Janelle Zara
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Archive for the ‘Architecture’ Category

Amale Andraos Appointed Dean of Columbia Architecture School

Amale Andraos has been appointed the new dean of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, the school’s Buell Center announced on Twitter. A principal at New York-based Work Architecture Company and an Associate Professor at GSAPP since 2011, Andraos replaces outgoing dean Mark Wigley. Having helmed GSAPP for nine years, Wigley revealed in September 2013 that he would retire at the end of the 2013-14 school year. Columbia president Lee Bollinger announced today that Andraos’s promotion would be effective September 1, in a press release published shortly after the Buell Center broke the news. In her new capacity, Andraos joins Sarah Whiting, dean of the Rice University School of Architecture, as one of the most prominent female figures in architectural education. (more…)

Norman Foster’s Gherkin Goes on Sale

London’s Norman Foster-designed Gherkin skyscraper, infamous for its various resemblances, has been placed on the real estate market, reports the BBC. After one of the building’s former co-owners, German company IVG Immobilien, filed for insolvency, joint responsibility for selling off the building was transferred to financial firms Savills and Deloitte in April.

Though the companies have announced that they plan to sell the 2004 tower, they refused to set a starting price; instead they’re asking bidders to name a sum. “We could see offers in excess of £650m,” said Stephen Down of Savills to the BBC (about $1.1 billion). The sale will likely make a very handsome profit — the Gherkin cost approximately $240 million to construct. Down explained that the companies have started marketing the building, which currently rents offices to approximately 20 tenant, and are already seeing interest from potential buyers in the Middle East, Far East, and North America. “I suspect there will be an iconic element to this [sale],” said Down. A website is taking registration from interested bidders through August 16, and after a vetting process, the winner will be announced in late September or early October, he added.  And that’s how you get out of a pickle.

— Anna Kats (@fortunaviriliis)

Image via Wikimedia Commons.

NYC Luxury Condo Will Have a Separate Entrance for Low-Income Residents

When developer Extell’s latest luxury condo building opens at 40 Riverside Drive on the Upper West Side, only wealthy residents will be allowed to enter through the front door. New York City’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development has officially approved plans for a separate entrance that will divert lower-income residents to enter through a side entrance, reports the Huffington Post. The “poor door,” as the New York Post calls it, will prevent owners of the building’s lavishly appointed full-price units from sharing public spaces with residents of low-income apartments mandated by the city. Entrances and elevators will be separated in the building according to income status, prompting incredulity among critics. When the plan was first announced last August, Assemblywoman Linda B. Rosenthal drew comparisons to the ‘separate but equal’ rhetoric of segregation in the West Side Rag. “A mandatory affordable housing plan is not license to segregate lower-income tenants from those who are well-off,” she said at the time. (more…)

Martino Stierli Selected as MoMA’s New Chief Architecture and Design Curator

MoMA has appointed Martino Stierli its new Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design, the museum announced today in a press release. Stierli, like his predecessor Barry Bergdoll, comes to the museum from academia; he currently teaches architectural history at the University of Zurich. Bergdoll remains a part-time curator at MoMA since he stepped down last July to serve full-time as the chair of the Art History department at Columbia University. Stierli will assume his new role at MoMA in March 2015, when the museum is due to open a retrospective on Latin American architecture since 1955, organized by Bergdoll. (more…)

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Filling Station Comes to Life at Buffalo’s Pierce-Arrow Museum

In recent years, Buffalo, in upstate New York, has emerged as an unexpected capital of historic preservation. Long gone are the days the yore, when the city allowed the demolition of Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1906 Larkin Building in 1950. Architectural landmarks, such as  H.H. Richardson’s 1870 Olmsted Complex and Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1905 Darwin D. Martin House, are now undergoing comprehensive restoration programs devoted to making the city’s most historically significant buildings accessible to the public once again. The Pierce-Arrow Museum in Buffalo has taken the city’s devotion to historic architecture one step further, by resurrecting a 1927 Frank Lloyd Wright design for a filling station — originally intended for a street corner in Buffalo and later incorporated into the architect’s sprawling, unrealized plans for Broadacre City.


