Search results for "studio gang"

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From Studio Gang to SHoP

World Architecture Festival: Taking American architecture global
WAF is your annual dose of the very latest in architectural thought, practice, ideas, and activism. Be inspired, gain knowledge, and make contacts with your global peers. The world's largest annual architectural forum will be held in Berlin this November. Be at WAF to:
  • Hear from the American finalists including CTA Cermak-McCormick Place Station by Ross Barney Architects and Writers Theatre by Studio Gang. View the full shortlist.
  • Learn from the likes of Matthias Hollwich of Hollwich Kushner (HWKN), Alan Balfour and Coren Sharples of SHoP Architects in 50+ inspirational seminars. See the program.
  • Attend the many fringe events taking place across Berlin, including parties, architect tours, and more.
  • Grow your contacts book and connect with 3,000 future collaborators and clients. WAF is your passport to the international architecture scene.
Learn more and book your pass by the 25 September at the early bird rate. Secure your flights early to ensure the best rates. If you need help finding the best rates and locations for accommodation the WAF concierge team will be able to help.
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Digging In

Studio Gang modifies plans for contentious American Museum of Natural History garden
Responding to community pressure, Chicago-based Studio Gang and Cambridge, Massachusetts-based landscape architects Reed Hilderbrand have changed the design of the controversial gardens surrounding their addition to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York City. This week the architects re-submitted plans for the Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education and Innovation to the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) for approval. The $325 million expansion, designed to evoke glaciers and geologic formations, will augment the museum's classroom and exhibition space. The revised plans account for community concerns over the footprint of the six-story addition, particularly its encroachment onto Theodore Roosevelt Park, a public space in front of the AMNH at West 79th Street and Columbus Avenue. Instead of occupying a half-acre, as originally proposed, Studio Gang's scheme was whittled down to a quarter-acre in size. Pathways were reconfigured so leisure-seeking visitors can avoid quick-walking museum-goers seeking the most direct path the museum's entrances and exits. A service driveway was rerouted to save a stately English elm and pin oak; now only seven trees will be removed for the addition. Although flora will be saved, the addition actually grew eight percent in its latest iteration, to about 235,000 square feet, the Wall Street Journal reports. The schematic design shows that some passageways were altered and walls taken down to accommodate the upsizing, increasing the budget but not the building's footprint. The AMNH is hosting an information session next week where members of the public can learn more about the proposed changes.
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Block Party

National Building Museum picks Studio Gang for 2017 summer installation
The National Building Museum has announced Studio Gang Architects as the designers of the 2017 Summer Block Party Installation. This year’s installation, ICEBERGS, was designed by James Corner Field Operations. Previous installations include BIG Maze by Bjarke Ingles Group and The BEACH by Snarkitecture. In 2003 Studio Gang designed another installation for the National Building Museum, a hanging translucent marble curtain that was part of  in the Masonry Variations exhibit. Firm founder Jeanne Gang has also served as an advisor for the National Building Museum’s Intelligent Cities project. “We are delighted to embark on a new collaboration with Studio Gang over the next year,” said Chase W. Rynd, executive director of the National Building Museum, in a press release. “With their creativity and impeccable design credentials, they are poised to reimagine the possibilities of this series.” Details will be announced in early 2017, with a public opening planned for July 4th through Labor Day 2017. “It’s great to return to the National Building Museum, where our Marble Curtain was such an important early project for Studio Gang, one that informed our thinking about material innovation and research,” remarked Jeanne Gang in a press release. “We are looking forward to building on the legacy and energy of the summer series, in the historic space of the Museum’s Great Hall.”
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Enviro-Tects

