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Bruce Damonte

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There's No Good Architecture Without Daylight: How to Promote Designs Molded and Nurtured by Light

Humans spend almost 90% of the time indoors; that's approximately 20 hours a day in closed rooms and 9 hours a day in our own bedrooms. The architectural configurations of these spaces are not random - that is, they have been designed or thought of by someone, and are at least slightly "guided" by the conditions of their inhabitants and their surroundings. Some people inhabit spaces specially catered to their needs and tastes, while others adapt and appropriate designs made for someone else, perhaps developed decades before they were born. In either case, their quality of life may be better or worse depending on the decisions that are made. 

Understanding the importance of carefully designing our interiors, particularly through the lens of access and enjoyment of natural light, was the purpose of the 8th VELUX Daylight Symposium, held on October 9 and 10 of 2019 in Paris. This year, more than 600 researchers and professionals attended and reaffirmed the importance of natural light, presenting a series of concrete tools that could help quantify and qualify light by designing its entry, management, and control with greater depth and responsibility.

Trailer / Invisible Studio. Image © Jim Stephenson Cortesía de Ruetemple NOKKEN Kindergarten / Christensen & Co Architects. Image © Bo Bolther © Jackie Meiring + 25

What is Plantscaping?

© Nelson Kon © Quang Dam © Edward Hendricks © Helene Binet + 49

Interior gardens and plants produce many day-to-day benefits, like mood boosting and memory enhancing effects. Interior landscape design, also known as "plantscaping", is much more than the act of bringing plants indoors; it's actually about the strategic placement and selection of plant species within an architectural project to highlight and enhance aspects of spatial design.

How BIM Can Make Building Renovations and Retrofits More Efficient

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is an increasingly common acronym among architects. Most offices and professionals are already migrating or planning to switch to this system, which represents digitally the physical and functional characteristics of a building, integrating various information about all components present in a project. Through BIM software it is possible to digitally create one or more accurate virtual models of a building, which provides greater cost control and efficiency in the work. It is also possible to simulate the building, understanding its behavior before the start of construction and supporting the project throughout its phases, including after construction or dismantling and demolition.

Reforma do Mason Bros Warehouse / Warren and Mahoney. Image © Simon Devitt Reforma do Mason Bros Warehouse / Warren and Mahoney. Image © Simon Devitt © Bruce Damonte Novo Laboratório, Centro de Pesquisa e Fábrica / Marvel Architects. Image © David Sundberg | Esto + 9

Spotlight: Rem Koolhaas

With the extensive list of acclaimed alumni of his firm, OMA, it is not a stretch to call Rem Koolhaas (born 17 November 1944) the godfather of contemporary architecture. Equal parts theorist and designer, over his 40-year career Koolhaas has revolutionized the way architects look at program and interaction of space, and today continues to design buildings that push the capabilities of architecture to new places.

Seattle Central Library / OMA + LMN. Image Courtesy of OMA Maison Bordeaux. Image © Hans Werlemann, courtesy OMA Fondazione Prada. Image © Bas Princen Casa da Musica. Image © Philippe Ruault + 39

Ridge House / Mork-Ulnes Architects

  • Architects: Mork-Ulnes Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area: 840.0 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year: 2018

M Building / Kennerly Architecture & Planning

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte + 22

San Francisco, United States

How to Choose Kitchen Countertops: Advantages, Disadvantages and Inspiration

One of the most practical and functional spaces of any residential project is the kitchen. Its artificial surfaces – be it countertops, kitchen benches, or coverings – contain most of the space's equipment. Thus, it’s essential to build kitchens with the most resistant and hygienic materials. Aside from these requirements, it's also important to pay attention to aesthetics and profitability, while adapting the space to the dynamics of each family. 

