Archinect - News 2017-08-20T02:09:35-04:00 New USC Dean Milton Curry shifts pedagogical focus toward theory Julia Ingalls 2017-04-27T15:30:00-04:00 >2017-05-01T14:04:01-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="269" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>When you think about diversity and globalization and urbanization, you can&rsquo;t do it without a theoretical underpinning. You just can&rsquo;t. And I think that what we&rsquo;re seeing in the discipline at large is the limit conditions of thinking a-theoretically about urbanism, about inequality, about what we should do about environmental challenges and sustainability. We&rsquo;ve got to address it through a theoretical lens. - Milton Curry</p></em><br /><br /><p>In this interview conducted by Christopher Hawthorne as part of his pithy Building Type column, the soon-to-be-Dean of USC's School of Architecture Milton Curry talks about reintroducing a theoretical emphasis to the school's programs. Curry, who in his time at University of Michigan experienced <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Detroit's imploding urbanity</a> first-hand, also wants to build greater connections between underserved students in Los Angeles and the university. "Los Angeles metro region is huge in its economic footprint, its land footprint," Curry explains. "I believe cities to some degree have more influence than merely being one of a combination of cities within one nation. They execute trade deals on their own, in some cases. They execute climate policies, other kinds of policing policies on their own. I think that some of those lessons will apply to Los Angeles."</p> Investigating the literary and sociopolitical implications of the skyscraper Julia Ingalls 2016-12-14T20:32:00-05:00 >2016-12-21T22:18:29-05:00 <img src="" width="650" height="423" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>So I&rsquo;d argue that the birth of the middle class, or the managerial middle class, is in some ways tied to the invention of the skyscraper.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Before the skyscraper, looking down at people from great heights was more of a figurative state of mind than an actual experience. But afterwards, the notion of people as dots on a landscape went beyond just a slangy Georges Seurat reference and became a Thing. But what were the ramifications of this change? How did novelists respond to the new structures, and what did those responses say about society and the influence of the skyscraper?</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>"[Henry James] tried to give the skyscraper a chance; he imagined seeing it and falling in love with it, but he really kind of ultimately dismissed it again&nbsp;as ugly, unaesthetic, a horrible structure that&rsquo;s also destroying the ways that we tell stories and destroying the intimacy that his kinds of stories require," says Adrienne Brown, an Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago whose forthcoming book, "The Black Skyscraper" explores just about every cultural ramification of the skyscraper one can imagine.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>In this extended interview with <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">JSto...</a></p> A Liberal Education: Tom Wiscombe on Archinect Sessions One-to-One #14 Amelia Taylor-Hochberg 2016-03-07T17:00:00-05:00 >2016-03-18T00:49:37-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="421" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>Architect and educator <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Tom Wiscombe</a> has made major inroads as SCI-Arc's BArch chair to establish a stronger connection to the humanities and critical theory in architecture education, founding the school's Liberal Arts Program last year and bringing in contemporary philosophers and theorists to spark new dialogues. We discuss his role in the southern Californian architecture culture (particularly in regards to MOCA's 2013 <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">New Sculpturalism</a> show), how he prioritizes theory in architectural practice and education, and his ongoing <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Main Museum of Los Angeles project</a> in the city's enlivened downtown.&nbsp;</p><p>Listen to One-to-One #14 with&nbsp;<strong>Tom Wiscombe</strong>:</p><ul><li><strong>iTunes</strong>:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Click here to listen&nbsp;and subscribe to the new&nbsp;"Archinect Sessions One-to-One" podcast</a></li><li><strong>SoundCloud</strong>:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">click here to follow Archinect</a></li><li><strong>RSS</strong>: subscribe with any of your favorite podcasting apps via our RSS feed:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></li><li><strong>Download</strong>:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">this episode</a></li></ul><p></p><p>Special thanks to <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">UCLA</a> for helping coordinate the interview, after Tom gave his <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Distingui...</a></p> The Ascendancy of Theory: writer and theorist Sylvia Lavin on Archinect Sessions One-to-One #13 Amelia Taylor-Hochberg 2016-02-29T16:03:00-05:00 >2016-03-15T23:23:45-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="421" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>Writer, critical theorist and architecture academic <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Sylvia Lavin</a>&nbsp;has been a fixture in the southern California art and architecture scene for the better part of the last 30 years. Currently serving as <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Director of the Critical Studies programs at UCLA's Architecture and Urban Design</a> department, she also recently launched a summer curatorial program at SCI-Arc, called <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">MEAT</a>: Making Exhibitions in Architecture Today, and is widely published on issues of architecture and art practice.