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Blog Articles - December 2007 - Page 9 Print E-mail
Sunday, 02 December 2007 19:00

December 4th, 2007

ar awards for emerging architecture 2007
Justin in materialicious
The annual ar Awards for Emerging Architecture 2007 have been announced. The list includes the winners, highly commended, and commended entries, as well as honourable mentions. The Jury for 2007 was Shirley Blumberg (KPMB, Toronto), Jo Noero (Cape Town), Peter Davey (Former Editor of The Architectural Review), Shuhei Endo (Osaka), Peter Cook (London), and Paul Finch (Editor of The Architectural Review and Chairman). Below are three of my favorites: the Wall House by Frohn & Rojas (posted here a while back), G House by Seiji Kamayachi & Masafumi Harigai, and the amazing Ghost House by DATAR....

We Shape Our Buildings and Afterwards, Our Buildings Shape Us
admin in
What did you see? What is above the woman’s head? What element is the backdrop? Researchers showed an identical image to people from East Africa, almost all of those took part in the experiment said the lady was balancing a box on her head, in an African culture where there are few angular visual cues, the group of people is seen sitting under a big tree. On the other hand, Westerners are used to corners and rectangular architecture, thus they are more likely to visualize the group of people in an indoor space and to interpret the rectangular shape above the lady’s head as a window opening.

renovation/addition in gondomar, a-cero

Justin in materialicious
Renovation/addition, Gondomar, Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain. Built: 1999. Find an old stone house, renovate, tack on a gorgeous addition…. A-cero, based in A Coruña and Madrid, does these huge, gorgeous modern mansions (read: mega - expensive) that I can’t really relate to, but I’m digging this smaller project they did, a renovation of and addition to an old stone farmhouse, and I am so inspired. Just look at that kitchen! And those beams! Woof.

Landscape/Portrait: do the statistics used by planners represent real people?
WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Wouldn’t it be great if... the faces and voices of citizens influenced design and regeneration projects – not just abstract data? Does your postcode define who you are? Statistical models of communities based on postcode areas are often used in the design and planning of public services and regeneration projects. Landscape/Portrait confronts people living in the North East with their demographic ‘stereotype’ based on these statistics and asks them ‘Is this you?’. ...

How to end a staircase
Not at all flimsy, the low balustrade makes this octagonal spike seem even bigger than it is. Architect: Alfred Waterhouse, Cheadle Hulme School.

Green.MNP: Building a Straw Bale House
This week our green ninja Jessie hits us with the second installment in myninjaplease’s series on straw bale construction: Building A Straw Bale House: Clearing the Site. Here’s an excerpt: When Anissa first laid out the house on a topo drawing of the site (a little $1400 survey cost) she suggested that floor joists over a crawl space might be cheaper than a slab on grade, due to the slope of the site and the amount of fill we would need to bring in for the slab. I was reluctant at first about losing the thermal mass in the slab, but I talked it over with Cadmon and he said that a two inch layer of lightweight concrete over the wooden subfloor works well for holding the radiant heating tubing. He did a top-of-the-head cost estimate that indicated this approach would be a bit cheaper than the slab and fill.

December 3rd, 2007

A Little Good News
By Patricia Pearson - CBC news
The other day, a friend and I were nursing some drinks in a bar andfeeling morose about the latest UN report on climate change. I don’tknow if you caught the warning, about how, if the United States andother major carbon emitters didn’t swiftly subscribe to Kyoto-styleregulations, the world would soon resemble something ‘out of sciencefiction.’
“Only scarier,” I believe is how Indian scientist Rajendra Pachauri put it to the press.

The Craig Hartman Interview - Part I
Brendan in Where
Yesterday, 10:56 PM
The following interview, in which SOM San Francisco design partner Craig W. Hartman, FAIA, discusses his firm's plan for the redevelopment of San Francisco's Treasure Island, was conducted in two parts. The first two questions asked by Where, as well as Mr. Hartman's first answer, have been copied directly from an email exchange. We then switched to a telephone conversation, which begins here with Mr. Hartman's second answer. The interview will be posted in two parts that do not correspond with the change in conversation methods, but rather split the text into two even halves.

le cabanon, a minimal habitat by cyril brulé
Justin in materialicious
Le Cabanon, Villiers-en-Morvan, France. Size: 20m2. Recently I ran across this neat little cabin by Cyril Brulé on Archipedia. I wrote him and asked for more info and photos… Brulé is an architect with Atelier d’Architecture Correia et Associés in Saulieu, in the heart of Burgundy (oh, yes, I’m a tad jealous). He built this little cabin (or, hut, hermitage, cottage, studio, guest house) on his family’s property in nearby Villiers-en-Morvan, and lives in it himself. Like he says: he’s young and lives simply. His living space is really all about ‘outdoors’. What more do you need? Especially in a beautiful place such as that?

Resisting Blackwater Sprawl
Bryan Finoki in Subtopia
You may remember a few months ago a post here on Subtopes about the private military contracting firm Blackwater USA moving in on a rural neighborhood outside San Diego called Potrero. From what I gathered at the time the company was planning a massive base and training facility there near the border and had been using local political players to ramrod the project through hurrying past proper environmental and political process.
Well, Alternate Focus, a non-profit educational media group based in San Diego, has put together a documentary called Blackwater in Potrero, that will be airing all this week on television if you subscribe to Dish Network, and get the Free Speech Channel. If not, it is also available online here.

Canada’s Greenest Building?

