In Still Ugly After All These Years: A Close Reading of Peter Eisenman’s Wexner Center, Alexander Maymind argued the center's "grid-based diagrams instantiate disestablishment effects...hinge on a particular aesthetic reading of architectural ugliness." 18x32 responded "I like where you've gone with the 'Ugly' here, but I don't think this building offers the best example. Nothing about Wexner is viscerally repellant, abhorrent or disgusting."
Alexander Maymind shared his essay Still Ugly After All These Years: A Close Reading of Peter Eisenman’s Wexner Center, recently published in One: Twelve Issue 4, April 2012. Therein he begins by suggesting how the center's "grid-based diagrams instantiate disestablishment effects related to the aims of a contemporary art institution sited in a traditional neoclassical campus plan. These effects; critical, discursive and haptic, hinge on a particular aesthetic reading of architectural ugliness."
18x32 responded "I like where you've gone with the 'Ugly' here, but I don't think this building offers the best example. Nothing about Wexner is viscerally repellant, abhorrent or disgusting. Everything is too clean, too precise, too clinical, too withdrawn, too intentional to be grotesque. The 'Uncanny' might be a more accurate descriptor and be more in line with Eisenman's own position (see, for example, his comments on Moneo's Town Hall in Logroño in discussion with Christopher Alexander)"
Last week radio station KCET sat down with Archinect senior editor Orhan Ayyüce for an interview about his Turkish roots, arrival in Los Angeles, and his unlikely introduction to the world of architecture. tammuz shared a story "i've been to LA only once (and the US generally). i loved it; (California), i was dancing with the hippies on venice beach. satan was there, so was a giant Pan-tree, an elderly woman who dreamt of being a ballerina...it was fabulous. Beautiful, and the scattered verdancy, the unravelling flowing of suburban with urban. just a very special place, the bits i saw at least. now, if it was only in a different kind of country: the laws, the homeless, the money....I loved LA much more so than NY. But if only one didnt need a car...."
Zaha Hadid claims she was not asked to the opening or closing ceremonies of the Games, or to any of the diving and swimming heats at her acclaimed £269 million aquatics centre and has criticised the Games bosses as "rude". mantaray approvingly griped "I am so not surprised by this at all. I frequently see full-page real estate ads in my architecturally-prideful city that specifically use the architecture of the building as the sole marketing ploy, and yet never once name the architect...It makes me so angry every single time. Maybe I should write to them. In any case, yes, people seem universally to conveniently forget an architect was ever involved as soon as that occupancy permit comes through."
Vice Magazine hosted a candid conversation on the horrendous state of new construction in New York, with the crankiest of architecture critics, Ivana Force-Majeure, and Vice Magazine's Bob Nickas. jplourde offered a clarification to the complaint’s noting "I think that most people, and this includes Ivava, seem to think of New York as falsely representing itself as a 'great' architectural city. Which it simply is not, and frankly does not try to be. I think New York does not care as much about architecture as architects and critics may wish it to. Rather, through it's complexity, size, and pluralism it is a city of architectural contradictions... This does not make the city architecturally 'ugly' nor 'beautiful' but merely democratic."
Tidda Tippapart talked to Aurash Khawarzad about the challenge of creating the post-Hipster city, gentrification, and what it means to (re)build New York City from the ground up. Though futureboy wondered "isn't the very nature of their social activism, the creation of leisure space within the city, the very mechanism that is used at the front lines that is being critiqued? Does it really make any difference if you ask a few community members what they think while you're doing? I think that is the missing criticality in so much of this ‘activism’, the substitution of ‘leisure’ space for ‘public’ space...The new ghetto is the suburb, not the center city."
Gregory Walker attempted to answer the oft-repeated question "why didn’t anyone teach us ‘business skills’ in school?" and Andrea Salvini recently worked on the TerrainsVagues team as part of their involvement in ARTFARMS Buffalo, launching June 2012.
Located in Seneca Falls, NY the Women's Rights National Historical Park by Elemental Architecture (in collaboration with Ann Marshall & Ray Kinoshita) is a "sanctuary, a place of meeting. The simple quadrangle of open space creates a setting for the chapel, but is also a gathering place in its own right. As if by a heaving of the earth, the ground has been transformed into a sloped grass plinth, a natural amphitheater."
The design/buildLAB students at Virginia Tech finally began assembling the prefabricated portions of their project, which they built over the past couple months.
The residents of UT Knoxville’s The New Norris House write about all their wild neighbors including; wild turkeys, deer, rabbits, squirrels, opossums, raccoons, hawks, bats, snakes, vultures, skunks, frogs, crickets, cicadas, and many songbirds.
Inspired by the dialog on the Formicis thread tammuz started a thread to discuss the ethics of parametricism/emergent architectural thought and reification. The whole line of reasoning misses the boat for gwharton, who explained "what I find most interesting about the entire discussion of parametricism, pro or con, is how scrupulously it avoids the most interesting/valuable aspect of algorithmic design methods: beauty...Has beauty, the creation of compelling and positively-reinforcing emotional experience in the built environment, really become such a taboo subject that we must continually dance around it, rationalizing everything we do while never daring to mention its elephantine presence in the corner of the room?"
i r giv up actually agreed that "beauty is the goal. i don't give a fuck about biomimetics. i don't care if your script is uses 4chan rss feeds to determine what your facade looks like. what i do care is how interesting your code is, and how beautiful the resulting form is. parametrics isn't about hvac ducts, and chase walls, or making buildings with butterfly wing patterns in every window. it's about augmenting the architect's potential. it's transhumanism at a smaller scale."
Meanwhile all the discussion led curtkram to query "What is it with kids today and the parametricism or other various forms of 'parameter' including different suffixes or prefixes? Surely they've noticed how pretty much everyone gets their own definition of 'parametric' due to the fact that it's an empty buzz word with no real meaning?" Apurimac quipped "It's just the current flavor-of-the-month at architecture schools. It'll pass in time just like the Blob and deconstructivism". However, Since countered "Have you guys ever heard a janitor try to desrcibe what autocad is? That is what you basically sound like...If you don't change or adapt you die. Period. These ideas have been around for a LONG time, they are anything but a flavor of the month." Lance Smith concluded "good god I think brogrammers have infiltrated architecture and archinect"
In construction related threads Donna Sink was looking for suggestions for in-ground uplights to be used in a public project? Her only experiences with them have involved lots of leaking, cracked lenses, and replacement costs. mantaray chimed in "We used Hunza lights at a project let's see, about 2005 and I haven't heard of them failing; I can check with the owner. They are *very* high-end though, but we thought it was worth the investment for a variety of reasons. One, they were the nicest-looking we could find, and two, they were the highest quality (as best as we could tell) that we found. Also they have a variety of options & offer some of the smallest diameters for in-pavement I could find."
Finally, sharkswithlasers would like to incorporate "an unusually large single window using typical commercial glass/framing. No divisions. No butt glazing. Just one big window." treekiller wrote that "typically 10' x 5' is easily sourced, some places can provide 10'x10' or 12'x6'. the better/higher end folks will provide bigger glass (pilkington, schott, ppg etc), while local yokals will be limited to much smaller glass installations". mdler pointed out "the real question is how much $$$ you have to spend on the glass".