France's SudOuest newspaper reports that Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has been selected to design Maison de l’économie créative et de la culture en Aquitaine, a.k.a. “la Méca.” The riverfront cultural center will include three regional visual and performing arts agencies, and is expected to cost 52 million euros. BIG beat out SANAA and the Toulouse-based firm W-Architectures for the project, which must still be approved by the City Council. 2012 has been a very busy year for BIG, back in February installation the firm was selected for the Times Square Valentine's Day installation, in addition to winning competitions for the Kimball Art Center in Park City, Utah, and a 49-story mixed use tower in Downtown Vancouver.
The Trust for the National Mall has opened an exhibition showcasing the finalists in National Mall Design Competition. The competition, launched last September, asked designers to redesign areas near the Capitol, Washington Monument, and Constitution Gardens in the nation’s capital. According to an article by the Associated Press, the hope is to have one of the sites—either Constitution Gardens or the area near the Washington Monument—complete by 2016.
A jury recently picked four finalists for each of the three sites, paring down a field of 32 teams. Organizers will select a winner for each site in May, but are currently seeking public comment to help make their decisions. Among the distinguished finalists emerges a West Coast connection—including LA-based firm Michael Maltzan Architects and Diller Scofidio + Renfro, the firm responsible for the Broad Art Foundation, which is coming soon next door to the Walt Disney Concert Hall. Bustler has a complete list of finalists, including the design boards for each finalist.
The Trust for the National Mall must still meet the funding requirements for the lofty ambitions of the competition. According to the AP, “The nonprofit National Mall group aims to raise $350 million to help restore the mall, beginning with one of these sites. Former first lady Laura Bush joined the fundraising effort last year, and the group committed $875,000 to the design competition.”
Fast Co. Design writes of a creative app that sources the panopticon--or the archive of Google Maps Satellite View, depending on how you look at it--for a new type of global photo album. Stratocam, as the app is known, allows users to take snapshots of images from Google Maps and share them broadly across the Internet. Unadorned by overlays and the needs of users who come to the system with more pragmatic needs, Google Maps is capable of producing images of surprisingly beautiful clarity and color. As Co. Design explains, the whole exercise also raises questions of authorship, because it "divorces the moment of framing from the moment of capture in photography." The site is, of course, fully integrated into social media, and in a very contemporary move, users can vote the snapshots on the site up or down depending on their tastes in satellite imagery.
Mad Men junkies (like me!) don’t want to miss a recent feature in the LA Times about the interior selections made in creating the set for the new Upper Westside home of Dan Draper. The apartment is "in a high-rise that feels like it was built in 1960 with a white-carpeted sunken living room and a fascinating fireplace and a Case Study-style kitchen with two pass through windows,” Set Decorator Claudette Didul tells the LA Times.
Among the original items in the apartment are a brown 1964 Frigidaire and a 1964 white metal patio dinette set by Samsonite. Many of the rest of the items filling out the interior of the room were purchased in the Los Angeles area to duplicate or imitate the deep, bright colors of the late 1960s. Including shag carpeting from S & J Biren floor coverings in Los Angeles; a Lied Mobler black leather lounge chair from Galerie Sommerlath in Los Angeles; a magazine rack from Amsterdam Modern in L.A.' and a glass-topped coffee table from Deja Vu in Long Beach. Didul also found smaller items from “antique malls in Orange and Pomona, and the Pasadena Antique Center and Annex and Novotny's Antique Gallery in Pasadena.”
According to the LA Times, "Didul took inspiration from two books by 1960s bestselling interior design author Betty Pepis and Decoration U.S.A., a 1965 collaboration between Jose Wilson and Arthur Leaman.
Join FORM for hors d’oeurvs, wine, and tall tales of luxury in the world’s high rise environments. Scott Johnson, FAIA, Michael Palladino, FAIA, and a panel of experts will detail the designs, finishes, gadgets, and concierge that define luxury in the high rises of New York, LA, Europe, and Asia.
Please RSVP to rsvp@FORMmag.net or 818.956.5313. Include name, title, phone, and email.
Thursday, April 26, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
bulthaup Santa Monica
619 Arizona Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90401