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Jorge Arvizu, Ignacio del Rio, Emmanuel Ramirez, and Diego Ricalde of MMX Studio (Mexico City)
Jimenez Lai of Bureau Spectacular (Chicago)
Sean Lally of WEATHERS (Chicago)
Seung Teak Lee and Mi Jung Lim of STPMJ (Brooklyn)
Michael Szivos of SOFTlab (New York)
Koji Tsutsui of Koji Tsutsui & Associates (San Francisco and Tokyo)
Young Architects 14: No Precedent is available now.
THE GREENEST HOME BOOK PARTY!
Wednesday, June 5
Panel Discussion, 6–7 pm
in Kellen Auditorium
Laura Briggs, Jared Della Valle, Karin Klingenberg, Tim McDonald, and David White; moderated by Julie Torres Moskovitz
Signing and reception, 7–8 pm
in the lobby
Sheila Johnson Design Center
Parsons New School for Design
2 West 13th Street, New York
Julie Torres Moskovitz is the founding principal of the collaborative design firm Fabrica 718 in Brooklyn. She retrofitted New York City’s first certified Passive House in Park Slope, Brooklyn.
Thanks to everyone who took part in our Souvenir Nation trivia contest last week! We had a great response - the Q & A’s and winners are listed below. If you didn’t win, you can still get the book here.
MONDAY, MAY 20
Q. This pin became a symbol for which civil rights movement?
A. Women’s suffrage
winner: Steven Paul Mark
TUESDAY, MAY 21
Q. This towel was used as an improvised flag of truce and carried between opposing lines by Captain Robert Moorman Sims, effectively ending which war?
A. The Civil War
winner: Bonnie Richmond
WEDNESDAY, MAY 22
Q. Even before he came to work for the Smithsonian in 1858 John Varden collected locks of hair from 14 heads of state. Name 2 of them.
A. Any two of the following (the first 14 presidents):
George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, James K. Polk, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce
winner: Meral Agish
THURSDAY, MAY 23
Q. This cake was served at FDR’s 52nd birthday, an event that also served as a fund-raiser for which charitable organization?
A. Polio treatment center in Warm Springs, Georgia
winner: Brandice Nelson
FRIDAY, MAY 24
Q. This teak chair was used on the set of which presidential debate—the first of its kind?
A. Kennedy-Nixon television debate
winner: Jeremy Carter
Thursday, May 23, 5:30 – 7:15 pm
31 West 57th Street, New York City
Just in time for summer, Francesca Cigola introduces us to the best sculpture parks across the United States. Join us for a book signing and celebration!
Francesca Cigola is an Italian architect and writer based in New York City.
1. John Baeder’s “Gas, Food, and Lodging”
The painter John Baeder collected real-photo and linen paper postcards of gas stations, restaurants and motels at a time when other collectors ignored them as worthy subjects. Such was Baeder’s interest that postcard dealers at the shows he frequented created a category for him that has since become the norm: Roadside. Here is one of his favorites in a chrome card, which he might have published had he pursued his interest into the high-gloss 1960s.
2. The revival of Federal architecture and design à la Mission ’66
After the debacle of the Park Service’s demolition of Richard Neutra’s Gettysburg Visitor Center, the recent renovation of the administration building at the National Arboretum off Bladensburg Road in Washington, D.C., gives one hope. The building floats above a shallow black-bottom pond, whose renovation is to be completed next year. As I write this, the news has come that the Arboretum’s buildings and grounds will close Tues–Thurs for the sequester.
3. Artist George Sánchez-Calderón
In 2001 Sánchez-Calderón installed a Villa Savoye replica under a freeway in downtown Miami—a temporary public art project that proved so popular with the highway department and everyone else that it stayed up for three years. The city of Bal Harbour recently commissioned Sánchez-Calderón to commemorate its postwar past with a reflective sculpture erected on the site of Morris Lapidus’s late Americana hotel. Entitled Pax Americana, the installation included a replica Levittown house, homage to the modest frame and shingle homes that once dominated the area as housing for war workers.
4. The outdoor flea markets of Adamstown, Pa.
These markets never disappoint as places to see people—and their things.
