MCHAP Shortlists the 36 Most “Outstanding Projects” in the Americas

Wiel Arets, Dean of the College of Architecture at Illinois Institute of Technology () and Dirk Denison, Director of the (MCHAP), have announced the inaugural MCHAP shortlist – 36 “Outstanding Projects” selected from the 225 MCHAP nominees.

“The rich diversity of these built works is a testament to the creative energy at work in the Americas today,” said Arets. “When viewed alongside the innovative work by the MCHAP.emerge finalists and winner, Poli House by Mauricio Pezo and Sofia von Ellrichshausen which we honored in May, we see the evolution of a distinctly American conversation about creating livable space.” See all 36 winners after the break.

Material Inspiration: 10 Projects Inspired by Glass

To celebrate the launch of ArchDaily Materials, our new product catalog, we’ve rounded up 10 awesome projects from around the world that were inspired by one material: . Check out the projects after the break…

Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects, Diller Scofidio + Renfro Among Shortlist for Vancouver Art Gallery

Site of the future Vancouver Art Gallery. Image Courtesy of http://vanartgallery.bc.ca/future/

In an odd twist of fate, the architects of the soon-to-be-demolished American Folk Art Museum, Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects, and the architects spearheading the MoMA redesign (that will require its demolition), Diller Scofidio + Renfro, will soon compete to design the Vancouver Art Gallery. Joining them on the impressive shortlist are Herzog & de Meuron, KPMB Architects, and SANAA. More after the break.

Which Architects Are Most Admired By Other Architects?

Foster + Partner’s Apple Campus II. Image © City of Cupertino

As part of their annual research for the World Architecture Top 100, Building Design (BD) has compiled a list of which architects are most admired by their colleagues from across the globe. Last year’s results were somewhat predictable, with Foster + Partners leading and Renzo Piano’s Building Workshop and Herzog + de Meuron close behind. According to BD, “this year saw a trend towards more commercial names.”

This year’s “most admired” list includes:

Iwan Baan on Light and the Louvre Lens

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Most architects are familiar with the work of Iwan Baan, the eminent photographer who has documented some of the most famous buildings of our time. But what you may not know is that Baan had not originally intended to photograph architecture. Had it not been for a chance meeting with Rem Koolhaas, things may have turned out quite differently. 

In the video above, Baan speaks with ERCO at the Louvre , a -designed offshoot of the Paris Louvre located in a small mining town in the north of France. As he traipses around the museum’s campus, he speaks about everything from his approach to photography (one that is less wrapped up in architecture than you might think) to the importance and transformative properties of light . 

SANAA’s ‘Cloud Boxes’ Wins First Prize in Taichung City Competition

First Prize. Image Courtesy of SANAA via City Cultural Center

SANAA, it is. In attempts to separate itself from its sister cities, Taichung City has named SANAA, led by Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, winners of an international that intends to unite a newly formed city. As of December 2010, Taichung city executed a mega-merger that increased its population from 1 million inhabitants to 2.5 million, encompassing the skyscraping towers of downtown Taichung to the agricultural mountainside villages of Taichung County. As a result, the local government envisioned a new urban space that would place art at its core, celebrating the regions’ disparate cultures. 

SANAA Unveils Plans for New Downtown Arts & Design Campus in Jerusalem

© SANAA

Today, SANAA (Sejima & Nishizawa and Associates) unveiled plans for a 400,000 square-foot building in that will form a new, interdisciplinary downtown campus for the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design. The competition-winning proposal, designed by the 2010 Pritzker laureates in collaboration with Israel’s Nir -Kutz Architects, features an array of stacked horizontal slabs that react to the area’s topography and surrounding context in order to create a series of outdoor terraced viewing platforms and multi-level interior spaces where students and teachers can meet, study and display their work.

