Archinect - Features 2019-01-17T20:31:23-05:00 How Can Architecture Respond to the 1.5ºC Imperative? Daniel A. Barber 2018-11-02T12:10:00-04:00 >2018-11-05T13:40:42-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">recent report</a> from the International Panel on Climate Change alters the discussion of architecture and environment. The report, released on October 11, is alarming. As <a href="" target="_blank">the Guardian</a><em></em> puts it &ldquo;we have 12 years to limit climate catastrophe, warns U.N.&rdquo; Based on discussions from the IPCC meeting in Paris in 2016, a group of scientists reviewed and summarized thousands of relevant articles to assess the relative goals of 1.5 and 2&ordm;C increase in global average temperature, from an 1850 baseline. It suggests that immediate action is needed&mdash;on reducing carbon emissions, on removing carbon from the atmosphere&mdash;to keep warming to 1.5&ordm;C, and also warns that governments must begin preparing for social disruption from climate instability.</p> The Amnesias of "Make New History" Nicholas Korody 2017-09-27T10:30:00-04:00 >2019-01-05T12:31:03-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>Before there was Mies, there was Mecca. Built originally as a hotel for the World&rsquo;s Columbian Exposition of 1893, the <a href="" target="_blank">Mecca Apartments</a>, which once occupied the site of the now-heralded IIT campus in Chicago&rsquo;s Bronzeville neighborhood, served as a cultural epicenter for the city&rsquo;s Black community. This was a community formed primarily by participants of what is called &ldquo;the Great Migration,&rdquo; one of the largest mass internal migrations in history. Between 1916 and 1970, 1.6 million people fled the American South, where they faced Jim Crow laws, racist ideology, and widespread, institutionalized murder (nearly 3,500 Black people were lynched between 1882 and 1968). But when they arrived in Chicago and other Northern cities, they were met with similar instances of racism, segregation, and violence. Places like the Mecca Apartments served as rare shelter. So when, under the guise of so-called &ldquo;urban renewal,&rdquo; the Mecca Apartments were slated for demolition to make room for the IIT campus,...</p> The Impossible Innocence of Architecture Maartje Ter Veen 2017-05-16T13:34:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>There are as many definitions of architecture as there are architects. It is something that will never be set in stone, and that&rsquo;s a good thing. At the same time, &lsquo;What is architecture?&rsquo; is an essential question&mdash;a question that every architect and others in the field should continue to ask themselves to, at the very least, fully assume the position they have taken on, both in their profession and in society.</p> Frank Gehry, Architectural Education, and the “Future of Prisons” Leo Shaw 2017-04-12T11:20:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>Last week the Architect&rsquo;s Newspaper reported that <a href="" target="_blank">Frank Gehry</a>, the 88-year old superstar of American architecture, is teaching a course at <a href="" target="_blank">SCI-Arc</a> this spring entitled &ldquo;The Future of Prison.&rdquo;</p> <p>To denizens of architecture Twitter, which has specialized in outrage over the past several months, the news seemed like a bad April Fool&rsquo;s joke. Even the course description had the tone-deaf optimism of a Silicon Valley pitch line, asking &ldquo;emerging architects to break free of current conventions and re-imagine what we now refer to as &lsquo;prison&rsquo; for a new era.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p> Architecture in the Trump Era: A Report from Columbia GSAPP by A.L. Hu A.L. Hu 2017-02-16T12:11:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>A week after taking to the streets for the Women&rsquo;s March in New York City and two weeks into the spring semester, I felt restless and helpless as the barrage of outrageous news took its toll. It&rsquo;s difficult to sit still in studio when it seems as if the world is beginning to morph into a reality that is at once unrecognizable in its incredulousness and intensely familiar&mdash;the beginnings of history repeating itself.</p> Climate change was removed from today. What does this mean for architects? Katherine Stege 2017-01-20T17:40:00-05:00 >2018-11-29T13:46:03-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>Directly following the inauguration of our new 45th president, received an overhaul. The most notable change was the complete deletion of the <a href="" target="_blank">climate change page</a>, which previously housed local, national, and international plans for combating climate change, as well as actions and goals of the previous administration. In this symbolic erasure, the new administration rejects climate change as a critical priority, denies the overwhelming evidence of human contribution to recent warming trends, and turns a blind eye to the critical research, policy, and international collaboration required in safeguarding our environment from significant long-term destruction.</p> Architecture 2030's Ed Mazria outlines an environmentally-responsible plan for the architecture and design industries Archinect 2016-11-21T13:17:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p><strong>A Sleeping Giant Awakens</strong><br>The election of Donald Trump, and <a href="" target="_blank">a hastily composed (and later retracted) post-election statement by the American Institute of Architects </a><a href="" target="_blank">(AIA)</a>, has galvanized the U.S. design community. After much soul-searching prompted by anxiety and anger, architects and our allied design and planning professionals have articulated a vibrant vision for themselves and their profession.