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An Olympic Review: Record-Setting Architecture

The Rio games may be over, but we’re happy to help wean sports fans off their recent diet of swimming, gymnastics, and track and field [to say nothing of badminton and water polo], with a survey of some memorable Olympic architecture.

 

Rio Golf

Golf Venue

Rio de Janeiro 2016

Rua Arquitetos

Golf is a sport of precision and balance, and the design of this complex reflects those qualities. Locker rooms, lobbies, pro shop, and administration areas are located in small, low buildings around a courtyard, with views opening to the course beyond. The translucent fabric roof over the plaza funnels rainwater into a collection tank; the water is used for grounds maintenance.

 

Zaha London

Aquatics Centre

London 2012

Zaha Hadid

The concept for this building was inspired by the fluid geometry of water in motion, creating spaces and a surrounding environment in sympathy with the riverside landscape of the Olympic Park. An undulating roof sweeps up from the ground as a wave, enclosing the pools of the Centre with its unifying gesture. After the Olympics, the facility was downsized: the wings were lopped off, and seating capacity reduced from 17,500 to about 2,500.

 

montreal-olympic-stadium

Olympic Stadium

Montreal 1976

Roger Taillibert

The architect was fired from the job in mid-construction; that’s just the first salvo in a fusillade of failures for this stadium. More than a decade after the games were over, the retractable roof was finally completed in 1987; functionally deficient, it was removed in 1998 and replaced by a fixed roof. The 575-foot tower element of the stadium contains a funicular, which runs up to an observatory. The 56,000-seat stadium was used for several years for professional baseball and football games; today, the deteriorating structure is infrequently used as an events venue.

 

Olympic_Shooting_magma architectureHuftonCrow

Shooting Venue

London 2012

Magma Architecture

Through its dynamic, curving walls, the design of this venue evokes the flow and precision inherent in competitive shooting. Three buildings sport crisp, white double-curved façades studded with brightly colored circular openings, which act as ventilation intake portals. They also function as tensioning rings, keeping the PVC-fabric façades from flapping in the wind. After the Olympics, the buildings were dismantled—as intended—flat-packed, and shipped to other sites for use.

See-Worthy Design

The last full month of summer, August presents a final opportunity to enjoy recreational pursuits—as a spectator or participant—before the autumnal commitments of school and work return. In weeks to come, we’ll take a look at the architecture of the Olympics, as well as the graphic branding of the Games over the years. Today, we’re indulging in a survey of a rarefied design sector: yachts designed by architects and artists.

 

foggy-gehry-hausman

Frers 74, Foggy built by Brooklin Boat Yard, Brooklin ME

Frers 74, Foggy built by Brooklin Boat Yard, Brooklin ME

Frers 74, Foggy built by Brooklin Boat Yard, Brooklin ME

Frank Gehry sets sail in Foggy, which he designed in collaboration with German Frers. Titanium details and wavy, lattice-like ports give the 74-foot daysailer a most unusual presence. Foggy was built at the venerable Brooklin Boat Yard in Brooklin, Maine.

 

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boat

Dazzle camouflage certainly influenced Jeff Koons’ design for this 115-foot craft (christened Guilty) and we detect a bit of Roy Lichtenstein in the comic-book colors and Ben-Day dots, too.

 

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Z-Boat-Zaha-Hadid_hausman

Koons’ Guilty accomplishes optically what Zaha Hadid’a Z-Boat does in three dimensions. Its squared-off bow defies conventional thinking about what constitutes a streamlined vessel; nonetheless, it conveys an impression of speed and power. The 24-foot powerboat was produced in a limited edition of 12 by Shoreteam.

 

pawson-almost nothing

pawson-b60 Sloop

b60

pawson keel

Not a slack halyard or an untidy coil in sight—John Pawson’s B60 is shipshape, indeed. Pawson teamed with naval architect Luca Brenta to create a sloop in his signature minimalist style. The hull, a graceful arc of polished carbon fiber, seems to float above as much as in the water.

For a more accessible seafaring experience, we recommend any of the excellent Around Manhattan tours, produced by the NY AIA in partnership with Classic Harbor Line. Expertly led by professors and practitioners of architecture, the tours offer a waterfront perspective on landmarks new and old from the vantage of teak- and mahogany-detailed, 1920s-style yachts.

Five Weekend Diversions for Architects and Designers

If your summer days aren’t quite as lazy as you’d like, and taking a full-fledged vacation is not in the picture, don’t worry—we’ve compiled a short list of simple day-trip destinations that can refresh you just as much as a week on the beach. All of our suggested sites are homes and/or studios of artists, so you can tap into the creative vibe and further your own artistic interests during your visit—kind of a busman’s holiday.

