Kids' Playroom with ArcHive Arch. and Studio SHK


A recent assignment to shoot the interiors for a model home. The kids' room in particular. Appropriately furnished and colored. In addition the the usual room furniture, the owner commissioned a sculptural piece called "the termite mound", designed and build by ArcHive Architecture of San Francisco. It's built out of stacked layers of 3/4" plywood, CNC machine cut. As pictured, inhabitable by one playful kid or adventurous adult. Or by the kid in you, regardless of your actual age or physical size... I will follow up win a separate post with more on this.


Fondation Louis Vuitton // Frank Gehry

Gehry, always overdoing it... here again, at Foundation Louis Vuitton - because we all know "98 percent of everything that is built and designed today is pure shit" I think he is just in the expensive part of the 98 percent. Regardless, I needed to stop by. Interesting to look under the skin, to see the structure supporting the trusses and glass panels.

"Let me tell you one thing," the architect replied to a few journalists "In this world we are living in, 98 percent of everything that is built and designed today is pure shit. There’s no sense of design, no respect for humanity or for anything else. They are damn buildings and that’s it."... "Once in a while, however, a group of people do something special. Very few, but God, leave us alone."

As expected, press coverage everywhere. All these articles are over two years old, as the building was completed Fall 2014 --- The Verge, "Frank Gehry drops a spaceship in Paris. Legendary architect flashes defiant middle finger to his critics with new Fondation Louis Vuitton art museum". The Guardian, Archdaily, Architectural Digest, Design Boom, Vanity Fair, Vogue.



Philharmonie de Paris // Jean Nouvel

I believe this is the first building by Jean Nouvel that I am seeing. Probably because I've avoided Paris my whole life, where many of his buildings are... Philharmonie 1 is an organic design with innovative forms rising like a hill within the Parc de la Villette. Yes, it remains a Jean Nouvel design, despite his efforts to remove his name from the building. It is a little bit hard to digest, but we should not just walk away from our design, whether it turns out the way we envision it or not... his thoughts: "The architecture is martyred, the details sabotaged," he said in a Le Monde editorial, "so taxpayers will have to pay, once again, to correct these aberrational decisions."

Regardless, it has some interesting moments that are worth capturing. This is why I spent more time there than I should have. I think the texture that is being used to cover almost all surfaces works well with the overall geometry. I let The Guardian tell more about the design "Some have compared it to a pile of broken paving stones. Others, to a rusty spaceship crash-landed on the edge of the city." and "the building certainly seems to embody the anguish it has caused both architect, client and taxpayer"

It has been extensively covered on Archdaily, New York Times, Design Boom and many more...

UC Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive // Diller Scofidio + Renfro

UC Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive // Diller Scofidio + Renfro - a building where the interiors are more interesting than the exterior. This is due in part to the fact that a good part of the structure is existing, and the integration with the new structure is not really that successful... The new BAMPFA integrates the 48,000-square-foot Art Deco–style former UC Berkeley printing plant with a 35,000-square-foot new structure.

Dezeen: "John King, architecture critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, praised the new BAMPFA complex, for which DS+R repurposed a historic printing plant and added a new metal-clad volume." More coverage on Dezeen, Archdaily, Architectural Record.

A day at the museum - New Museum, SANAA, NYC

A day at the museum – a must do, both for the exhibit and for the building itself – SANAA did great again. A deceivingly simple interiors. Some great moments inside, the narrow stair in particular. It's an exit stair, really, so purely utilitarian, and the space constraints created a narrow, elongated, expressive volume. I am no covering the exterior, which has been photographed over and over again by many...

New Museum, NYC

Campbell Sports Center // Steven Holl Architects


While in New York, I did a little detour to see one of Steven Holl's recent projects - Campbell Sports Center.

From Archdaily: "The Campbell Sports Center aims at serving the mind, the body and the mind/body for aspiring scholar-athletes. The design concept “points on the ground, lines in space”—like field play diagrams used for football, soccer, and baseball—develops from point foundations on the sloping site. Just as points and lines in diagrams yield the physical push and pull on the field, the building’s elevations push and pull in space."

Plenty of articles about this project, on Steven Holl's website, Dezeen, Design Boom and many more.

Sugar Hill Development // David Adjaye

This is probably the first of David Adjaye's projects that I am seeing in person. I am more impressed with the overall massing and questioning the cladding and texture a little bit. After spending a few days in NYC, it became obvious to me that this scheme really belongs there. From Archdaily:

"Unusually, the scheme incorporates a public program, with a children’s museum and early childhood center, which resonate with Adjaye Associates’ commitment to a wider urban and cultural responsibility. The 13-storey, 124- apartment affordable housing complex will be located on W. 155th Street at St. Nicholas Avenue. The practice worked closely with the client and local community to ensure the design is tied to its history, practical and aesthetic requirements, through a series of workshops and planning meetings. The brief required a modern design complementary to its surrounding environment of Gothic revival row-houses."

As expected, numerous articles about this, everywhere: Architectural Review, Curbed, BD Online, Citylab.