</p><p>Lavin spoke with me about growing up in an academic family, splitting her childhood between New York and Rome, and her perception of the art/architectural scene in southern California. Special thanks to UCLA for helping coordinate our interview.</p><p>Listen to One-to-One #13 with&nbsp;<strong>Sylvia Lavin</strong>:</p><ul><li><strong>iTunes</strong>:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Click here to listen&nbsp;and subscribe to the new&nbsp;"Archinect Sessions One-to-One" podcast</a></li><li><strong>SoundCloud</strong>:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">click here to follow Archinect</a></li><li><strong>RSS</strong>: subscribe with any of your favorite podcasting apps via our RSS feed:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://onetoone...</a></li></ul> Revisiting Sharon Zukin's "Loft Living" and NYC gentrification Justine Testado 2015-04-08T13:14:00-04:00 >2015-04-13T19:39:43-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="1005" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>When Loft Living was first published, artists&rsquo; laments about real estate in New York City mirrored the concerns that have plagued residents for much of the last century. Namely, it&rsquo;s tough to find a suitable and affordable place to live. Since the late &rsquo;80s, the tenor of that complaint has shifted from one of anxiety to one of fear...</p></em><br /><br /><p>Guernica magazine interviewed sociologist Sharon Zukin following the 25th-anniversary release of her 1989 landmark book "Loft Living" last year. Revisiting her timely book -- which focuses on NYC's SoHo neighborhood when upscale real estate properties took over industrial lofts and artists' studios -- Zukin discusses urban theorist Jane Jacobs, perpetually soaring rent rates, NYC's changing demographics and affordability, and the influential yet seemingly overlooked role that arts communities play in the complex American "pastime" that is gentrification.</p> Thresholds - Issue 41, now available online Archinect 2013-05-07T18:02:00-04:00 >2013-05-07T18:02:49-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="956" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>What actions are prompted by revolution in the space of the city? Which publics take part in this struggle, and who are the agents that mobilize it? And after a revolution has subsided, how is it remembered, represented and memorialized? thresholds 41: REVOLUTION! turns to the history, design, and cultural production of the public realm as a site of dissensus...</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> What About It? Part 2 goes Online! croixe 2012-08-26T12:24:00-04:00 >2012-08-26T20:54:13-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="920" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <strong>What About It? Part 2 </strong>is now available online on the digital publishing platform <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">ISSUU</a>.</p> <p> The second issue of the graphic narrative in magazine format created, designed, edited, and written by&nbsp; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">WAI Architecture Think Tank i</a>ncludes essays,&nbsp;Manifestoes, Projects, Collages and a series of Conversations with: <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Simona Rota</a> (Madrid); <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Zhang Ke / standardarchitecture</a> (Beijing); <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Bernd Upmeyer / MONU</a>&nbsp;&nbsp; (Rotterdam); and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Perry Kulper&nbsp;</a> (Michigan).</p> <p> <strong>Manifesto of the WAIzine:</strong></p> <p> The WAIzine switches rhythm and pace, focus and aim, strategy and method. It goes from pure research, to retroactive manifesto, to speculative provocation. It is ambitious like architecture should be, especially these days of philosophical uncertainty, intellectual laissez faire, economic restraints, and social deterioration.<br><br> Rejecting the role of mere spectators of the global spectacle that has been set up by previous generations, the new generation of thinkers should be eager to embrace and confront the world with a pa...</p> Project 1984: What About the Possibility of a Kynical Architecture? croixe 2012-08-24T12:11:00-04:00 >2012-08-28T13:47:20-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="557" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <em>For an architect, in the instant that he has undivided attention of a patron with the power to realize his designs, literally nothing else matters; not a fire alarm, not even an earthquake; there is nothing else to talk about but architecture.</em></p> <p> -Dejan Sudjic, The Edifice Complex</p> <p> <br><em>The fully developed ability to say No is also the only valid background for Yes, and only through both does real freedom [begin] to take form.</em></p> <p> -Peter Sloterdijk, Critique of Cynical Reason</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>City</strong><br> Four towers rise above the city like muscular trunks in a grass field. Their scale obliterates any possible question about the intentionality of their disproportionate size. The exaggerated disparity between them and the urban fabric could not have been accidental.&nbsp; The towers were unquestionably built to be the main focus, the sole object of attention. They are by lengths the most important buildings in the city. The towers deliver an explicit message of datum and order. Visible from any point in the ci...