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National Building Museum: The Latest Architecture and News

National Building Museum Honors Inga Saffron and Robert Campbell with Vincent Scully Prize

15:40 - 26 September, 2018
National Building Museum Honors Inga Saffron and Robert Campbell with Vincent Scully Prize, National Building Museum. Image © Snarkitecture
National Building Museum. Image © Snarkitecture

The National Building Museum has announced critics Inga Saffron and Robert Campbell as the recipients of the 2018 Vincent Scully Prize. The award celebrates the pair's thoughtful, insightful, and clear journalistic observations and criticisms of the built environment. Both Pulitzer Prize winning journalists, the two are honored by the Museum for their ability to reveal how smart architecture criticism can raise the consciousness and expectations for the built environment.

Snarkitecture's "Fun House" Opens at the National Building Museum in Washington DC

14:00 - 6 July, 2018
Snarkitecture's "Fun House" Opens at the National Building Museum in Washington DC, © Noah Kalina
© Noah Kalina

Snarkitecture’s “Fun House” has opened at the National Building Museum in Washington DC, an interactive exhibition forming part of the museum’s Summer Block Party series of temporary structures created inside its historic Great Hall.

More than 1500 people visited Fun House at its July 4th opening day, which comes three years after Snarkitecture’s installation at the 2015 Summer Block Party, titled "The BEACH." Other noted collaborations for Summer Block Party include Studio Gang in 2017, James Corner Field Operations in 2016, and Bjarke Ingels Group in 2014.

© Noah Kalina © Noah Kalina © Noah Kalina © Noah Kalina + 14

A Tale of Misplaced Trust in News Media Wins 2018 Fairy Tales Competition

14:20 - 3 April, 2018
A Tale of Misplaced Trust in News Media Wins 2018 Fairy Tales Competition, 1st Place: Deep Pool That Never Dries. Image Courtesy of Blank Space
1st Place: Deep Pool That Never Dries. Image Courtesy of Blank Space

Blank Space, in collaboration with The National Building Museum, has announced winners of their fifth annual Fairy Tales competition, unveiled in front of a live audience at the Washington D.C. National Building Museum. The competition saw submissions from 65 countries, with 3 prize winners, a runner-up, and 9 honorable mentions chosen for their exploration of current events and the creative process through well-crafted short stories and artwork. The winners were chosen by a jury of 20 leading architects, including Daniel Libeskind, Bjarke Ingels, and Maria Aiolova.

Studio Gang's "Hive" Opens at the National Building Museum

16:10 - 7 July, 2017
Studio Gang's "Hive" Opens at the National Building Museum, © Tim Schenck
© Tim Schenck

Hive, Studio Gang’s 2017 Summer Block Party installation, has opened to the public at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. Constructed from 2,551 silver-and-magenta wound paper tubes, Hive invites visitors to explore their senses in a series of dome-shaped chambers, each scaled to reflect a unique sound signature.

Utilizing structural paper tubes commonly used in construction as concrete formwork, Hive takes its form from the catenary physics that have inspired some of the world’s great structures such as the the Gateway Arch in St. Louis and Brunelleschi’s Dome at the Florence Cathedral in Italy, and vernacular buildings such as Musgum mud huts in Cameroon.

© Tim Schenck © Tim Schenck © Tim Schenck © Tim Schenck + 9

Studio Gang to Construct "Hive" for the National Building Museum's Summer Block Party

16:10 - 18 April, 2017
Studio Gang to Construct "Hive" for the National Building Museum's Summer Block Party, Courtesy of National Building Museum
Courtesy of National Building Museum

Previously home to a beach-like ball pit, a giant maze, and sea of icebergs, this summer the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. will host the “Hive,” a 60-foot-tall domed structure made up of more than 2,700 individual paper tubes. Designed by Studio Gang, the installation is part of the museum’s Summer Block Party series, which invites architects to fill the building’s historic Great Hall with a temporary, immersive intervention.

The Landscape Architecture of Lawrence Halprin

17:50 - 27 December, 2016
The Landscape Architecture of Lawrence Halprin, Portland Open Space Sequence, Ira Keller Fountain, Portland, OR, 2016. - Photograph © Jeremy Bittermann, courtesy The Cultural Landscape Foundation.
Portland Open Space Sequence, Ira Keller Fountain, Portland, OR, 2016. - Photograph © Jeremy Bittermann, courtesy The Cultural Landscape Foundation.