© Nikole Ramsay. ImageBluebird Townhouses / Altereco Design © Oliver Smith. ImageCreative Kitchen Designs and Their Details: The Best Photos of the Week © Josefotoinmo. ImageGAS House / OOIIO Arquitectura © Dmitry Tsyrencshikov. ImageStudio11 Minsk Office / Studio11 + 38

The Avery Mixed Use Building / OMA

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte + 11

  • Architects: OMA
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area: 906470.0 ft²

Triple Barn House / Mork-Ulnes Architects

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte + 18

Sonoma, United States

San Joaquin Villages at the University of California / SOM + LOHA + KDA + KieranTimberlake

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte + 33

Santa Barbara, United States

Harmon Guest House / David Baker Architects

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Angie Silvy © Angie Silvy + 51

Healdsburg, United States

Moose Road / Mork-Ulnes Architects

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte + 24

Ukiah, United States

ArchDaily's Sustainability Glossary : A-B-C

It is expected that within the next couple of decades, Earth will have absolutely nothing left to offer whoever/whatever is capable of surviving on it. Although the human race is solely responsible for the damages done to the planet, a thin silver lining can still be seen if radical changes were to be done to the way we live on Earth and how we sustain it. 

Since architects and designers carry a responsibility of building a substantial future, we have put together an A-Z list of every sustainability term that you might come across. Every week, a new set of letters will be published, helping you stay well-rounded on everything related to sustainable architecture and design. Here are the terms that start with letters A, B, and C.

How to Implement Passive Solar Design in Your Architecture Projects

Although the sun is almost 150 million kilometers away, this star has had the most impact on our planet. But while some are busy chasing the sun for sun-kissed skin, architects are all about creating sun-kissed spaces.

In definition, “passive solar energy is the collection and distribution of energy obtained by the sun using natural means”. The simple concept and process of implementing passive solar energy systems have provided buildings with heat, lighting, mechanical power, and electricity in the most environmentally-conscious way possible.

In this article, we will provide you with a complete guide of implementing passive solar systems in your designs.

Triple-Glass Facade. Image © Adrien Buchet Passive Office Building in Belgium . Image Courtesy of Neutelings Riedijk Architects Maison + Agence. Image © Philippe Ruault Sun Rain Room. Image © Edmund Sumner + 27

AIA Announces Winners of 2019 Institute Honor Awards for Interior Architecture

Nine projects have been recognized this year by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in the 2019 Institute Honor Awards for Interior Architecture. A five-member jury evaluated entries’ sense of place and purpose, ecology and environmental sustainability, and history to choose this year’s most innovative interior spaces.

New United States Courthouse; Los Angeles, Los Angeles | Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP. Image © Bruce Damonte Apple Store, Upper East Side; New York City | Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. Image © Peter Aaron Shirley Ryan AbilityLab; Chicago | Gensler. Image © Michael Moran Studio Dental II; San Francisco | Montalba Architects. Image © Kevin Scott + 36

How to Design for Optimal Thermal Comfort (And Why it Matters)

Have you ever found yourself losing a good night’s sleep due to an overly warm room? Or wearing four jackets and a scarf just to tolerate your office’s frigid air conditioning? Truth be told, you can’t please everyone when it comes to adjusting an indoor climate, and there is always that one unfortunate individual who ends up sacrificing their own comfort for the sake of others.

Evidently, there are no ‘universal standards’ or ‘recommended comfort ranges’ in designing building systems, since athletes training in a gym in Mexico will not feel comfortable in an interior with the same building systems of a nursing home in Denmark, for instance. Which is why, if we were to briefly define ‘thermal comfort’, it is the creation of building systems that are adapted to the local environment and functions of the space, cooperatively.

So how can we design for optimum thermal comfort?

© Saint-Gobain / illustration by Elisa Géhin © Saint-Gobain / illustration by Elisa Géhin © Saint-Gobain / illustration by Elisa Géhin Diagram by Snøhetta + 24

Why Reusing Buildings Should - and Must - be the Next Big Thing

Sustainability awards and standards touted by professional architecture organizations often stop at opening day, failing to take into account the day-to-day energy use of a building. With the current format unlikely to change, how can we rethink the way what sustainability means in architecture today? The first step might be to stop rewarding purpose-built architecture, and look instead to the buildings we already have. This article was originally published on CommonEdge as"Why Reusing Buildings Should be the Next Big Thing."

At the inaugural Rio Conference on the Global Environment in 1992, three facts became abundantly clear: the earth was indeed warming; fossil fuels were no longer a viable source of energy; the built environment would have to adapt to this new reality. That year I published an essay in the Journal of Architectural Education called “Architecture for a Contingent Environment” suggesting that architects join with both naturalists and preservationists to confront this situation.