March 31, 2009
Color-coded Flickr Search
Ever find it difficult to find interesting photos on Flickr? A new tool from Ideé Labs allows you to search Flickr images by color combinations. Choose up to ten different colors with the Multicolr Search Lab tool, and get a grid of search results almost instantly. Before you use the images you find, make sure to check the copyright status in flickr so you know you have the right to alter, publish or share the images.
March 27, 2009
Smart City Radio
Smart City Radio is a weekly talk show discussing different issues regarding urban life, lifestyle, and sustainability. The host of the show is Carol Coletta, president of CEOs for Cities and internationally recognized urban expert. Some of the recent topic have been Resilient cities, America's Transportation Strategy, and the History of Food. Whether you're a designer, planner, or just someone interested in being green, the weekly show might be a good addition to your podcast subscriptions.
March 26, 2009
BBC Radio 3 Interviews with Architects
BBC Radio 3 offers interviews with architects and architectural critics for online listening. You can see the archives of Radio 3 Architecture Programs here, and you can find a listing of other architecture-related stories on the BBC, here You may need to download RealPlayer as well as manually download the audio file to listen.
Use the podcast Radio3 directory to subscribe to any programs available world wide.
March 20, 2009
"The Bird's Nest: Herzog and de Meuron in China"
A free screening of this film will take place at 7 p.m. this Saturday, March 21 in Auditorium A, Angell Hall on central campus!
A film by Christoph Schaub and Michael Schindheim; 2008; 88 minutes (Mandarin and English with English subtitles)
Many events of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games took place in the brand new, 100,000-seat National Stadium. Plans for this massive structure began in 2003, when Swiss architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron were selected by the Chinese government to design the new stadium, which because of its curved steel-net walls was soon dubbed by the locals as the “bird’s nest.” This documentary chronicles the five-year effort to build the stadium, as well as Herzog and de Meuron’s design for a new city district in Jinhua, involving hotels, office and residential buildings. Both projects involved complex and often difficult negotiations and communications between two cultures, two architectural traditions and two political systems. In addition to following the progress of both projects, from initial design and groundbreaking, Bird’s Nest features interviews with Herzon and de Meuron, Chinese architects Ai Wei Wei and Yu Qiu Rong, plus additional commentary by cultural advisor Dr. Uli Sigg, the former Swiss Ambassador to China.
Chinese Documentary Film Series
Center for Chinese Studies
University of Michigan
March 18, 2009
American Institute of Architects on Google Earth
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) introduced a project called America's Favorite Architecture for their 150th anniversary in 2007. After polling over 2,000 of its members, the AIA produced a list of the 150 most beloved structures in America. You can scroll through the list on the project website by ranking, architect, title, or date.
In sticking with our Google theme from the previous post, if you'd like another way to interact with the structures on the list, you can use the America's Favorite Architecture layer in Google earth. All you have to do is type 'America's Favorite Architecture' into the 'fly to' search box. This will give you a list of the structures, and double-clicking on the title of the structure will "fly" you to that location. Many of the structures are rendered in 3D, so you can view all sides of the structure. You can also download 3D models using Google Earth itself or Google Sketchup.
March 17, 2009
Google has become synonymous with searching the internet, but many of us may be less acquainted with other Google offerings. Google SketchUp, as you can see in from the video above is downloadable software that allows you to create 3D models of just about anything. The program is fairly easy to use and can be translated into presentations using LayOut (watch the tutorial here). Dwell Magazine is even sponsoring a design contest using SketchUp models (details).
March 12, 2009
Housingprototype.org is an online collection of various multifamily housing structures. For each housing project, a brief description, images and some plans are listed. You can easily browse by architect, building type, project name, city or country using the left hand navigation bar. Also listed with each project are bibliographies for further research on a particular project. Many of the images aren't high quality, but that shouldn't stop you from being able to use Housing Prototypes as a starting point for thinking about housing developments.
above: View of garden side of Rue des Suisses infill block seen along the garden slab. Herzog, Jacques & Pierre de Meuron. Rue des Suisses. Paris, France image © Roger Sherwood
March 10, 2009
If you're interested in environmentally conscious design, planning and architecture, the PBS series E2 Design might be of interest to you. The Visual Resources Collection owns season 1, 2, and 3. You can also watch the third season online for the time being at the E2 Design Website.
If you can't completely get you green fix from the episodes, there are PBS E2 podcasts to supplement each segment of the series. The PBS E2 site also provides teachers' guides and project suggestions to accompany the videos if shown in class.
logo above © Kontentreal and displayed here for promotional and educational reasons
March 03, 2009
Brooklyn Museum and the Crowd as Curator
If you haven't already heard of the Brooklyn Museum's Click! exhibition, you might want to check the website out. The show sprung from the ideas around the intelligence of large groups laid out by the book, The Wisdom of Crowds. The Brooklyn Museum allowed users to log in and vote on images one time and without knowing how others were voting. Based on the results, the museum printed the images to mirror its popularity with the online users. On the results page you can see the images and graphical data on how votes were cast based on location and expertise. Reviews of the show are definitely mixed, but whether you agree with the crowd's selection, what remains regardless of are important questions about how we digest art in the 21st century, the differences between curatorial expertise and the average person, and where the failures of current curatorial practices might be.
Listen to a discussion of the exhibition below:
Image above: screen shot of the virtual tour of the Click! Exhibition available of the Brooklyn Museum's website