The Mercedes-Benz Museum ~ you’ve seen the elevators and tornado and while the cars and exhibitions are amazing, there are so many parts of the architecture that were surreal and beautiful! From the way they play with the constant combination of sun and artificial lighting, to the way the building is constantly leading you to swirl downwards from past to present, to the engraved concrete markings to denote what section you’re in, to the horse ~ the first… pre-automobile? It’s much like a car museum meets history museum meets sweeping art gallery filled with surprising textural juxtapositions at every turn… so take a peek at the next page for a full gallery of images ~ it’s less about the cars and more about the amazing images the space creates for you.
Entries tagged with: architecture
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The Mercedes-Benz Museum houses an incredible amount of automotive history, unexpected surprises, and is in and of itself an absolutely mind blowing architectural space. That being said there are a million and one different posts i could write about it, and none would do it justice fully. So, let’s do this my way and start with my favorite detail… the ELEVATORS are amazing! When you enter the space, you can see straight up to the roof (and a peek at the sunlight coming in) as floors spiral all the way… you could even say the ceiling has a Mercedes-Benz star inspired shape… and then you notice what look three like vertical tracks going up… and these awesome metal pod (with abstract ghost like eyes/shape) moving up and down… it’s surreal. A bit overly concrete feeling (gave me a similar vibe to Oakley HQ’s entrance)… there was something very sterile/scifi feeling about the entrance space. I could have stood there and stared up at the mesmerizing symmetry of it all for ages. So see more close ups of it in action on the next page!
p.s. Also amazing are those giant panels… the ones that look like concrete? they arent. That’s how they move cars into the various floors.
p.p.s. Additionally, when it comes to ventilating the space and quickly dealing with a fire/etc… this building is the official world-record holder for the World’s Largest Artificial Tornado! It’s over 100ft, generated from the center of the roof… i’ve just updated the post with a few videos on the next page…
Popped by the Architizer launch party tonight at the A+D Museum (major work in progress going on across the street from LACMA) ~ and then the Cool Haus Ice Cream Truck came! And it was ice cream for dinner…Architectural ice cream! From Richard Meyer Lemon to Frank Behry and Rem “Coolhaus”… the imagery for the Cool Haus brand of architecturally inspired ice cream is adorable… sadly the ice cream cookie sandwiches are just normal looking… i secretly hoped for a plate with a fake lawn and a cookie sandwich shaped like a house… that i could then decorate with doors and windows of sugary faux-glass panes? Take a peek at the scene and the truck and my cookies and cream smooshed between oatmeal raisin cookies on the next page!
p.s. the paper is edible, they’ll even let you print your own logo on it… but just because its edible doesn’t mean it tastes good!
I feel like such a tease. I keep showing you parts of Oakley HQ, but not the insides… well not the normal insides, just the secret bar so far. And since these are in fact their real offices with 1500 people or so… there is a lot of work going on, and the majority of it confidential… so for everything i CAN show you, just know that there were probably 10 things i was dying to take pics of to share with you… whether they were prototypes, new designs, renders, sketches, or even amazing future wall tiles that i’m still lusting after… BUT that being said, take a peek at how awesome the architecture is, a peek down memory lane of Oakley’s history, the ejection seats CEO Colin’s waiting room… and his mine… camouflage covered cubicles… a few allowed sketches… the GI Joe looking guy dropping out of a helicopter on me when i looked up… machine gun in the hallway… AWESOME diorama’s to put your childhood shoebox setups to shame… and a bit more.
On Oakley fun facts: Did you know the name came from that adorable dog up there? And you can see the original 70s acorn logo from their bike grip days on the next page too!
While in Palm Springs at the Ace, i was told that i HAD to go see the Integratron. How good a word is that? I didn't even know what it meant, but was instantly intrigued. So, while on super secret brainstorm adventure in Palm Springs this weekend, we jumped in the car, took off an hour into the desert not quite sure what to expect... although we did know that it had something to do with amazingness, alien abductions, domes, a sound bath, and something about our neurons getting massaged. Dome + sunset + desert = gorgeous pics.