Jorge in Inhabitat
Green architecture seems to have taken the world by storm, and not a week goes by without a number of buildings making bold claims as to what their green credentials are. Not wanting to be left out of the global race to have the greenest building ever, seven local non-profit groups have revealed the design for the Maison du développement durable (Sustainable Development House), which they claim will be Canada’s greenest building.

Finding Internships a Challenge for LA Students - The Dirt
This letter from ASLA National Student Representative Paul Fusco appears in the latest issue of LAND Online. Please let your voice be heard by using the comment system below. It is starting to get to that time of the year again when students are looking to apply for internships in their field of study for the upcoming summer. It also becomes a busy time for firms looking for that ideal intern. Their search through all the applications can become a daunting task. What catches their attention?
In my research I have been trying to zero in on the key components for a dynamic resume, cover letter, and portfolio. These are probably the most important items you need to address when applying for an intern position. The first impression of who you are definitely comes into play. Added to the physical application is the interview, which too can be nerve-racking.

Notes on Competitions
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
It seems like a host of design competitions, both actual ones and those merely in the talking stage, have come up a lot lately. In today’s Oregonian , Eric Mortenson reports on a new competition sponsored by Metro, “Integrating Habitats”, to generate ideas and designs that result in green clusters of development, not just green buildings. The competition has already attracted 234 entries from 10 countries, Mortenson reports, with a respected jury that includes local developer Jim Winkler, German architect Stefan Behnisch, and Metropolis magazine editor Susan Szenasy.

Industrial Ruins in Eastern Europe and the Far East.
Christoph, anArchitecture in anArchitecture
Whether in Poland, Romania or former East Germany – or in Russia, China or Mongolia: Abandoned mines, foundries and coking plants tell stories that reflect the fate and identity of entire regions and their inhabitants. The Leopold Museum in the MQ Vienna is featuring a photo exhibition of Christoph Lingg showing industrial Ruins in Eastern Europe and the Far East.

loq•kit: the snap-together house
Justin in materialicious
Loq•kit is a fascinating proposed system of mass-produced house parts by architect Patrick Freet, which won 2nd place in a recent C2C Home Competition, and while the system is still being developed I feel it’s worthy of a closer look. So I asked my friend, architect Greg La Vardera (see his ad in the sidebar) to give us all his take on it.

Thinglink: what are the true environmental costs?
WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Today, 11:28 AM
[DOTT 07 explores how to tackle big problems by blending leading-edge design thinking with insights from local people involved in grassroots innovation in Northeast England. We're excited to be running 14 days of excerpts from the project's amazing book Wouldn't It Be Great If.... -Alex] Every product that enters our lives has a hidden history - an invisible 'rucksack' containing huge quantities of wasted or lost materials used in its production, transport, use and disposal....

acrylic house, takeshi hosaka architects
Justin in materialicious
Acrylic House, Fuji Kawaguchiko-machi, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. Size: 103.09m2. Built: 2006-2007.

3form: Best Installation Contest
3form, the material manufacturer, is currently running a ‘best installation contest‘, with 114 entries [to date] on which visitors can vote. An MNP reader pointed the contest out to us, and singled out a project by Menefee+Winer Architects in particular: The Light Bridge. The translucent footbridge was constructed of 3form’s Chroma material [supported by a Unistrut structure] - built in Menefee+Winer’s office as a connection between the office’s lounge + library, suspended above a staircase. Looks pretty ill....

New Museum of Contemporary Art Building Review Bonanza UnBeige
Lots upon lots being written this weekend as the brand new home of the New Museum of Contemporary Art opened its shiny doors on Saturday morning. To avoid our usual gibberish about nothing in particular (specifically when it comes to this writer), we thought we'd just pick a couple of select words from the bigger news outlets and give you a brief overview of the largely positive reviews of the building, designed by the firm, Sanna, in Japan.

Gary Leonard: PHOENIX
On Thursday, December 13th the galleries of downtown Los Angeles will celebrate the final Art Walk of 2007 - featuring the unveiling of Gary Leonard’s first exhibition of large-scale photographs, entitled PHOENIX, at Colori Kitchen [popular South Park trattoria of longtime Ca’Brea chef Luigi Barducci Contessi]. The project is a series of architectural images documenting the 21st Century transformation of downtown LA. Hundreds of Leonard’s small-scale photographs will on display/for sale at his nearby gallery.

It's a Gaudiful Life - December Architectural Events
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
Today, 1:21 AM
"But they built the cathedral, Clarence - I've seen pictures!" "No, George they never finished that cathedral. They haven't finished it to this day. Remember, you were never born. So there was no one to save him from getting run over by that tram." George ran the back of his hand across his mouth, as he was prone to do in times of great stress. "I just don't understand, Clarence, I just don't . . . wait a second, 1926. That's when I was working for Mr. Gower! I stopped him from writing that bum prescription that would have poisoned that kid. Goshdarnit, you showed me that yourself, Clarence - why, I was just a kid, myself. And a kid in Bedford Falls, don't forget.


December 2nd, 2007

The Hudson 5
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
A couple weeks ago the MTA publicly released the five design proposals responding to its RFP for the Hudson Rail Yards, a 26-acre tract of land in Midtown Manhattan extending west of 10th Avenue to the Hudson River and bounded by 30th Street to the south and 33rd Street to the north. Friday I ran through the exhibition currently on display next to Grand Central Terminal to see how these five developer/urban/architect/landscape teams responded to the mega-site.

Vital Signs: when will our region be sustainable?
WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
[DOTT 07 was an incredible exploration into tackling big problems by blending leading-edge design thinking with insights from local people involved in grassroots innovation in Northeast England. We're excited to be running 14 days of excerpts from the project's amazing book. How will we know when our region is 'sustainable'?...



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