Posts tagged with "David Adjaye":

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Adjaye Associates delivers a high-design switching station in Newark

Switching stations, a necessary part of our electrified lives, are normally ugly as hell. From afar, the assemblage can look like sculpture, all painted metal and catenaries, but up close, the infrastructure in harder to appreciate, and even harder to accept in the middle of a residential neighborhood. Out in Newark, electricity provider PSE&G heard neighbors when they demanded the company's new switching station be a) beautiful and b) a real community asset. It took four years of planning to get there, but on a recent Wednesday, a stylish crowd of Newark residents gathered to celebrate the opening of an Adjaye Associates–designed switching station in the city's Fairmount Heights neighborhood. The 177,000-square-foot Fairmont Heights Switching Station commands a good chunk of a full city block, but it harmonizes easily with its more modest, three-story neighbors. To strike a coolheaded balance between the industrial structure and the existing residential fabric, Adjaye Associates' New York office worked with local firm WSM Associates to encase the switching station's unsightly components behind an art wall, a 1,790-foot-long concrete and aluminum edifice embedded with permanent works by 14 artists. While two of the works anchor the concrete portion of the facade, most of the pieces are mounted up high, near the top of the 30-foot walls, in niches that interrupt tastefully gold and subtly curved perforated aluminum screens. The most remarkable feature, however, is a concrete-columned agora at the front of the building whose two rows of 34-foot-high red columns support geometric canopies that cast complicated shadows on the sidewalk below. The arrangement can hold other artworks in suspension, but it also defines an otherwise throwaway cutout in the perimeter that can now be used for a market or other community events. In his remarks, Mayor Ras Baraka joked about Newark's seemingly forever-ongoing revitalization. Alluding to the process that created the building he stood in front of, Baraka called art and collaboration—between public and private, between community and architect—the "secret sauce" of successful neighborhood revitalization. Like other new, high-design public amenities in the tristate area, this project was brought on by Hurricane Sandy. In the immediate aftermath of the 2012 storm, local utilities took a beating, leaving around nine in ten of Newark's residents without power. In response, PSE&G began upgrading its infrastructure to anticipate overloads, and it planned a switching station in Fairmount Heights to improve its resilience in the face of extreme weather events. Adjaye Associates worked with the company, arts groups, and elected officials to deliver a design that exceeded expectations. "What I've learned in architecture and design is that, when the opportunity seems complicated, that's when your creativity has to rise to that opportunity," firm principal David Adjaye told the crowd. "One gets opportunities to work in amazing places, but it's actually much more rewarding to work in places people think design will not come to. [Here] we wanted to create something that would make a place." Outside Newark, Adjaye's firm has a number of projects in process or recently completed. The architect just revealed updated designs for a new public library in Winter Park, Florida, and earlier this month, The Architect's Newspaper (AN) spotted crews working on 130 William, Adjaye Associate's first New York skyscraper. Although the firm is best known for its work on the National Museum of African American History and Culture, its latest commission, a Manhattan espionage museum, opened to the public in Feburary.
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Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, David Adjaye selected to design Detroit's West Riverfront Park

