This building both amazes and terrifies me. I mean, it’s a beautiful building, and the structure is extremely creative, but it’s also a 10-story mall, which is absolutely ridiculous, that’s the last thing anyone needs. That said, maybe it’s a new kind of mall? Here’s how a designer from UN Studio, the architects behind this project, describe the building:
“The department store is no longer solely a commercial space, it now offers the architect the opportunity to build upon and expand the social and cultural experience of the visitor. If today we are seeing the museum as a supermarket, then we are also now seeing the department store as a museum.”
So really the intention is to shift the idea of what a mall can be to perhaps be something else entirely? It’s a really interesting concept for sure, but I wonder if people will view it as such, and if they do, how does someone managing a place like this make that happen? It’s almost like they’d have to put a bunch of psychologists in a room with a bunch of environmental designers to make the magic happen. If you’d like to see more photos of the building, you should click here.
Found through KNSTRCT
Yes, yes: a second section of The High Line opened recently in Manhattan. It’s lovely! It’s the extension of an innovative, urban park. It’s impossible to copy other places. My favorite part of the second bit happens to be this sculpture by Sarah Sze. On either side of the walkway, these forced perspective grids rise, dotted with wooden and steel structures. These structures not only play off the urban environment that make up their backdrop, but provide shelter to the wild animals that make the High Line home.
As a kid, I could not believe some of the things my mom would throw away: we’re talking high-quality junk. “What?! You’re going to throw away the stick-on-bow from this present?!” or “Are you sure we don’t need to keep this ratty, thread-bare towel in case some of our other towels run away?” We didn’t need to keep the bows or towels, but I always hated throwing away anything potentially useful. Maybe I got this from my grandma who lived through the Great Depression, but I doubt it since I failed to acquire her disinterest in expiration dates. Sometimes, I would talk my mom into letting me take her “trash” and do something with it.
But I never did this. My assemblages of useless refuse remained useless and never rematerialized as the enclosure of a gathering space. Raumlabor Berlin has made such an enclosure out of what looks like debris from a tornado or the season finale of Hoarders. But this is Germany, an in my next broad generalization of an an entire country, I’m going to assume that the neighbors are pretty happy about it. Does Doris Salcedo live in Darmstadt?
Photos by Walter Herfst
Remember these renderings from back in April? Now, the Serpentine Pavilion has been realized and opens to the public on 1st of July in Hyde Park. This summer’s pavilion seems more somber than some previous iterations, an introspective space that comes off more like an interior… just an interior with big plants in the middle of the room. It’s being called a garden within a garden. The sun-lit pants against the shadowy backdrop of the blueish black walls is nice, and largely the architecture is background, putting this verdant and disorganized mass of a greenery in the forefront.
Architect Peter Zumthor says about his design: “The hortus conclusus that I dream of is enclosed all around and open to the sky. Every time I imagine a garden in an architectural setting, it turns into a magical place. I think of gardens that I have seen, that I believe I have seen, that I long to see, surrounded by simple walls, columns, arcades or the façades of buildings – sheltered places of great intimacy where I want to stay for a long time.” If you’re lucky enough to find yourself in London this summer, you must plan a visit.
Photographs by Jorge Gamboa
The kids in Santa Marta, Colombia are lucky little five year olds. This is their kindergarten: a cluster of shotcrete classrooms both open and sprawling designed by Giancarlo Mazzanti. Was your kindergarten this cool? Mine wasn’t. The interior quality of the classrooms is probably more distracting to me than to the kids that actually go there, who are undoubtedly aching to get outside and play. It’s easy to be lured outside of structures this open to the exterior, especially when you’re in kindergarten and you have no desire to nap, learn months of the year, or count.
But they will learn. Maybe one day the kids will be able to count high enough to enumerate the good qualities of their school. Sadly, it’s not likely to happen before they graduate into double-loaded corridors disconnected from exterior and shut off from the daylight they will remember from kindergarten.