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Cristóbal Palma

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South American Architects Sandra Barclay and Gloria Cabral Win 2018 Women in Architecture Awards

Two South American architects have been selected as the winners of The Architectural Review and The Architects’ Journal’s 2018 Women in Architecture awards. This year’s top prize, Architect of the Year, has been awarded to Peruvian architect Sandra Barclay, while Paraguayan architect Gloria Cabral has been selected as the winner of the Moira Gemmill Prize for Emerging Architecture, with both being recognized by the jury for their mastery of materials.

4 Ways You Can Dress Like an Architect

1. All black.
2. Black with a bit of grey.
3. Black with a bit of white.
4. Match different shades of black. 

It’s Elementary (Not): On the Architecture of Alejandro Aravena

Siamese Towers. Image © Cristobal Palma
Siamese Towers. Image © Cristobal Palma

When reading about the work of Alejandro Aravena, it can sometimes seem like two distinct discussions: one about his widely praised social housing innovations, and another about his impressive (albeit more conventional in scope) buildings for universities and municipalities. In this post originally shared on his Facebook page Hashim Sarkis, the Dean of the MIT School of Architecture and Planning, connects the two apparently separate threads of Aravena's architecture, discovering the underlying beliefs that guide this year's Pritzker Prize winner.

Much of the work of Alejandro Aravena, whether designed alone or with the group ELEMENTAL, embodies a eureka moment, a moment where after a careful interrogation of the program with the client, the architect comes up with a counterintuitive but simple response to the charge. (For the computer center at the Catholic University, the labs have to be both dark and well-lit. For the social housing in Iquique, instead of a full good house that you cannot afford, you get a half good house that you can). In turn, these simple equations are embodied in buildings that usually acquire similarly simple forms. The clients and occupants repeat the “aha” with Aravena’s same tone and realization. “If I cannot convincingly convey the design idea over the phone, then I know it is a bad idea,” he says.

Las Cruces Lookout Point. Image © Iwan BaanDesign for Casa OchoQuebradas. Image Courtesy of ELEMENTALInnovation Center UC - Anacleto Angelini. Image © Nico SaiehQuinta Monroy housing. Image Courtesy of ELEMENTAL+ 11

Alejandro Aravena Wins 2016 Pritzker Prize

Alejandro Aravena has been named as the winner of the 2016 Pritzker Prize. Highlighting his dedication to improve urban environments and to address the global housing crisis, the Pritzker Prize jury praised the way in which the Chilean architect has "risen to the demands of practicing architecture as an artful endeavor, as well as meeting today's social and economic challenges." Aravena is the 41st Pritzker Prize laureate and the first Chilean to receive the award.

At 48 years of age, Aravena has a large portfolio of private, public and educational projects in Chile, the USA, Mexico, China and Switzerland. But perhaps more notably, through his “Do Tank” firm ELEMENTAL he has managed to build 2,500 units of social housing, engaging in the public housing policies of governments where he works and taking an opportunistic approach to market forces to generate a powerful impact on lower-income communities.

"Alejandro Aravena epitomizes the revival of a more socially engaged architect, especially in his long-term commitment to tackling the global housing crisis and fighting for a better urban environment for all,” explained the Jury in their citation. “He has a deep understanding of both architecture and civil society, as is reflected in his writing, his activism and his designs. The role of the architect is now being challenged to serve greater social and humanitarian needs, and Alejandro Aravena has clearly, generously and fully responded to this challenge."

UC Innovation Center – Anacleto Angelini, San Joaquín Campus, Universidad Católica de Chile. Santiago, Chile 2014. Image © Nina VidicMonterrey Housing. Monterrey, Mexico 2010. Image © Ramiro RamirezMedical School, Universidad Católica de Chile. Santiago, Chile 2004. Image © Roland HalbeSiamese Towers, San Joaquín Campus, Universidad Católica de Chile. Santiago, Chile 2005. Image © Cristobal Palma+ 23

Radical Cities, Radical Solutions: Justin McGuirk's Book Finds Opportunities In Unexpected Places

Justin McGuirk's book Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture is fast becoming a seminal text in the architecture world. Coming off the back of his Golden-Lion-winning entry to the 2012 Venice Biennale, created with Urban Think Tank and Iwan Baan, McGuirk's work has become a touchstone for the architecture world's recent interest in both low-cost housing solutions and in Latin America. This review of Radical Cities by Joshua K Leon was originally published by Metropolis Magazine as "Finding Radical Alternatives in Slums, Exurbs, and Enclaves."

Justin McGuirk’s Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture should be required reading for anyone looking for ways out of the bleak social inequality we’re stuck in. There were 40 million more slum dwellers worldwide in 2012 than there were in 2010, according to the UN. Private markets clearly can’t provide universal housing in any way approaching efficiency, and governments are often hostile to the poor. The only alternative is collective action at the grassroots level, and I’ve never read more vivid reporting on the subject.