Beating out a pool of over 80 international design teams, a team with Brooklyn-based landscape architects Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) and Sir David Adjaye have been chosen to transform the 22-acre West Riverfront Park in downtown Detroit. While the nonprofit Detroit RiverFront Conservancy has stressed that they were choosing a team, not a design, MVVA’s presented plan for the park would substantially change the waterfront. While the final four competitors for the park presented big names in landscape architecture, including James Corner Field Operations, Hood Design Studio and Diller Scofidio + Renfro, and Gustafson Guthrie Nichol, the diverse programming proposed by MVVA ultimately won out. The $50-million redevelopment will present all-ages options throughout the shore, including the carving out of a beach inside of a secluded cove. Now that the design team has been chosen, the MVVA-led team and Detroit RiverFront Conservancy will solicit input from the community to nail down the final design details. The Detroit RiverFront Conservancy will also fundraise to reach the rest of the $50 million goal in the meantime, meaning the construction and completion date for the project are uncertain at the time of writing. MVVA’s design for the riverfront park mixes active uses with more passive recreational areas and mingles the park’s natural systems with the city grid, similar to firm’s approach at Brooklyn Bridge Park. On the western side of the park, there will be a pool house and built up “performance hill,” complete with a clamshell-shaped amphitheater that will sit on a pier in the river. The circular “Sport House” will go up to the east, which from the renderings looks like it will float above a basketball court and feature a green roof on top. Moving east, a tall, artificial bluff will surround the park house and picnic grove. Perhaps the most prominent feature in the proposal is the aforementioned beach at the park’s center, which will be hemmed in by a stone jetty to the west and a fishing pier to the east, likely to prevent erosion. MVVA’s renderings show kayakers and beach-goers relaxing in the summer and skating on the frozen river in the winter, part of the Conservancy's vision for an all-year-round park. Capping off the eastern edge of the park is the enormous “Great Lakes Play Garden” for children, and “Evergreen Isle.” The stone island sits parallel to the playground in the river and is designed to break up ice floes and anchor ecological improvements by creating a shallow, biologically diverse channel. The shore of the entire park will be bounded by the Detroit Riverwalk. “It was love at first sight when I saw the Detroit River,” said Michael Van Valkenburgh in a press release. “I immediately recognized that this new park could draw the city to the water’s edge.” West Riverfront Park is bounded by Rosa Parks Boulevard to the west and Eighth Street to the east, a stretch that had been in private hands for nearly 100 years before the Conservancy purchased it in 2014. A $345,000 grant from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation’s “Livable Communities” focus area financed the West Riverfront Park Design Competition. MVVA’s team for the project, besides David Adjaye, will also include Utile and Mobility in Chain, and local partners LimnoTech (Ann Arbor), PEA (Detroit) and NTH Consultants (Northville).
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New renderings released for Adjaye Associates' Florida library

 Last year, a small Florida city commissioned David Adjaye to design a new public library and venue. Now, Winter Park has released new renderings and schematic designs for the building, whose upside-down-lopped-off-pyramidal massing resembles the London architect's acclaimed design for the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington D.C.

The new images are more detailed than the collaged ones that debuted last November. Here, the new, 50,000-square-foot facility is depicted with its cast concrete panel cladding that will be painted with a to-be-determined color (current renderings depict an ochre facade). Included in the footprint is a 8,500-square-foot civic center, as well as a parking garage for 200 vehicles. In the two-story library, a central spiral staircase will connect the two floors. At the events center, a spiral stair will connect the venue with the rooftop cafe.

Adjaye's firm, Adjaye Associates, is collaborating with Florida's HuntonBrady Architects on the project, which will supplant Winter Park's civic center.

The library is slated to cost around $30 million, but features like a rooftop venue over the events center could be included if fundraising efforts are a success, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The city is hoping to okay the move to design development at its meeting next week.

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Adjaye Associates' loggia-wrapped Manhattan condo tower starts to rise

The Adjaye Associates-designed 130 William, the firm’s first skyscraper in New York, is on the rise. AN has spotted crews working above grade, and a red kangaroo crane has gone up at the Financial District site to help the building reach its expected completion in 2020. At 66 stories and 755 feet tall, the building will be a substantial addition to the downtown skyline. However, unlike most recent towers built in this current boom, 130 William will eschew a glass curtain wall for a custom-tinted precast concrete accented with bronze. The texturally rich surface will be punctuated by arches and loggias on the upper floors, which will blur the divide between interior and exterior spaces for their inhabitants. The cutouts in the upper half of the building's façade invert the traditional window shape commonly found among historic buildings in the neighborhood (as well as on the tower's lower half). The project’s narrow, L-shaped lot on the corner of Fulton Street and William Street was assembled in 2015 through piecemeal acquisitions and demolitions by developer Lightstone group. Construction began in late 2017, well before the official renderings were released. The building’s location near the Brooklyn Bridge will afford many of the residents unobstructed views of the East River from the 244 light-filled units, which includes interiors also designed by Adjaye Associates. Residents of the luxury tower will also have access to a number of amenities, such as a black-tiled swimming pool with grandiose windows, a fitness center, a pet spa, shared outdoor spaces, a rooftop observatory, and not least of all, reportedly an IMAX theatre. According to City Realty, city paperwork also suggests that there will be ground-level retail and a plaza park, embedding the tower within the urban landscape below. David Adjaye has been ramping up the firm's presence throughout Manhattan as of late, including the Studio Museum in Harlem and the recently completed SPYSCAPE museum in Midtown.
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Adjaye Associates unleashes spy museum on Midtown Manhattan

