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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 6:09 PM
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Time Magazine's Most Anticipated Building of 2007

Time's Most Anticipated Building of 2007 is:

The Bloch Building, addition to the Nelson-Atikins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Mo.



Quote:
Architecture
The Art That Lies Beneath

Now that architecture is practically as glamorously daredevil as bullfighting, every year has its Most Anticipated Building. in 2006 there were two - Daniel Libeskind's addition to the Denver Art Museum and Norman Foster's Hearst Tower in New York City. This year there's just one: the Bloch Building, Stephen Holl's addition to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Mo., which opens in June. It's going to be the year's most visible building, on the strength of being the building that's not there.

Holl gave the Nelson-Atkins 165,000 sq. ft. of new space by buring the space underground. (Architects love metaphors. Is this a reminder that all art traces back to cave paintings?) What appears aboveground are five irregular glass pavilions, transparent in some part and translucent in others, which serve as vaulted glass ceilings for the galleriesbelow while carrying out a kind of photon hydraulics. During the day they'll pour (diffused) light into the galleries. After dark, lit from within, they'll pump it back against the night sky. Call them lenses - Holl's term - or lanterns. They're illuminating.
- Richard Lacayo
The building has been garnering rave reviews in the architecture world, including the following from Metropolis:

http://www.metropolismag.com/cda/story.php?artid=2536

However, it seems to be getting mixed reviews among the public in KC. Personally, I did not like it at first, but it is growing on me. It looks nice lit up at night.

What do you think?









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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 6:21 PM
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wow... I'm going to have to totally disagree with Time Magazine on this... but they seem to have a history of fawning over wacky architecture... the design is intended to baffle, confuse and befuddle the human... I can't wait to see the reactions to this monstrosity 30 years from now
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 6:28 PM
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Least anticipated most anticipated. I disagree entirely.

Still no mention whatsoever of Burj Dubai in Time Magazine that I know of.
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 7:19 PM
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I am pretty sure they only count buildings that will be finished that year. Given that Burj isn't even topped out, and has zero glass on it.. there is probably 0% chance it will finish this year I think.
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 7:23 PM
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Yeah but there are other buildings that are better than this one, and I didn't mean choosing it for this category, just a simple comment about it or something! I've had a subscription since December and my aunt gave me her two and a half years worth, and I can't recall it being mentioned once.
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 10:33 PM
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are u kidding me ! were they high when they made this selection. that building is hidieous(sp). with so many wonderful buildings being built around the world and in the U.S. i cant believe Time chose this. from the outside , it looks like public storage. wow. unbelieveable. there are plenty of candidates in NYC alone, not to mention Comcast Center in Phila. several bulidings in Chicago, etc...
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 11:12 PM
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Most anticipated? When noone on a forum dedicated to skyscrapers has even heard of it, i'd have to guess that there aren't many people anticipating it's arrival. What is so great about it anyway? from the outside it looks like a series of large trailer homes.
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 11:24 PM
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What the fuck is she looking at!?!?!?!??!??!?
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BnaBreaker View Post
Most anticipated? When noone on a forum dedicated to skyscrapers has even heard of it, i'd have to guess that there aren't many people anticipating it's arrival. What is so great about it anyway? from the outside it looks like a series of large trailer homes.
the New York Times has already done a glowing review of it, several months before it opens.

it's also much more about the inside than the outside. it's an enormous underground space with translucent glass "lenses" on the surface. it's gorgeous, particularly at night, and is easily the most important museum project in the world right now. check out the METROPOLIS article.

http://www.metropolismag.com/cda/story.php?artid=2536

it is a polarizing project, but when it is finished you'll be hearing a lot about it, as well as other projects in KC right now (the Moshe Safdie-designed Performing Arts Center, Safdie-designed West Edge project, and more). frankly, i think the fact it is KC is the main reason people aren't talking about it. KC people dont really post on this forum anyway since we have a very active forum of our own. (forum.kcrag.com)
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  #10  
Old Posted Mar 17, 2007, 11:52 PM
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I think it's pretty cool, particularly in comparison with the older building.
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  #11  
Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vid
What the fuck is she looking at!?!?!?!??!??!?
She's anticipating something!
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  #12  
Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 5:30 AM
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YOU GUYS DONT LIKE THIS BUILDING!?!

Man this is evidence of the divide between the world of really energetic and visionary architects and the general public. I hate that the public really doesn't GET architecture.

I'm a young architect and definitely a Modernist at heart. Please try to hear me out on what this building offers that you may be overlooking.

Holl was given a unique program with this building. He was asked to design an extension of the Neo-Classical museum that already existed. He didn't want to imitate the old (where is the point in that, after all?) and wanted to create a dialogue with the existing building. Whereas the original museum is sited as an object set atop a very ordered lawn, Holl proposed a building that would be integrated intoit's site as a series of fragments. Each 'pavilion' is connected by a sinewy thread of passages beneath the ground that are flooded in light.