So while i'm still on my thing about circles lately ~ and concentric circles from directly below... the architecture of the Integratron blew my mind to wander around in... and honestly, i think there must be something wrong with me, because the Sound bath (you lay on the mats in the dome, and they "play 9 quartz crystal singing bowls live, each one keyed to the energy centers or chakras of the body, where sound is nutrition for the nervous system." and it's on Rolling Stone Magazine's 2009 Hot List) ~ i couldn't lay through the whole thing, it made me feel like i wanted to scream and dissonant sounds vibrating through my head just started to hurt. BUT that being said, it was pretty amazing the way they resonated around the space... really staring at the architecture and lighting as the sunset around us was far more fascinating to me. So take a peek at the random pics on the next page... LOVE the colors in the desert sunsets...
While i seldom do party pics, i'm fascinated by Absolut and the way they brand experiences so nicely... This was their big 30th Anniversary Party for the Art Collection... and the lighting in the giant black cube they constructed for the party next to the Lydmar Hotel was this ominous mysterious structure that popped up while we were staying there, and they wouldn't let us peek in until the event itself... so once in there with such cool lighting and visualizations and bands/djs playing... the pictures of the bar, the bottles and glasses, the scene, and the straws even! I just had to share! The colors came out so beautifully!
Also ~ i ran out tonight (day after the party) but was a bit too late to get black cube pics, however did get some very cool mid-deconstruction pics! If you see the pics on the next page, just imagine that covered in black...
So now you've seen the creatures of the California Academy of Sciences ~ ready to see what the scene was like for NightLife (their Thurs late night party/events ~ with drinks, food, djs, and more)... basically imagine going to an incredibly awesome museum/science center... but no kids! and the scene is like a 25-55 singles/date night! and as the evening progresses, the drunkeness runs a bit rampant... definitely have to feel for the poor museum folks who had to chase a few inebriated folks through the rather steep planetarium... and those starfish in the tidepools where it's one hand in the tank and the other holding your beer with your arm around your girl... Interesting scene. And BEAUTIFUL space! Definitely worth doing the VIP tour if you've never been, since you get some behind the scenes sneak peeks, checking out the roof in a tiny group of about 15, skipping the rainforest queue, a look in the Vault, reserved passes for the planetarium show (and they let you in first!)... oh, and open bar too. Anyhow, take a peek at the experience!
The Bloomframe is a reality! Not that it wasn't real before when i posted about it about 2.5 years ago, but now its in production!!! There is something so thrilling about watching these ideas grow and garner so much interest as concepts and make it into working production models! And don't take my word for it... there's even a VIDEO! See the video and more pics on the next page! If i had a second story, i'd definitely want one!
"The Bloomframe® balcony, designed by Hofman Dujardin Architects and developed and manufactured by Hurks geveltechniek, is the winner of the prestigious Wallpaper* Design Award 2009 in the category Most-life-enhancing-product." Additionally it's picked up - 1st prize Audi Design Award 2008, 1st prize Red Dot Design Award 2008 Germany, Nomination Index Design Award 2009 Denmark, Nomination Design Award of the Federal Republic of Germany 2009, and Nomination MKB Innovation Top 100 2009. And there are various options/sizes/etc ~ take a peek at more pics (and the video!) on the next page!
On inspirational spaces ~ and that very odd feeling of wishing i had a huge office filled with creatives to hang out and play with (not that you kids here on the internet aren't fun!) ~ who knew that answering a random email/twitter would lead to having such an inspiring lunch over at TBWA\Chiat\Day, and getting a chance to explore their VERY fun office space over in Playa Del Rey? I suddenly have the hankering to break out the vinyl cutter and fill unexpected spots with giant quotes... play with designing guest stickers (for people entering the house/office???)... spray painting giant logos out on the floor of the patio... build a BAR out of surfboards... and so much more silliness... It was really incredible to be in a place that so clearly prioritized creativity and the generation of fun ideas. Don't get me wrong, i've always loved advertising, and i REALLY love the visual and innovative sides... but recently as i've learned about advertising on the web, i've gotten to see the less fun side of it (negotiations, accounts, ideas that get devolved until unrecognizable - as well as incredible ones of course!)... I guess you could say it was fun to have that moment of "ooooh so THIS is where my crazy campaigns and banner ads come from"... and just so nice to connect with real people behind the artwork, ideas, and campaigns.
SO ~ take a peek inside TBWA\Chiat\Day, the incredible land of ad legend, Lee Clow... tons of pics on the next page!
p.s. Huge thanks to all the TBWA\Chiat\Day-ers who knew NOTCOT ~ it's such an honor to hear the sites help keep you inspired! And i'm not kidding about being curious to see what else you find out there that i miss!