Spying—on your neighbors, on random strangers, on your ex-partner's new partner—can be kind of fun. Now, there's a whole Manhattan museum dedicated to the fine art of surveillance, deception, and decoding. Adjaye Associates designed SPYSCAPE, a new 60,000-square-foot museum in Midtown Manhattan that opened its doors to secret-seekers on Friday. Developed in concert with former intelligence officials and hackers, the building is decked out in what the New York– and London-based firm is calling "the architectural language of the most prestigious spy organizations:" materially, that translates to black linoleum, grey acoustic paneling, and dark fiber cement across a series of glass boxes that hold exhibitions while fragmenting the viewer's sense of space. Outside, the facade is covered in dot-and-pixel vinyl, which provides solar shading while keeping the inside shrouded from prying eyes. For $39, visitors can learn about history's most famous spies, climb through an agility-testing laser maze in one room and crack codes in another, or detect lies in special interrogation booths. At the end, the exhibition analyzes each visitors' skill set, Myers–Briggs-style, assigning each an intelligence job that best corresponds with demonstrated ability. With features like a 350-square-foot multimedia elevator and whiz-bang elements, the three-story SPYSCAPE's exhibits are ensconced by a futuristic palette—all cool blues and green. A bar, event spaces, and a rare book store round out the program. SPYSCAPE is open from 10:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m. daily. More information about the museum can be found here.
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David Adjaye reveals ‘sweeping’ Winter Park Library design

Sir David Adjaye was on hand last night to publicly present Adjaye Associates’ conceptual design for the new 34,000-square-foot Winter Park Library and adjacent events center. Announced in May, the $30 million project will be built on the northwest corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Park, in the Orlando suburb of Winter Park. In front of a packed crowd of 300 residents and public officials, the firm detailed its approach to creating a space that blurs indoor and outdoor usage while still preserving views of the nearby lake. The library, long and rectangular with enormous arched windows running the length of the building, stands apart from the plaza without blocking sunlight from passing through. The two-story library will have a stage, spaces for children of all ages, and historical components. A shorter, square version of the main building, the events center is angled to the library and cuts a triangular public space between the two that still allows for visitors to see the waterfront at all times. Capable of holding up to 300 people, the events center will also host a dining area on its roof. “It feels like somebody has found the perfect position and placed a beautiful tent,” said Adjaye. By angling the windows and sides of each building upward, Adjaye said that he hopes the buildings will shade the deck area in the summer, while still allowing enough sunlight through in the winter to keep the plaza warm. That same shape, he continued, would allow visitors to walk around the outside of each building while staying dry in the rain. The audience was enthusiastic about the renderings overall, but some had still had their concerns. A parking deck that had been previously mentioned was absent at Wednesday’s presentation. Mayor Steve Leary answered that planners for the city were currently working on adding a 220 car parking lot nearby, including 70 more spots than the city’s required minimum for a project of this size. Describing Winter Park Library as a “community campus” composed of complimentary forms, Adjaye said that he hopes his design will honor Winter Park’s past, present and future while preserving its natural environment. Orlando-based HuntonBrady Architects will be serving as the executive architects on the project, and Winter Park City Commissioners will hold a vote on proceeding with the current design on November 13th.
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Adjaye Associates and Ron Arad Architects to design UK Holocaust memorial

