June 9, 2011 § Leave a comment
June 8, 2011 § Leave a comment
Filling the 13,500m2 space of Paris’ Grand Palais , Anish Kapoor’s Leviathan is every bit the colossus its Biblical title would suggest. Dedicated to still-missing Chinese artist, Ai Wewei, Leviathan was commissioned by France’s Ministry For Culture And Communication for this year’s Monumenta exhibition, an event now in its fourth year of challenging some of the world’s most renowned artists.
Yielding to the immense space proved advantageous for Britain’s Turner Prize-winning sculptor, whose four-chambered, inflated PVC structure makes explicit use of the glass-domed site, allowing Kapoor not only his trademark scale, but also to extend his close relationship with architecture. Of his spatially-interactive, perfectly symmetrical installation, Kapoor says this: “A single object, a single form, a single colour. My ambition is to create a space within a space that responds to the height and luminosity of the Nave at the Grand Palais. Visitors will be invited to walk inside the work, to immerse themselves in colour, and it will, I hope, be a contemplative and poetic experience.”
Titanic, womb-like, and all but drawing breath, you have until June 23rd to make this speculative artwork your own.
May 9, 2011 § Leave a comment
May 6, 2011 § Leave a comment
For Brazilian architects, Angelo Bucci and Alvaro Puntoni, a site topographically unusual for its depression became more advantageous than problematic in relation to meeting the clients’ brief for a live/work environment. Utilising the abrupt drop in ground level, Bucci and Puntoni responded to the need for separatism of these two existential necessities by elevating the 3mW x 25mL tubular office area by two reinforced concrete supports, the only section visible at street level.
Connected to the office space by a steel bridge, but nestled below the street level, the two domestic storeys of the house in Carapicuíba, Brazil, lay in distinct, desired separation. But just as the site encourages this brief to be so surprisingly well-realised, so, too, does its geography allow for great incorporation of indoor and outdoor space. Woods, valley, gardens and pool surround the home storeys, merging with living spaces through sliding glass doors onto a terrace and patio. Similarly, the windows at either end of the office structure allow for a unique aerial viewpoint of the green spaces, thus offering further converging separatism within the property.
Working with the site’s geography and landscape, to allow its unusual topographical dictates govern the realisation of the project, has not only created distinct living and working environments and a merging of nature with structure, but has also meant simplicity of materials. Built from two material elements – concrete and glass – Bucci and Puntoni were less constrained by budget and more able to focus on the build itself. The result is exemplary of the great design and wellbeing that can and should be derived from environmental attentiveness.
Photography by Nelson Kon.
May 1, 2011 § Leave a comment
March 27, 2011 § Leave a comment
“Open up a structure to the undulating space of sky, landscape and view, and the building becomes an ever-evolving organism” – Wallace E. Cunningham, architect.
What do you get when you cross a Wrightian-schooled member of the AD 100, a client whose brief is akin to a Warhol-style fluctuating artwork, a plot of land widely considered unsuitable for building, and a $32,000,000 price tag? Answer: the Cunningham-designed home of philosophical merging extraordinaire, The Razor, is on the market.
“Nature is not static, nor should be the efforts of man.” Cunningham has, no doubt, brought forth an appreciable continuum of the Wrightian ‘Organic’ ethic, and a remarkable response to working harmoniously with both the environment and the clients’ own wishes. The resultant reactive structure, deeply embedded within the steep and difficult plot, is in perpetual response to its environment and therefore more living sculpture than inert structure. The clients in question, a couple for whom the La Jolla, California, situation afforded them good opportunity to flow internal to external, requested a residence that would be active and reactive; a building which, rather than dominate or compete with the incredible view, would not only compliment it, but act as a sort of passive viewpoint to the landscape itself.
With the advantageous position, lightness of materials, and an approach to design that is “more intuitive than intellectual,” Cunningham took the clients’ brief and returned a property that is of the sharpest adherence to all necessary components, carrying it to a transcendence of its own materials and into a true work of art.
But if you find yourself salivating at the sight of this highly glorified concrete and glass lookout and with a readily-spendable £32,000,000 (or the seemingly more digestible figure of approximately 20,000,000 if you make your acquisitions in Great British Pounds), then The Razor could be the residence of your reality.