Take a look at the Tower House by the firm GLUCK+, featured in the video above. As principal Thomas Gluck explains here, the materials for the house were chosen not to blend in with the surrounding forest, but to reflect it. In this way, the house changes throughout the day and across seasons.
In this week’s New York Times, Michael Kimmelman discusses the growing need for vibrant public spaces in cities. The piece posits that corporate-owned public plazas— known as “privately owned public spaces” (POPS)—fail to reflect the interests of the community that is meant to use them. Instead, curbside “parklets” in San Francisco, as well as other successful DIY-style initiatives that require less trickle-down decision-making efforts, exemplify what could be the future of planning for public spaces.
International protests in support of Turkey’s Occupy Gezi movement (with its accompanying hashtag, #OccupyGezi) have spread like wildfire since the clashes began on May 28. Art and politics collided at the Venice Biennale as roughly 100 curators and artists banded together in Piazza San Marco in an effort to use one of the global art world’s largest events to raise awareness of the mounting violence and lack of media coverage in Turkey.
Check out what four leading architecture firms have imagined for the future of Penn Station and Madison Square Garden. This collection of renderings was submitted to a design competition hosted by the Municipal Arts Society of New York, and is currently on display at the Times Center in midtown Manhattan. The proposals range from Diller, Scofidio + Renfro’s “city within a city” concept, envisioning a dynamic environment that is both a point of passage and a destination for commuters and locals alike, to Skidmore, Owings & Merrill’s grand plan, which includes a public park four times larger than Bryant Park, designating the plot’s four-city-block ground plane strictly for public use.
Word Play, by artist and architectural designer Chat Travieso, is a tiny, free library overlooking the East River waterfront on the Lower East Side. The DIY-style library encourages public gathering by providing seating and a place for people to share books, relax, and enjoy the view. The word “library” is printed on the book station in English, Spanish, and Chinese to visually represent the diverse population of the neighborhood.
David van der Leer, the newly appointed executive director of the non-profit architectural think tank Van Alen Institute (and a former Lab curator), is inviting designers to participate in a competition to redesign the organization’s new street-level office location. The competition aims to inspire ideas that reflect the main activities of the organization, which include competitions, research, consultancy, curatorial projects, and public programs. Find out more about Van Alen’s design competition and other current initiatives.Have a suggestion for Friday links? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your link, first name, and where you’re from. We’re excited to hear from you!