Chicago architects to launch environmental advocacy organization
September 1st will mark the official launch of Architects Advocate Action on Climate Change. The group, composed of nearly 80 Chicago firms, has a mission of advocating for legislative action on climate change. Firms of all sizes have signed on as supporters, including Studio Gang Architects, John Ronan Architects, JGMA, Design with Company, Goettsch Partners, and UrbanLab, to name a few. Firms from related fields, such as engineers, architectural photographers, and videographers have also joined. The genesis of the project was initiated in the office of Chicago-based Krueck + Sexton Architects. The group positions itself between practice and policy: it will help shape legislative action with a united front. An Architects Advocate statement reads, “As architects dedicated to healthy and livable communities, and guided by scientific consensus and reason, we advocate for action on Climate Change.” The group will push for a healthy environment as a civil right. Though Architects Advocate's exact plan of action has not yet been released, supporters are encouraged to mark their participation with banners embedded in their websites. The group's web page also includes links to environmental advocacy resources including AIA Advocacy, Architecture 2030, and NASA. The launch of Architects Advocate coincides with the federal Council on Environmental Quality’s new guidelines for evaluating federal projects. These rules ask that any federal agency starting a project should quantify climate impact and consider alternative design solutions. “Indirect” emissions will also be included in understanding any project’s environmental impact. For example, building a new road may encourage more people to drive while replanting trees can reduce airborne carbon and erosion as well as provide wildlife habitat. The new guidelines are built on previous directives, including the 1969 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Though some federal agencies have already been providing “Climate Impact Reports,” these new rules will help standardize and clarify a framework for climate action.
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Build Local, Think Global

Studio Gang proposes net-zero school with three-acre urban farm (complete with its own goat)

In the near future, students at the Academy for Global Citizenship will learn firsthand how a net-zero building works, as their campus will collect enough solar power to be completely off the grid. Chances are, though, the thing they will remember most distinctly about their unconventional school will be that it included a working farm, complete with a goat.

The Academy for Global Citizenship (AGC) on the Southwest Side of Chicago is already unlike nearly any other K-8 school around. Once it moves out of its now-cramped makeshift space into a brand-new, Studio Gang–designed campus, it will be truly one of a kind.

The charter school, as the name would suggest, was conceived with a focus on global stewardship and was in dire need of a space that better reflected its pedagogy and ambitions. With this charge, Chicago- and New York–based Studio Gang set out to produce a campus that would be a productive space for students, faculty, and the surrounding community. Conceived as a series of flexible “neighborhoods” with indoor and outdoor learning environments, the project is designed without typical circulation space. Rather, students will walk through “Wonder Paths” that wind fluidly though indoors and outdoors. Along these paths students will encounter laboratories, presentation spaces, learning stations, and play areas. A central courtyard will connect all of these diverse programs.

The main structure’s design takes cues from industrial building typologies to maximize natural light and solar collection. A sawtooth roofline is set at the optimal angle for solar power, while allowing copious amounts of north light into the learning spaces. Yet the passive and active solar aspects of the project are only part of the school’s sustainability goals. Perhaps the most notable of the school’s amenities is a three-acre urban farm. Along with producing its own power, the school will also produce a portion of its own food. Students will help grow breakfast and lunch for their classmates. The school believes the understanding of agriculture is an important part both of being a global citizen and of creating one’s relationship to food. Anchoring the farm is a greenhouse-barn where classes and presentations can be held for students and the community. “The whole thing is really all about growing a power- and food-conscious community and designing a replicable system that can be used by other schools in the future,” firm founder Jeanne Gang said. Working with Studio Gang on the project are Chicago-based landscape architects site design group, ltd. and New York–based environmental consultants Atelier Ten. The school will be completely one of a kind when finished, but the design is specifically done in such a way that it can be repeated around the world. To do so, prefabricated systems and readily accessible materials are being specified. While Studio Gang is garnering international attention for soaring skyscrapers, it continues to work on smaller-scale projects for socially minded clients. The Academy for Global Citizenship adds to the firm’s list of educational and community projects that includes the award-winning Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership, the SOS Children’s Villages Lavezzorio Community Center, and the Columbia College Chicago Media Production Center.
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Battersea