</p> The Ideology of Publication / Conversation with Bernd Upmeyer croixe 2012-08-14T13:09:00-04:00 >2012-08-20T20:57:14-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="877" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <strong>Urbanism is one of those malleable concepts that defy definition. A flexible subject where, by trying to lock it within a specific scope, its validity sometimes gets undermined and its potential spoiled.</strong></p> <p> <strong>But when a magazine develops and maintains its own way to portray the multiple faces, forms, shapes, relationships, arguments, contradictions, images, consequences, and messages of the discipline that is supposed to carry the unbearable load of thinking the city, then the exercise of defining urbanism becomes an enriching intellectual journey.</strong></p> <p> <strong><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">MONU</a> (Magazine on Urbanism) was born in 2004 in Rotterdam. What was originally an almost underground magazine made available through a pdf dossier and a stapled black and white print has evolved into one of the main independent publications, a reference for the collective intelligence of urbanism, and an icon of exquisite aesthetics.</strong></p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <strong>Set to satisfy a growing urbanophilic hunger, MONU has thrown into the mix an intoxicating mixture o...</strong></p> Discovering Khidekel croixe 2012-07-18T09:46:00-04:00 >2012-07-30T11:07:13-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="363" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <strong>What About the Last Suprematist?</strong></p> <p> <em>When one speaks of revolutionary art, two kinds of artistic phenomena are meant: the works whose themes reflect the Revolution, and the works which are not connected with the Revolution in theme, but are thoroughly imbued with it, and are Colored by the new consciousness arising out of the Revolution.&nbsp;</em>-Leon Trotsky</p> <p> October 1917 opened an architectural Pandora&rsquo;s Box.<br> During the Russian revolution, the avant-garde exercises of the Cubo-Futurists, Rayonnists, Suprematists, and Constructivists, paralleled to the unmovable inflexibility of the Stalinist &ldquo;establishment&rdquo; to reveal the difference between architecture of the revolution and revolutionary architecture.</p> <p> While architecture of the revolution responds to the iconoclastic demands of the moment and creates a profusion of icons that portray a specific historical period, revolutionary architecture strives to break with the current paradigms, establishing a new architectural language that detac...</p> WAIzine 2 Coming Soon (Reserve your copy!) croixe 2012-06-21T13:32:00-04:00 >2012-06-24T06:19:47-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="390" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <strong>What About It? Part 2 to be released on July 7, 2012</strong></p> <p> The second issue of the graphic narrative in magazine format by WAI Architecture Think Tank includes essays, Manifestos, Projects, Collages and a series of Conversations with:<br> Simona Rota (Madrid)<br> Zhang Ke / standardarchitecture (Beijing)<br> Bernd Upmeyer / MONU&nbsp;&nbsp; (Rotterdam)<br> Perry Kulper&nbsp; (Michigan)</p> <p> To order a printed copy (numbered limited edition of 100) of the WAIzine part 2 please email your order <strong><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></strong> (Subject: waizine) and you will receive a reply with the shipping details and an invoice through PayPal. If bank transfer is preferred please let us know.</p> <p> WAIzine part 2 Information<br> What About It? Part 1<br> Soft cover, 100 pages , Black / White, Colour<br> Dimmensions: 205mm by 275mm<br> Publisher: WAI Architecture Think Tank Publishers<br> Language: English</p> <p> For pricing and more information go to: <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></p> <p> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></p> The Shapes of Hardcore Architecture croixe 2012-03-16T11:02:00-04:00 >2012-03-20T05:20:53-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="235" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <strong>hard&ndash;core</strong></p> <p> adj \-&#712;k&#559;r\</p> <p> 1: a : of, relating to, or being part of a hard core<br> 2: of pornography : containing explicit descriptions of sex acts or scenes of actual sex acts<br> 3<strong>: characterized by or being the purest or most basic form of something</strong></p> <p> <br><strong>Modernism</strong></p> <p> Modern Architecture was a fashion statement. Coated with an ideology of social impromptu and urban reconstruction, it seems undeniable and remarkable that the dominant gene of the Modern Movement&rsquo;s DNA was its aesthetics.</p> <p> Everything, from the &ldquo;hygienic&rdquo; appearance of its white villas, to its revolutionary materials&mdash;glass, steel and concrete, to its grid-restricted urban plans and its desolated tree-less plazas, was a trend; a stylistic straightjacket&nbsp; fiercely defended through an almost endless list of manifestoes and catalogues that prophesied how the modernist Zeitgeist should be portrayed.</p> <p> Modernism&rsquo;s plan was to become alchemistic through fashion; it was trying to transform positivism, rationalism, and Cartesianism i...</p> Editor's Picks #244 Nam Henderson 2012-01-02T11:28:03-05:00 >2012-01-03T00:34:19-05:00 <img src="" width="503" height="423" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Anthony Stephens offered up his euology for Ricardo Legorreta. "Ricardo Legorreta is the reason I began to study architecture...The spaces he designed had something long gone from most architects, soul. Unlike so many of the steel, glass and white wall designs that seem so clever and popular nowadays, his buildings could convey a feeling to those that laid eyes on the spaces he designed."