Today officials announced Adjaye Associates and Ron Arad Architects as the winners of an international competition to design a Holocaust memorial in London. The project, officially known as the Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre, will honor the memory of the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust, as well as the Roma, gay, and disabled people who were killed by the Nazis. Elected officials, rabbis, Holocaust survivors and their descendants presided over the design unveiling for the memorial and learning space, which will sit at the southern end of Victoria Tower Gardens, right next to the Houses of Parliament. The spaces will encourage reflection and understanding by educating visitors on the Holocaust and antisemitism and in turn using this understanding to explore other forms of hatred, such as Islamophobia and homophobia, as well as examine institutions' role in preventing hatred. The idea for a new memorial and education center was first floated in January 2015, following a survey that found growing public ignorance of the Holocaust and dissatisfaction with the memorial in Hyde Park. The design competition launched the following year, in September, and the ten finalists were announced this February. The labyrinthine design is meant to encourage individual reflection. At the end of each pathway, 23 tall bronze fins representing the 22 countries of origin of Jewish Holocaust victims will face visitors, who will enter the chamber alone. The routes eventually funnel into the contemplative Threshold. This segues into the underground Learning Centre, which includes a space where survivors' stories are shared, as well as reflective chamber with eight bronze panels which will be called the "Contemplation Court." “The complexity of the Holocaust story, including the British context, is a series of layers that have become hidden by time," said Sir David Adjaye, principal of Adjaye Associates, in a prepared statement. "Our approach to the project has been to reveal these layers and not let them remain buried under history. To do so, we wanted to create a living place, not just a monument to something of the past. We wanted to orchestrate an experience that reminds us of the fragility and constant strife for a more equitable world." The memorial is Adjaye Associates' latest high-profile public commission. In the U.S., the firm is best known for designing The National Museum of African American History and Culture in D.C., and it was just tapped to design an interactive spy museum in New York. The building's siting was meant to provoke intrigue from afar. On the approach, visitors will see the memorial's fins just over a green landform. The structure dialogues with a likeness of Emmeline Pankhurst and the Burghers of Calais, as well as the Buxton Memorial, three other statues and sites that interrogate injustice. Gustafson Porter + Bowman is collaborating with Adjaye and Arad on the landscape design.
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Adjaye's Studio Museum, a view from Mexico City, and other updates from the architects of Instagram

At The Architect’s Newspaper, we’re plain addicted to Instagram. Sure, we love seeing Brutalist concrete through “Inkwell” or “Ludwig” filters, but there’s also no better place to see where architects are getting their inspiration, how they’re documenting the built environment, and where they’ve traveled of late. Below, we bring you some of the best Instagrams of this past week! (Also, don’t forget to check out our Instagram account here.) Richard Meier & Partners unveiled a dual pedestrian and vehicular bridge in Alessandria, Italy, suspended from an enormous white steel arc. Sleek, Richard. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZgzzhAAhEe/?taken-by=richardmeierpartners Adjaye Associates released new, more detailed renderings for the new home of the Studio Museum in Harlem this week – along with this gorgeous model (via Field Condition). The five-story building block structure will increase the museum's space by 115 percent. It will break ground next year. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZg5koFFWWi/?taken-by=field_condition Not to over-saturate your feed with Iwan Baan, but he's just ... so good at what he does. Here, an aerial of BIG's big new LEGO House in Billund, Denmark – a terraced, colorful playground for adults and children alike. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZl7egsBk2t/?taken-by=iwanbaan Any excuse for a garden wall. Steven Holl Architects here tried a mock-up vertical sedum for the Kennedy Center expansion.  https://www.instagram.com/p/BZWMirrAprB/?taken-by=stevenhollarchitects You thought you could escape Thomas Heatherwick for a second – but here he is again, haunting your weekend. The Heatherwick-designed Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa opened in Cape Town last week, featuring immense sections cut out of concrete grain silos to form a central atrium. We demand receipts. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZV0CXohcx9/?taken-by=zeitzmocaa Finally, from Mexico City-based architect Michael Rojkind and his firm Rojkind Arquitectos, a sobering view of the future of reconstruction needed in the aftermath of the city's most recent earthquakes. He will be at a MAS Context fundraiser in Chicago to provide an update from Mexico City. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZha3qXF0M_/?taken-by=rojkindarquitectos That’s it for today, hashtag archilovers and quote-on-quote gallerinas. See you next week for more drama.
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David Adjaye in Finland, contemporary wigwams, and other updates from the architects of Instagram