I keep hearing about SciFi/Syfy's Caprica recently ~ so got curious and checked out the DVD on directv tonight ~ and i love the designy details of this alternate reality. Particularly the tennis court!!! And the architecture of the main house, the bookshelves, and the computer sheets... take a peek at some screenshots on the next page!
i must admit i haven't really watched battlestar yet, but it has come up so many times in the last week alone, definitely need to do some catching up?
I love the way Spanish designer/illustrator, Borja Bonaque portrays urban landscapes ~ they have a certain retro futuristic glow to them ~ and feel so fun on skateboard decks as well! The water towers are adorable. I've had her images open in tabs all weekend, kept getting too distracted by them to actually get this post up until now! See more of my favorites on the next page!
Firstly, omg its so cold... so when we headed over to Old Ebbitt's Grill for dinner we couldn't resist wandering by on the walk back to the hotel. (Ebbitts was established in 1856, and has a Beaux-Arts facade, mahogany and velvet booths and bars set in marble, brass and beveled glass.)... when we wandered across the street seating and portopotties were all set up, and it looks like they just got the huge booth for the Obamas to view the parade from up! The cop/guards were telling us that they even take the whole thing down the day of! So here are some quick pics we snapped with the little point and shoot, where we were sooooo cold we didn't even want to take our gloves off... Although this is a few blocks from the hotel, unlikely we'll get this close again on inauguration day, but pretty interesting to take a look at up close! Also see some pics of the white house behind it as well all on the next page...
I'm also taking this week in DC off from most work/email ~ so posts from me might be lighter, but i'm still editing posts on the other sites like usual...
More Mobile! Portable Architecture for Today ~ Edited by Jennifer Siegal ~ this book showed up recently from the Princeton Architectural Press, and its so awesome, i think i'm finally figuring out how to share books with you guys... So i've scanned some of my favorite pages on the next page for you to check out!
This book is the follow up to her 2002 book, Mobile: the art of mobile architecture (which i will now have to go track down!) - for regular readers, you know i've got a thing for mobile architecture, especially shipping container architecture! So this book is just incredibly inspiring to flip through the many fascinating projects! Check out the next page to see some of the best pages!
NOTCOT Note: Lucky! Sub-Studio was invited to go see Chicago through the eyes of Volkswagen, specifically while cruising around in their new 2009 CC, while dining on molecular gastronomy goodness, and checking out the humble abode of Frank Lloyd Wright ... and all we got is a post filled with pictures of Anna's adventures! I'm so fascinated by the studio and foodie pics on the next page!
A few weeks ago, I made a trip out to Chicago to review and test drive the new Volkswagen 2009 CC. Along the way, we got to see Chicago, have a 20-course dinner at molecular gastronomy restaurant Moto, and visit Frank Lloyd Wright's home and studio in the Oak Park suburbs of the city. Check out my adventures through pictures on the next page!
I interviewed a fictitious house! Ok, well that's the one liner i've used for people who either don't know Twitter, Sci-Fi's Eureka, or both. For those who know ~ I twitterviewed a self actuated residential automated habitat! (aka S.A.R.A.H.)... and perhaps the most unexpected and exciting part of the whole experience was getting a sneak peek at the creative background for this television wonderhouse ~ while twitterviewing, S.A.R.A.H. shared some blueprints, set photos, and early sketches of what the house was planned to look like. Definitely some fun creative food for thought...
So first, here's a little background ~ Eureka has been one of my tv indulgences for some time now... there's something so playful and creatively inspiring about how they've managed to mix some very smart, sciencey ideas with some very pretty, glossy, innovative gadgetry in their magically hidden town of geniuses (you can watch full episodes on the Eureka site now if you want to see what i mean). Much of what shows up, often reminds me of crazy designer concepts and prototypes we dream up and read about constantly... So when i found out they decided to go all web 2.0 and have both a twitter (written by the house AI) and a tumblr (Eureka Unscripted - the behind the scenes blog), i couldn't resist reaching out to see if they were willing to take it one step further and let me interview the AI over twitter! Afterall, we seldom do interviews here, and definitely focus more on design than people, so how perfect is it to interview the design versus the designer? So as you can see, the idea quickly blossomed, and last night turned into a fun hour long ramble between us over twitter, which even exposed some visually inspiring behind the scenes sneak peeks (including one of my messy desk)!