Second Solo House to Open Its Doors

What happens when eight world-renowned architects are given carte blanche to design holiday homes on a dream site in Spain? This is precisely what French developer Christian Bourdais set out to discover with the launch of the Solo House project in 2010, and now, you can find out for yourself. Just two years after the completion of Solo Pezo, by Chilean architect Pezo von Ellrichshausen, the second of twelve houses is now emerging for tours and site visits. Solo OFFICE, by Office Kersten Geers David van Severen, will open its doors to visitors this week, October 9 through 11, as it nears fruition.

Rodrigo Nino: In Defense of Crowdsourcing and Crowdfunding

The 17John Building in New York. Image Courtesy of Prodigy Network
The 17John Building in New York. Image Courtesy of Prodigy Network

As both crowdsourcing and crowdfunding gather momentum in the architecture world, they also gather criticism. The crowdsourcing design website Arcbazar, for example, has recently attracted critics who label it as “the worst thing to happen to architecture since the internet started.” A few months ago, I myself strongly criticized the 17John apartment-hotel in New York for stretching the definition of "crowdfunding" to the point where it lost validity, essentially becoming a meaningless buzzword.

In response to this criticism, I spoke to Rodrigo Nino, the founder of Prodigy Network, the company behind 17 John, who offered to counter my argument. Read on after the break for his take on the benefits of tapping into the 'wisdom of crowds.'

Wood Encouragement Policy Coming To Australia

Latrobe City Council is pushing an initiative that would put “wood first.” If implemented, the “Wood Encouragement Policy” would educate architects and industry professionals about the structural and environmental benefits of wood in an effort to promote the local timber industry and use of sustainable building materials. Following the lead of the United States and New Zealand, both of which recently established “wood encouragement” policies, the council hopes that this will set a precedent that can be applied throughout the rest of Australia.

Synthon Laboratory Building / GH+A | Guillermo Hevia

© Nico Saieh© Nico Saieh© Nico Saieh© Nico Saieh+ 37

  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  12
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2012
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Bash, Chubretovic, Hunter Douglas, MK

Carozzi Production and Research Food Center / GH+A | Guillermo Hevia

© Nico Saieh© Nico Saieh© Nico Saieh© Nico Saieh+ 43

  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2012
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Vitra, Atika, Bash, Brimat, Budnik, +7

Eight Ingenious Interiors

In case you missed it, we’re re-publishing this popular post for your material pleasure. Enjoy!

Continuing with our materials-themed posts celebrating the launch of AD Materials (our US product catalog), we decided to round-up eight materials/products (from a light fixture made from woven irrigation hoses - really - to a wall made from shoeboxes) that make their interiors truly ingenious. Enjoy!

Imagine 2020: Denver Launches Arts-First Public Policy

The City of Denver has launched “Imagine 2020,” a pro-arts cultural plan that will pave the way for more city-wide “art opportunities” over the next seven years. According to the Denver Post, this initiative will include the revision of “plans, permits and codes” to allow for more installations, offer small micro-art grants for residents and neighborhoods, and establish large public gathering places throughout the city. You can learn more, here.

Under Construction: Place of Remembrance / BARCLAY&CROUSSE Architecture

© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma+ 27

  • Architects

  • Location

    Lima, Peru
  • Project Architects

    Sandra Barclay and Jean Pierre Crousse
  • Collaborators

    Paulo Shimabukuro, Carlos Fernandez, Sebastián Cilloniz, Rosa Aguirre, Mauricio Sialer
  • Project Area

    4896.0 m2
  • Project Year

    2014
  • Photography

Cien House / Pezo von Ellrichshausen

© Cristóbal Palma
© Cristóbal Palma

© Cristóbal Palma© Cristóbal Palma© Cristóbal Palma© Cristóbal Palma+ 30

Bestias XX / MoVe architects

© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma© MoVe architects© Cristobal Palma+ 13

  • Architects: MoVe architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  12 Area:  12
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2012 Year:  2012

Children's Bicentennial Park / ELEMENTAL

© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma© Cristobal Palma+ 20

  • Architects: ELEMENTAL
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  40000
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2012

Solo Houses: When Architects Are Given Carte Blanche

French developer Christian Bourdais has enlisted eight architects to develop vacation homes on a 50-hectare nature reserve about two hours south of Barcelona. So far, so normal. However, each participant in the "Solo Houses" experiment was given what every architect dreams of (and hardly ever receives): carte blanche. The results, from the likes of Sou Fujimoto, Pezo von Ellrichshausen, and more, are stunning. See them all after the break...

Casa Faustino / Didier Faustino. Image © by-encore.com, via Solo HousesCasa Johnston Marklee / Johnston Marklee. Image © by-encore.com, via Solo HousesCasa Office KGDVS / Office KGDVS. Image © by-encore.com, via Solo HousesCasa Pezo / Pezo von Ellrichshausen. Image © Cristobal Palma+ 23

Casa La Cañada / Ricardo Torrejón

© Cristóbal Palma© Cristóbal Palma© Cristóbal Palma© Cristóbal Palma+ 26

Santiago, Chile
  • Architects: Ricardo Torrejón
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  225 Area:  225
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2013 Year:  2013