Herzog & de Meuron, Studio Gang, and DS+R among those shortlisted for new Royal College of Art campus in South London
The Royal College of Art (RCA) in London has a unveiled a shortlist of seven invited studios that will compete to design the school's new $140 million campus in Battersea, South London. The list features practices from Europe and the U.S. including Swiss duo Herzog & de Meuron, Chicago-based Studio Gang and Diller Scofidio + Renfro (DSR) from New York. Organized by Malcolm Reading Consultants, who claim that the college is set to "embark upon the most exciting phase of development" in its 179 year history, the RCA will align itself into being a primarily science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics-based institution. As a result, it aims to coalesce these disciplines to "create transformational impact in such areas as connected cities; robotics, the internet of things and intelligent mobility; sustainability, mass migration and city design." Specifically, this will include the expansion of the RCA's "research and knowledge exchange centers into the domains of computer and materials science, the impact of the digital economy, and intelligent mobility." The shortlisted practices are:
  • Christian Kerez (Switzerland)
  • Diller Scofidio + Renfro (U.S.)
  • Herzog & de Meuron (Switzerland)
  • Lacaton & Vassal (France)
  • Robbrecht en Daem architecten (Belgium)
  • Serie Architects (UK/Singapore)
  • Studio Gang (U.S.)
"At the centre of the Battersea South vision are the practices of artists and designers," said Dean of Architecture Dr. Adrian Lahoud. "The project should support and inspire their work, offering an incredible opportunity to explore new frontiers in learning and research in art and design." Malcolm Reading, competition director, added: "This is a dazzling list of architectural thought-leaders who have connected with a project that will create a renewed sense of place in this part of Battersea.  We very much look forward to the teams’ analyses of the brief at the second stage of the competition." The selection panel members include:
  • Dr. Paul Thompson (Chair)
  • Professor Naren Barfield
  • Richard Benson
  • Dr. Adrian Lahoud
  • Professor Judith Mottram
  • Baroness Gail Rebuck
  • Alan Leibowitz (lay member of Council)
  • Professor Ricky Burdett (lay member of Council)
  • Professor Rachel Cooper OBE (lay member of Council)
  • Paola Antonelli
  • Marcus Cole (student)
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Brownsville, Brooklyn

Studio Gang’s ecological firehouse and training facility breaks ground today
Ground has broke on the site of the Fire Department of New York's (FDNY) newest firehouse, designed by Chicago-based Studio Gang for the New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC). Set to cost $32 million, the 21,000-square-foot building will sit on 1815 Sterling Place in Brownsville, Brooklyn and become the new home of the FDNY's Rescue Company 2.  Founded in 1925, Rescue Company 2 is one of FDNY’s five rescue companies, elite units that handle a variety of emergency situations ranging from building collapses, high-angle rescues, hazardous materials incidents, water rescues as well as fires. In their new location, Rescue Company 2 will use the building to train for all these scenarios and many more. The project is Studio Gang's first in New York and as a result they have opened up a new Manhattan office. The Architect's Newspaper attended the groundbreaking ceremony and spoke with Studio Gang design principle Weston Walker about the firm's design process and approach to the project. "We wanted the design to fit the [low-rise] scale of the street, while accommodating all the unusual training that will take place here" Walker said. Training facilities will also include specific areas for trench rescue and confined space rescue training as well as a room to simulate the smoke-filled environments in which firefighters operate, and an elevated area that allows firefighters to train to rappel from the roof of a building to perform a rescue. The project's design drivers were "apertures and openings" that paid heavy respect to both the site and typology traditions. Demonstrating this, he pointed out the numerous openings—visible in the renders above—that "ease the building's oppressiveness" in massing. A subtractive structure, the openings allow for interior landscaping as well as facilitate natural ventilation. This is also aided by the fact that the building will be the first firehouse in New York to have a drive-through concourse on the ground floor. The building aims to be as energy efficient as possible. Due to sit 500 feet below the structure is a geothermal heating system. A solar water heating system has also been included which is due to reduce the energy required to heat and cool the building by a third. In addition to this, a green roof and permeable pavement will be implemented to aid the reduction of stormwater runoff and further cut down on the firehouse's carbon footprint.  “In keeping with Mayor de Blasio’s vision for a healthier, more sustainable and resilient city, DDC is proud to partner with FDNY to provide New York’s bravest with a state-of-the-art training and housing facility that is energy efficient and can serve as a beacon of community engagement,” said DDC commissioner Feniosky Peña-Mora in a press release. “The design aims to reduce carbon emissions, conserve water and contribute to a healthy urban environment through integrating environmentally responsible practices. A geothermal system, solar water heating system, permeable pavement and a green roof will contribute to this goal and strengthen the City’s commitment to building sustainable, environmentally friendly buildings.” “We are proud to break ground on a state-of-the-art new home for Brooklyn’s Rescue Company 2.  This firehouse will be a leader in energy efficiency, moving our city closer to an environmentally sustainable and resilient future. With ample space for tools and a training facility on the roof, this firehouse will be the impressive space that New York’s bravest deserve,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio in a press release. 
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Being the Trimtab

