Apr 30, 2008

Nestle Museum, Mexico City, Mexico

The concept was a playful folding shape, an origami shaped bird, a spaceship, or an alebrije. An architectural experience, from the surprises, the twists and folds, and the forms and spaces they contain. (to find out more...)
This museum is built by Rojkind Arquitectos. What amazes me of this building is the manipulation on the form and how the slanting structure came about. This is only phase 1 of the project, the extension is currently under construction.

posted by s-uper-chii

Concrete Rings

Rock- USD 50$

Corner- USD 44$

Hand-made rings made from concrete and stainless steel. These two fashionable designs are only available exclusively from designboom (to find out more...)

These rings sure look simple yet elegant, a true minimalism accessory. These rings are made in Taiwan. There are 6 sizes and some of them are already sold out. I like this and i wonder if Mr. Tadao Ando has alreafy own one of this.

Text and images from: http://www.designboom.com/shop/concretering.html

posted by s-uper-chii

Apr 29, 2008

Swell House, Studio ST Architects & Z-A

A renovation and 1,000-square-foot expansion conceived for a 900-square-foot home in Highland Park, New Jersey, achieves maximum visual effect for a budget of only $400,000. Unhindered by neither a complex program nor a compelling setting, collaborating designers Studio ST Architects and Z-A took an alternative approach to suburban additions—such as contrasting old and new, borrowing the old to cover the new, or placing new inside the old.
Swell Houses's new volume appears like a mutated outgrowth of the existing house, a move inspired by salvaging the original footprint and roof to decrease demolition waste. The roof profile is extruded, twisting 90 degrees to create the terminus of a new volume that largely hovers on pilotis; that foundation, in turn, maximizes water permeability on the lowland site.
The old house has been converted into a giant room devoted to public uses, while the addition is largely private. A semi-public family room links the two. Despite the double curvature of the new volume, it is made of simplified, orthogonal surfaces.
(to find out more..)

passage & images from: http://archrecord.construction.com/residential/unbuilt/archives/2008/08_swellhouse/default.asp

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 26, 2008

Salt and Pepper in One

Salt and Pepper in One is a container that unites salt and pepper in one piece. Tilt one end for salt, the other for pepper.
Its soothing form distinguishes itself from conventional salt and pepper shakers — it blends with everyday surroundings without the hassle of hiding for special occasions. It makes itself available to us anytime.
Made of stainless steel and rubber plugs.
(to find out more..)

I like this, a stylish yet humble piece of object which form appears to have little connection to its use.

passage & images from: http://www.munirek.com/

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 23, 2008

SANAA: Works 1998 - 2008

A video of the exhibition featuring the firm's works in the last decade, currently held in the New Museum in Bowery, NY (28 March - 15 July).

(to find out more..)

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 18, 2008

Nora House, Atelier Bow-Wow

Though modestly scaled in comparison with its historic antecedents (while contemporary urban houses tend to be small, historic minka farmhouses are usually huge), Nora House reads as a single-story, barnlike building. In keeping with this exterior, the interior is essentially one big space. “In Tokyo, we have done a lot of one-room living, but in a more vertical way,” explains Tsukamoto. “Here, we developed the idea horizontally.” Spanning a height differential of 9 feet—the walk-in storage area marks the house’s lowest point, and the daughter’s play area the highest point—the functional zones within this house are spread out over nine distinct levels. Fulfilling the client’s request for a house with continuous interior space without many partitions, short runs of stairs distinguish areas without separating them completely. Three freestanding partitions function as dividers and additional lateral bracing. (to find out more..)

posted by afterrabbit

New Forest "Tree House" Study Centre

The purpose-built study spaces within the Tree House Study Centre will be suitable for use throughout the community, as well as providing a stimulating environment for children, particularly from inner-city areas, who come for the wide range of activities we offer. The idea of the Tree House Study Centre is to build a facility which is at one with its surroundings, illustrates green building practice, and is an aid to education in itself. Now we have planning permission we hope to get the building constructed and open for business as soon as possible.
Samantha Sherwood, a third-year architecture student from Oxford Brookes University, created the innovative sustainable design concept of the study centre, which incorporates rainwater collection and biomass boilers. Samantha was the winner of a competition across five Schools of Architecture in the South East, to design the concept.
Specialist tree house contractor Blue Forest has been working with Samantha to turn her vision into a ‘buildable’ architectural solution, with additional sustainability advice from environmental engineering consultancy XCO2.
(to find out more..)