</p> Architects: If You Don't Start Disrupting Urbanism, Silicon Valley Will Do It for You. Fred Scharmen 2016-11-07T12:33:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>When Mountain View start-up incubator <a href="" target="_blank">YCombinator&nbsp;announced this June</a>&nbsp;that the company would be creating an initiative around designing new cities, it was easy for architects and urbanists to laugh.</p> To Hire 'the Best in the World' Post-Brexit, Trade and Immigration Are Top Concerns Chris Williamson 2016-10-25T02:56:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>In <a href="" target="_blank">a previous article</a> I wrote about the Brexit referendum, I concluded by saying it could be the crowning achievement of a long and glorious reign for Elizabeth II. I would like to be clear: I voted to remain in the European Union.</p> Architecture's place in the museum Bridget Gayle Ground 2016-08-17T09:36:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>The role that architecture plays in our individual and communal lives is often overlooked, yet in an age when environmental crises are imminent and individuals increasingly turn inward to their electronic devices, an investment in quality spaces that promote social and ecological well-being seems more urgent than ever. This conundrum begs the question: how can a deeper appreciation for architecture be instilled in twenty-first century society?</p> Brexit vote was due to "a loss of identity more than anything else" – op-ed by Alan Penn, Dean of the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment Alan Penn 2016-07-30T06:19:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>As an architect and an optimist, I am hopeful that the chaos in Britain triggered by the Brexit referendum may be accompanied by yet another great age of creative invention.</p> Brexit exposed a Britain divided, and architects must now "redouble our efforts to be at the forefront of quality and innovation." – op-ed by Chris Williamson of Weston Williamson + Partners Chris Williamson 2016-07-15T01:00:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>I was in New York at the time of the Brexit vote. I found out the result at two in the morning and was incredibly disappointed, but not surprised.</p> Brexit: a chance to roll back the interventionist state and unleash entrepreneurial creativity – op-ed by Patrik Schumacher Patrik Schumacher 2016-07-08T04:02:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>I have very little in common with the arguments of the Leave Campaign, and in particular reject the anti-immigration thrust of the Campaign. However, I welcome Brexit as offering an enhanced ability and chance to experiment with new policies that dare more economic freedom.</p> Op-Ed: Beyond Stars, Icons and Much More, by Patrik Schumacher Patrik Schumacher 2015-06-08T15:21:00-04:00 >2019-01-05T12:31:03-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>In mid-April I had posted a note entitled "<a href="" target="_blank">In Defense of Stars and Icons</a>" on my Facebook page. This was <a href="" target="_blank">picked up and extensively commented on, here on Archinect</a>. I am thrilled about the lively debate that followed (in which I had participated as &lsquo;parametricist&rsquo;) and I am happy to get the opportunity to come back to this debate once more in this op-ed.</p> Op-Ed: If Architecture Were Optimism; A Response to Michael Kimmelman's Critique of 1 WTC archiadventures 2014-12-01T11:38:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>In the last year or so, reading or watching the news has become a game of roulette. Taking my chances, I scan pages or flip channels hastily in an attempt to avoid disturbing imagery and narrative in favor of landing on something meaningful and at least slightly optimistic.</p> Op-Ed: From (EX)CITE to (IN)CITE, reflecting on Rem's Biennale Esther Sperber 2014-07-07T12:43:00-04:00 >2019-01-05T12:31:03-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p><strong>EXCITE</strong></p><p>Rem Koolhaas, chief curator of the 2014 Venice Biennale, managed to excite us, again forcing us to rethink the <a href="" target="_blank">Elements</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Fundamentals</a> of architecture. For me, this is the first time I felt a real desire to visit the show, which I have always imagined to be more like an amusement park for new design.</p> Op-Ed: Response to Screen/Print #6, MONU's "Greater Urbanism" Petros Phokaides 2014-04-07T17:23:00-04:00 >2014-04-14T19:07:51-04:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p>Greater urbanism, the focus of the latest issue of <em>MONU</em> magazine, is a term aiming to describe urban phenomena and strategies associated with cities expanding their territories (&ldquo;greater&rdquo; as bigger and more complex); and/or increasing their economic or symbolic power (&ldquo;Greater&rdquo; as grander). Revisiting the magazine&rsquo;s rich content, profiled in <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Screen/Print</em> #6</a>, this review, by Petros Phokaides,&nbsp;Loukas Triantis and Iris Polyzos, aims to offer critical insights on some of the challenges faced by urbanism today, and a quick reflection on current dynamics/discussions on the future of cities.</p> Op-Ed: Millennials and Opportunity: Embracing Intentional vs Spontaneous Change in the Workforce archiadventures 2013-11-07T15:37:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> It seems I can&rsquo;t have a conversation these days without someone invoking the ever-popular saying, &ldquo;the only constant is change.