Welcome to our Repetition issue. Through eighteen contributions we immerse into a world of monotony, variation, experimentation, replicas, strategies, simulations, imperfections, and routines. We do so in long and short essays, photo essays, interviews, videos, manifestos, and projects. A combination of contributions that question, embrace, and ultimately work with the topic at hand. On top of the varied format of our contributions you will find another aspect added to the mix. Each contribution is uniquely interpreted by a designer based in Chicago, all under the creative direction of Rick Valicenti and Bud Rodecker from Thirst. A specific identity for each contribution that makes up an issue on repetition. We had fun adding even more variation to the topic. In the end, repetition does not have to be boring.
I am excited to participate in Mextropoli, the First International Festival on Architecture and the City. The Festival, organized by Arquine and directed by Andrea Griborio, takes place in Mexico City between March 22 and March 26, 2014.
I will be part of a panel discussion called “Habla ciudad: la crítica” and will join Ethel Baraona Pohl from Barcelona, Andrés Jaque from Madrid and Mimi Zeiger from Los Angeles. It will be a really interesting conversation given the work they all produce, either as essays, full publications, exhibitions, and organizing events.
Besides that panel, there are over thirty academic, cultural and touristic activities of different nature taking place in the Festival, mostly in the historic core of the city. Other participants include Antanas Mockus, Juhani Pallasmaa, Stefano Boeri, Iwan Baan and Alejandro González Iñárritu to name just a few. (Here is the full list)
(Buildings around the Museum of Modern Art, shown in 1939, have fallen to accommodate expansion, changing the scale of West 53rd Street.Andreas Feininger/Museum of Modern Art)
Last year, the Museum of Modern Art caused a ruckus with a plan to raze its neighbor, the former American Folk Art Museum building, designed by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien. So MoMA trustees hired the architecture firm Diller Scofidio & Renfro to explore alternatives to demolition that would still permit expansion.
But last week, that firm’s architects joined with Glenn D. Lowry, MoMA’s director, to say that, unfortunately, the building needs to be torn down after all. They saw no way around it. (New York Times)
(Archival photo of the Dymaxion Deployment Unit prototype assembled in Washington in 1941. Courtesy of the Estate of R. Buckminster Fuller)
In the 1940s, R. Buckminster Fuller converted grain bins into emergency housing. For a long time it seemed they had disappeared from the earth, but at least a dozen have survived in New Jersey. (New York Times)
Architecture and narrative, as Victor Hugo nostalgically pointed out in The Hunchback of Notre Dame in 1831, have walked hand in hand through history, crossing paths without really risking the extinction that the archdeacon of Notre-Dame gloomily predicted. Today, in a moment where the conjunction of the crisis and the entrance into a new stage in the communication era impulse the discipline into new, multiple directions, the narrative aspects of architecture come to the front. This issue tackles the intersections between architectural practices and different forms of visual narrative. Within this overall theme, our NARRATIVE issue moves on both sides of the line that separates these two disciplines, presenting three different perspectives, organized in three consecutive parts. The first section of the issue deals with the presence of graphic narrative in disciplinary architecture, both past and present while the second one discusses the crossing of borders portrayed by comics artists who also make forays into the built world. Finally, the third one moves towards both sides of the spectrum, briefly covering the tangents with (implied) written narratives and emerging animation practices in architecture.