 

manitoga russell wright

Manitoga

Garrison, New York

Overlooking a water-filled quarry in the Hudson River Highlands, mid-century designer Russell Wright created the interiors for his home and studio; David Leavitt was the architect for the house, which was built in 1960. Trails wind through the 75-acre woodland garden. A program of music performances and art installations continues throughout the summer; guided tours are offered May through November.

 

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Georgia O’Keeffe Home and Studio

Abiquiu, New Mexico

This adobe compound was in a ruined state when Georgia O’Keeffe’s first visited the property in 1945. After a four renovation, she moved into home and converted a stable into her studio; she lived there until 1984. About 50 miles from Santa Fe, the property is open for tours from March through November.

 

 

grant wood

Grant Wood Studio

Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Grant Wood painted American Gothic in this studio in 1930. Located on the second floor of a modest 19th century brick carriage house, he remodeled the raw loft, creating an unexpectedly interesting and space-efficient live/work home. The building is open for visits from April through December.

 

The Benton Carriage House

Thomas Hart Benton Home and Studio

Kansas City, Missouri

The humble-yet-heroic paintings and murals of Thomas Hart Benton offer a powerful look at American life in the 1930s, with the people and culture of the Midwest his most frequent subject. The artist worked in this studio for 35 years, until his death in 1975. The property is open from April through November.

Away From It All

July is the month when vacation season starts in earnest. Temperatures climb, work weeks shorten (if you’re lucky), and the beach beckons. We’ve rounded up some architecturally auspicious summer homes by the shore (perhaps you’ll recognize a few of them) where we’d be very happy to while away a few days.

 

1 arango_house_lautner

Designed by John Lautner in 1970, the Arango House still has an avant-garde appeal. Overlooking Acapulco Bay, its solid, swooping forms handily defy easy categorization.

 

2 Brighton Beach

A vivid bit of vernacular design, the photogenic “beach boxes” of Australia’s Brighton Beach are an architectural inheritance of sorts, passed from one generation to the next. When one of these colorful cabanas does come on the market, the asking price—around $200,000 AUD—belies its size.

 

3 cooper_hse_gwathmey_siegel_architecture_hausman

Photograph by Bill Maris

An instant icon when it was built on Cape Cod in 1968, the Cooper House by Gwathmey-Siegel featured a peace-keeping program: the childrens’ bedrooms were separated from the parents’ master suite.

 

4 f2architecture.com.au 1

Photograph by Matt Lord

Clever photography and superlative engineering imbue this home, the Pole House Fairhaven by f2 Architecture, with the illusion of floating over the Australian coast.

 

5 garves_malibu_architecture_hausman

Post-modernism is having something of a moment, now, so we’re including this Malibu beach house by Michael Graves on our list of seaside retreats.

 

7 vault_hse_johnston_marklee_architecture_hausman

North of LA in Oxnard, the Vault House overlooks the Pacific. Architects Johnston Marklee designed the geometric exploration in 2013.

 

8 Norton Gehry Architecture Hausman

Frank Gehry‘s Norton House has been a landmark on the Venice, California boardwalk since 1984. The “lifeguard tower” structure, inspired by the homeowner’s erstwhile summer job, is used as a writer’s studio.

 

9 jeffreydungan_alys bch_architecture_hausman

Moorish meets Moderne in this spirited stylistic hybrid. In Alys Beach, not far from the epicenter of New Urbanism, Seaside, Florida, it’s designed by Jeffrey Dungan Architects.

 

10 mackay lyons two hulls architecture hausman

Reaching out over the waters of Canada, the Two Hulls House illustrates MacKay-Lyons-Sweetapple Architects’ continuing interest in pared-down forms set in a primordial landscape.

 

11 meier_malibu_architecture_hausman

At this Malibu residence, Richard Meier forgoes his traditional white facade in favor of a slatted screen of wood. How very Cali.

 

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The harbinger of a Bay Area regional style, Condominium 1 at The Sea Ranch was not initially well received by its developers, who sent a terse telegram—”Stop work. It looks like a prison.”—to architects Charles Moore, Donlyn Lyndon, Bill Turnbull, and Richard Whitaker in 1965.

