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Posts Tagged ‘Shigeru Ban’

Design Miami Opening Night

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Switching gears from the South Beach scene of Wednesday night, we found ourselves last night in the inland Design District, where familiar faces and serious fun made us feel right at home.

After a stop at the OLPC party, we witnessed the VIP rope drop at the Design Miami preview, where a swell of eager design groupies swarmed into the Moore Building. With that scene a little too, um, eager, for our tastes, we had more fun getting lost in the blocks nearby…

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The driving forces behind Design Miami: the unbelievably gorgeous Amber Medda, and the equally dapper Craig Robins.

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That handsome man facing the camera is Murray Moss, standing in his satellite store.

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This place totally blew! The Campana Brothers, Constantin Boym and Paul Haigh all blowing glass live throughout the night.

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The soothing Light Showers by Yoshiko Sato and Michael Morris (that’s Tania Ketenjian soaking up the experience; she’s doing a piece on the “As Long as it Lasts…” tattoo parlor for “Studio 360″).

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Brad Pitt Builds Little Pink Houses For New Orleans

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When the Sexiest Architecture Fan Alive Brad Pitt put on his cute little hard hat in New Orleans back in August, we had no idea he was going to actually build houses. But the word is out that he’s not only given $5 million of his own money to help rebuild the Ninth Ward, he got David Adjaye, Thom Mayne and Shigeru Ban to help, too. And if this video on his new non-profit site Make It Right is to be believed, Pitt is so absorbed in his cause that he can’t even be bothered to change into something other than an ill-fitting thermal shirt, its neck sagging after a day spent sweating at the construction site.

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Make It Right pulls in a team of 13 architects to design the actual houses, but there’s also an 11-block art installation called the Pink Project, based on the color of a wrapped house that struck Pitt while filming a David Fincher movie (this one?) Listening to the NPR interview provides the full story, along with the hypnotic swoon-worthy cadence that only an upbringing in Springfield, Missouri could produce.

Now here’s a holiday gift idea that might not leave you feeling empty inside: You can “buy” houses or even donate items inside a house that people need. This way you not only feel good, you’re also that much closer to Brad.

Surprise Guests Announced for Tonight’s Ray Kappe-Shigeru Ban Event in LA

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For those of you in LA on the fence about attending tonight’s conversation at the Hammer Museum between Shigeru Ban and Ray Kappe (and moderated by Frances Anderton) this little tidbit might help you get off that fence and over to UCLA.

To celebrate Kappe’s 80th birthday (yeah he’s up there, but he’s no Julius Shulman), there will be surprise appearances by Michael Rotundi, Thom Mayne, and America’s most eligible eco-bachelor, Steve Glenn. (Tell him you liked his movie, okay? Even if you didn’t see it. Makes him feel good inside.)

Tonight, 7pm at the Hammer, and it’s FREE.

Christopher Hawthorne Wishes He Could Find Some Green Designers to Write About For Once

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With Philip Nobel lighting the way for architecture critics to speak their tainted little minds, critics everywhere are now making pointed attempts at abrasiveness. But sometimes it just doesn’t fly. When Christopher Hawthorne at the LA Times finally makes it out to NY to review the “Design for the Other 90%” show, he tries to make some kind of point about the lack of green designers. We only have to wonder…what on earth is he talking about?

Rem Koolhaas has offered what seems like a dozen explanations–some of them rather convincing, actually–for his willingness to take commissions from the Tibet-paving, coal-belching Chinese government. Peter Eisenman has long been happy to play the charming villain for the green crowd. Zaha Hadid‘s buildings show a mesmerizing disdain for the idea that she bears responsibility for anything beyond the health of her own legacy.

Horrible use of the starchitect card. Ho hum. Nothing new there. Try again.

Among the green generation, who is heading up the charge? Well, nobody, really. This may be the first movement in architectural history whose followers are more famous than its leaders. Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Orlando Bloom are well-known fans of green design. Among green designers, on the other hand, we have the ambitiously principled (read: sorta vanilla) Cameron Sinclair, who leads Architecture for Humanity; the great, greatly mustachioed and soft-spoken Shigeru Ban; and William McDonough, who is beginning to project an Andy Rooney vibe.

Although we can’t disagree with either the vanillaness of Sinclair or the Rooneyness of McDonough (or the greatness of Ban), we have to say it’s clinically insane to say that there’s a dearth of well-known green designers. Really? Leo and Brad are the greenest architects you could find?

Hawthorne, what are you smoking? We bet that’s green.