Archive for the 'Places' Category

Architecture Daily

Sunday, August 24th, 2008

  architecture daily, modern architecture, contemporary architecture

Arch Daily” is one of my new favorite sites. It’s just bursting with bounties of inspiring new architecture.

The presentation is great, with lots of big pictures and they even give you the plans and elevations. Not everything will suit your fancy, but for my taste, there’s quite a high ratio of fantastic designs.

Here are a few I found quite interesting:

Metal Shutter Houses

  architecture daily, shigeru ban, metal shutter houses

The “Metal Shutter Houses” by Shigeru Ban seem like a modern reimagining of some of the features of traditional Japanese architecture, where sliding panels and doors allow you to open up the house to nature’s breezes and break down the barriers between indoors and out. I personally love the idea of hydraulic folding glass walls.

Slovenia Villa

  architecture daily, slovenia villa, OFIS arhitekti

Here’s an interesting and extravagant use of wood, and what a setting!

Jardin del Sol House

architecture daily, Jardin del Sol House, Corona y P. Amaral Arquitectos

Wow, the view… I love how the pool blends with the ocean, another sort of barrier breakdown. Nice raw, functional interiors too.

Ocho al Cubo House

architecture daily, ocho al cubo house, Sebastian Irarrazaval

An intriguing combo of Zen cave meets convention center. Minimalist secluded areas converge with open pillar-lined spaces. It’s glass and concrete in a modern symbiosis.

Lotus House

Monday, March 6th, 2006

lotus house, kengo kuma

Here is some interesting architecture from Kengo Kuma & Associates. It’s a combination of natural elements with geometric repetition and optical illusion. I think if you were there, the shadows and reflections would sort of make it look like two different worlds were connecting. I bet it makes interesting sounds in a strong breeze too.

Still working on part 2 of that hiphop thing. Extra busy with job stuff currently, but that should be slowing down soonish. I’ll have some submissions and new bands coming up after the break as well…


Death-defying Dwellings

Monday, January 30th, 2006

japanese architecture; shusaku arakawa and madeline gins; death-defying dwellings

“…Arakawa, who now bases himself in New York, advocates ‘architecture that defies death.’ How? By incorporating inconveniences and obstacles in his designs in order to bring people’s sensory perception back to life..”

I found out about this design team of Shusaku Arakawa and Madeline Gins from an article on The Japan Times Online, and I think they are brilliant. I love eccentric architecture, and as far as that goes, this team is a total winner: They make living spaces with hilly floors and obstacles, and put light switches near the floor and clothes storage on the ceiling. Their designs are colorful, thoughtful, innovative, and playful.

Another great example of their work is an “experience park” at the site of Reversible Destiny, in Yoro Park, Gifu Japan, which you really have to see to understand. Check out the great website and be sure to look at the “directions for use”, and the maps sections for explanations and quicktime vr panoramas from various vantage points. I definitely need to spend a day there.


Leping Zha – Landscape Photography

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

leping zha; great harmonious landscape photography

Via metafilter, here is some grand landscape photography indeed, from Leping Zha. I very much enjoy the sense of balance he employs in composing his shots. It’s like the different rocks and trees are really one big family, helping and supporting each other, and complementing each other’s differences.


City Sculpting

Friday, January 20th, 2006

urban art; demolition sculptures; new art

Here’s an interesting concept via the always fascinating Bldgblog. It’s yet another definition for art and another unlikely medium: apartment blocks, offices, run-down buildings. I’m not sure how likely the physics are for something like this, but I would be willing to bet that if you were able to make structurally-sound ap-art-ments, you could get the whole art-student demographic in the city to line up at the leasing office.



Sunday, December 18th, 2005


This is a treat from Japan for anyone who enjoys secret spots, abandoned or lost bits of civilization, anthropology, or just an interesting piece of history. This is Hashima Island. It was nicknamed Gunkanjima ??? (battleship island) because of the impression its high walls and skyline gave from the water. It’s a comparatively tiny speck of land off the country’s westernmost coast, [Gmap] but it has a fascinating and unique history.

Forty-odd years ago, this little blip was the site of the most densely populated community on earth. It was a coal-mining community complete with apartment blocks, schools, temples, drinking establishments, movie theatre, hospital, a brothel, and plenty of shopping. A self-contained community which at one point contained the tallest building in the whole of Japan, all built around a profitable mine.

Then one January day it was all over. Coal was no longer profitable enough to justify continuing the mine (thanks to the magic of petroleum), and the operation was closed down. Within a few short months not a single person remained. They left their tools where they had last used them, and their houses and belongings intact. Only the residents became conspicuously absent.

For someone who enjoys exploring abandoned spaces this seems to be a pretty much unbeatable locale. A fully intact miniature city; a modern ghost-town; a perfectly-preserved snapshot of an autonomous culture at a moment in history. The fact that it is an island that most Japanese don’t even know about, and that it requires a boat-ride and special permission to get there means that it is virtually untouched since the day the last worker left. Only time and the elements have continued to alter it.


Tokyo Underground

Wednesday, December 7th, 2005

  Giant Future-looking Storm Drains of Tokyo  

Great pictures of huge stormdrain networks beneath Tokyo. Apparently the vertical shafts are large enough to accomodate a space-shuttle. It seems they have been under construction for over a decade, and should provide protection in the case of a tsunami/etc. Very future-looking.

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