Sneak Peaks

hill harbor

We wrap up our month-long look at nature and architecture with a look at one of the newest public parks in New York City. Designed by West 8 landscape architects, the Hills on Governors Island are scheduled to open on July 19—but we’ve got a secret to share with you. Over the course of Memorial Day weekend, free hardhat tours of the Hills will be offered. Hour-long tours will depart from Liggett Arch at 11am, 1pm, and 3pm on Saturday and Sunday. Leslie Koch, president of the Trust for Governors Island, will lead the 11am and 1pm tours both days. Hardhats and vests will be provided, and closed-toe shoes are required.

governors-island-hills

Governors-Island-Park-The-Hills

The ten-acre site features four hills, built of recycled construction materials and fill. Grassy Hill is a 25-foot-high slope overlooking the island’s new and historic landscapes, as well as the Manhattan skyline. Slide Hill, rising up 40 feet, is home of four twisting slides, including the longest one in New York City. Rachel Whitehead’s Cabin has been installed on Discovery Hill, another 40-foot mound. Overlook Hill provides both fully-accessible paths and a granite-block scramble to its 70-foot summit, where panoramic views of harbor and city can be enjoyed.

Summer Haus Art Guide: 8 Outdoor Exhibitions to See Before the End of Summer

Part 3 of Summer Haus is a curated guide of outdoor art exhibits around the globe. Bid farewell to the remaining weeks of summer, soak up the golden sunlight, while checking out these outdoor art exhibitions.

Inside Out, Philadelphia

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 10.45.38 AM(Courtesy of Detroit Institute of Arts)

Inside Out, an exhibition organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Detroit Institute of Art, Akron Art Museum, and the Knight Foundation, brings high quality reproductions of famous artworks from their collections to outdoor areas such as bike paths, residential neighborhoods, and parks in Pennsylvania and other states.

Please Touch the Art, Brooklyn, New York

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 10.57.03 AM(Courtesy of James Ewing)

New York’s Public Art Fund invited Danish artist Jeppe Hein to create an installation of fountains, mirrors, and playful benches to populate Brooklyn Bridge Park. Mirror Labyrinth NY, made with vertical planks of mirrored-polished steel arranged in three radical arcs, the alternating rhythm and uneven heights of the steel elements echo the Manhattan skyline.

Kapoor Versailles, Versailles, France 

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 10.48.01 AM(Courtesy of Anish Kapoor)

Sectional Body Preparing for Monadic Singularity, is one of six pieces at the historic French site. Measuring 23 feet high, the black-and-red cube with a futuristic PVC interior is tucked amid the foliage in Versailles’s mazelike hedges. Artist, Anish Kapoor, states that, “a work of art doesn’t exist alone but through its viewer.” The visitor at Versailles will experience the dualities of artist’s work: heaven, earth, visible, invisible, inside, outside, shadow, light.

Dismaland, Somerset, England 

Screen Shot 2015-08-31 at 9.48.42 AM(Courtesy of Anish Kapoor)

Bansky’s Dismaland is a bemusement park where you can escape from mindless escapism. Hidden inside the walls of this derelict seaside resort, you will find an assortment of bizarre and beautiful artworks. Banksy is showing 10 artworks of his own with artwork from 58 global artists, including Damien Hirst, Jenny Holzer, Jimmy Cauty, Bill Barminski, Caitlin Cherry, Polly Morgan, Josh Keyes, Mike Ross, David Shrigley, Bäst, and Espo.

Jaume Plensa: Human Landscape, Nashville, Tennessee

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 10.48.54 AM(Courtesy of Cheekwood)

Spanish artist Jaume Plensa has installed the two ethereal visages pictured above along with seven other large-scale sculptures at the historic Nashville estate Cheekwood. Jaume Plensa creates sculptures and installations that unify individuals through connections of spirituality, the body, and collective memory.

Swing Time, Boston, Massachusetts 

Screen Shot 2015-08-31 at 11.24.25 AM(Courtesy of Justin Saglio for the Boston Globe)

Part of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority ‘s initiative to create the first interactive public space in Boston, Swing Time, designed by Eric Howeler and Meejin Yoon of Howeler and Yoon Architecture, is an art installation of 20 glowing oval swings containing LED lights that activate based on the swings’ movement.

Lynda Benglis: Water Sources, New Windsor, New York

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 10.51.43 AM(Courtesy of Lynda Benglis)

American artist Lynda Benglis has installed a series of sculptures and fountains at New York’s 500-acre Storm King Art Center. The North South East West fountains, shown here, are made from cast bronze and steel.

 Salt, Sandhornøya, Norway

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 11.00.16 AM(Courtesy of SALT)

SALT is a nomadic initiative celebrating the environment, art, and culture of the Artic region. The 150 meter long Artic Pyramid designed by Rintala Eggertsson Architects and artist Joar Nango will host art from Chinese artist Yang Fudong.

Make a Splash During the Final Days of Summer

Part 2 of Summer Haus is a very brief and very biased tour of our favorite pools. Take off your clothes, hold your nose, and jump in! Oh, and remember to reapply your sunscreen.