passage from: http://www.cet.org.uk/news/article/20
images from: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cetbeaulieu/tags/treehouse & http://www.solentcentre.org.uk/imgdb/366001

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 15, 2008

A Tribute to Jørn Utzon

In celebration of Jørn Utzon’s 90th birthday the Danish Architectural Press have published a tribute to the man whose building became a symbol for a city.

When the publishers asked a number of Utzon’s colleagues if they would send a sketch and a birthday greeting, they poured in from all over the world. The effect of Jørn Utzon’s work, the ideas and the buildings' universal impact and importance today, are interpreted by architects including, Tadao Ando, Glenn Murcutt, Rafael Moneo, Steven Holl, Juhani Pallasmaa, and Lene Tranberg.(check out on the greetings and never before published sketches)

“It is a great honor and wonderful feeling to be appreciated by one’s colleagues.
To have been allowed to create something that enriches the lives of my fellow human beings is a wonderful gift.”
Jørn Utzon(winner of the Pritzker Prize 2003)

images & passage from:

posted by midori mizu

Apr 12, 2008

Scanline rendering vs Vray rendering

How to light up a scene for a rendering is important. The basic knowledge of pencil sketching, the relationship of lights and the material's reflection behaviour matters a lot to render a good image.
For basic rendering knowledge to be shared here:-
1. Global illumination acts as a skylight to lighten the entire scene.
2. Sun light as a key light casting shadow towards a building to emphasize the form while determining the sun direction.
3. Ambient lights as general lights to cast shadow caused by skylight. It's role to be fill light as well.
4. Internal lights to lit up the internal spaces. Where it can be added through touched up in Photoshop brush effect too.In scanline rendering, lights are articulated through the knowledge of lighting relationships.In Vray rendering engine, it is much simpler to generate Global illumination through HDRI, where the lightest and the darkest point of light to be simulated through HDRI for external scene. It is much more expansive to render an internal scene as it depends more on light bouncing that requires more calculations and considerations on light settings.3 point lighting is basic to be implemented throughout lighting an exterior scene. The proportion of Key light, Fill light and back light to stimulate the gesture of the rendered scene is important. Normal key to fill proportion would be 1:4.To render a scene, you need to observe the actual environment, how the light reacts with different material, creating different highlight parameters and the planning of your scene, the shading, the light sources, the material used, the things to be emphasized is important before starting the rendering.

Some important techniques in Vray rendering engine to share here:-
1. Get Gamma correction right at 2.2/2.5 depending on the monitor you are working on and enable overriding of Gamma on material imported to avoid twice Gamma correction on materials to save time and better effect on light feature.
2 Lowering down the secondary bounces while rendering an internal scene and raise the contrast level in Irradiance Map in the GI column would create the same effect of adjusting the curvature of color level in Photoshop.
3. Test render with Light cache as primary and secondary bounces of light to save time when determining key light position would help saving time.However, lighting a building or internal spaces is a profession and it would be very helpful to share your knowledge for users and readers. PLASA is one of international association for lighting and sound. to find out more...

A sharing of rendering knowledge & experience from young.
I am currently learning 3dsmax & is very fond of the lighting & rendering aspects, but needs to work on it a lot harder.
Do leave comments for any techniques you intend to share! Thank you.