&rdquo;&nbsp; As a young professional with friends in a wide cross-section of demanding fields, the truth behind this statement is highly apparent in their various professional lives. All this change has made me wonder whether or not there are exceptions to the new professional rule, and whether or not change has in fact become the &ldquo;safer&rdquo; option than digging in and embracing the abstract notion of something &ldquo;long-term.&rdquo;</p> Op-Ed: Thoughts on Naivete as Design Method or, Why Our Entry Didn’t Have a 6” Curb Ann Lui 2013-07-24T12:35:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> When asked about courage in architecture, Elizabeth Diller has <a href="" target="_blank">said</a>: "[It] comes half from being naive and also not having the cynicism to stop yourself when you have a good idea that you don't know how to work it out.&rdquo; More simply: You can&rsquo;t know that it can&rsquo;t be done if you&rsquo;re going to do it. My partner and I recently won a Jury Citation &mdash;&nbsp; a euphemism for 9th place &mdash;&nbsp;in a <a href="" target="_blank">competition</a> for bus rapid transit stations. <a href="" target="_blank">Our project </a>was by any measure grossly out of scale, eclipsing any imaginable budget or structural methods, and barely included any buses at all. Rather than being sited in an expanded traffic lane, our entry swooped high and far above the city. It created a counterpoint to the constant discourse on hyper-efficiency and speed. It provoked, I hope, questions about the nature of the competition as well as addressing the brief. But the night before we submitted our entry, I reviewed the FAQ and had a moment of panic.</p> <p> Other entrants had asked, &ldquo;frequently&rdquo;, how high th...</p> Op-Ed: The Ego and the Architect archiadventures 2013-05-20T09:36:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> A few weeks ago, I witnessed an interaction that I imagine most people in the design industry experience numerous times both in school AND professional life. What transpired was this: a few junior architects were pinning up carefully composed drawings, renderings, and sketches for a client meeting. Under a tight budget and time constraint, the amount of thought, options, and exploration on the wall felt vital and impressive. As the last drawing was being pinned, a visiting architect from a different office briefly stepped into the room, looked at the wall for about thirty seconds, and quickly claimed &ldquo;Oh, I built this building in the 90&rsquo;s&hellip;&rdquo;</p> Op-Ed: an Open house? Nick Axel 2011-06-21T19:18:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> <em>Written by Nick Axel</em></p> <p> The recent project of <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Open house</em> by Droog with Diller Scofidio + Renfro</a> is refreshing in the sense that it engages a pervasive condition and experience of the built environment that often goes unthought. The idea of envisioning a &lsquo;future suburbia&rsquo; has strongly provoked the attention of architects and the non-architect, better known as the resident. The content of the project has to this date contained a one day event that included a seminar taking place in New York City, polemical installations within the archetypal suburb of Levittown, New York, visionary representations of a potential life in suburbia (1), and a host of online journalism. <em>Open house</em> uses traditional architectural conventions as provocative mediums in order to communicate, what I would like to show, a much deeper and significant concept that is at the root of the project. By employing the potentiality of a service economy, <em>Open house</em> fundamentally works on an ideological level that seeks to...</p> Op-Ed: The Neglected Public Bathroom Archinect 2011-06-09T18:55:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> According to the New York Post, the National 9/11 Memorial will open this year with no bathrooms. The $508 million project will draw legions of visitors and is characterized by gushing water, but anyone seeking a toilet will have to leave the site for a nearby department store.</p> <p> This omission of public bathrooms resonates with a personal architectural experience. Over the past six months, I participated in a collaboration of art and architecture students to design a pavilion at <a href="" target="_blank">Columbia University</a>. It is located in a courtyard behind the architecture school and will be up for most of the summer. A temporary structure, a pavilion is often the architect&rsquo;s opportunity to build without the inconvenience of plumbing or other practicalities.</p> Op-Ed: Sticks and Stones; Ai Weiwei and the Uses of Architecture Fred Scharmen 2011-05-26T12:39:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> This op-ed was initially conceived as a series of critical Twitter messages by <a href="" target="_blank">Fred Scharmen</a>, aka <a href="!/sevensixfive" target="_blank">sevensixfive</a>, directed at blogs (including Archinect) that have been providing ongoing exposure of new architecture projects in China, considering China's unfair capture and treatment of artist/activist Ai Weiwei. In an effort to investigate this issue further, and hopefully spark a little productive debate, we invited Fred to pen this op-ed.