5. The renovation of the Smithsonian’s Arts & Industries building
The repetitious pattern of the building’s four main exhibit halls, connecting ranges, balconies and towers becomes even more disorienting when stripped down to its structural essentials. Taking the tour through the scaffolding made me nostalgic for boyhood trips to the old museum to get happily lost in the nation’s attic.
Hugh Hardy is the quintessential New York architect. During his long and illustrious career, his contributions to some of the city’s most iconic and beloved cultural institutions have been indelible: Radio City Music Hall, Bryant Park, Brooklyn Academy of Music, the New Amsterdam and New Victory Theaters on 42nd Street, and the New York Botanical Garden. It would be difficult to pin him to a particular style or mode of designing. His approach is to derive the best solution possible from each project’s context and client’s needs. For example, at Radio City Music Hall, he restored the building to its original art deco elegance; but at the Harvey Theater at BAM, his restoration retains both new and old elements layered together in the same space.
Although Hugh Hardy is best known for the work he’s done in NYC, he has an impressive portfolio of projects from across the country. Hugh applied his knowledge of theatrical acoustics and sightlines to the U.S. Federal Courthouse in Jackson, MS, where he worked with the chief judge to design courtrooms that make it as easy as possible for the judge and jury to clearly hear every testimony and see each piece of evidence, which traditionally has been eclipsed by other concerns. The Botanical Research Institute of Texas showcases his innovation in landscape design, energy and water management, and materials.
Theater of Architecture features interviews with Hugh’s clients and collaborators, conducted by Mildred Friedman, which demonstrate his commitment to a shared practice. Hugh’s daughter, Penny Hardy, along with Carren Edward Petrosyan, of the graphic design firm PS New York, designed the book.
Sara Stemen, Senior Editor here at Princeton Architectural Press, was the project editor on Theater of Architecture and says that Hugh is “incredibly enthusiastic. He’s mad about the process of architecture, of theater, of language. The meticulous attention Hardy gives to his work and his writing are inspiring; it has been an honor to work with him. His body of work is impressive, and a gift to New York City and beyond.”
Remember that summer abroad when you couldn’t get enough of those kaleidoscopic vaults? Well, how’s this for a flashback? Plus, we saved you from laying down on the floor.
Rafael Guastavino and his talented family are finally getting the attention they deserve. NPR just posted an excellent story about the remarkable built legacy of the Guastavino clan on the occasion of the opening of the National Building Museum’s new exhibition Palaces for the People: Guastavino and America’s Great Public Spaces. It’s curated by MIT professor John Ochsendorf, the author of our epic monograph Guastavino Vaulting. John sums it up nicely in a video on the National Building Museum website: “In whatever city you’re in you can almost certainly find a significant building with Gustavino vaulting.” May we suggest you start with a late-afternoon lunch at the Oyster Bar in Grand Central Terminal? Celebrate the100th anniversary of that classic publishing and Mad Men haunt with Oysters Rockefeller and an Old Fashioned!
Just in! Advance copies of Draw Your Own Alphabets—a workbook to whip your lettering skills into shape. The book showcases a variety of hand-drawn fonts and provides helpful tips for turning your own bespoke alphabets into digital type.
Coming March 20 to a bookstore near you. Sharpen your pencils and get ready for some ferocious doodling!
Later this month artist Bryan Nash Gill brings his stunning woodcut prints to the Chicago Botanic Garden. If you’re a fan of the book (or the new notecards) don’t miss this chance to see each arboreal ring up close. Just don’t touch—since we’re his publisher, we’d like to remind you that’s what the book (and the new notecards) are for. Enjoy the art and maybe buy an original print, too! Proceeds from work sold at the exhibition benefit the Garden.
Woodcut: Bryan Nash Gill
Chicago Botanic Garden, Joutras Gallery
January 19 – April 14
1. James Burke
According to James Burke, “No one under the age of fifty has heard of me and everyone over the age of fifty thinks I’m dead.” Until recently, I had no idea who he was but was blown away by his talk from this year’s dconstruct conference. This science historian and author became famous for producing the documentary TV series “Connections” (1978) and “The Day The Universe Changed” (1985), which survey the history of science and technology. For his dconstruct talk, Burke rifled off examples of technologies that unexpectedly emerged because of other, more fundamental innovations. Listening to his astute observations was like reading Malcolm Gladwell on crack: so much substance in only a short, hour long talk. Burke shows the importance of realizing how our every creation can lead to another, more profound creation.