At The Architect’s Newspaper, we’re plain addicted to Instagram. Sure, we love seeing Brutalist concrete through “Inkwell” or “Ludwig” filters, but there’s also no better place to see where architects are getting their inspiration, how they’re documenting the built environment, and where they’ve traveled of late. Below, we bring you some of the best Instagrams of this past week! (Also, don’t forget to check out our Instagram account here.) It was a busy weekend in New York. In Sara D. Roosevelt Park on Saturday morning, the New Museum's latest iteration of IdeasCity kicked off with a host of temporary wooden structures hosting keynotes by speakers like Trevor Paglen, who lectured on visual recognition technologies. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZG5fWFhG4W/?taken-by=ideascity Later, on Saturday night, Storefront for Art and Architecture opened their new exhibit Souvenirs: New York IconsMore than 59 artists, architects, and designers were asked to create souvenirs for each of the city's community districts. It was so crowded we had to escape through the Holl in the wall. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZTw_02nC1c/?taken-by=oma.eu Across the pond, OMA posted renderings of their designs for Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport, clutch the pearls. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZQy_0sHBIt/?taken-by=3xn_gxn Danish firm 3XN demonstrated how their new children's hospital design was inspired by the movement of two hands opening. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZTYEh-AjFr/?taken-by=ekeneijeoma Artist Ekene Ijeoma announced he had created a new sculpture focusing on New York's immigrant community while reposting another sculpture we wrote about a while back that mapped out where low-wage workers can afford the rent, essentially forming islands of affordability. Still very relevant. https://www.instagram.com/p/BZNkVlflw7v/?taken-by=adjaye_visual_sketchbook We don't have favorites, but our perennial fave Sir David Adjaye has the best feed of all. He recently posted from the Aalto University in Finland—a beautiful little chapel by Hiekki and Kaija Siren from 1957. Take that, Louisiana Museum (1958). https://www.instagram.com/p/BZOy-16HlJf/?taken-by=exhibitcolumbus Jetting seamlessly back to rural Indiana, Exhibit Columbus highlighted a contemporary wigwam made of copper scales by Chris Cornelius of studio:indigenous. That's it for today, hashtag archilovers and quote-on-quote gallerinas. See you next week for more drama.
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What is the future of the Chicago riverfront?

While many architects moon over biennials and architecture festivals, these shows are often a bit esoteric for the general public. The Chicago Architecture Biennial (CAB) is no exception. Amidst the complex discussions and abstract installations, the average visitor may enjoy the show, but also feel a bit disconnected. However, there is one show at CAB that anyone would find accessible. Located in EXPO 72 across the street from the Chicago Cultural Center, the exhibition, Chicago Urban River Edges Ideas Lab, presents the visions of nine firms for the Chicago River. Chicago Urban River Edges Ideas Lab was initiated by the City of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development and the Metropolitan Planning Council to solicit proposals for the city’s quickly evolving riverfront. Firms participating in the show include David Adjaye, James Corner Field Operations, Perkins + Will, Ross Barney Architects, Sasaki, Site Design, SOM, Studio Gang Architects, and SWA. Each firm addressed three sites along the river with designs that ranged from outdoor theater spaces to water remediation and ecological classrooms. Other ideas included policy suggestions, such as SWA’s forest bonus, rather than a density bonus. Multiple offices proposed ways of engaging more closely with the river itself, including James Corner Field Operation’s softened edge and Perkins+Will’s riverside beach. The three sections of the river addressed by the show are the Civic Opera House, the Congress Parkway, and the Air Line Bridge. Each of these sites present different challenges which the city hopes to resolve. While large stretches of the riverfront have already been converted into the Chicago Riverwalk, there are over 156 miles that have yet to be developed or connected with public walkways and activity spaces. The initial downtown stretch of redeveloped space was designed by Ross Barney Architects and Sasaki, and was completed earlier this year. The exhibition, which was also designed by Ross Barney Architects, aims to engage public feedback and present ambitious yet feasible visions of the river’s future. Throughout, large renderings with texts allow visitors to compare proposals side by side. Those interested are directed to the project's extensive website to watch interviews with the architects, watch animated shorts about the proposals, and send commentary to the city and designers. “We thought this would be a great way to bring together a bunch of very creative folks, as well as help Chicagoans begin to imagine how this could work and what their place in it would be,” explained Josh Ellis, vice president of Metropolitan Planning Council at the exhibition opening. While the exhibition is not intended to be a competition, it is clear that each of the offices poured resources and brain power into the project. The Department of Planning and Development as well as the Mayor’s office have been explicit in their search for ideas for the future of the river. “This is just a snapshot of how serious each of these teams took this. These are meant to be ideas that can be realized,” said Clare Cahan, studio design director at Studio Gang at the opening. “There are things that will be attractive to communities, attractive to the city, and attractive to developers.”
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David Adjaye has L.A. projects in the pipeline

This post is part of our years-long running Eavesdrop series (think page 6 for the architectural field). It’s your best source for gossip, insider stories, and more. Have an eavesdrop of your own? Send it to: eavesdrop[at]archpaper.com.

