opening of Maggie’s Centre in Gartnavel, Glasgow and the Rothschild Bank Headquarters in London later this year. The OMA/Progress Exhibition will run through February 19, 2012.
This exclusive video of OMA’s Maggie’s Centre by BD online features OMA partner Ellen van Loon discussing the design for the cancer care center. Led by OMA Partners Rem Koolhaas and Ellen van Loon with Associate-in-charge Richard Hollington the Maggie Gartnaval center located in Glasgow opened today.
Ellen van Loon shared, “I enjoyed designing such an exceptional environment with this very dedicated and inspired team of designers and contractors. The sequence of spaces is an interplay of openness, retreat and support to underpin the Maggie’s programme.”
Today marks the opening of Maggie’s Gartnaval, a new center for the charity located on the ground of Gartnaval Royal Infirmary in Glasgow, Scotland. Designed by OMA, the center aims to provide emotional and psychological support to those affected by cancer in the greater Glasgow area.
Rem Koolhaas commented, “We were touched to be asked to design a Maggie’s Centre, and invigorated by the opportunity to work on a completely different scale, with different ambitions, and in a different environment. Maggie’s is so unique and urgent among the projects we are working on.”
In this video from Cities of Opportunity 2011, architectural superstar and OMA founder Rem Koolhaas shares his views on the contemporary evolution of the city and his vision for the future of urban centers. Produced by accounting giant PwC (a.k.a PricewaterhouseCoopers before their 2010 re-branding) and the Partnership for New York City, Cities of Opportunity 2011 “analyzes the trajectory of 26 cities, all capitals of finance, commerce, and culture and through their performance, seeks to open a window on what makes cities function best.”
Both figures present ideas partly against the backdrop of their architecture, and conclude with a shared conversation chaired by CCA Founding Director Phyllis Lambert.
This event took place in June 2007 at the Center for Canadian Architecture, but as you will see the subjects in discussion are more present than ever.
OMA warmly thanks the CCA for sharing this film.