Chicago Plans to Host an Architecture Biennial in 2015

As if the ongoing Donald Trump vs. Blair Kamin brawl and the upcoming annual convention of the American Institute of Architects didn’t provide enough architecture news from Chicago for the week, the city has just announced that it plans to start an international architecture expo in 2015. “Aiming to boost tourism and elevate its status as a design center, Chicago next year will mount a global exhibition of cutting-edge architecture that will strive to duplicate the cachet and commercial success of a cultural spectacle in Venice, Italy,” writes Kamin in the Chicago Tribune, where he serves as staff architecture critic.

The Chicago Cultural Center will start hosting the city’s forthcoming Architecture Biennial in 2015.


Brought to Light: Knud Lonberg-Holm, the “Invisible Architect” of Information Design

Knud Lonberg-Holm’s propsed design for the Radio Broadcasting Station, Detroit, circa 1925.

“The really great architect will be the architect who produces the invisible house where you don’t see roofs or walls,” designer Knud Lonberg-Holm told a young Buckminster Fuller when they first met in 1929. Though the advice deeply impressed the future geodesic dome innovator, who cultivated a lifelong friendship with Lonberg-Holm and even hoped in the 1960s to pen a book about the Danish-American designer’s ideas and oeuvre, the fame and notoriety accorded to Fuller have eluded his mentor’s legacy. Never one for self-promotion, Lonberg-Holm eschewed the aesthetic and personality flourishes that made contemporaries like Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright ubiquitous names the world over. Modern architecture, believed Lonberg-Holm, should be defined by its mode and scale of production, not a conspicuous style (International or otherwise). Yet for all his forward-looking ideas about “invisible” buildings, and research into designing systems for organizing and disseminating information about architectural production, Lonberg-Holm eventually became invisible himself — his work occasionally uncredited, his name and innovations largely absent from narratives of design history. (more…)

Donald Trump Throws Shade at the Chicago Tribune’s Architecture Critic

The American Institute of Architects’ annual convention opens in Chicago this Thursday, but the Windy City is already hosting a vociferous design debate courtesy of none other than Donald Trump. It turns out that almost everyone in Chicago hates the 141-foot-long sign that spells out Trump’s surname currently being installed on the riverfront facade of the Donald’s Trump International Hotel & Tower building, which opened in 2009. “The sign is an on-steroids version of Trump’s ubiquitous logo and its bold serif typeface,” writes Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin. But it’s not like Trump has ever been one to back down or acquiesce to what his detractors think. (more…)

New Renderings Revealed of Tadao Ando’s First NYC Building

Ando’s planned low-rise building will incldue a rooftop reflection pool.

Foster’s got one, Hadid’s got one, now Ando’s got one: Tadao Ando’s first luxury condominium building in New York City’s NoLIta neighborhood sums up the architect’s hallmark formal flourishes in an urban, residential typology, as evidenced by the first renderings of the project which were released on Thursday. Construction is expected to begin on the poured-in-place concrete, galvanized steel, and glass tower before the fall, with a completion date scheduled for 2016. The 7-story, 32,000-square-foot building at 152 Elizabeth St. will contain 8 residences, with local architects Michael Gabellini and Kimberly Sheppard of Gabellini Sheppard Associates both designing the interiors and serving as the Architect of Record. The project has yet to break ground but developer Sumaida + Khurana are already promising a monumental result: “We intend to establish a new paradigm in terms of the relationship between architecture, art, craft and global luxury real estate development,” the firm said in a press release.

— Anna Kats (@fortunaviriliis)

Image courtesy of Sumaida + Khurana.

Xavier Veilhan Sets the Melnikov House on Fire

On May 15, French artist Xavier Veilhan set fire to the 1929 Melnikov House in central Moscow. Despite the premise of destruction that inspired the latest iteration of Veilhan’s Architectones project, the event was orchestrated to build support for the landmark residence’s restoration. Over the course of the evening, Veilhan used a five-foot-tall metal model of architect Konstanin Melnikov’s personal home to grill meat for guests and onlookers inside the garden of Melnikov’s full-scale original. The mock-up featured the home’s distinctive diamond-shaped windows and interlocking double-barrel frame, but Veilhan was inspired to use it for cooking by a stove on the home’s second floor, much like the stoves built by Melnikov after he was prohibited in the late 1920s by the Soviet state from practicing as an architect. (more…)