Syrian government troops have retaken Palmyra from Islamic State forces, with help from Russian air support, the Syrian army said in a statement on Thursday. Politicians in Russian welcomed the news as a triumph, as widely reported by the state’s media, but few details have emerged about the condition of the ancient site, where Isil has previously wreaked large-scale destruction. [...]
Isil first took Palmyra in May 2015 and the extremist group destroyed a number of important monuments [...]. — theartnewspaper.com
ISIS forces have retaken the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria, according to Syrian government media, the ISIS media wing and a human rights monitor. [...]
ISIS first seized control of Palmyra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in May 2015. Syrian government forces recaptured it in March this year. [...]
ISIS demolished many of the city's ancient treasures, including the 1,800-year-old Arch of Triumph and the nearly 2,000-year-old Temple of Baalshamin, as well as the Temple of Bel. — CNN
One of the tallest surviving structures from the ancient world has been totally destroyed by Isil extremists at Nimrud, the former capital of Assyria, which was captured by Iraqi government forces on 13 November. The ziggurat, which was nearly 2,900 years old, was obliterated. Only the largest Egyptian pyramids are higher than Middle Eastern ziggurats and central American step pyramids.
[...] incidents represent “the worst damage that Isil has inflicted on Iraqi archaeology”. — theartnewspaper.com
“Village” may not seem like the right term for a cluster of tenement-style walkups that can house more than 100,000 people. Chengzhongcun hang onto the name partly because of the familiarity evoked by the traditions and small-scale businesses that thrive among their migrant populations, and partly because when modern Shenzhen began growing, these places really were just villages in the middle of the city. — foreignpolicy.com
During his time in power, as head of state and as leader of the all-powerful, secularist Ba’th party, Saddam would oversee an unprecedented program of monumental development across the historic city of Baghdad. This was not limited to monuments of war and hollow bronze shells, but enormous palatial complexes, museums, art galleries, and civic squares [...] marshal it, awkwardly, unevenly, into the post-industrial age, a modern city shaped by the aspirations and egotistical tastes of a despot. — failedarchitecture.com
In the first case of its kind, the Islamic extremist Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi has today (22 August), pleaded guilty to war crimes for destroying historic monuments in the ancient city of Timbuktu in northern Mali. Al-Mahdi is accused of ordering the razing of nine mausoleums and the 15th-century Sidi Yahia mosque. It is the first time the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague has heard a case about the demolition of cultural heritage. — theartnewspaper.com
The world heritage site status of Liverpool’s waterfront is in jeopardy after the city’s mayor, Joe Anderson, rejected a plea by UN cultural chiefs to halt development in the city [...]
Anderson said he would be writing to the UN body informing it that the city would not be complying with its request [...]
Heritage campaigners recently went to court in a fight to stop the demolition of 10 historic buildings near Liverpool Lime Street station in the buffer zone. — The Guardian
A top businessman has offered to help restore the home of [Thomas Blake Glover] a Scottish pioneer who became one of the most famous merchants in Japan [...]
If anything can be done to restore Glover House we will be prepared to do it and we have made an offer to contribute to the house reopening in his memory [...]
the building would be turned into an “ideas hub”, which could be used to strengthen business links with Japan - with a particular focus on the oil and gas industry. — The Scotsman
Brutalism will never happen again. Our stock of Brutalism is limited, and sadly under constant attack. The demolition and ‘refurbishment’ of great buildings by Rudolph, I M Pei, Denys Lasdun and other giants of the movement should be taken as seriously as would the loss of buildings by Donato Bramante, Christopher Wren or Frank Lloyd Wright. Brutalism deserves far better than the wrecker’s ball: it was the pinnacle of world architecture through all of history. — Aeon
The [Khartoum Planning Project-05, or KPP-05] state[s] that heritage buildings will be taken over for cultural, recreational and tourism functions. The government ministries that currently occupy such buildings will be moved elsewhere. There’s nothing in the plans to demonstrate a clear strategy for preserving these buildings' heritage. [...]
There have been no proper consultation processes. This has undoubtedly led to the current flux of protest and anger. — theconversation.com
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I’m on a walking tour with two dozen international architects and urban designers, as we imagine a theoretical future for Havana. The walk is part of a charrette—an exercise that gives professionals and community members a voice on urban development when there is no formal mechanism to do so, as has been the case in crumbling Havana. [...]
As the Cuban government slowly loosens restrictions on private enterprise, one wonders if the gentrification of Havana is inevitable. — Hakai Magazine
“Downton Abbey is just down the road from us," Mockler-Barret said. “And we’re so jealous of Lord and Lady Carnarvon. Although they won’t tell us how much they’ve made from 'Downton Abbey,' I think they’ve done quite well out of it.”
But that’s the fairytale. The residents of Milton Manor will be happy if they can just patch up their inheritance and avoid the humiliation and disgrace of losing the ancestral seat after 250 years of family ownership. — marketplace.org
Called the Grand Entrance Hall, the underground space – opening today – will be run by The Brunel Museum and is set to host plays, operas, concerts and even weddings.
Architects Tate Harmer breathed new life into the 1843 Grade II*-listed shaft – originally designed by civil engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel and his father Marc – adding a cantilevered staircase to make the 75ft-deep hall accessible. — thespaces.com
As the Two-Way reported on Sunday, the Syrian government says its forces have retaken the desert city of Palmyra, in the center of Syria.
The self-declared Islamic State seized the city in May of last year — and soon unleashed a wave of destruction on its defenders, inhabitants and archaeological treasures. — npr.org
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