Buckminster Fuller Challenge 2016 semi-finalists announced
In its ninth iteration, The Buckminster Fuller Institute (BFI) has revealed 19 semifinalists for the 2016 Fuller Challenge. First launched in 2007, the competition strives to pioneer holistic approaches that cover a wide breadth of problems within social, environmental, and design fields. A stringent selection process and rigorous entry criteria has led to the competition to be known as "Socially-Responsible Design's Highest Award." "Bucky made an urgent call for a ‘Design Science Revolution’ to make the world work for 100% of humanity, in the shortest possible time, through spontaneous cooperation, without ecological offense or the disadvantage of anyone,” said BFI Executive Director Elizabeth Thompson. "Answering this call is what the Fuller Challenge is all about" 2015 Fuller Challenge Video from Buckminster Fuller Institute on Vimeo. For this year's challenge, submissions were whittled-down to 19 proposals which went before the Challenge Review Committee. The proposals were judged if they were "visionary, comprehensive, anticipatory, ecologically responsible, feasible, and verifiable." The winning submission, due to be unveiled later this year, will receive $100,000 that will be used to aid the development and implementation of the scheme. This year was also the first year that the BFI accepted student proposals. Undergoing a separate review process, student winners will be subject to a different awarding process. “In recent years, we’ve seen an increase in student entries to the Challenge,” said Fuller Challenge Program Manager Megan Ahearn. “We’re now devoting time and resources to a separate review track for student entries, and we look forward to publicly recognizing work from university-level entrants.” In their call for proposals this year, the BFI said that they were seeking "whole-system solutions that demonstrate a clear grasp of the ‘big-picture’ and focus on a well-defined need of critical importance. If, for example, a proposal emphasizes a new design, material, process, service, tool, or technology, it is essential that it be part of an integrated strategy that simultaneously addresses key social, environmental, and economic factors." The semi-finalists fell into six categories: The Built Environment; Human Health; Food Production; Human Rights and Development; Materials and the Circular Economy and Environment and Resources. The 19 semi-finalists listed below have been divided into these categories, as done so by the BFI: The Built Environment
  • The African Design Center: Led by Rwandan designer Christian Benimana and the MASS Design Group, this project aims to transform the African built environment through a comprehensive program to recruit and train the next generation of African designers and architects.
  • Build Change: Over 200 million people worldwide live with the constant threat of being killed by their house collapsing in an earthquake or windstorm, as the death toll in Ecuador's recent earthquake so tragically illustrated. Build Change is a unique international initiative working to boost natural disaster preparedness on a large scale by engaging holistically with all the stakeholders: homeowners in the poorest, most vulnerable, "informal" areas; local builders, planners, engineers, and architects; and municipal, regional and national governments.
  • Cooperación Comunitaria: In 2013, hurricanes Manuel and Ingrid devastated the West of Mexico, causing 200 deaths and affecting over 230,000 people. Cooperación Comunitaria has envisioned and is implementing a comprehensive model to radically improve these marginalized populations' living conditions by working with communities to rebuild—combining sound geological and engineering risk analysis with local indigenous wisdom.
  • PITCHAfrica: This group’s Waterbank Schools are working demonstrations of the remarkable leveraging power of water catchment as a socially integrated solution to resource scarcity. In a world in which one billion people are living without access to clean water and water-borne illnesses are rampant, this simple design offers an elegant and practical way to improve sanitation, health, and education (especially for girls, who are often the ones tasked with water collection in their families and often miss school for that reason).
Human Health
  • Concern America: This project empowers local communities in isolated and underserved regions to provide the bulk of their medical services themselves. Working with mostly rural, poor communities in Colombia, Guatemala, and Mexico, they train community members to become Health Promoter Practitioners (HPPs). Concern America aims to install self-reliance instead of supplying traditional aid work.
  • Sustainable Health Enterprises (SHE): SHE has designed a comprehensive strategy to locally produce menstrual sanitary pads for women and girls in the developing world. The eco-friendly pads are made from agricultural residue (discarded banana fiber) using no chemicals and very little water, simultaneously raising consciousness in the larger society in order to dispel unproductive attitudes surrounding menstruation.
  • The Urban Death Project (UDP): UDP has designed a scalable, regenerative urban system based on the natural process of decomposition, with the first full-scale human composting facility to be located in the city of Seattle, Washington. UDP hopes to minimize wastage in death in light of the fact that each year in U.S. cemeteries, 30 million board-feet of hardwood, 90,000 tons of steel, 1.6 million tons of concrete, and millions of gallons of formaldehyde-laden embalming fluid are buried. Cremation meanwhile emits 600 million pounds of CO2 annually in the U.S. alone.
Food Production
  • ECOTIERRA is a certified B corporation working to create a sustainable agricultural economy across the Andes cordillera, with plans to replicate their model in Cote d’Ivoire and Colombia. The company works as a matchmaker, connecting investors to coffee and cocoa cooperatives throughout Peru. The cooperatives partner with ECOTIERRA to develop a customized, bottom-up agroforestry design that suits their land and production needs, and in turn the cooperatives receive additional revenue from carbon offsets.
