The towns in Japan’s Tōhoku region were practically wiped off the face of the earth by the tsunami on March 9, 2011. What little remains is hastily being replaced by new settlements built on elevated plateaus. No memorials are wanted. But former residents – and architect initiatives such as Architecture for Humanity – disagree with the hasty reconstruction plans made up by the central government.
Jeffrey Kipnis’ collection of mind-blowing theoretical essays in architecture addresses the question of qualities. Yet stimulated by contemporary architecture’s sensorial affects and epistemic potentials, it also points to the discursive capacities of critical writing as such. The book is a remarkable insight into the mind of one of today’s most piercing and playful architectural thinkers.
Sou Fujimoto’s new library for the famous Musashino Art University in Tokyo, Japan, suggests that in the internet-age a library is just that: a library! All it needs are good lighting, good orientation, bookshelves, and nice reading areas. Fujimoto’s Musashino Art University Library has all these ingredients, and more.
This week, some good news for Frank Gehry, some not-so-great news for OMA, and the Shard is about to get a baby brother. Then, Foster proposes a bold scheme for London cyclists and a dreamlike video of LA.
The use of wood in multi-storey buildings is an art form almost completely buried a hundred years ago. Reinforced concrete structures became the norm worldwide. In recent years, however, the sustainability debate has brought a renaissance to wood and an interest in large, urban, wooden structures has awakened. Shigeru Ban, well-known for his use of paper and paperboard, has built an office building in Zurich made entirely of wood, or to be more precise 2,000 m3 of Austrian spruce.