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The Living

Elon Musk, Architects David Benjamin and Kate Orff Among Rolling Stone's "25 People Shaping the Future"

12:20 - 29 November, 2017
Elon Musk, Architects David Benjamin and Kate Orff Among Rolling Stone's "25 People Shaping the Future"

In their latest issue, Rolling Stone has named Elon Musk "The Architect of Tomorrow," as well as listed architects David Benjamin and Kate Orff as two of their "25 People Shaping the Future in Tech, Science, Medicine, Activism and More."

In "Horizontal City," 24 Architects Reconsider Architectural Interiors at 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial

10:20 - 25 September, 2017

Horizontal City is one of two collective exhibitions (the other being Vertical City) at the 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial. 24 architects were tasked by artistic directors Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee to "reconsider the status of the architectural interior" by referencing a photograph of a canonical interior from any time period.

Their challenge was in considering the forms and ways that their selection "might extrapolate out from the cropped photographic frame into a spatial and lifestyle construction across a larger, horizontal site" – in this case, a field of plinths, the size and positioning of which is a direct reference to the footprint of Mies van der Rohe's 1947 plan for the IIT Campus in Chicago.

Chicago Architecture Biennial Announces List of 2017 Participants

11:00 - 6 March, 2017
Chicago Architecture Biennial Announces List of 2017 Participants, James Welling, 8183, 2016 from the series Chicago, 2016-2017, Courtesy the Artist and David Zwirner, New York and London. Image Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Biennial
James Welling, 8183, 2016 from the series Chicago, 2016-2017, Courtesy the Artist and David Zwirner, New York and London. Image Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Biennial

The Chicago Architecture Biennial has announced the list of participants invited to contribute to the event’s second edition, which will be held from September 16 to January 7, 2018 in Chicago. More than 100 architecture firms and artists have been selected by 2017 artistic directors Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee, founders of Los Angeles–based Johnston Marklee, to design exhibitions that will be displayed at the Chicago Cultural Center and throughout the city.

“Our goal for the 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial is to continue to build on the themes and ideas presented in the first edition,” explained Johnston and Lee. “We hope to examine, through the work of the chosen participants, the continuous engagement with questions of history and architecture as an evolutionary practice.”

The Living's 3D Printed Airplane Partition is Designed to Mimic Bone Structure

13:00 - 20 January, 2016
The Living's 3D Printed Airplane Partition is Designed to Mimic Bone Structure, © The Living
© The Living

You’ve probably never given much thought to the seemingly basic interior partitions of an airplane, but building codes are a walk in the park compared to the exacting standards of aviation design. Those thin panels that separate the seats from the plane's galley must also be capable of supporting the weight of flight attendant jumpseats and providing a removable section to accommodate emergency stretchers - not to mention the rigorous safety standards and crash testing that aviation components must satisfy. With all of these challenges in mind, The Living, an Autodesk Studio, in collaboration with Airbus and APWorks, have developed the Bionic Partition Project, which harnesses generative design and 3D printing to maximize the structural efficiency of the panel, reducing the weight of an aircraft, and saving fuel. And while this particular application is specific to a single aircraft type, the technological advances could have far-reaching implications.

© The Living © The Living © The Living © The Living + 11

BIG, Heatherwick and The Living Named Among Fast Company's Most Innovative Architectural Practices of 2015

00:00 - 10 February, 2015
BIG, Heatherwick and The Living Named Among Fast Company's Most Innovative Architectural Practices of 2015, Hy-Fi - The Organic Mushroom-Brick Tower / The Living. Image © Andrew Nunes
Hy-Fi - The Organic Mushroom-Brick Tower / The Living. Image © Andrew Nunes

Fast Company has announced who they believe to be the most innovative practices in architecture for 2015. Topping this list is the online remodeling community Houzz, the BIG powerhouse and David Benjamin’s The Living. See the complete list, after the break, and let us know who you believe is the world’s most innovative firms in the comment section below.

Emerging Voices: David Benjamin of The Living

00:00 - 5 October, 2014

In his lecture as one of winners of the Architectural League’s annual Emerging Voices awards, David Benjamin discusses his unique approach to environmental and computational design and how it manifests itself in the work of The Living, a firm he founded in 2006.

Throughout the lecture Benjamin discusses projects that are fundamentally linked to the natural environment and ideas related to sustainability. To introduce how the firm generates new ideas, Benjamin describes a method of experimentation developed in their practice called flash research: beginning with the idea that architecture could be dynamic and responsive, these are prototypes that operate under self-created constraints such as a budget of $1000 or less and a required time span of three months or less.

Read on after the break for further synopsis of the lecture.

The Living and BIG Among Winners of the Holcim Awards 2014 for North America

01:00 - 19 September, 2014
The Living and BIG Among Winners of the Holcim Awards 2014 for North America, © BIG Courtesy of the Holcim Foundation
© BIG Courtesy of the Holcim Foundation

The Holcim Foundation has announced the Winners of the Holcim Awards 2014 for North America, the award which recognizes the most innovative and advanced sustainable construction designs. Among the winners are BIG and The Living, with designs which the jury stated showed "sophisticated and multi-disciplinary responses to the challenges facing the building and construction industry."

The ten recognized projects share over $300,000 in prize money, with the top three projects overall going on to be considered for the global Holcim Awards awards, to be selected in 2015.