  • MIT Open Agriculture Initiative develops open-source "controlled environment agriculture" (CEA) technologies to experiment and innovate in seeking alternatives to the unsustainable and destructive practices of industrial agriculture, and to make highly localized food production more viable. The project has designed transparent, open-source, "hackable" hardware and software platforms to allow indoor farmers conduct networked experiments in "food computers."
Human Rights and Development
  • Glasswing International has designed a highly effective program to protect and re-integrate children emigrating from the Northern Triangle (El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala) into their communities, schools, and families. Using a referral system that draws on and coordinates all the major stakeholders, they seek to integrate mental health counseling, support services, education, vocational training, recreation, and more in order to create safe pathways for youth to avoid endemic gang violence and have the opportunity to thrive.
  • International Bridges to Justice (IBJ): IBJ seeks to end the torture and abuse of detainees by training attorneys and legal officials in legal best practices, and by creating a global legal community that can be supportive and protective of lawyers working in difficult contexts. A legal system that respects human rights norms is one of the defining hallmarks of a civilized society.
  • The Sentinel Project's Una Hakika system is an effective approach to defusing inter-ethnic/inter-communal violence and tension in the world's highest risk "hot spots" for conflict, using the communication tools most relevant in a given context. Their work aims to counteract inflammatory misinformation and rumors with trusted, accurate information.
  • South Vihar Welfare Society for Tribal (ASHRAY): ASHRAY is an exemplary organization that seeks to address the roots of the problem among one of the world's poorest and most oppressed groups: tribal people in India. ASHRAY, a totally grassroots effort led by local women, works with tribal communities in Jharkand State to bolster education, skills training, agricultural production and food security, economic opportunities, and women's empowerment, all to counteract the poverty and social instability that make trafficking possible in the first place.
Materials and the Circular Economy
  • Evrnu, SPC has developed a proprietary technology that goes far beyond standard garment recycling to deconstruct used cotton textiles at the molecular level, creating a range of multi-purpose regenerated cellulose fibers far stronger and more durable than the original fabrics. Currently, consumers dispose of 80% of all textiles directly to landfill. If Evrnu’s technology, still at an early stage of development, succeeds in the market and is widely adopted, it could "upcycle" millions of tons of polluting waste.
  • Procesos Proambientales Xaquixe has created a methodology for micro-industrial sustainability by implementing a wide range of alternative energy technologies and by repurposing discarded materials from local waste streams. This system fosters a trans-disciplinary network of small businesses, or ¨eco-clusters,¨ which share knowledge and resources to sustainably enrich their communities and economies while helping detoxify their environment.
  • ZERI Network and Sanctuary Asia (with the support of APPL), the brainchild of renowned eco-entrepreneur and activist Gunter Pauli and his Blue Economy initiative, is a comprehensive project that seeks to simultaneously tackle multiple goals: conservation, wildlife and biodiversity protection in one of the world's most diverse regions (which includes endangered rhinos, tigers, and elephants); food security, sustainable economic development, and effective social services for a currently impoverished population; and the demonstration of cutting-edge organic agro-ecological methods' capacity to be competitive.
Environment and Resources
  • KTK-BELT is a home-grown Nepalese biodiversity preservation, conservation, education, rural sustainable development, and job creation initiative that seeks to protect and share the invaluable ecological knowledge held by local/indigenous people in a "vertical university," which will stretch from Koshi Tappu (67 meters above sea level), Nepal's largest aquatic bird reserve, to Kanchenjunga (8,586 meters above sea level). The “vertical university” will include plots of research land in various locations and eventually corridors between them.
  • Taking Root's CommuniTree project seeks to tackle three interlinked problems: deforestation, climate change, and poverty, through a comprehensive reforestation and carbon sequestration strategy. Currently working with thousands of smallholding rural farming families in Nicaragua (and earlier-stage projects in Guatemala) as well as local, regional, and national governments and international "social" investors and donors, the program engages farmers to reforest degraded, marginal, underutilized portions of their farms with a range of native tree species suited to each locale, and trains them to manage their trees effectively using innovative data collection tools.
  • The Tides Canada Initiatives' Rainforest Solutions Project has designed a groundbreaking "Ecosystem-Based Management Model" that draws from cutting-edge environmental science, deep cultural respect for First Nations' sovereignty, and political savvy. Previously the project team had paved the way for a historic 250-year agreement between all the stakeholders of British Columbia's enormous coastal rainforests (26 "first nations," lumber and mining corporations, leading environmental organizations, and the BC provincial and Canadian federal governments) to conserve and sustainably manage the 15-million acre Great Bear Rainforest.
Previous Challenge winners include the Living Building Challenge (built environment), Ecovative (materials innovation), Living Breakwaters (coastal adaptation), and most recently, GreenWave, a non-profit organization that has designed multi-species 3D ocean farms, aiming to create jobs in coastal communities by transforming fishers into restorative ocean farmers.
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More Space