passage from: http://architectureyp.blogspot.com/

posted by afterrabbit

BWTC turbines spin for first time

The three 29m-diameter turbine blades on Bahrain’s iconic landmark are the first in the world to be integrated on such a scale into a commercial development and are forecast to provide the equivalent of 11-15% of the power for the two towers when fully operational. The successful rotation of the blades involved collaboration between Atkins architects and engineers and turbine specialists Norwin, who were in Bahrain for the milestone event. “Having all three turbines spinning simultaneously represents an historic achievement for this landmark project and Atkins is excited to have been a major player in turning the original idea into reality” says Simha LytheRao Senior Project Manager for Atkins in Bahrain.” The use of established technologies, including type-tested turbines with minimal modifications, ensured that the additional cost incurred by incorporating turbines into the project was reduced to around 3.5% of the overall project value, making it not only an environmentally responsible but also a financially viable venture.” The BWTC design blends maritime aesthetics with the functionality of traditional wind-towers. The visually striking sail-shaped towers form a commanding silhouette on the skyline of Manama, and serve to channel the strong on-shore winds directly onto the three spinning blades. (to find out more..)

passage from: http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=2133
image from: http://www.inhabitat.com/2008/04/10/bahrain-world-trade-center-turbines-activate/#more-9648

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 10, 2008

DATUM:KL 2008 - Distinction

Well well.. that's the flyer for the new DATUM Forum in KL~ (click image for larger view) in conjunction with ArchiDex 08, which is Malaysia's biggest annual architectural event.

I missed the DATUM 2007.. I missed Nishizawa.. that's my very very big regret!

This year we get Kengo Kuma, he's another 'mysterious' architect who has 'something' I am keen to look deeper into. So, I'll go this time.

Of course! Not to forget the other interesting architects who will also be present at this forum to share with us their works, experience, thoughts and passions!

See you there~!

posted by afterrabbit

Dafen Art Museum - Urbanus

Urbanus’ proposal went beyond the design of a building to include a program of uses for the institution itself. “A typical art museum would be out place,” says Yan Meng, one of three partners at Urbanus. Less a ‘museum’ in the traditional sense, and more a mixed-use arts center, the project responds to both the topography and unique cultural setting of its urban environment. Urbanus designed a three-story building, in which each floor has a different function. (to find out more..)

passage & images from: http://archrecord.construction.com/ar_china/BWAR/0804/0804_dafen_art/0804_dafen_art.asp

posted by afterrabbit

Asphalt Spot by R&Sie

Set amid farmland in rural Japan, this small project is a bizarre hybrid of landscape art and infrastructure. It consists of a square, 20-space car park that looks as if it has been struck by an earthquake – its corners have been lifted into the air, its surface ripples and buckles and a great gash has been torn in its black asphalt surface. Asphalt Spot was completed in 2003 as part of the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial 2003 – a cultural festival that saw 157 artists and architects from 23 countries produce 224 artworks in the Shinano Basin of Niigata Prefecture. Despite being one of Japan’s main rice-producing regions the area has experienced severe depopulaiton in recent years and the triennal was intended to attract visitors to the region. Designed by Parisian architects R&Sie, Asphalt Spot was commissioned by the Art Front Gallery in the nearby town of Tokamashi as an exhibition venue with integrated visitor facilities and parking. Yet the architects treated the project as an art installation itself, designing a structure that mimics the bumpy terrain and merges seamlessly with the surrounding landscape. (to find out more..) text by dezeen editor Marcus Fairs.

passage & images from: http://www.dezeen.com/2007/03/11/asphalt-spot-by-rsie/

posted by afterrabbit

Glenburn House (Peninsula House) - Sean Godsell Architects

A 30m x 7.2m oxidized steel portal structure has been embedded into the side of a sand dune. This structure forms the 'exoskeleton' of the house upon which the weather controlling outer skin - operable timber shutters, glass roof and walls are all mounted. The simple programme of the house - a living/eating room, library and sleeping room forms the 'endoskeleton' of the building. The verandah is abstracted in this work to become the outer layer of the building. There is no distinction in that sense between the function of the roof and the function of the walls. The house itself is the nurturing inner room, protected from the elements by a course outer hide. The interplay of the occupant between these two elements activates the simple form of the building (by the opening and closing of the facade) and transforms it into an organic domain. This effect is further accentuated by the emptying and filling of the building with light, filtered through the timber screens, which maps the course of the day and the time of the year in the shape and extent of the shadows cast by the screens.My interest lies in the iconic nature of the verandah to both Asian + European cultures and the common architectural ground which they afford to the region. (to find out more..)

passage from: http://www.seangodsell.com/
images from: http://archrecord.construction.com/residential/recordHouses/2008/08glenburn.asp