A traveling photographic exhibition about the life and work of influential Modernist landscape architect Lawrence Halprin (1916-2009). Organized on the 100th anniversary of the year of his birth, the exhibition, organized and curated by The Cultural Landscape Foundation in collaboration with the National Building Museum, is accompanied by a comprehensive website and full color, 92-page gallery guide.

12 Dollhouses That Trace 300 Years of British Domesticity

03:45 - 17 October, 2016
12 Dollhouses That Trace 300 Years of British Domesticity, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

As part of a new exhibition at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C., twelve dollhouses tracing the history of British domesticity have been lent by London's Victoria & Albert Museum of Childhood. The show—Small Stories: At Home in a Dollhouse—spans 300 years and presents a miniature-sized, up-close-and-personal view of developments in architecture and design – from lavish country mansions, to an urban high-rise.

Whiteladies House (Moray Thomas, England, 1935). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Whiteladies House (Moray Thomas, England, 1935). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Jennys Home (Tri-ang, Northern Ireland, 1960s). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Betty Pinney’s House, set in 1910s (England, 1870). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London + 63

Small Stories: 24 Architects, Artists and Designs Model Their Dream Houses in Miniature

06:30 - 13 October, 2016
Small Stories: 24 Architects, Artists and Designs Model Their Dream Houses in Miniature, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

As part of a new exhibition at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C., a group of 24 American architects, designers and architects have been commissioned to create "dream homes" in the format of the contemporary dollhouse. Part of Small Stories: At Home in a Dollhouse, in which twelve historical dollhouses spanning the past 300 years from London's Victoria & Albert Museum of Childhood are being presented in the United States for the first time, these 21st Century interpretations intend to showcase a "diverse array of perspectives, demonstrating the limitless creativity of building in miniature."

Design Meditation Room / Marshall Moya Designs. Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London The Cupboard Under the Stairs / Louise Krasniewicz. Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London PEEPS Playing Poker / Rebecca Heaton and Suzan Maher. Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London The Paper Trail / Patrick J. Baglino, Jr.. Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London + 25

Studio Gang Selected to Design Next Iteration of National Building Museum's Summer Block Party

14:00 - 4 September, 2016
Studio Gang Selected to Design Next Iteration of National Building Museum's Summer Block Party , Studio Gang’s Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo. Image © Hedrich Blessing
Studio Gang’s Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo. Image © Hedrich Blessing

Studio Gang has been selected to design next year’s installation of the Summer Block Party at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. The temporary exhibition will be the latest in the Museum’s annual series, after this year’s ICEBERGS by James Corner Field Operations, and previous installations like Snarkitecture’s The BEACH in 2015, and Bjarke Ingels Group’s BIG Maze in 2014.

Graham Foundation Announces $419,000 in 2016 Grants to Organizations

15:00 - 9 August, 2016
Graham Foundation Announces $419,000 in 2016 Grants to Organizations

Coinciding with the organization’s 60th anniversary this year, The Graham Foundation has announced the list of recipients of their 2016 Grants to Organizations, a total of $419,000 (USD) to be given to 31 exemplary projects from around the world. The Organization Grants are awarded to projects displaying “originality, capacity, feasibility and potential for impact” and are divided amongst four categories: Exhibition, Film/Video/New Media, Public Program, and Publication.

In its 60 years, the foundation has made significant impacts in the fields of art and architecture through the awarding of grants to outstanding projects, exhibitions and publications. They have expanded their exhibition programming in the past few years, including a display at the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennal last year.

Continue after the break for the full list of recipients.

James Corner Field Operations' ICEBERGS Brings the Chill to the National Building Museum

12:20 - 11 July, 2016
James Corner Field Operations' ICEBERGS Brings the Chill to the National Building Museum, © ICEBERGS at the National Building Museum, by James Corner Field Operations. Photo by Timothy Schenck.
© ICEBERGS at the National Building Museum, by James Corner Field Operations. Photo by Timothy Schenck.

This year’s installment of the National Building Museum’s Summer Block Party Series, James Corner Field Operations’ ICEBERGS, is now open to the public. On display until September 5th, ICEBERGS takes the form of a shimmering, underwater world of glacial ice fields located in the museum’s expansive Great Hall to provide the public with an escape from the hot Washington, D.C. summer.

