But still strong is the seduction of the Bilbao Effect — when an architecturally exciting project makes an institution more of a destination, like Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim in Spain. And with the success of the new Whitney Museum of American Art, which is drawing droves downtown, everyone seems to be grabbing for hammers — NYT
Robin Pogrebin explores how with more than a dozen New York cultural institutions planning major projects, fundraisers are hoping to tap into the deepest pockets. Strategies include selling naming rights, targeting heavyweights donors, remembering certain 'Dos and Don’ts' and expanding boards...
Among this new breed of towers, design elements not directly tied to profit are often downgraded or eliminated as overall costs climb. [...] With today’s mathematically generated super-spires, it’s best to paraphrase Mae West: “Architecture has nothing to do with it.”
[...] much as the new super-tall New York condos may serve that same general purpose, these are no works of art. If, as Goethe posited, architecture is frozen music, then these buildings are vertical money. — The New York Review of Books
Although money is often seen as a taboo topic in art schools, a group of Yale alumni is urging professional architects to place more value on the relationship between money and architecture.
The Yale Architectural Journal’s latest edition, titled “Money,” discusses the controversial role of money in the field of architecture. [...] ranging from Frank Gehry to Yale School of Architecture Professor Keller Easterling, the issue urges architects to reconsider the financial side of their work. — yaledailynews.com
Cultural giving among America’s top philanthropists fell slightly in 2014, according to an annual ranking of the 50 largest charitable donors released last week by the Chronicle of Philanthropy. This news might come as a surprise to US museum directors, who have been swiftly—and quietly—raising eight-, nine-, and ten-figure donations from eager patrons. Their ambitious capital campaigns make the austerity measures of the recent recession feel like a distant memory. — theartnewspaper.com
From the opening of the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris in October to the construction of The Broad in Los Angeles now set to open this autumn, the model of the single-donor museum is thriving. [...] what will happen to these new institutions on the death of the founder or the decline in their collecting activity. [...]
To what extent have these museum founders made plans to ensure the vitality and flexibility of their prized institutions beyond their own lifetimes? — theartnewspaper.com
The plans call for nothing less than the rebirth of the Prussian-era heart of Berlin. A new palace is currently under construction on the German capital's famous Museum Island to replace the Berlin City Palace, or Stadtschloss, the erstwhile residence of Prussian kings and German emperors that was demolished by the communists soon after the end of World War II. [...]
But completion of the exterior may be in doubt. — spiegel.de
From buckling sidewalks to potholed thoroughfares to storm drains that can’t handle a little rain, the infrastructure that holds [Los Angeles] together is suffering from years of deferred maintenance. Bringing pipes that deliver water to 3.9 million people up to snuff could cost $4 billion [...] The bill for repaving streets will be almost that much, according to estimates from a city consultant, and patching or replacing cracked sidewalks will require $640 million. — Bloomberg BusinessWeek
A team of researchers from Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia are working on another solution: A swarm of tiny robots that could cover the construction site of the future, quickly and cheaply building greener buildings of any size. [...]
"The robots can work simultaneously while performing different tasks, and having a fixed size they can create objects of virtually any scale, as far as material properties permit” — fastcoexist.com
What if you could earn a degree as quickly or slowly as you can learn, regardless of whether you plodded through 80 hours in a classroom lecture?
That could be the next wave of higher education, as schools come under more pressure to cut costs while proving the value of expensive degrees and competing with the growing number of high-quality free online courses. Call it the decoupling of instruction and testing. — Co.Exist
"Competency-based education" is the radical new initiative where students pay institutions (pending admittance) a flat, per-semester rate to attend whichever college courses they like. Degrees are awarded when a student passes a "competency" test, regardless of how many units they took or how...
Double happiness by Zaha Hadid and Philippe Starck . A house for Russian billionaire and his gf Naomi Campbell. And a Steve Job design directed yacht called Venus. Architects + Architecture + the power of money. "Taking over the galaxy? Naomi Campbell's Russian billionaire...
Affordability, along with a minimalist aesthetic, were the reasons she decided on a prefab house — points on which Mr. Buryk, who had years before remodeled a 100-year-old house in Portland, Ore., wholeheartedly agreed. “I, similar to Zoe, was coming from a place of not wanting to do that again,” he said.
But it wasn’t quite as affordable as they had hoped. The house cost $260,000 to build, from start to finish (the kit itself was $47,000) — nearly $100,000 more than they’d expected. — nytimes.com
The house is constructed from sheets of plywood and frames donated by a local DIY shop. The outside walls are built from stacked bricks while inside, the shredded euros are used to plaster the walls and carpet the floor. It has a double glazed window, a high security front door and a toilet. — BBC News
Zaha Hadid has made the Sunday Times Rich List for the first time, with her personal wealth estimated at £37 million.
Hadid features in the extended list of the UK’s 2,000 wealthiest people, due to be published in full later this month. The threshold for entering the top 1000 is £70 million. — bdonline.co.uk
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