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 9, 2008

Qui est Paul

Qui est Paul?, a new brand of high-end furniture will be launched during the Milan furniture fair, in the off circuit around the Duomo, in the prestigious "Circolo Filologico" (Via Clerici, 10). In a way, Qui est Paul?, or Who is Paul? in English, tells the story of the life and values of a man through the objects he acquires and holds.The first pieces consist of rotomolded furniture that can be used in or out. They have been designed in order to be very sculptural, while remaining highly functional and ergonomic. They are all made out of fully recyclable PE.This first collection has been designed by Studio Paul and by Alain Gilles who in his "second life" has worked for Xavier Lust and Quinze and Milan and is currently being edited by several international brands such as Bonaldo. (to find out more..)

Rock Garden - Modular Planter Design Alain Gilles

Sliced Chair Design Alain Gilles

Tanslation(?) Armchair Design Alain Gilles

passage & images from: http://www.dexigner.com/design_news/qui-est-paul.html

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 6, 2008

House RR - Andrade Morettin

This summer house, by Andrade Morettin, is situated at a few metres from the sea, on the north coast of the State of São Paulo, a place with exuberant vegetation and hot humid climate. The project began with the idea of a big shelter, a “shell”, under which they could locate the programme and protect from the intense sun and frequent rains, without blocking the permanent natural cross ventilation. This roof measuring six metres high, with a surface of eighteen by eight metres, was built using a prefabricated timber structure with galvanized steel joints. The lateral and top faces are made of steel cladding with EPS filling. (to find out more..)

Am loving the non-merging yet blurring of inside & outside. The experience is so unique, like I'm in the rain but don't get wet.

passage from: http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=2061
images from: http://www.andrademorettin.com.br/

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 3, 2008

Architecture Is a Team Sport

So why do they award the Pritzker Prize to just one person?

The Pritzker Prize, which this year was awarded to French architect Jean Nouvel, is often referred to as the Nobel Prize of architecture. It is an inaccurate analogy. Nobel Prizes, whether in literature, chemistry, or physics, are given to individuals for individual work; buildings are the result of teamwork. Sometimes Nobels are awarded to small teams of scientists, and researchers do have assistants, but not 140 of them, which is the size of Ateliers Jean Nouvel, whose head office is in Paris but which maintains site offices in London, Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, and Minneapolis.

This is not to take anything away from Nouvel, an imaginative if sometimes heavy-handed architect. He deserves credit for assembling—and leading—the talented teams that get his designs built. But teams they are. One of the most striking features of the bullet-shaped Agbar Tower in Barcelona, designed in association with the firm b720 Arquitectos, is its shimmering exterior glass screen. The screen was fabricated by the Italian firm Permasteelisa, one of the leading curtain-wall manufacturers in the world, responsible for some of the most striking walls of recent times—including that of Frank Gehry's Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Norman Foster's Hearst Building in New York, and Coop Himmelblau's BMW Welt in Munich.

The Pritzker Prize promotes the fiction that buildings spring from the imagination of an individual architect—the master builder. This wasn't true in the Middle Ages, when there were real master builders, and it isn't true today. The modern architect works with scores of specialists, first and foremost structural engineers, without whom most architects today would be lost. Armies of consultants are responsible for everything from acoustics and lighting to energy conservation and security. Fabricators like Permasteelisa manufacture—and influence the design of—specialized building components, and contractors put the whole thing together.

Construction has become so complex that responsibility for design and building is commonly split between design architects and so-called executive architects, who oversee the preparation of construction documents and supervise the building process. The international nature of high-profile architectural practices—Ateliers Jean Nouvel is currently building 40 projects in 13 countries—means that local associate firms like b720 Arquitectos also play a key role in the process. Given the messy and unpredictable nature of construction, it is often the person on the building site who makes critical design decisions.

The other crucial ingredient for a successful building is the client, not only because he pays for it—though that is no mean contribution, since building costs are notoriously difficult to estimate. It is often said that good buildings require good clients, and great buildings demand great clients—who will support the architect but also challenge him. It is surely no coincidence, as John Silber points out in Architecture of the Absurd, that Gehry's IAC headquarters building in New York, designed for Barry Diller, is the best work the architect has done in years.