2. MIT D-Lab
I became familiar with D-Lab when working at MIT. The lab “fosters the development of appropriate technologies and sustainable solutions within the framework of international development.” Instead of looking for funding to help low-income communities buy things like wheelchairs and charcoal from a company, D-Lab researchers (usually engineers and designers) look for ways to make needed items from existing resources in those communities. The idea has caught on and “D-Labs” are popping up at schools and research centers around the country, including UC Davis among others. These advances in appropriate technology get it right and I love hearing about what they’re working on.
3. COLORS magazine
Few magazines keep my attention like COLORS. Each issue investigates universal social issues with photography and illustration that is striking and often humorous. Issue 85, called “Going to the Market,” looks at how the free market has grown in different parts of the world: from marriage markets in China and hair markets in India, to an Italian bank that uses cheese as collateral for cash.
4. Vivian Maier
I was an avid photographer before I turned my focus to design and writing. I shot 120 film using a twin-lens Yashicaflex. Vivian Maier shot with the same kind of camera and that’s probably one of the reasons why I get so absorbed in her photos. They are incredible examples of street photography from the second half of the 20th century. But she never shared them with the public and the images of Americana she captured were nearly trashed after her death in 2009. Fortunately, Jo Maloof discovered Maier’s 100,000+ negatives, 3,000 prints, and hundreds of rolls of film in a Chicago auction house in 2009 and has been archiving them ever since. Maloof is in the process of making a documentary called “Finding Vivian Maier” which will incorporate her photos and films. I often visit the Vivian Maier site to see the latest additions to the archives.
5. 99% Invisible
Design is all around us, though we often forget this fact. That’s why I love this podcast. Host Roman Mars describes it as “a tiny radio show about design, architecture & the 99% invisible activity that shapes our world.” Show topics include forgotten Soviet icons, the design of airports, and the white lines that separate lanes on highways. Aside from providing engaging content, Mars also takes time to introduce the different elements that went into producing the show, like new music and useful services. I now eagerly anticipate the next show as a package of inspiration.
The Obama family as they emerged on stage on election night inspired me. That sight galvanized my feelings as an American citizen and brought me unlimited pleasure.
Part of my fantasy life includes forays into the far reaches of the universe, and I avidly follow the movements of the Martian rover.
3. More than just entitlements
After all the controversy surrounding the viability of the Social Security and Medicare programs, I was amazed at how promptly my first check arrived when I turned 67.
4. Beam me up, Siri
It’s sick, but I love my new iPhone and I am thinking of having it surgically implanted. I was a Star Trek fan and this is as close as I might come to having a personal transporter.
5. Environmental anxiety
My approach to building sculptures on site finds me working on the world’s street corners, and conversing with a cross section of people. From that vantage point, I see that anxiety about the environment has penetrated our common mind. Most people carry a tinge of personal guilt about our stewardship and are frustrated by inadvertently being part of systems that can’t change easily or find immediate solutions. Part of the success of my sculpture is the way it hints at simple shelter and fosters the fantasy that—unencumbered by our worldly possession—we might be able to slip back through the forest curtain once in awhile to a more natural, unspoiled world.
Somehow it’s already mid-November! The holiday season—with all its list making, gift getting, and relative visiting—is almost here. Along with it comes the familiar holiday stories. Delightful as they are to tell and retell, there is definitely room for new Yuletide legends. It is in this spirit that we offer The Lost Christmas Gift, an imaginative new tale about a blizzard, a magical encounter, and an unforgettable bond between father and son. Featuring a lively combination of maps, drawings, watercolors, and photographs, it is destined to become a Christmas classic. We spoke with Andrew Beckham about his remarkable new book.
Where did the idea for The Lost Christmas Gift originate?
The project began unexpectedly during a backcountry ski trip on Rabbit Ears Pass in Colorado. One night a storm plastered everything with a shimmering layer of snow. As my wife and I were skiing in this almost otherworldly landscape, the image of St. Nicholas just seemed to emerge from the place itself. So I started taking pictures, not knowing what might become of them, but knowing I wanted to tell a story about St. Nicholas that was set in this place. It was five more years before the story began to solidify, and two more after that before the final draft of the book was completed. But, I knew from the start that there was something special that would come out of that initial experience up on the Pass.