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Traditional Techniques Applied to Contemporary Architecture in the Amazon

Instituto Socioambiental – ISA / Brasil Arquitetura. Photo: © Daniel DucciCacao Interpretation Center / Taller Con Lo Que Hay 4 + ENSUSITIO Arquitectura. Photo: © Taller Con Lo Que Hay /ENSUSITIO ArquitecturaMirante do Gavião Amazon Lodge / Atelier O'Reilly. Photo: Ruy ToneInstituto Socioambiental – ISA / Brasil Arquitetura. Photo: © Daniel Ducci+ 19

The architecture of indigenous peoples is deeply rooted in their surroundings, in the sense that materials are locally sourced and empirically tested, to discover the construction techniques and dwellings that best respond to the values of the community and their understanding of housing. The situation in the Amazon is no different. Many different groups of people have settled on the land and water, developing many unique building skills that attract a lot of architects working in these regions. As a result, there is an exchange of knowledge, combining native cultures and novel architecture.

How Artificial Intelligence Will Shape Design by 2050

Artificial intelligence is transforming how we design and build. By 2050, the effects of AI adoption will be widely felt across all aspects of our daily lives. As the world faces a number of urgent and complex challenges, from the climate crisis to housing, AI has the potential to make the difference between a dystopian future and a livable one. By looking ahead, we're taking stock of what's happening, and in turn, imagining how AI can shape our lives for the better.

© Foster + Partners© Foster + Partners© Iwan Baan© Ivan Avdeenko+ 11

The Production Chain of Architecture: Reasons to Choose Local Building Materials

The construction industry is known to be one of the most polluting industries on the planet, but we often find it difficult to associate the role of the architect and urban planner with this industry, thus avoiding the responsibility of being involved in one of the most harmful production chains in the world. Therefore, it is imperative to emphasize the importance of questioning not only the materials used in the projects but also the manufacturing systems involved.

The Long-delayed Guggenheim Abu Dhabi Will Open in 2026

Twenty years after the Frank Gehry–designed Guggenheim Abu Dhabi was first announced in 2006, the museum may finally have its grand opening.

Craft, Composition and Smart Tech: Shakúff's Custom Residential Lighting Solutions

 | Sponsored Content

‘All of sudden, a robot is coming to my desk,’ says Shakúff founder and creative director Joseph Sidof. The video-equipped automaton can be virtually controlled by existing clients and potential new customers, allowing them to (carefully) navigate around the brand’s Brooklyn showroom and even ask for advice. This kind of robot is more usually on duty in hospitals, making it possible for family members to communicate with isolated Covid-19 patients. Sidof thought they might serve another useful purpose.

Virtual Tour of the Unbuilt Slow House by Diller + Scofidio

Welcome to the Slow House, Diller and Scofidio’s (now Diller, Scofidio and Renfro) first building commission for Long Island, in NY. The crescent-shaped slug doppelganger, was a pivotal design for the firm — and architecture at large — when it was first revealed in 1990. However, the building was never built, living only through its extensive catalog of models and drawings. In this video, the Slow House is digitally reconstructed, analyzed and explored to discover unique elements lurking in its design that can only be revealed through a first-person experience. From delayed million-dollar views, to CCTV feeds of the water, to dozens of operable plywood doors and shades, the house is truly a machine for viewing. And now, you can view it for yourself. 

The Allure—and Importance—of Architectural Models

This article was originally published on Common Edge.

In this week's reprint, author Mark Alan Hewitt talks about models and their importance. "For those of us lucky enough to have grown up during the 1950s and ’60s, models were hot stuff—and not just the kind that statement may bring to mind", he states. Going back to the realistic models of the 70s, similar to today's virtual renderings, this essay retraces their history and the artists that produced them.

Hybrid Architecture: Combining Digital Design and Vernacular Crafts

In Mendoza, Argentina, the digital fabrication research lab Node 39 FabLab created a frame loom structure made of digitally cut wood to help indigenous people in the central region of the country weave and create their traditional patterns. In the state of Ceará, northeast Brazil, a study entitled "Artífices Digitais" (Digital Artisans) by the Federal University of the State of Ceará used digital fabrication tools, namely 3D printing, to produce digital models, like digital prosthetics, to restore the damaged parts of an altarpiece of the high altar of the Mother Church in the city of Russas.

Aquahoja. Image Courtesy of MIT Media LabIn China, an Experimental Pavilion of Ceramic Bricks Fuses Craftsmanship and Digital Fabrication. © Christian J. LangeIn China, an Experimental Pavilion of Ceramic Bricks Fuses Craftsmanship and Digital Fabrication. © Christian J. LangeRobotic Collaboration. Image Courtesy of ETH Zurich+ 11

Architecting the Metaverse

You might have heard that Mark Zuckerberg wants Facebook to become a Metaverse Company, and earlier this year, Epic Games, the company that develops the Unreal Engine announced that it completed a 1 billion round of funding to support the long-term vision for the metaverse. Metaverse is definitely the hottest buzzword in the tech scene. In this article, we will briefly discuss what is Metaverse, who will build it, and most importantly why it matters for architects, and how can designers play a significant role in this upcoming digital economy?