See the full transcript as well as some of the reactionary tweets on the next page ~ and if you need some catching up first - jump to the background of S.A.R.A.H. and a quick visual overview!
Another Outside Lands' Eco-lands discovery ~ that beyond the living roof, solar panels, and more sustanable architecture going into the new California Academy of Sciences building reopening in Sept in Golden Gate Park ~ they are using recycled DENIM insulation! So if you're not sure what to do with all those old jeans, apparently this is a great way to make better use of them!
For their latest Design Issue, Canadian magazine The Block commissioned chocolatier Thomas Haas to replicate the now-iconic 1949 Eames House in CHOCOLATE! Funniest thing is that this house is right down the street, and i've probably driven by multiple times a day for years...
"This sweet miniature design mimics the original structure Charles and Ray Eames created as part of Arts & Architecture magazine's Case Study Houses program. The program asked prominent architects of the day to design affordable and cost-efficient homes as possible solutions to the post-WWII housing boom. The modernist Pacific Palisades home is a semi-prefab wonder; the airy steel-and-glass structure with its brightly coloured panels was built in just three days. The Block's modernist chocolate dollhouse took 30 hours to complete."
Check out the photos, The Block issue cover, and article (including Thomas Haas' Chocolate Shortbread Recipe)... perhaps it's inspiration for gingerbread house building this year?
NOTCOT Note: Here's another fun one from our resident architect, Anna (Sub-Studio)!
David Lewis of Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis was one of my studio professors back when I was studying architecture at Cornell and he was very influential in the way that I learned how to draw and present information. LTL has perfected the art of multi-media drawing, using computer models to generate the building forms and to create severe, impossible perspectives and sections, and then hand-drawing hyper-detailed drawings which are layered on top of the model. The meticulousness of the drawings is amazing and I love the texture that the pencil provides - the more intense and detailed a section of a drawing, the dirtier it is.
Besides great drawings, LTL also creates really beautiful built spaces that are focused on materials and construction methods. The same attention to detail in their drawings shows up in their built work. I've only chosen to include their restaurant work in this post (after the jump), but LTL also has a bunch of great large scale projects and competitions on their website. If you want to see more of their drawn work, you should definitely check out a recently published a book of their work, Opportunistic Architecture, or an older publication, Situation Normal, by P.A. Press.
Click the images to find out more! HAPPY MOTHER's DAY to all the moms out there! And for all the kids- don't forget to call mom.
Tonight i went themed on our roundup for the week ~ top row, unusual frozen goods were trendy on TasteSpotting, from margarita popsicles and frozen eggs to Raw Banana Mango Malted Ice Cream with Agave Caramel... in the middle row, from NOTCOT.org had quite a nice selection of Architecture showing up this week... and finally, from NotCouture here is an assortment of bags, trunks, and 'waterproof backpack reviews'!
Top 25 from each site last week on the next page...
I received an email with the subject line: First Paperless Architecture Book EVER: Piel... and with such a bold claim i initially wrote it off... 'paperless' just sounded like a silly spin on 'digital'. Anyhow, as time permitted, i came back to it, and found that it has a pretty sweet interface and isn't 'just a digitized book' ~ sure, it has the flashy corner peels and page flips - but what is nice, is how it utilized the fact that this is an architecture book, and it built in links to google map views of each building featured!
Check out Piel.Skin - About skin: This book is the result of two years of architectural research. Dynamic facades, ventilated, high-tech or traditional composites with new features. This book shows that currently new skins not only act as an isolating element, besides interact with the environment, optimizing energy exchange with the outside. From Germany to Australia or Korea to Colombia, there are many examples that readers can visit with this publication. With international vocation due to bilingual English-Spanish text and a language away from technicalities, this paper aims to show as an "interactive toy" the evolving field of the facades in architecture.
Piel.Skin is an experimental web book aimed at architecture students. The book literally surfs on several projects, jumping from exceptional exteriors in Asia to intelligently optimized facades in Europe. The book allows playing a virtual tour dedicated to google-earth travellers: By means of clicking on the coordinates of each project begins a journey where you can jump directly to each site and visualize the project within its environment.
