Designing a chair is an eternally tempting but precarious prospect: the humble seat, legs, and back must resolve the essential challenges of structure, function, form. And the end result is inevitably compared to a canon of predecessors.
Essex, England Grayson Perry and FAT Architecture A House for Essex This whimsical vacation house is styled as a secular chapel. The strange brief was requested by Living Architecture, a nonprofit that commissions notable architects and rents the buildings to the public. The house, designed by artist Grayson Perry and now-disbanded architecture firm FAT, mixes formal and informal, sacred and nonreligious precedents, canonizing a fictional local woman by using architectural details. These include the eclectic symbols on the exterior's green and white tiles, each of which represents aspects of her identity, and tapestries inside that commemorate events in her life.
As If It Were Already Here, suspended above Fort Point Channel Park, is comprised of 100 miles worth of rope. Janet Echelman’s massive new installation in downtown Boston hovers 365 feet above the ground at its highest point and weighs 2,000 pounds. Titled As If It Were Already Here, the sculpture, suspended above Fort Point Channel Parks, is comprised of 100 miles worth of rope and exerts 100,000 pounds of force on the Intercontinental Hotel, one of the anchor points for the project, when the wind blows. When dealing with forces of that magnitude, it’s no surprise that Echelman—who was
The Obama Drone Aviary would transport Presidential artifacts to the public. The drama surrounding the siting of President Barack Obama’s future Presidential Library has unfurled like a juicy tabloid story, with the minute details making headlines and stoking fierce debate. Most recently, speculation abounded when the Barack Obama Foundation, the organization charged with selecting a site, polled the Windy City’s residents—and no other prospective cities—on their feelings towards the project, while Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has lobbied to build the library on city parkland if Chicago is indeed selected. Now, with the Chicago mayoral race in serious contention, the Foundation
In December, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) declined to adopt a rule forbidding AIA members to design specific buildings whose purposes involve human-rights violations (as defined by international laws), such as executions or prolonged solitary confinement. The proposed amendment was submitted to the AIA on August 1, 2014, having been drafted by Architects/Designers/Planners for Social Responsibility (ADPSR), a San Francisco–based 501(c)3 organization, with the help of human-rights lawyers. The amendment would have stipulated that AIA members “shall not design spaces intended for execution or for torture or other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, including prolonged solitary confinement.”
Edited by Denna Jones. Prestel Publishing, November 2014, 576 pages, $35. History looms over architects. In few other professions is there such a defined canon of masterpieces, such a tradition of reviving old styles. Yet, as Richard Rogers and Philip Gumuchdjian observe in their forward to Architecture: The Whole Story, “architecture is surely one of the most optimistic art forms.” Each generation searches for “new utopias, new ideals” and finds inspiration “from all our innovations and all expressions of harmony and beauty,” they say. Architecture always looks forward, but does revisiting the past offer new inspiration? That tension is at
An exhibition at the Yale School of Architecture explores the early uses of digital tools in architecture. Greg Lynn No single tool has become more critical to architectural practice than the computer. In fewer than 30 years, CAD software and related products have become an entire industry by catering to the needs of designers. But the early years of architects’ use of digital tools are little known. Greg Lynn, founder of Greg Lynn FORM and a professor at UCLA, has curated exhibitions that explore this early architectural experimentation. The exhibition, the second of three on this theme, Archaeology of the