Courtesy of Mars HouseCourtesy of Refik Anadol installationCourtesy of User interface of City EngineCourtesy of Townscraper, developed by Oskar Stålberg+ 10

Non-Structures & Palimpsest: Photography as a Register for Urban Regeneration and Real Estate Speculation

In honor of World Photography Day (August 19 ), Chilean architect Francisco Ibáñez Hantke offers a a perspective of urban transformation and the resulting instability caused by the regenerative processes and the constant real estate speculation that drive it. The photographs center on London, and reveal an exhausting array of construction and demolition and highlight the often blurry line between architecture and urban decay.

"Unsustainable Structures", 12. Image © Francisco Ibáñez Hantke"Hybrid Structures", 5. Image © Francisco Ibáñez Hantke"Unsustainable Structures", 1. Image © Francisco Ibáñez Hantke"Unsustainable Structures", 3. Image © Francisco Ibáñez Hantke+ 38

11 Architect-Designed Furniture and Lighting Pieces Displayed at the 2021 Salone del Mobile

After a year-long absence, Milan Design Week has wrapped up yet another year of creativity and innovation. From the 5th to the 10th of September, thousands of design companies displayed their creations to more than 200,000 visitors hailing from different countries, demographics, and industries. And while the design fair gravitated towards the world of interior design, many renowned architects such as Bjarke Ingels, Foster + Partners, and Herzon & de Meuron participated in the week-long exhibition and joined forces with interior and furniture design brands to create signature pieces.

Gu Chairs. Image Courtesy of MAD ArchitectsFlexia. Image Courtesy of ArtemideMedallion Chair . Image © Ken NganEl Poris. Image Courtesy of Artemide+ 12

Cement Can Be A (More) Sustainable Material

Centro de Interpretação do Românico / spaceworkers. Image © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG
Centro de Interpretação do Românico / spaceworkers. Image © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

"If the cement industry were a country, it would be the third-largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world, with about 2.8 billion tons, surpassed only by China and the United States." This statement in Lucy Rodgers' BBC report on the ecological footprint of concrete stands out as quite shocking. With more than 4 billion tonnes produced each year, cement accounts for around 8 percent of global CO2 emissions and is a key element in the production of concrete, the most manufactured product in the world. To give you an idea, about half a ton of concrete is produced per person in the world every year, enough to build 11,000 Empire State buildings. With these huge numbers, is there any way to reduce this impact?

A Reflection on Prostitution and Spatial Segregation in the Cities

Sex Day is an unofficial holiday created by marketers celebrated on September 6th in Brazil, highlighting one of the greatest taboos in modern society: sexuality. From an architectural and urban point of view, the immorality associated with sexual activities, especially in exchange for payment, deeply impacts our society and also affects the territory.

While sometimes considered morally wrong, sinful, forbidden, and impure, sex, sexuality, and pleasure are all inherent to human physiology. Prostitution is sometimes referred to as "the world's oldest profession," playing a fundamental role in our societies, as well as in our territory, in the spatial organization and dynamics of cities. This practice is at the margins of modern society and therefore has ended up occupying segregated spaces in the cities.

Building Up: Modern Architecture in Pakistan

Pakistani architecture is defined by multiplicity. Both following tradition and breaking from it, contemporary projects contend with multiple histories. Informed by the coexistence and juxtaposition of conditions like regulated development and informal settlements in Karachi and Islamabad, modern designs are being shaped by broader contexts. In turn, these public and private projects are exploring new spaces and forms.

© Shabih HaiderBuilding Up: Modern Architecture in Pakistan© Mustafa Mehdi© Shabih Haider+ 12

Cultural Centers: 50 Examples in Plan and Section

How many times have you been faced with the challenge of designing a cultural center? While this may seem like quite a feat, many architects have had to design a program that blends a community center with culture.

Among the projects published on our site, we have found numerous examples that highlight different responses, from flexible configurations to sites that prioritize central gathering areas for citizens and activities. See our series of 50 community centers and their plans and sections below.

Cortesía de Mecanoo© Adam Mørk© Gonzalo Viramonte© Stephan Lucas+ 148

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Frederick Bagley House Dodges Demolition and Will Be Restored

Less than two months ago, the future of an 1894 Dutch Colonial-style home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright wasn’t looking all that bright after it hit the market for $1.3 million in the Chicago suburb of Hinsdale, Illinois. As of this week, however, the historic Frederick Bagley House, described by the nonprofit Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy as a “unique and irreplaceable” early work of Wright, has found a very happy ending—or, more aptly, a new beginning.

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