As you're dazzled by light refracting off one million Swarovski crystals at a very Rockwellian Oscars this evening, there'll be one award worth watching besides the Mickey Rourke vs. Angelina Jolie faceoff for Biggest Lips. Up for best documentary feature is The Garden, the story of a 14-acre community garden in South Central that was the largest of its kind...until it was bulldozed in 2006 by developer Ralph Horowitz to make way for a Forever 21 warehouse. Since 2006 the plot has sat vacant while the 350 families locked out of their plots have mounted a massive campaign to combat the warehouse and boycott the retailer. Local residents have even accused project supporters City Councilwoman Jan Perry and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa of corruption; last year, the mayor recieved at least $1.3 million in donations from the fast-growing retailer and even took the company's founders on a trade mission to Asia in 2006. This weekend, protests at Forever 21's Pasadena location seemed like bittersweet promotion for the documentary, which is currently making the festival rounds. We'll be pulling for the film—and the displaced farmers—tonight. Update: The Garden didn't win, but that's okay with us because another architecturally-significant film, Man on Wire, about Philippe Petit's tightrope walk between the World Trade Center towers, did. After accepting the award, Petit balanced the Oscar on his chin.
Posts tagged with "David Rockwell":
Possibly channeling a youth well spent watching late night reruns, David Rockwell envisioned a stage set for the 81st Academy Awards straight from the dazzling finale of 42nd Street wherein a woman's face dissolves into a crescent moon. And that would be almost as surreal as David Rockwell incorporating some paving ideas from the Piazza del Campidoglio.
From our roving correspondent Alex Gorlin, who was party-hopping the other night:
Among the guests at Aaron Betsky's 50th birthday celebration on Thursday were Henry Urbach, curator of Architecture at SFMOMA, Laurie Beckelman, UCLA's Sylvia Lavin (who was complaining to Jeff Kipnis about the mosquitoes), Susan Grant Lewin the PR Queen—she barely made the "haj" to the party—the Modern's Barry Bergdoll with Bill Ryall, his partner, Reed Kroloff and Casey Jones. Last and certainly not least was Katherine Gustafson, the Zaha of landscape design, who appeared in a regally flowing white toga-like gown. The setting was her "Garden of Paradise" at the Arsenale, a coyly-renamed installation in the Garden of Virgins, with vegetables and flowers culminating in a swirling ridge of grassy mounds above which floated giant white ballons and what looked like the remains of a parachute. All in all, an elegant evening, although with no lights on, it was pitch black and so far away that one can only imagine half the guests, a little tipsy perhaps, falling into canals on the trek home.
Robert and Holly Ivy hosted their annual Architectural Record party at the same time as Aaron's fete, causing high anxiety and handwringing among the smart set who wanted to attend both. Many cleverly thought they could go to the Garden of the Virgins and then sprint over to the Accademia Bridge where Bob's soiree was held, not knowing of the tremendous distance between the two. Bergdoll, Kroloff and Jones, and David Rockwell showed up late in the evening exhausted by the trek. Hans Hollein was already there, looking somewhat fearsome, as were Joseph and Mrs. Rykwert, Charles Jencks, and AN's own Bill Menking and Diana Darling."—Alex Gorlin