Read on after the break for the full list of winners

VIDEO: How The Living's Mushroom Tower Was Built

00:00 - 1 July, 2014

Our friends at The Creators Project have shared with us an awesome video of the latest MoMA PS1 installation: Hy-Fi. Designed by The Living, who have - in a fascinating move - recently been acquired by Autodesk, the tower's many organic, biodegradable bricks are grown from a mushroom root in five days, with no energy required and no carbon emissions. In fact, the tower will be composted after MoMA PS1's summer program is over. Learn more about this ingenious tower from the creator David Benjamin in the video above. And check out more images of the tower after the break.

© Andrew Nunes © Andrew Nunes © Andrew Nunes © Andrew Nunes + 6

Hy-Fi, The Organic Mushroom-Brick Tower Opens At MoMA's PS1 Courtyard

00:00 - 27 June, 2014

Last night, the organic brick structure known as 'Hy-Fi' opened in the courtyard of MoMA's PS1 space in New York. Designed by David Benjamin of New York architects The Living, the tower was designed as part of MoMA's Young Architects Program, and its construction centers around the use of an innovative building material: organic, biodegradable bricks consisting of no more than farm waste and a culture of fungus that is grown to fit a brick-shaped mold.

Acting as the centerpiece for MoMA's Warm Up music festival on Saturdays throughout the Summer, the temporary structure will provide shade, seating and water until September 7th. Read on after the break for more on the design.

Arup Engineers Explain: How the MoMA PS1 YAP Winners Grew Ten Thousand Mushroom Bricks

01:00 - 26 June, 2014

This year's MoMA PS1's Young Architects Program opens tomorrow (you can see the schedule of events here). Find out how the innovative winning design (a tower of fungal bricks), by The Living's David Benjamin, was tested and built with this article, originally posted on as "Engineering a mushroom tower".

Soft, spongy, and delicious on pizza, mushrooms have approximately as much to do with structural engineering as alligators or lawnmowers. Or so we thought, until architect David Benjamin of New York firm The Living walked into our offices with a brick grown from fungi.

This brick was the key to his concept for an entry to MoMA PS1’s Young Architects Program competition. Every year, the museum commissions a designer to build a centerpiece for its popular outdoor Warm Up concert series.

If architectural design competitions are where brave, innovative ideas rise to the top, The Living’s mushroom tower (official name: Hy-Fi) checked all the right boxes. In addition to the novelty factor, mushroom bricks offer a host of sustainability benefits. The raw materials needed to produce them — mushrooms and corn stalks (waste material from farms) that the spores feed on — are as eco-friendly as they come. Bricks can be grown in just five days, and the process produces no waste or carbon emissions. When the structure is taken down at the end of the summer, they can be composted and turned into fertilizer.

14 Architectural Trends That Will Define The Next Decade

01:00 - 5 June, 2014
14 Architectural Trends That Will Define The Next Decade, © MAD
© MAD

When you think about the future, how do you envision the built environment? According to this article, originally appearing on The Huffington Post as The Architecture of the Future is Far More Spectacular than You Could Imagine, the future is closer than we might think – current projects are already answering the imagined needs and desires of the next generation. From a tower with rotating floors to a park with the ability to cleanse raw sewage, check out fourteen projects believed to embody the architecture of tomorrow, after the break.

© The Living Courtesy of Diller Scofidio + Renfro with Hargreaves Associates and Citymakers 14 Architectural Trends That Will Define The Next Decade Courtesy of NEXT Architects + 14

The Future of Brick: Biodegradable And Bacterial

00:00 - 27 May, 2014
The Future of Brick: Biodegradable And Bacterial, Biodegradable Brick Is The Featured Material In This Years MoMA PS1 Exhibit, But Is It Suitable For Housing? . Image © The Living
Biodegradable Brick Is The Featured Material In This Years MoMA PS1 Exhibit, But Is It Suitable For Housing? . Image © The Living

MoMA’s PS1 exhibit in Queens is a showcase for young architects with lofty ideas. This year’s winning firm “The Living” designed "Hi-Fy" - a biodegradable brick tower. Although the idea might seem far-fetched for housing, the idea is gaining traction. North Carolina start-up bioMason, recently won the Cradle to Cradle Product Innovation Challenge for their “biodegradable bricks.” So Kieron Monks at CNN had to ask the question, would you live in a house made of sand, bacteria or fungi? Find out the benefits of these modern bricks here.

Architectural League Announces 2014 Winners of Emerging Voices Award

00:00 - 7 February, 2014
Architectural League Announces 2014 Winners of Emerging Voices Award, Mud Box (Terry Mowers Residence) / Rael San Fratello | Photo: Rael San Fratello
Mud Box (Terry Mowers Residence) / Rael San Fratello | Photo: Rael San Fratello

The Architectural League of New York has announced the winners of their 32nd annual Emerging Voices awards. The coveted recognition program spotlights eight emerging practitioners in North America whose “distinct design voices” have shown the potential to influence the disciplines of architecture, landscape design, and urbanism.

“The work of each Emerging Voice represents the best of its kind, and addresses larger issues within architecture, landscape, and the built environment,” described the League.  “This year, in particular, saw firms entrepreneurial in spirit, pursuing alternate forms of practice, often writing their own programs or serving as their own clients.”

This year’s eight Emerging Voices are...

The Living Wins P.S.1 with Compostable Brick Tower

01:00 - 5 February, 2014
The Living Wins P.S.1 with Compostable Brick Tower, © The Living
© The Living

The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 has selected "Hy-Fi," a “circular tower of organic and reflective bricks” designed by The Living (David Benjamin), as the winner of the 15th annual Young Architects Program (YAP) in New York. An exemplar of the cradle-to-cradle philosophy, the temporary installation will be built entirely from organic material via a new method of bio-design.