More on the new SANAA-design downtown campus after the break…

Factory Building on the Vitra Campus / SANAA

Photo by Christian Richters © Vitra

Architects: SANAA
Location: Vitra Campus, ,
Architectural Planning: Kazuyo Sejima & Ryue Nishizawa
Architectural Execution: Mayer Bährle Freie Architekten BDA, Lörrach, Germany; in partnership with nkbak, Frankfurt, Germany
Project Team: SANAA team: Takayuki Hasegawa, Marieke Kums (ex-staff); nkbak team: Nicole Kerstin Berganski, Andreas Krawczyk; Mayer Bährle Freie Architekten BDA
Area: 20455.0 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Christian Richters, Julien Lanoo, Human Wu, Nicole Berganski, Courtesy of SANAA

Architects Selected for Competition to Design Nobel Prize’s New Home

Blasieholmen at Nybroviken in Stockholm. Image © Jeppe Wikström

Out of 140 architects considered, 12 architects have been selected by the Nobel Foundation to compete to design their new home, a Nobel Center in Blasieholmen, Stockholm. The conspicuously European selection, chosen for their “design and artistic abilities and experience working in intricate urban environments,” includes some very names – including , David Chipperfield Architects, Herzog & de Meuron, and OMA. The only non-Europeans to compete will be ’s Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa.

See the full list of competitors, and more information on the competition, after the break…

Louvre Lens / SANAA

© Julien Lanoo

French photographer Julien Lanoo has shared with us a first look at the Musée du Louvre’s new sister gallery: . The design, first conceived as part of an international competition in 2006, was created by the Pritzker Prize laureates of , in collaboration with New York studio Imrey Culbert, landscape designer Catherine Mosbach and museographer Studio Adrien Gardère.

The 360 meter long, steel and glass structure is integrated within a 20 hectare wasteland that was originally used as a coal mine before the 1960s. It is expected to attract 500,000 visitors every year and envisioned to help revitalize the post-industrial town.

Continue reading for the architects’ description.

SANAA Unveils Their Plans for Bocconi University Campus

The new Bocconi University campus by . Photo via Domus.

SANAA has just unveiled their plans for the Bocconi University Campus in Milan, . The design features various undulating structures, forming connective inner courtyards, that wind their way across a 17,500 square meter green space open to both students and neighborhood residents.

According to Paola Nicolin, a professor at Bocconi and writer for Domus, the University is a “playground” for the imagination, using “non-hierarchic compositional elements” to establish a relationship between the campus’ organic forms and the human lives which inhabit it. In Nicolin’s words, the project “speaks of transparency, empathy for nature, and far-sightedness.”

More images and info on the project, after the break…

Grace Farms unveils SANAA-designed ‘River’ Building

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Grace Farms Foundation, a not-for‐profit charitable organization in , Connecticut, has submitted a proposal to the town’s Planning and Zoning Commission for a SANAA-designed, meandering structure dubbed the “River”. The project prioritizes the needs of the community by preserving the 75-acre Grace Farms property as a permanent offering of open space and providing an array of public amenities, such as a library, gymnasium and church.

“We are thrilled to be sharing SANAA’s wonderfully sensitive design with the members of the Planning and Zoning Commission and with the community we serve,” stated Sharon Prince, President of the Grace Farms Foundation. “Grace Farms is a place where people can walk their dog, read a book by the lake or simply relax in a beautiful natural setting. By blending so seamlessly into the landscape, the River enhances this experience, almost erasing the barrier between the spaces sheltered within and the natural world outside.”

If approved, the River will be SANAA’s first United States commission since receiving the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2010. Continue reading for the architects’ description.

Kazuyo Sejima appointed as Rolex’s first architecture mentor

Kazuyo Sejima, Mentor © Takashi Okamoto

News from the 2012 Venice Biennale: Japanese architect Kazuyo Sejima has been appointed as the first architecture mentor for the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Initiative – a unique program that pairs major artists with young talents. Recognized as “one of the most important creative disciplines”, architecture has added as the seventh category in the Rolex’s global philanthropy program, which already includes literature, music, visual arts, dance, film and theatre.