Level Vodka invited Hussein Chalayan to design The Level Tunnel... and it is now here! With a blog that even chronicles everything from the design and renders - to the building of - and the launch! Also incredible are the specially design blindfold/goggles for the experience, and the gorgeous press release complete with Bach in sheet music form!
"It all started back in 2006. Level Vodka invited star designer Hussein Chalayan to create a pioneering work of art with a focus on taste. He was given completely free rein. The result was The Level Tunnel - a 15 meter long, 5 meter high, traveling installation that captures the essence of Level Vodka. After a mind-blowing journey, the project is now nearing the finish line. The 6th of May 2008, the tunnel will have its world premiere in Mexico City. " See images of the process, press kit, and final product on the next page!
I've been a bit baffled as to what to make of this 120th Anniversary Eiffel Tower Observation Deck designed by Serero that will go up next year as i came across images on all the blogs (i.e. Core77, Gizmodo, etc)... see my favorites of the architectural diagrams and renders after the jump. In celebration of the 120th birthday of the tower, the Société d’Exploitation de la Tour Eiffel decided to restructure the public reception and access areas of the tower, and the result will be a temporary horizontal extension of the 3rd floor of the tower. Serero's design is built out of carbon kevlar, steel connectors, and metal mesh. What was most intriguing to me was Serero's discussion of the generative design:
Generative Design: The design is based on a generative script, creating branches out of the primary structure of the tower. Inspired by the structural concept of Eiffel of three-dimensional cross bracing beams, the script unfolds along curved lines the “DNA” of the tower. The script used the existing structure at the top of the tower ( a 10 by 10 meters cube) to generate 3 structural weaves, which are interconnected. These layers are combined to create a woven complex, which is based on the redundancy and the non-repetition of patterns to increase its structural performance. In opposition with modern engineering (based on the concept of repetition and optimization), the project for the Eiffel tower extension is based on an alternative model of high performance.
NOTCOT Note: Here's another article from Anna Corpron of Sub-Studio!
I came across a flickr set today with some amazing pictures of an abandoned housing complex called San Zhi outside of Taipei, Taiwan. A google search didn't bring up much information, but from what I can gather, it was apparently built in the early 1980s as a series of vacation homes marketed towards affluent Taipei residents seeking to get out of the city.
The speculation about why the site was abandoned varies, with the most interesting being that a series of fatal accidents occurred during construction, causing locals to believe the site was haunted, and therefore instigating the developer's decision to stop construction (and also putting a stop to any future redevelopment). A more mundane reason listed for the abandonment was the developer running out of money, but I'll go with the first reason, thank you!
Architecturally speaking the houses are super cool, being very futuristic for the 80's (even by today's standards) with the cantilevered, modular pods houses (think Archigram). Check out more amazing photos from two flickr sets after the jump!
My latest obsession discovered at IDS08... Inflate's airy structures! I fell in love with the white Luna cave/igloo that was set up in the corner of the show floor. There was also a black one, but with a silver exterior (i guess less likely to melt down in the sun if outside?) it wasn't nearly as appealing. But the white one you can see images of below, it's the perfect size for a playful rooftop studio space, or even in a backyard... it would probably be incredibly fun to have projections on the interior when its dark out... Anyhow, this prompted me to do much reading on the Inflate site, and this UK design and production studio was established in 1995 when founder, Nick Crosbie, was fresh out of RCA creating smaller scale products like fruitbowls, egg cups, ashtrays, etc.... with the first collection launched at 100% Design London it snowballed, and now they have 2 production facilities in the UK and an HK office! Naturally with a need for booths at competitions, the inflatables scaled up, and now they have moved into semi-permanent and permanent architectural structures as well! See many images below of why i'm smitten, and toying with whether 7,000$ for a pop up Luna is a worthwhile expense...
NOTCOT Note: Here's another article from Anna Corpron of Sub-Studio!
This recently completed project by Andrew Berman Architect was designed as a library and studio for a writer. As you approach the studio, you are greeted by an oversize glass door, with nothing but trees providing a contextual scale for the building. The building is divided programmatically, with the studio lifted up off the ground (and therefore providing privacy from neighbors), and a storage area located at ground level. With the studio floor situated at the elevation of the tree canopies, a floor to ceiling picture window provides the inhabitant with panoramic views of the wooded area beyond. A building-wide skylight floods the studio with daylight. The exterior of the building is clad in copper, which is meant to weather naturally over the years.