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Places Journal: The Latest Architecture and News

How the Portrayal of Houses in Cinema Shows Uncomfortable Truths About Hollywood's Relationship to Race

This short excerpt is from Places Journal's article "Prop and Property: The house in American cinema, from the plantation to Chavez Ravine," which in turn was adapted from John David Rhodes' book Spectacle of Property. The article, which investigates the many layers of property inherent in the production and viewing of movies, investigates in particular the films Gone with the Wind and To Kill a Mockingbird, revealing how their themes of race and property are made even more complex by the practicalities of Hollywood filmmaking.

Perhaps the most mysterious and desired feature of housing is the privacy of property, and especially the property of and in the house. Property, however, is fungible and alienable. Whatever is promised by the house is radically susceptible to violation, displacement, and loss. Often the experience of property’s violation or redefinition involves an unwelcome reminder that the house is not a very private place after all. Partly we know this: we have all spent time in living rooms, on porches, or in other spaces of the house in which it is nearly impossible to say where the public ends and the private begins. But when property’s inherent instability is experienced vividly—whether in “real life” or in representation—we are forced to confront the tenuous relationship between public and private, as well as the tenuousness of all property relations as such.

Fairy Tales and Architecture: Places Journal Explores the Narrative of the Fantastical

Narrative has a powerful place in architecture, and some of the most enduring narratives come in the form of fairy tales. A recent series by Places Journal brings the two directly together, exploring “the intimate relationship between the domestic structures of fairy tales and the imaginative realm of architecture.” The curation team reflects this duality, with the diverse collection put together by writer Kate Bernheimer and architect Andrew Bernheimer. Read on for a quick look at four new additions to the series released by Places Journal this week.

Places Journal Examines Post-Katrina Architecture in New Orleans

The damage caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 can never be forgotten, but 10 years after the rebuilding of New Orleans started in 2006, a new architecture has emerged with cutting-edge designs being widely celebrated in the media. The Make It Right foundation (founded after the disaster to help with structural recovery) commissioned first-class architects such as Morphosis, Shigeru Ban, and David Adjaye to design safe and sustainable houses for New Orleans’ Lower 9th Ward. But Richard Campanella and Cassidy Rosen worry that this vision is detached from reality.

Places Journal Explores the Past, Present and Future of Urban Skyways

When hearing the word “skybridge” or “elevated walkway,” what often comes to mind is a narrow, glassed-in pathway perhaps crossing between two office buildings or hospital concourses; a narrow artery whose only purpose seems to be keeping people dry and away from cars as they walk from meeting to meeting. But this wasn’t always the case - in the 1960s, skyways were seen as radical urban inventions that would bring city circulation into the 3rd dimension. Championed in the United States by architect Victor Gruen, following ideals espoused by both CIAM and Team 10 in Europe, the skyway movement took hold in cities all over the world with varying degrees of success, but rarely with the fluid connections between levels originally envisioned by its designers.

Places Journal Launches New Tool for Sharing Articles about Architecture, Landscape, and Urbanism

Do you have a stimulating read on architecture, landscapes, or urbanism you want to share with the world? Places Journal has launched an innovative interactive feature called Reading Lists designed to spread the word. Whether you have videos and websites to share with a peer, articles and books to compile for future perusal, or an annotated bibliography to create, Reading Lists is sure to simplify the process through its user-friendly and interdisciplinary platform. Check out the Featured Lists for inspiration and start your own list, here.