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Bamboom: Elora Hardy's TED Talk on Bamboo's Exploding Popularity

Perhaps the most surprising thing about bamboo - besides being an entirely natural, sustainable material with the tensile strength of steel that can grow up to 900 millimeters (3 feet) in just 24 hours - is that it's not more widely recognized as a fantastic construction material. Like many traditional building materials, bamboo no longer has the architectural currency that it once did across Asia and the pacific, but the efforts of Elora Hardy may help put it back into the vernacular. Heading up Ibuku, a design firm that uses bamboo almost exclusively, Hardy's recent TED Talk is an excellent run through of bamboo's graces and virtues in construction, showing off sinuous private homes and handbuilt school buildings.

Karawitz's open shell of bamboo. Image Courtesy of Karawitz ArchitectsThe Green School in Bali. Image Courtesy of PT BambuOne of Elora Hardy's bamboo bridges. Image Courtesy of PT BambuThe Green School in Bali. Image Courtesy of PT Bambu+ 9

Sushi Restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City / 07BEACH

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 29

  • Architects: 07BEACH
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  79 Area:  79
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014 Year:  2014

MM House / MM++ architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 32

Nhà Bè, Vietnam
  • Architects: MM++ architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  280
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014

The Gills / Cong Sinh Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 32

District 7, Vietnam

3x10 House / DD concept

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 32

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Architects: DD concept
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  110
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014

The 14 Stories Behind the 2015 Building of the Year Award Winners

With our annual Building of the Year Awards, over 30,000 readers narrowed down over 3,000 projects, selecting just 14 as the best examples of architecture that ArchDaily has published in the past year. The results have been celebrated and widely shared, of course, usually in the form of images of each project. But what is often forgotten in this flurry of image sharing is that every one of these 14 projects has a backstory of significance which adds to our understanding of their architectural quality.

Some of these projects are intelligent responses to pressing social issues, others are twists on a well-established typology. Others still are simply supreme examples of architectural dexterity. In order that we don't forget the tremendous amount of effort that goes into creating each of these architectural masterpieces, continue reading after the break for the 14 stories that defined this year's Building of the Year Awards.

S HOUSE 3 / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 13

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Architects: VTN Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  31 Area:  31
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014 Year:  2014

NQ House / Nha Dan Architect

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 42

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Gremsy© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 24

  • Architects: VTN Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  3800 Area:  3800
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2013 Year:  2013

Son La Restaurant / VTN Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 27

  • Architects: VTN Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  1984
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014

Take a Moment to Enjoy ArchDaily's 12 Most Popular Outdoor Spaces on Pinterest

Architects are notorious for working long, consecutive hours. So, in an attempt to remind you to take a break, we've compiled the top 12 most re-pinned images of inviting, well-designed outdoor spaces from our Pinterest. Take a look, after the break, then step away from the screen and go outside for some much needed fresh air.

Beach House E-3 / Vértice Arquitectos. Image © Juan SolanoStone Creek Camp / Andersson Wise Architects. Image © Art GrayLa Tallera / Frida Escobedo. Image © Rafael GamoSanta Ynez House / Fernau + Hartman Architects. Image © Richard Barnes+ 16

Hotel Golden Holiday in Nha Trang / Trinhvieta-Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 30

Nha Trang, Vietnam

S House / VTN Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 27

tp. Tân An, Vietnam

Rebel Architecture: Al Jazeera’s New Series to Feature Activist Architects

On August 18 Al Jazeera will launch “Rebel Architecture,” a new series featuring architects who use design as a form of resistance and activism. By designing for the majority rather than the elite, the architects in “Rebel Architecture” are tackling the world’s urban, environmental and social problems. Through six, half-hour documentaries the series will highlight architects working in Vietnam, Nigeria, Spain, Pakistan, the Occupied West Bank and Brazil.

“In contemporary architecture, people are always concerned with ‘what a beautiful building’; or ‘what a pretty project’ – architecture should be about something more,” said Spanish architect Santi Cirugeda, who will be featured in the series’ first episode. Cirugeda works in Seville reclaiming abandoned urban spaces for the public, despite the fact that self-building is illegal in Spain.

Green Renovation / VTN Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki© Hiroyuki Oki+ 27

  • Architects: VTN Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  387
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2013

Vo Trong Nghia Wins ARCASIA Building of the Year

Vietnamese Practice Vo Trong Nghia Architects has taken home the top honor at the Architects Regional Council Asia (ARCASIA) 2014 awards. The Dailai Bamboo Complex, consisting of the 2009 Bamboo Wing and the 2012 Dailai Conference Hall, was selected out of 276 entries to win Building of the Year Award, one of the most prestigious prizes in Asian architecture.

The award adds to the recent success for Vo Trong Nghia, who recently won the top prize in the AR House Awards for their House for Trees.

More on the Dailai Bamboo Complex after the break

Bamboo Wing / Vo Trong Nghia Architects. Image © Hiroyuki OkiDailai Conference Hall / Vo Trong Nghia Architects. Image © Hiroyuki OkiDailai Conference Hall / Vo Trong Nghia Architects. Image © Hiroyuki OkiBamboo Wing / Vo Trong Nghia Architects. Image © Hiroyuki Oki+ 23

AR Names its 2014 House Awards

The winners of the 2014 AR House Awards have been announced, celebrating excellence and innovation in the design of a one-off house. This year, the jury consisted of AR Editor Catherine Slessor, Ben van Berkel (UNStudio), Yvonne Farrell (Grafton Architects), William Mann (Witherford Watson Mann Architects) and Abraham Thomas (Director, Sir John Soane's Museum).

Read on after the break for the full list of winners

Butaro Doctors’ Housing / MASS Design Group. Image © Iwan BaanCerrada Reforma 108 / DCPP arquitectos. Image © Onnis LuqueDragon Court Village / Eureka. Image © Ookura HidekiBb Home / H&P Architects. Image © Doan Thanh Ha+ 10

Oceanique Villas / MM++ architects

© Hiroyuki OKI© Hiroyuki OKI© Hiroyuki OKI© Hiroyuki OKI+ 35

  • Architects: MM++ architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  1014
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: LG Electronics, Tribu, Quan Dat, SSWW