When an extension on an existing historical building is requested, often architects opt for glass, transparent and reflective interventions. Some decide to stay neutral and subtle when dealing with an older structure, while others choose a bold and outspoken design to manifest their contemporary character. With each project having its own conceptual motivation and reasoning, the outcomes are different and diverse.
Read on for some relevant examples, each responding to a different program.
Opening on July 5th, “Architecture Speaks: The Language of MVRDV” will provide an immersive, diverse, multimedia experience for visitors to the Tyrolean Architecture Center (aut) in Innsbruck, Austria. The exhibition centers around a spatial intervention of 4 towers constructed inside the aut’s Adambräu Building, a former brewhouse. Each tower embodies a word that represents key concepts in MVRDV’s designs: stack, pixel, village, and activator. “Architecture Speaks” aims to present the concepts in an approachable, engaging manner, with the colorful towers enhanced by images, text, models, drawings, videos, audio, and interactive elements to present MVRDV’s projects.
In the Negev Desert of Israel, SAGA Space Architects are collaborating with D-MARS to build a Mars Lab Habitat that will simulate the conditions of living in a confined space on the hazardous surface of the red planet. The laboratory structure they’ve designed is an addition to D-MARS' existing Mars simulation habitat and will be part of a larger experiment. This habitat will serve as a prototype for a longer mission scheduled for 2020.
Etienne-Louis Boullée, though regarded as one of the most visionary and influential architects in French neoclassicism, saw none of his most extraordinary designs come to life. Throughout the late 1700s Boullée taught, theorized, and practiced architecture in a characteristic style consisting of geometric forms on an enormous scale, an excision of unnecessary ornamentation, and repetition of columns and other similar elements.
Award-winning architect Tatiana Bilbao spoke in an interview released by Louisiana Channel about her frustrations with today’s concept of sustainability in architecture. Living in Mexico, which Bilbao describes as a “country with no resources,” she states that people are accustomed to not wasting resources and that “sustainability” is a natural part of daily life. “I hate the word ‘sustainability’ because I think it has become a word that can qualify a type of architecture, and for me it should be embedded.”
Drawing as an architectural tool serves not only as a means of communication, but through drawing we can also gain a deeper understanding of the subject. To this purpose, Alessandro Luporino has created the Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture. The series of beautiful and evocative illustrations serve as companions for the book “Dictionary of Architecture,” by Nikolaus Pevsner, John Fleming, and Hugh Honor.
This article was made in partnership with Design Indaba, a website and annual festival that uncovers innovation for good. Click here to learn more about the annual event.
It took a few years and multiple failed career attempts for renowned minimalist designer John Pawson to truly enter the world of architecture. Though he’d cultivated an interest in design from a young age, he’d initially shied away due to his beliefs that he needed to be good at math and that design was an innate skill rather than something that could be taught.
Though many designers today spend their working hours immersed in computer drawing programs, few would deny that hand-drawn work still holds a unique beauty. The traditional lightbox as a drafting tool has become sadly scarce in the modern architectural practice, but architecture graduate Tom Williams hopes to encourage more people to utilize them once again with his free monthly zine, The Lightbook.
Architecture, unlike other aspects of culture (such as fashion or music), can only really be experienced and understood in person. For highly branded companies, designing a new building can be a prime opportunity to signal taste and values - but also creates an interesting architectural conundrum. While the buildings will be inhabited (nearly 24/7) by company employees, they’re also very much populated by the imaginations of people across the globe. What is it like to be in these places?
Architectural education has always been fundamentally influenced by whichever styles are popular at a given time, but that relationship flows in the opposite direction as well. All styles must originate somewhere, after all, and revolutionary schools throughout centuries past have functioned as the influencers and generators of their own architectural movements. These schools, progressive in their times, are often founded by discontented experimental minds, looking for something not previously nor currently offered in architectural output or education. Instead, they forge their own way and bring their students along with them. As those students graduate and continue on to practice or become teachers themselves, the school’s influence spreads and a new movement is born.
Nestled in a valley north of Beijing, a building will soon be completed that may appear to have always been there, or to have emerged from and grown out of the surrounding stony landscape. OPEN Architecture’s Chapel of Sound in Chengde, China was recently recognized in the 66th annual Progressive Architecture (P/A) Awards, chosen as one of ten projects to receive the commendation. The P/A Awards focus on innovative, ongoing work that promotes new ways of thinking about architecture. The Chapel of Sound was noted for its creation of a new, progressive type of environment and its reimagining of an established typology.
Most architects who are parents have thought, at some point, about designing and building toys for their children. Paula Zasnicoff, a partner at Arquitetos Associados, along with designer Andrea Gomes, decided to go for it and created the Bubud brand.
Celebrate Bauhaus 100 through the world's number one visual storytelling platform, Instagram. An essential tool for designers, Instagram is a constantly growing digital database of market sharing and stimulation. Social media has changed not only how we gather precedents and market our designs, but also our designs themselves. "Instagram Culture" drives designers to create more shareable moments. As we continue to seek these dynamic encounters, let us not forget our forefathers of user experience design and the Bauhaus school.
After the dissolution of the Bauhaus due to Nazi political pressure in April 1933, the ideas, teachings, and philosophies of the school were flung across the world as former students and faculty dispersed in the face of impending war. Of the numerous creative talents associated with the Bauhaus, many went on to notable careers elsewhere. Some made a living as artists or practitioners, others either continued or began careers as teachers themselves - and many did both throughout the course of their lives.
The A’ Design Award was "born out of the desire to underline the best designs and well-designed products." It is an international award whose aim is to provide designers, architects, and innovators from all design fields with a platform to showcase their work and products to a global audience. This year's edition is now open for entries; designers can register their submissions here.