Kazuyo Sejima is expected to announce her protégé in the Fall. She and the young architect will collaborate for a year on the international project Home For All, which she established with other leading Japanese architects – , Riken Yamamoto, Hiroshi Naito and Kengo Kuma – in response to the 2011 housing crisis caused by ’s devastating tsunami.

The idea will be to design community meeting spaces for people who are living in emergency accommodation. Continue after the break to learn more.

Finalists announced for the Menil Collection Expansion

© D Jules Gianakos

Prior to becoming a Pritzker laureate, Italian architect Renzo Piano was commissioned to design the Menil Collection in a quiet inner-city neighborhood of , . Since celebrating its opening in 1987, the museum has expanded, adding Renzo’s second commission, the Cy Twombly Gallery (1995), along with the permanent, site-specific installation at Richmond Hall by minimalist sculptor Dan Flavin and the Byzantine Fresco Chapel (1997-2012) by owner Dominique de Menil. Surrounded by ample amounts of open space, the long-term master plan of the museum’s campus has been under the review of architect David Chipperfield.

Now, after an extensive international search to select the architect for the campuses new major addition that will house the Menil Drawing Institute (MDI), the architecture selection committee has announced the four architects under consideration. Once completed, MDI will be the first freestanding facility in America dedicated to modern and contemporary drawing, and one of the most advanced in the world.

Continue after the break to find out the finalists.

The RAINS Project / Sabrina Faber

Sana'a, Yemen © eesti via flickr

Sana’a, Yemen is at risk of being the first capital city in the World to run out of renewable, reliable and clean water supplies. With seasonal rain, expensive bottled water and polluted reservoirs, the residents of Sana’a are constantly faced with waterborne diseases and severe drought hazards.

In celebration of World Water Day, we would like to catch you up with the progress Sabrina Faber who was selected as winner of the 2010/2011 Philips Livable Cities Award – a global initiative designed to generate innovative, meaningful and achievable ideas to improve the health and well-being of city-dwellers across the world. Although the project went on hold due to political unrest, The Rainwater Aggregations (RAINS) Project was still able to complete three sites just in time for World Water Day. Continue reading for more.

Video: New Museum / SANAA / Great Spaces


Ever likened SANAA’s to Lady Gaga?  We didn’t think so!  So, check out this video by Great Spaces and prepare to see the museum in a new light.   Toward the end of the video, it was mentioned that only after won the Pritzker, did some people truly take notice of the museum.  Have you visited the New Museum on the Bowery prior to the Pritzker, or have you been influenced to see if after ’s won?   And, for more info on the museum, be sure to reference our previous articles.

Seeing the Building for the Trees by Sarah Williams Goldhagen

Metropol Parasol © Javier Orive

This article, recently seen on The New York Times, was kindly shared with us by the author Sarah Williams Goldhagen.

A REVOLUTION in cognitive neuroscience is changing the kinds of experiments that scientists conduct, the kinds of questions economists ask and, increasingly, the ways that architects, landscape architects and urban designers shape our built environment.

This revolution reveals that thought is less transparent to the thinker than it appears and that the mind is less rational than we believe and more associative than we know. Many of the associations we make emerge from the fact that we live inside bodies, in a concrete world, and we tend to think in metaphors grounded in that embodiment.

Rolex Learning Center Photographic Project / Johann Watzke, Anne-Fanny Cotting & Aurélie Mindel of EPFL

Courtesy of Johann Watzke, Anne-Fanny Cotting & Aurélie Mindel of EPFL

Johann Watzke, Anne-Fanny Cotting & Aurélie Mindel of EPFL (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne) in shared with us their photographic project on the Rolex Learning Center from SANAA which is the campus hub and state-of-the-art library. More images and a brief description after the break.