Sunday, May 30, 2010

Kahn, Piano, In Texas

A worthwhile read on art museum architecture, the issue of institutional growth and one solution to it.

Image: New York Times

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Patkau + Wright

Patkau Architects has won an international competition to design six cottages at Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater in Pennsylvania. The cottages will serve as lodging and provide additional room for educational programming.

In addition to Patkau, two other Canadian firms were among six chosen by a preliminary selection committee, including Saucier + Perotte and MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects.

Image: Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

Friday, May 21, 2010

Douglas Simpson: West Coast Modernist

The AIBC recently held its annual conference with one of the panels focusing on the work of local modernist Douglas Simpson. Along with Harold Semmens he formed Semmens + Simpson Architects and between 1949 and 1957 designed a number of prominent buildings in Vancouver, including the old Vancouver Public Library, Hycroft and St. Anselm's Church (seen above).

See this page for information on Simpson's work, created by his son Gregg.

Update: Robson Square

A few photos taken near the South side of the Art Gallery, at Robson and Hornby:

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Forum on VAG

While we're on the subject of Robson Square, there will be an open forum on the future of the Vancouver Art Gallery this Thursday at 7pm.

Panelists include a broad range of Vancouverites, from Michael Audain, Joost Bakker and Heather Deal to Gordon Price and Ian Wallace. Billed as a dialogue on the VAG's potential move and "its implicatons for planning of civic space", it's being sponsored by UBC, SFU, Architecture Canada and RAIC.

Bring your opinions-- it should be an interesting night.

Robson Square Tear Down

Disheartening news at
Robson Square where mature trees and plantings have been razed by the province to repair the roof membrane that lies underneath.

Repairs to the building have been ongoing for some time but apparently the swiftness of the removal of the gardens took both the city and the original landscape designer, Cornelia Oberlander, by surprise. Considering Oberlander lives in Vancouver and is one of Canada's most important landscape architects as well as the integral relationship Erickson's design has with the landscaping, it's shocking and shameful she wasn't consulted on this.

For anyone who never ventured into the almost hidden pathway at the corner of Robson and Hornby, it was one of the most magical spots in downtown to disappear into--an oasis of mature native West Coast landscaping in the middle of the city.

The good news is the gardens will be replanted according to the original 1976 design.