Does David Adjaye, lead designer behind the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. have Los Angeles–based projects in the pipeline?

Yes, according to the architect himself. During a recent interview at the Dwell on Design conference with Los Angeles Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne, Adjaye teased that his office had several potential L.A. projects on the way—up to half a dozen of them, in fact.

The architect could not elaborate further, but he hinted the projects might be diverse in their programming and occupy sites scattered across the city.

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New book delves into history of the NMAAHC, offering all-too-rare look into major modern building project

The first corona in the skies above Trump’s Washington will occur on August 21, 2017, when a passing moon partially reveals light emanating out millions of miles from the surface of the sun. This great halo of solar rays will fall on the anniversary of the 1831 Nat Turner Rebellion in Southampton, Virginia, where violence in the face of injustice exposed the mounting terror of slavery and accelerated the pace of abolition’s inevitable advent a blood-soaked generation later. While likely unnoticed inside today’s White House just across its namesake Ellipse, the Smithsonian’s new National Museum of African American History and Culture will innately mark that celestial confluence by the design and engineering animating its symbolic facade: the three-tiered curtain of reflective bronze-coated cast aluminum that defines its four equivalent sides. Labeled as “corona,” it is a sunburst incarnate, recalling the woven modular strips of West African Ashanti textiles and Nigerian Yorubaland caryatids. That kind of metaphorical connection is prompted by the rigorous, cross-disciplinary narrative contained in this compact and amply illustrated volume by architect and educator, Mabel O. Wilson. Commissioned by the Museum to mark its recent launch, Wilson delivers with a history of its genesis from century-long civic intent to the intricate teamwork of curators, scholars, and (above all) architects and engineers, who together shaped its conceptual vision. This is all-too-rare look at what a modern building requires in its realization, especially when the stakes are no less than the historic record itself and a site at the hinge of L’Enfant’s plan. Professor Wilson sums up well, “each architect and firm… played a distinct and complementary role, which they described as working together like a jazz quartet.” Her task here is to annotate the resulting score. What further distinguishes Begin With the Past from a routine souvenir book published for an opening (and harkening back to a lost but once common tradition of keepsake publications for such occasions) is its primary focus on the process of construction itself. Wilson recounts this history propelling the pursuit for a national “negro” memorial ideally on the National Mall always with an eye with what the architectural solution would be for each successive iteration. While initially nothing but a white marble Beaux Arts temple seemed suitable, the sheer longevity of the political jockeying, budgetary ebbs and flows, public transparency, and open competition meant its architecture could adjust to shifting definitions of what best informs the African-American experience today in all its complexity. Underlying but evolving narratives of bondage, prejudice, cultural intersections, and the promises of progress as vivified by both people and events—as well as the collections gathered to tell these stories—shaped its sheltering form. There was throughout an eager embrace of new materials and technologies (green among them) that turned delay into opportunity. Wilson’s chapter titled “Drawing Up the Plans” offers a model synthesis of good intentions yielding to implementation beginning at long last with site selection followed by the guiding building program. Too often this long resolution disappears in the glare of some architect celebrity at the expense of the combined effort really responsible. Lead designer Sir David Adjaye of Freelon Adjaye Bond, alongside Davis Brody Bond (especially partner forbear, Max Bond, who died in 2009 with the building finally under way) and landscape architect firm, Gustafson Guthrie Nichol, share due billing with the structural, mechanical, and civil engineers who framed solutions far beyond the mere fulfilling of orders. The chapter “Inside the African American Story” stands out as a standard of well-explained problem solving; its welcome inclusion of design elevations and blueprints cements this comprehensive intent. What the author describes as “ a spiritual feeling like that of a cathedral,” comes as much from a soaring interior of long vistas as the combined efforts the book affirms. This is a building that blends strife with hope as its historical mandate deserved. Wilson’s book helps show us not only why but how. Begin With The Past: Building the National Museum of African American History and Culture Mabel O. Wilson, Smithsonian Books, 2016.