Taking place February 20-March 15, Grimshaw Architects will be holding their first exhibition staged in Asia, titled ‘Equation’. The exhibition will explore how the natural environment provides inspiration for innovative architectural projects around the world. These projects adopt biomimicry for greater efficiency, acknowledge the importance of connecting building users to nature and work to harness natural systems which ensure that buildings conserve and replenish natural resources. Located at the Urban Redevelopment Authority in Singapore, this marks the sixth major exhibition of work from Grimshaw which continues on from this tradition. More information after the break.
Inspired by the textile industry of Southeast Asia, Yann Follain, co-founder of WY-TO Architects, has designed a Floating Skeleton at Art Stage Singapore to greet the fair’s visitors. The wire-framed floating structure will act as a gateway to Asia’s global art fair. The over-sized loom theme follows through into the new VIP area – The Whirl. Follain has deliberately used lines (representing thread), color, light and textures to represent the diverse and differentiating cultural influences on the established textile industry of Southeast Asia. More images and architects’ description after the break.
This article comes to us courtesy of author Jason Wee, an artist, curator, and writer who directs Grey Projects in Singapore. It originally appeared in the Perspectives section of the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative Online Platform on January 14th, 2013.
In Singapore, between the freshly designated arts and museum district in Bras Basah and that bastion of colonial hospitality known as the Raffles Hotel, sits a remarkable work of architecture, the Central Library. Designed by Malaysian architect Ken Yeang, the building reflects sensitivities to the island’s tropical weather and its people’s reading habits; its most frequently accessed collections are housed directly below the ground-level entrance, enabling easy navigation and minimal loss of cool air. The Library is a strong example of what Yeang calls “eco-design,” reflecting his conception of built space as a species of living system that interacts dynamically with its environment to form a single ecology.
Yeang’s ecological innovation resides in his consideration of close relationships between urbanism and natural conditions, but it is no stretch to see how his thinking might also be applied to other, cultural, conditions. Such a “cultural ecology” seems appropriate for a library site that neighbors a complex known to Mandarin readers as “Book City.” This mixed development is rife with small bookstores, harried print shops, and cheap stationers—as well as with restaurants and public housing. And it is home to Basheer Graphic Books, Singapore’s single best store for arts and design publications.
Thinking of culture as an ecology might help us to understand the ways in which a culture of reading is positioned in Singapore. Bearing the Central Library’s location in mind, we can see how the “space” of reading is positioned between Singapore’s aspiration toward the status of culture-savvy global city (with its attendant venues for contemporary art), and its oft-told history as a city prized by empires for a strategic geography that also constrained it.
Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum (ACM) is moving forward with its next phase of development and will soon construct a distinct new addition. The new S$5.5 million wing, designed by GreenhiLi Consultants, will be a stark contrast to the 19th-century, neoclassic original structure, as it features a modern structure clad in titanium that will float weightlessly above a glass encased atrium.
This atrium will continue up, filling the interstitial spaces between the old and new structure, while connecting the galleries on all three levels and revealing parts of the interior gallery to street-level pedestrians.
Singapore-based DP Architects has played a significant role in shaping Orchard Road’s present form. Since the practice’s establishment in 1967, it has designed, retrofitted and reworked nearly thirty projects on Orchard Road, oftentimes reinterpreting the same building several times over a period spanning two or three decades. These projects cumulatively represent over one million square metres of mixed-use commercial space – a rare example of the comprehensive, long-term influence of a single design firm on an urban centre.
The Bukit Panjang Hawker Center proposal by Materium, which was announced as one of the finalists in the international competition, manifests and promotes the food culture of Singapore. Composed of a unique program, the project is a humble social and communal space despite the cosmopolitan nature of the society. Its unassuming nature allows people from all walks of life to enjoy their meal in their most relaxed and comfortable state. Simple, casual and informal: being relaxed allows one to be social. More images and architects’ description after the break.
A Guide to 21st Century Singapore Architecture documents every significant project built since 2000, and presents a comprehensive survey of public and commercial buildings, transport and infrastructure projects, apartments and condominiums, and private houses.The text analyses the ongoing search for an appropriate and sustainable architecture for a tropical city, and examines the contribution of well-known international architects working in Singapore.
Beijing-based Büro Ole Scheeren has released plans for a mixed-use, high-rise development in the modern metropolis of Singapore. Titled ‘DUO’, the twin towers are not intended to be conceived as autonomous objects, but defined by the spaces they create around them. Their curved facades engages the city and frames a “new civic nucleus” at its base, while featuring premium offices, a five-star hotel, 660 high-end residential units and signature retail space.
DUO is lead by German-born architect Ole Scheeren, whose best known for his work with OMA on Beijing’s CCTV headquarters and has recently turned heads with the popular floating Archipelago Cinemas. The project is expected for completion by 2017, with construction planned to break ground next year.
More images and the architects’ description after the break.
It is projected that by the year 2050, nearly 80% of the earth’s population will reside in urban centers. With fears of overcrowding and land scarcity, the need to evolve our agriculture is one of the primary challenges we face in the 21st century.
A solution? Vertical farming. The innovative concept, which was first pioneered by Columbia University professor Dickson Despommier, is a promising solution that many of the world’s most populated cities are starting to consider. As of now, the land-scarce Republic of Singapore is leading the way with the opening of the world’s first commercial vertical farm, featuring 3.65-hectares of stacked vegetables in the northwestern district of Lim Chu Kang.
Continue reading to learn more…
Grant Associates shared with us their just released short film of a walk round Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, which recently received the World Building of the Year Award at the World Architecture Festival. One of the largest garden projects of its kind in the world, Andrew Grant, director of UK landscape architects Grant Associates, walks around Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, reflecting on the ideas and inspirations behind the the design of the spectacular Supertrees, Cooled Conservatories and Themed Gardens. The project is an integral part of Singapore’s “City in a Garden” vision, designed to raise the profile of the city globally whilst showcasing the best of horticulture and garden artistry.