The fact that architecture is a team sport is what makes buildings so interesting. Art is often chiefly the reflection of an individual sensibility, but architecture tells us something about the society that produced it, its technology, its values, its taste. In that sense, building buildings is more like making movies than creating personal works of art. The Academy Awards recognize that the auteur theory of filmmaking has little relevance to making major movies; that's why Oscars are awarded in all those categories—art direction, sound mixing, makeup—and why the best-picture prize is given to the producers, not the director, writer, or actors. Perhaps the Pritzker should be given to the "best building." The prize would be picked up by the architect, the engineer, the builder, and, oh yes, the client.

passage from:

posted by midori mizu

Ghery's New Residence

It is not often that an architecture master reinvents himself, but that is precisely what Pritzker Prize winning architect Frank Gehry has done. Gehry, who first won international recognition with his own residence, a masterpiece of post-modern architecture, has revealed what can only be described as the first post post-modern architectural work, the New Gehry Residence, completely confounding both his critics and promoters alike.
The New Gehry Residence is located in a nearby suburb of Los Angeles is the newest reinvention of Gehry’s signature architecture. The house, which seems to resemble your typical two story McMansion, has all the details that one would expect from his work. The odd shapes resting one on top of the other seem to look like a gable roof, but are in fact so complex, that it took NASA engineers, and builder and his crew, 6 months to make them work. “We couldn’t get them to work together” said one of NASA’s chief engineers. “When Frank asked us to have the larger shape be nested on top of the other two, we new that this was going to be challenge.”
(to find out more..)

It's for April Fool by the way..
I was awed for a moment! Ghery's facade plus greek columns, Yucks!
Guys don't let this happen in the future k.

passage & image from: http://www.inhabitat.com/2008/04/01/the-new-gehry-residence/#more-9354

posted by afterrabbit

Apr 2, 2008

Natural Architecture

There is an emerging art movement that is exploring mankind's desire to reconnect to the earth, through the built environment. Referred to as 'natural architecture', it aims to create a new, more harmonious, relationship between man and nature by exploring what it means to design with nature in mind. The roots of this movement can be found in earlier artistic shifts like the 'land art' movement of the late nineteen sixties. Although this movement was focused on protesting the austerity of the gallery and the commercialization of art, it managed to expand the formal link between art and nature. This has helped develop a new appreciation of nature in all forms of art and design. The 'natural architecture' movement aims to expand on 'land art' by acting as a form of activism rather than protest. This new form of art aims to capture the harmonious connection we seek with nature by merging humanity and nature through architecture. The core concept of the movement is that mankind can live harmoniously with nature, using it for our needs while respecting its importance. (to find out more...)

posted by s-uper-chii

Apr 1, 2008

Jean Nouvel - Laureate of the Pritzker Prize 2008

Jean Nouvel has talked of creating buildings that he hopes will disappear into their surroundings, defy easy characterization, and that will become dated. And yet with today’s announcement by The Hyatt Foundation that this 62-year-old Frenchman is the 2008 laureate of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, the profession’s highest honor, Nouvel’s oeuvre is certain to invite close study by many generations to come. In fact, contrary to the architect’s own desire, his buildings already stand out.
Many of Nouvel’s more than 200 works are concentrated in France but increasingly they are located around the world. They include a branch of the Louvre Museum at the Saadiyat Cultural District, in Abu Dhabi, expected to open in 2012. It will be covered by a dome-shaped, latticework roof whose filigreed pattern expresses Islamic influences—also evident in Nouvel’s first widely acclaimed building, the Institut du Monde Arabe, opened in Paris in 1987. But any resemblance between it and the Louvre is fleeting. Each of Nouvel’s designs acknowledges a unique context while making use of technologies and materials that are of the moment. If that makes them look dated after a few years, the architect is unconcerned.
(to find out more..)

passage from: http://archrecord.construction.com/news/daily/archives/080331pritzker.asp
image from: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/arts/la-et-pritzker31mar31,0,351027.story

posted by afterrabbit

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