© ICEBERGS at the National Building Museum, by James Corner Field Operations. Photo by Timothy Schenck. © ICEBERGS at the National Building Museum, by James Corner Field Operations. Photo by Timothy Schenck. © ICEBERGS at the National Building Museum, by James Corner Field Operations. Photo by Timothy Schenck. © ICEBERGS at the National Building Museum, by James Corner Field Operations. Photo by Timothy Schenck. + 14

Watch as James Corner Field Operation's "Icebergs" Comes Together at the National Building Museum

12:00 - 8 July, 2016

Building on the popularity of Snarkitecture's popular BEACH last year and BIG's massive Labyrinth in 2014, the National Building Museum's 2016 Summer Block Party installation has returned this year with "ICEBERGS," designed by James Corner Field Operations. ICEBERGS is an interactive underwater environment of glacial ice spanning the museum's Great Hall, and invites in the public to escape the hot Washington D.C. summer by exploring climbable bergs, ice chutes, caves, grottos and more.

Take a look at this time lapse video to see how the project came together.

ICEBERGS

15:00 - 15 June, 2016
ICEBERGS

The National Building Museum offers a new, one-of-a-kind destination with ICEBERGS, designed by James Corner Field Operations. Representing a beautiful underwater world of glacial ice spanning the Museum’s enormous Great Hall, the immersive installation features climbable bergs, “ice” chutes, caves and grottoes to explore, and much more.

Event: Built By Women DC

13:29 - 7 March, 2016
Event: Built By Women DC, © Cunningham | Quill Architects
© Cunningham | Quill Architects

Built by Women D.C. (BxW DC) is a crowd-sourced competition organized by the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation (BWAF) to recognize and support the diverse women working in design and construction. This weekend, view the winners that are on display in the Great Hall. On Saturday, attend tours of projects selected as outstanding that will be included in the BWAF’s BxW archive. For more details and to register for the tours, visit go.nbm.org/BxWDC.

Re-Ball! A Design Competition by the Dupont Underground

19:56 - 4 January, 2016
Re-Ball! A Design Competition by the Dupont Underground

Re-Ball! is an open design competition to turn 650,000+ 3-inch, white, translucent plastic balls into a site-specific installation in the Dupont Underground’s 14,000-square-foot east platform. The balls were previously part of the National Building Museum’s blockbuster 2015 summer destination The Beach.
The winning concept will take the medium in a new direction, one that responds to the uniqueness of the installation site. From the open, light-filled box of the National Building Museum’s Great Hall to the curving concrete volume of the Dupont Underground's east platform, Re-Ball! entries should transform the constituent materials — and the space itself — into an entirely

Canstruction Timelapse: Architects Build Transportation-Inspired Sculptures at the National Building Museum

08:00 - 26 November, 2015

Twenty-four teams from Washington, DC-based architecture and design firms participated in CanstructionDC 2015 at the National Building Museum, building transportation-themed sculptures out of canned food. At the end of the display, the sculptures will be dismantled and the food will be donated to local hunger relief organizations. Watch the sculptures come together, including a Mayflower bean soup ship and a full-scale smart car, in the timelapse video above. Learn more on the National Building Museum website.

Field Operations to Design National Building Museum's Next Summer Installation

12:00 - 28 October, 2015
Field Operations to Design National Building Museum's Next Summer Installation, Tongva Park overlook. Image © Tim Street Porter, courtesy of Field Operations
Tongva Park overlook. Image © Tim Street Porter, courtesy of Field Operations

James Corner Field Operations has been chosen to design the National Building Museum's 2016 Summer Block Party installation. Just like its predecessors, including Snarkitecture's popular BEACH and BIG's massive Labyrinth, the installation will take over the Museum's Great Hall. With the design in its preliminary stages, little has been revealed. However, its mission is to "present innovative, interactive experiences that experiment with new ways of seeing and understanding the built environment."

“We are very excited about this opportunity to once again transform the Great Hall for summer spectacle and pleasure,” said James Corner, adding that “it will be a great challenge to surpass the genius of previous installations, but also an opportunity to explore something new and unexpected.” 

Snarkitecture Turns National Building Museum into Massive Ball-Pit

12:24 - 7 July, 2015
Snarkitecture Turns National Building Museum into Massive Ball-Pit , © Noah Kalina
© Noah Kalina

Now through September 7, you can take a "swim" in a massive "BEACH" that has taken over the National Building Museum's Great Hall. Spanning 10,000-square-feet, the BEACH was created in partnership with Brooklyn-based Snarkitecture to offer the people of Washington D.C. a one-of-a-kind installation as part of the NBM's "Summer Block Party."

The "ocean" is essentially a ball-pit comprised of nearly one million recyclable translucent plastic balls. It is contained within a mirrored, all-white enclosure flanked by a 50-foot-wide "shoreline" that offers visitors the option to wade the  "water" or sit back and relax. 

© Noah Kalina © Noah Kalina © Noah Kalina © Noah Kalina + 11