Hadrian’s Villa, Tivoli, Italy

hadrians villa - Raddotto(photo Carole Raddato, Flickr)

The Emperor Hadrian employed thousands of slaves to build his sprawling country retreat outside Rome in the 2nd Century AD. The estate cover 250 acres and boasts a treasury of art from across the Empire, particularly Greece and Egypt. This oval pool, the Canopus, must have been the scene of many a Bacchanalian toga party. The caryatids aren’t talking.

 

Donnell Garden, California

donnell pool_no restrictions(photo Charles Birnbaum, Cultural Landscape Foundation)

Living the American dream at the father of kidney-shaped pools. This iconic California landscape, designed by modernist landscape architect Thomas Church in the 1950s, is an outstanding example of laid back but sophisticated outdoor living. The biomorphic sculpture is by Adaline Kent.

McCarren Pool, BrooklynRogers-Marvel-McCarren-Pool_photo Rogers Marvel(photo Rogers Marvel)

McCarren pool(photo Rogers Marvel)

Closer to home, we have Robert Moses to thank for Brooklyn’s McCarren Pool – and for nine other free, gigantic New York City pools for the 99%. Moses was a keen swimmer who competed on the Yale swim team and swam a mile a day into his 80s. Rogers Marvel Architects renovated the pool in 2012, using the original swimmer’s storage baskets on the lobby ceiling.

The Library, Koh Samui, Thailand

Koh_Samui_pool(photo The Library)

A base of mosaic glass tiles in orange, yellow and blood gives this pool its alarming color.

Bondi Iceberg, Bondi Beach, Australia

Bondi wave_no restrictions

The Bondi Icebergs pools are right next to Bondi Beach and allow swimmers a safe environment. It's one of the oldes Surf Live Saving Club's of Australia.

“Be a man, not a mollusk,” proclaim the membership rules of the Bondi Iceberg Club, so called because winter swimming is compulsory for members. The dramatic Bondi Baths, overflowing into the ocean, have been a landmark of Bondi Beach for over 100 years.

Infinity Pool, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

Marina Bay - wiki commons(photos Wikipedia Commons)

Marina_Bay_Sands_in_the_evening_-wiki commons(photos Wikipedia Commons)

Eat you heart out, SoHo house: This dizzying pool, on the roof of the Moshe Safdie-designed, triple-towered Marina Bay Hotel, is the world’s highest and largest rooftop infinity pool. Not for those with vertigo, this watery aerie cantilevers 65 meters off the towers, and looms 57 stories above the city.

 

 

Stuck in the city this summer? 'Escape' with your Netflix queue

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Welcome to our inaugural Summer Haus edition! We are still weeks away from the final days of summer, so let’s lather on the sunscreen, take a sip of our cold brew, and delve into Hausman’s very first summer guide.

Dreaming of taking a vacation to the south of France and reliving the Bohemian 1900s surrounded by Belle Époque architecture, or maybe spending the day exploring both the inside and outside of Frank Gehry’s designed Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. While the Parisians close shop for all of August, most of us do not have the luxury of taking such a leisurely holiday. But don’t fret, let me introduce the ‘staycation.’ You don’t have to deal with long car rides, traumatic airports, tight airplanes, and lost luggage. You can ‘escape’ to exotic locations, travel through time, and explore astounding architecture without leaving the comfort of your couch (or bed). Here’s a short movie guide that will transport you to a different world.

Art Nouveau

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Midnight in Paris (2011) featuring Art Nouveau, “new art” of the beginning of the 20th century

Art Deco 

Metropolis - art deco

Metropolis (1927) influenced by New York City’s 1920’s Art Deco

Ghostbuster - Art Deco (Shandor Building)

Ghostbusters (1984) at 55 Central Park West, New York

Eclectic

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Blade Runner (1982) features the Bradbury building inspired by a 1880’s sci-fi novel, featuring a Victorian inspired five story atrium with intricate iron details, including Mexican tiles and Italian marble. The Bradbury is also featured in Double Indemnity, 500 Days of Summer, and The Artist

Modernism

Ben Rose House

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986) features a Modern residential designed by A. James Speyer, who studied under Mies can der Rohe

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Mon Oncle’s (1958) Villa Arpel

Gattaca -Frank Lloyd Wright

Gattaca (1997) Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Marin County Civic Center

Prairie School

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North by Northwest (1959) could not afford Frank Lloyd Wright’s fees, so here’s a little Hollywood trivia, this prairie-style house is actually just a movie set

Let us know of any other movies that you thought should have made it on the list. Leave a comment below!

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