</p></em><br /><br /><p> In <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Top 10 Design Initiatives to Watch in 2012&mdash;for the public good</a>,&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">John Cary</a>,&nbsp;offered up a "<em>a simple meditation on initiatives poised to advance the field, and how they can be scaled up, refined, tweaked, borrowed, and leveraged.</em>"<br><br> While in the latest edition of the <strong>Contours </strong>feature&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The Year&rsquo;s End: The Political, Economic, and Social Perspective</a>,&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Sherin Wing</a>&nbsp;contends "<em>that&rsquo;s what all those 'Best of' lists are about. They are designed to soothe us</em>". After reviewing the various social, economic and political turmoils of 2011 Sherin concludes, "<em>if there is one lesson we can learn from all of these movements, it is that architects must all engage in the movements and processes that are meaningful them. They must be thoughtful about them. And become involved directly. Because this is the time of true change.</em>"</p> <p> While <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Orhan Ayy&uuml;ce</a>,&nbsp;starts a new feature <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">NEXT SERIES: RADAR LOVE</a>&nbsp;in which he is tell us what he is interested in currently. He writes that while various discussions regarding in...</p> Post(card) Ideological Icons croixe 2011-11-28T05:14:00-05:00 >2012-12-02T13:09:32-05:00 <img src="" width="650" height="459" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p> <strong>What about revisiting the hardcore shapes of the avant-garde?</strong></p> <p> It has been almost a century since the air was heavily saturated with the combustible gas of ideology. Almost a hundred years have passed since everything from film, through art and architecture, to urbanism was susceptible to the slightest friction in the atmosphere sparking endless manifestoes and multiple visions of the perennial &ldquo;new beginning&rdquo;. But what happens when the ideological fire that fuels urbanism is extinguished, and in its place just smoke remains? What is left after the idealistic energy of the avant-garde has vanished and we are left with necrophilic icons of dead ideologies? Why aren&rsquo;t we able to see the striking similarities and contrasting disparities between the avatars of yesterday&rsquo;s ideological urbanism and today&rsquo;s pop-architectural icons?<br><br> In the twenties imaginary taut wires, steel trusses, and structural concrete gave form to the muscular monuments of a <em>Potemkinesque</em> avant-garde.&nbsp; Utopia had...</p> Roger Scruton: red rag to an architectural bull J. James R. 2011-04-14T14:34:01-04:00 >2011-04-17T04:35:55-04:00 <img src="" width="300" height="399" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>While Scruton maybe "pleased as punch" with himself, his column in the Times have a few in Britain "cream crackered." Both the Guardian and BdOnline have prepared their own commentary to Scruton's salacious, if not shallow, reading of contemporary architecture. As reported in this article "<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Philosopher mauls 'starchitects'</a>," Scruton's column can be summed up by a few quotes: <br></p><p>"'New architecture&hellip; is designed to stand out as the work of some inspired artist who does not build for people but sculpts space for his own expressive ends.'</p><p>He claimed the resulting designs resembled 'vegetables, vehicles, hairdryers, washing machines or backyard junk' and added: 'The typical starchitect building is without a facade or an orientation that it shares with its neighbours.'</p><p>'It is designed as waste: throwaway architecture, involving vast quantities of energy-intensive materials, which will be demolished within 20 years.'"</p><p>Of course, a cage rattle of this severity usually does not ...</p> What is architecture? What ever it is, it's not this. J. James R. 2011-04-13T16:54:31-04:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <img src="" width="544" height="347" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>"Architecture is inherently a political act, be it in the public or private sector. As a process it begins long before actual design work, and it is difficult to do by oneself. Art can be political, but the work of art only has to be itself and can be done by oneself. Architecture is not Art."</p></em><br /><br /><p>The new issue of Art Lies is out on shelves. And its primary focus this issue is a proverbial bitch slap&ndash; "architecture is not art." <br><br>"The positions maintained in and by this issue upend the seemingly quaint flaccidity of Picasso&rsquo;s moral argument that &ldquo;Art is not truth,&rdquo; and that &ldquo;Art is a lie that makes us realize the truth&rdquo; and shifts to Nietzsche&rsquo;s enigmatic statement from <i>The Gay Science</i> that &ldquo;we need art, and the other kind of art, an art for artists.&rdquo;&nbsp; While I have always appreciated <i>Art Lies</i>, I have never agreed with its name." &ndash;Mary Ellen Carroll and Peter Noever<br><br>Mary Ellen Carroll, a conceptual artist, is known for her previous works involving architecture. A recent project, Prototype 180, involved <a href="" target="_blank">rotating a house 180 degrees</a> and then reconfiguring the lot based on the change envisioning the structure and its surroundings as an intertwined system. In this issue, she takes the reigns as guest editorial contributor.<br><br>Other points in the issue? Tehran's Azadi Tower framed by a ...</p>