Perkins Eastman adds to the University of Chicago Astrophysics Lab

The University of Chicago has begun work on a two-story addition to its Laboratory for Astrophysics and Space Research (LASR). Designed by the Chicago office of Perkins Eastman, the addition will update and expand the original 1964 SOM-designed modernist single story building.

The main goal of the new addition will be to bring the building up to current standards of physics research, and to house both the Theoretical and Experimental research groups in one building. The LASR will also house the University of Chicago’s acclaimed Department of Physics, including the Enrico Fermi Institute and the Kadanoff Center for Theoretical Physics. When finished, the 63,500-square-foot building will include day-lit offices and collaboration spaces, and two large gathering spaces. One of these spaces will cantilever over the existing building's footprint in order to accommodate larger groups. Expansive picture windows in the gathering spaces allow for views across the architecturally rich campus. A bright double-height commons and roof terrace will also provide spaces for less formal gatherings. Laboratories that are light-sensitive will be located below grade, and to the interior of the building. With a goal of LEED Silver, the building’s facade is calibrated to reduce the need for artificial light, while avoiding excessive solar heat gain. Heating and cooling will be handled by overhead chilled beams instead of forced air. Perkins Eastman joins a handful of architects currently working for the university including Studio Gang, Johnston Marklee, and HOK. The University of Chicago campus is a veritable theme park of architecture with projects by Frank Lloyd Wright, Henry Ives Cobb, Eero Saarinen, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Walter Netsch, Ricardo Legorreta, Rafael Viñoly, César Pelli, Helmut Jahn, Tod Williams and Billie Tsien Architects, and Holabird, Root and Burgee.
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Open through July 23