</p> <p> Should the media protest the treatment of Ai Weiwei by ceasing promotion of all new architectural work in China? Should architects refuse to take on new work in China? Should we continue to support the work of architects and artists in China, but only with a disclaimer? Please share your thoughts in the comments.</p> Archinect Op-Ed: Meier or Piano? A Provocation. Nam Henderson 2011-01-18T12:20:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> A few months ago, before I visited the High Museum complex for the first time, a friend explained to me why he preferred the work of Piano's addition in comparison to Meier's original building. Key for him were two factors. First, the quality of detailing on Piano's addition, with regards especially to his attention to light(ness). He also expressed the belief that Piano is a master at making human spaces, and beautiful moments.<br> &nbsp;</p> Archinect Op-Ed: A Response to Nicolai Ouroussoff’s Article Seth Embry 2010-04-01T15:20:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> Having recently had the pleasure of reading Alexandra Lange's critique of the <i>New York Times</i>' resident architectural critic Nicolai Ouroussoff on <a href="" target="_blank">Design Observer</a>, I realized that I wasn't alone in my unappreciative assessment of his writing. <a href="" target="_blank">This article</a> has only intensified my antipathy into simmering anger, due to the amount of contempt that it displays toward both the <i>Times</i>' Design section readers and the people affected by the disaster in Haiti, as well as those involved in the reconstruction efforts there.</p> Archinect Op-Ed: The Acropolis Museum; An Unhappy Fit Archinect 2009-07-31T11:36:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> Last June, after three decades of competitions and debate, the Acropolis Museum in Athens opened to the public. It was designed by internationally re-known architect Bernard Tschumi, and it houses nearly 4000 ancient Greek artifacts, including the great stones of the parthenon&#700;s frieze. I &#64257;rst visited the Acropolis 15 years ago as an undergraduate student of architecture. Last month I had the opportunity to visit the site again, now with the eyes of an experienced architect. Hearing about the controversy surrounding the new museum, I was eager to see how one of the great theorists and idols from my student yeas responded to such a challenging, high-pro&#64257;le commission. My &#64257;rst glimpses of the building brought that familiar rush of excitement and anticipation, the kind you get at a concert just before the performer takes the stage. The simple geometric volumes, one rotated above the other, were familiar from pictures and, seeing it live, I could appreciate its powerful yet restrained...</p> Archinect Op-Ed: Big Bangs, Slums, and Suburbia will galloway 2009-03-29T11:39:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> This is not a scientific statement by any means, but I think it&rsquo;s reasonable to assume that every universe pretty much gets just one big bang.<br><br> However, architecture and planning (both professions in which I have some experience) generally are practiced as if the opposite was the case. Not in a literal sense, of course. It isn&rsquo;t like we walk around our offices worrying about celestial events. Yet we are clearly entranced with the possibility of using our arts to magically sweep aside - all at once - every wrong that we see before us; replacing entire cities and neighborhoods with little mini-novas of creative destruction. The Big Bang model of urban planning &ndash; where existing matter is rubbed out, the new stuff is all good, everything is pre-decided, and the outcome inexorable. It&rsquo;s very mechanistic.</p> Archinect Op-Ed: Global Systems vs. Local Platforms Archinect 2008-12-20T22:51:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> We are in the midst of radical social and economic change brought on by the emergence of a global system that is completely and utterly uncontrollable -- it is too big, too fast, and too complex to control. Unfortunately, the lack of a global control system means that we face a long series of increasingly severe shocks (due to the system&rsquo;s tight coupling, each new shock will sweep the world in months), wrecking long standing and established structures with ease. The first shocks, a bubble in energy and a financial crisis, have already done significant damage. More are on the way as the global system moves ever farther from normal patterns of operation.</p> Archinect Op-Ed: The Public Image(s) of Architecture o d b 2008-11-08T21:03:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> Architecture and politics have a long and sordid relationship. It has been said that all architecture is political. Typically architecture serves a subservient role in this relationship by merely representing the politics of the building&rsquo;s patron&mdash;what Deyan Sudjic has described as the Edifice Complex. Nevertheless, at times throughout history architects themselves take on a political agenda and use their projects as rhetorical devices for the elucidation of these views.</p> Archinect Op-Ed: The Academy Transformed? aml 2008-11-01T21:21:00-04:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <img src="" border="0" /><p> In the last few years, architecture programs have started offering more courses that address current problems. I&rsquo;m referring specifically to sustainability classes and social housing studios. This may be partly because of a general move in education to accommodate a growing market and student demand for green practice. Although this is great news, and there is still work to be done, I&rsquo;d like to take this opportunity to issue some warnings on the subject.</p>