Three from Abitare

Norman Foster writing about Foster and Partner’s design for the Beijing airport. He writes “I think that the Beijing airport is an attempt to recapture a golden era of travel; when it was more generous, when it was a luxury experience, but accessible to all. And in that sense, I think it is really radical and also very successful.” Foster also describes a bit of the firm’s design process in terms of evaluation and testing, the iterative development of a design. Surprisingly although a computer is important he writes, “What you can do with a model is also take photographs of the model and you can insert scale references, like figures. And curiously, the photograph of a model is one of the most important tools for usIn the past we worked with two types of models: a model to communicate an idea and a model to explore an idea.” More (here)


Yehuda Safran in Gravity and Grace on Steven Holl’s  Horizontal Skyscraper-Vanke Center in Shenzhen. “Unlike most buildings in this town, Holl’s Horizontal Skyscraper not only resurrects dreams of past generations of Megaform/Megastructure, but it does so in a manner which retains a large variety of interiors and a constant shift in direction. Rhizomatic in plan, it provides an endless play on the inside/outside experience.

Peter Fischli, Rem Koolhaas and Hans Ulrich Obrist talk about the photos taken during the Venturi, Izenour and Scott-Brown’ noted trip to the US town. Koolhaas speaking almost nostalgically about the 1960’s notes “At that point there was still a more elegant form of mass culture. That’s perhaps the great thing about the 1960s. It had that kind of perfection not only in high culture, but also in low culture. If you look at the interiors of the largest restaurants, the largest casinos or hotels from that time, they looked exactly like this. It was before the arrival of populism as we know it.” He also distinguishes between the ‘as found’ and Pop art movements thusly, “More nostalgic maybe, too. With Pop, everything was new. But “as found” could also be amazingly touching, or amazingly sad … But there’s nothing tragic to Pop. Whereas I would say that even Ed Ruscha’s pictures of parking lots have something tragic about them.” More (here)


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