AIANY’s New Practices New York exhibition features work from six emerging firms
The tenth biannual New Practices New York competition exhibition showcases its six winners with an unprecedented amount of diverse projects and approaches. The six firms chosen were Young Projects, Taller Ken, Studio Cadena, STPMJ, Schaum/Shieh, and MODU. The exhibition will be open through July 23. The firms, which had to be founded after 2006 and located in New York City, were tasked with responding to the theme “Prospect.” “Prospect” was chosen based on the very practical challenges of building in New York: “high costs of living, fierce competition, and minimal profit margins.” Through their portfolios and projects, the firms addressed heady questions such as: “How are you shaping our practice around the prospect of the future? What are the most important challenges that you see facing the city over the next three months? And in 30 years? What will you focus on? Where are you headed? How will you thrive?" The exhibition features the firms' answers through a series of presentations and "wonder boxes." The boxes were each made to showcase the firms' ideologies and varied from a literal box to more amorphous projects. Taller KEN Founded by Gregory Melitonov and Ines Guzman Mendez, Taller KEN is a New York– and Guatemala-based practice. Although Melitonov and Mendez’s latest completed project is the Dean & Dylan Baquet residence in New York, they have a variety of projects in Guatemala and have invited nine young architects from around the world to work on a design-build project with them there. “In order to capitalize on the enthusiasm of young designers just beginning their design careers, we invited them to Guatemala City to produce an intervention that provides a positive, lasting impact on the local community,” they said. Studio Cadena Brooklyn’s Benjamin Cadena founded his eponymous practice in 2013 and has already completed projects in Marfa, Texas, Chicago, Illinois, and Bogotá, Colombia. He still champions New York, however: “The lack of affordability plays a big part in limiting a broader range of people from living in New York City and this needs to be addressed to preserve the vibrancy and dynamism that makes the city interesting in the first place…The city is not dead, but it needs to find ways to attract and nurture a creative ecosystem to remain relevant.” STPMJ Although many young firms today are based in multiple cities, Mi Jung Lim and Seung Teak Lee’s South Korea–­­New York office stands out. “We aim for ‘Provocative Realism’—We design iconic architecture that stands out, not a part, that is visionary, not fantastical.” The firm’s projects, whether in Korea, California, or Kentucky, share a minimalism so precise that it borders on futurism, but with a playful, not cold, aesthetic. Young Projects Bryan Young’s design studio in Brooklyn has tackled everything from art and furniture to townhouses in Williamsburg and (most recently) a retreat and spa in the Dominican Republic. But he insists on maintaining work-life balance. “We limit the hours during the work week and we listen to Kanye,” he said, answering how he creates a creative atmosphere that can accommodate his variety of projects. Schaum/Shieh “In our practice, we attempt to sharpen the conceptual and representational tools to really see and describe the everything-up-until-now,” said Rosalyne Shieh and Troy Schaum in their statement. Each structure feels site-specific: A house in Lexington, Virginia, mimics the rolling Blue Ridge Mountains behind it while the Pop Music Center in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, articulates a varied spatial field as a reaction to the city behind it. MODU Directed by Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem, MODU creates installations that are simultaneously artistic and poetic as well as hardcore scientific. Focusing on climate patterns and mathematical models of the weather, MODU creates installations that are “based on a two-way interaction between the public and the environment.” Its most recent project, Cloud Seeing in Holon, Israel, is a lightweight structure with 30,000 balls or “seeds” made from PET plastic from recycled water bottles that move with the wind across the structure’s ceiling. Similarly, the Doppelganger installation in Sydney, Australia, is a “flexing structure” that reacts to its surroundings and the wind to create a “micro-scale public space.”
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Catwalk

AMO designs Prada’s 2017 Spring/Summer set space

OMA's internationally-based research, branding, and publication studio AMO has designed the set of Italian fashion brand Prada's Spring Summer 2017 show.

Formed in 1999, 24 years after Rem Koolhaas founded the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), AMO is the architecture practice's research think-tank. Directed by Reinier de Graaf, a partner at OMA, AMO addresses issues surrounding architectural production and other mediums such as fashion, print, online media. Past projects include a redesign of the EU flag and being a leader in the production of Volume magazine.

In 2011, the group worked with Prada on the confusingly titled OMA*AMO for/with Prada, an exhibition in Venice. This year, OMA's Shohei Shigematsu designed the exhibition space for Manus x Machina at the Met.

This year's project for Prada, however, is on a much larger scale. The design features a catwalk runway divided into three zigzagging segments that slope down to the audience seating. The upper-most level, the entry gangway, is located behind a mesh-crafted colonnade.

Made from metal, the mesh dominates the interior space and allows an array of colored lighting to permeate through and illuminate the space. "Generating an abstract layer, composed of meshes with different patterns and dimensions...overlap to recreate a total space. The transparency of the cladding material unveils the underlying framework with Cartesian precision," the firm said in a press release.

Subsequently the resultant glow from the lights aims to de-humanize the space, "[dematerializing] all the surfaces, coloring the room, now reminiscent of a post-human scenario."

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Cetacean Save

National Aquarium in Baltimore to build North America’s first sanctuary for “retired” dolphins
Designers have created sanctuaries for elephants, chimpanzees and big cats. The National Aquarium in Baltimore announced today that it will design and build North America’s first “sanctuary” for dolphins. The project will enable the institution to move its eight Atlantic bottlenose dolphins out of public display and into the protected seaside habitat by the end of 2020, paving the way for major changes to its Inner Harbor campus. A location for the dolphin sanctuary—likely farther south, in warmer climates closer to the equator—has not been selected, but aquarium officials say it will provide a new option for how dolphins can live in human care. No designer has been selected, but the aquarium has been working closely for the past two years with architect Jeanne Gang, of Studio Gang Architects. Gang’s office has prepared a rendering showing what the dolphin sanctuary might look like. Several years ago, she led an architecture class at Rice University and her assignment for the class was to design a dolphin sanctuary off the coast of Texas. Aquarium Chief Executive Officer John Racanelli announced the decision about the dolphins in a press release and an email message to members of the National Aquarium’s extended community. "Through more than 25 years of dedicated care for dolphins, we have realized that the relocation of our dolphins to a natural sanctuary setting is the best way to offer them an environment in which they can thrive," Racanelli said in his email message. "We now know more about dolphins and their care, and we believe that the National Aquarium is uniquely positioned to use that knowledge to implement positive change," Racanelli said. "This is the right time to move forward with the dolphin sanctuary." "There’s no model anywhere, that we’re aware of, for this," Racanelli told the  Associated Press. "We’re pioneering here, and we know it’s never the easiest nor the cheapest option." The aquarium disclosed two years ago that it was considering retiring its dolphins, as part of a movement in which institutions are rethinking the idea of holding cetaceans and other living creatures in captivity. Because the dolphins may not be able to survive if released into the wild, the aquarium has explored the idea of creating a sanctuary for them, in the same way Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus maintains a sanctuary for its retired elephants. As part of its evaluation, the aquarium hired Studio Gang to propose ways to repurpose a $35 million marine mammal pavilion that opened in 1991 and was designed specifically for the display of dolphins. Gang has proposed converting the building, on Inner Harbor Pier 4, to an attraction that would focus on the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Drawings were made public last month. In its announcement today, the aquarium released some details about the proposed animal sanctuary. According to the aquarium, it will be in a tropical or sub-tropical climate, possibly in the Florida Keys or the Caribbean. The National Aquarium has formed a site selection team whose top priority is to ensure the health and welfare of the dolphins. The location will be chosen based on a list of criteria, including: ability to provide lifetime customized care for each dolphin; an outdoor location with natural sea water, with more space and depth than current facility; a warm weather climate, and natural stimulus for the dolphins, such as fish and aquatic plants “As we look at the future of the dolphins in our care, we are working very hard to provide them the best possible place to live out their years,” said Tom Robinson, the National Aquarium’s board chair. According to the aquarium, the institution and its directors began exploring new ways to care for the dolphins five years ago. Numerous options were weighed, ranging from rebuilding the existing Marine Mammal Pavilion in a more naturalistic style to moving the dolphins to other accredited facilities. After careful consideration, officials said, the decision was made to create a protected, year-round, seaside refuge with aquarium staff continuing to care for and interact with the dolphins. “We've evaluated this for five years and have decided that this is the right decision for the dolphins, and, thus, for our organization,” said aquarium board member Colleen Dilenschneider, who also served on a separate board committee that assessed this project. “We are excited to introduce this new option along a spectrum of human care for dolphins.” “This is a special time in history concerning evolving attitudes about treating all forms of life with dignity and respect—other humans very much included,” said Sylvia Earle, marine biologist, explorer and author. “The idea of providing sanctuaries for elephants, chimpanzees, big cats—and now dolphins—is a sign of a maturing ethic of caring unthinkable in past millennia, centuries and even decades.”