Please take a second look at the material of the walls. The translucent panes capture a very exciting opalescence and change constantly in appearance with the light of the day. Keep in mind that Holl wanted to achieve both an interesting relationship between building and landscape and a very good quality of natural light on the interior for the viewing of art.

Evergrey, I agree with most of your posts, but on this you're wrong. Holl did not want to baffle or confuse the public. He sought to give us a new idea of what a building can be. His work is both playful and imaginative and seeks to stimulate and excite users much more than to disrupt them psychologically. It is an architecture that is very much about personal experience and offers a new perspective on a way to envision new realities within exisitng cities.

I'm not crazy guys, and neither is the architect. I just hope you can start to see a little of what I'm talking about. Please try to be less dogmatic against Modern architecture. The best architects of today are not destroying the city like the old ones did in the 60s, they're actually trying to propose some new solutions to the problems we discuss on here. I'm one of these architects and I speak to encourage you towards a greater openness in this area.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:03 AM
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Hmmm...looks like another one of those pretentious, abstract structures that so called 'art lovers' will fawn over so that they can pat themselves on the back for liking different.

"Oh, it's so cool because it's different, and because the general public won't 'get it.'"

I'm a fan of all kinds of architecture. I just can't bring myself to like much of any deconstrutivism architecture. I just don't see the big deal about architecture that looks as if it was styled after a block tower built and then destroyed by a 2-year-old.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:06 AM
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I have yet to be impressed by Holl's work, but that aside, this building looks okay. Much of Holl's work seems messy and unorganized (not in a Gehry or Mayne manner BTW) and the interior picture is an example of this. The issue I have with energetic and visionary architects is that they often look past purpose in a search for style or creativity for the sake of creativity (the most dangerous form of it). For instance, why did Holl choose the translucent panels? I realise you said that they "capture a very exciting opalescence and change constantly in appearance with the light of the day. Keep in mind that Holl wanted to achieve both an interesting relationship between building and landscape and a very good quality of natural light on the interior for the viewing of art." This however does not explain why he wanted that affect. What does it have to do with anything? The quality of light on the inside comes close to an acceptable reason, but there are many different ways to achieve such lighting. And why the "fragments" connected by a "sinewy thread of passages?"

Another point that struck me was your second sentence. The general public should not have to interpret or try to understand architecture. If it requires an explanation, it doesn't work. Secondly, the general public should not be lambasted for not having an interest in architecture. I don't have a particular interest in classical paintings or ballet, but I'm sure art curators and ballet choreographers scold me for my inability to comprehend their work. It becomes a matter of acceptance: not everyone cares about architecture. Whether they should or not is a different question as architecture's affect on people is inherent in the practice. My suggestion: if you're really tired of the general public's words concerning architecture, design a building that leaves them speechless.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evergrey View Post
wow... I'm going to have to totally disagree with Time Magazine on this... but they seem to have a history of fawning over wacky architecture... the design is intended to baffle, confuse and befuddle the human... I can't wait to see the reactions to this monstrosity 30 years from now


Dude, reactions 30 years from time X are always the worst. It was 30 years after the '20s that people failed to appreciate neo-classical and art deco architecture, which lead to widespread destruction of both.

I don't know about most anticipated, but this is an excellent design. It's not deconstructivist, it's just neo-modern.

That interior render is gorgeous. The sight lines along the multiple buildings are gorgeous. The way those buildings are arrayed along the top of the ridge is beautiful. The interaction with the reflecting pool is great. Perhaps most admirably, it's an addition that doesn't intrude upon the original building, or its grounds. A quality design all around.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vid View Post

What the fuck is she looking at!?!?!?!??!??!?
the buildings beauty...obviously
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:26 AM
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that building is spectacular.

throw a stone cornice on it and maybe a gargoyle or two and the public would love it too.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natelox View Post
I have yet to be impressed by Holl's work, but that aside, this building looks okay. Much of Holl's work seems messy and unorganized (not in a Gehry or Mayne manner BTW) and the interior picture is an example of this. The issue I have with energetic and visionary architects is that they often look past purpose in a search for style or creativity for the sake of creativity (the most dangerous form of it). For instance, why did Holl choose the translucent panels? I realise you said that they "capture a very exciting opalescence and change constantly in appearance with the light of the day. Keep in mind that Holl wanted to achieve both an interesting relationship between building and landscape and a very good quality of natural light on the interior for the viewing of art." This however does not explain why he wanted that affect. What does it have to do with anything? The quality of light on the inside comes close to an acceptable reason, but there are many different ways to achieve such lighting. And why the "fragments" connected by a "sinewy thread of passages?"

Another point that struck me was your second sentence. The general public should not have to interpret or try to understand architecture. If it requires an explanation, it doesn't work. Secondly, the general public should not be lambasted for not having an interest in architecture. I don't have a particular interest in classical paintings or ballet, but I'm sure art curators and ballet choreographers scold me for my inability to comprehend their work. It becomes a matter of acceptance: not everyone cares about architecture. Whether they should or not is a different question as architecture's affect on people is inherent in the practice. My suggestion: if you're really tired of the general public's words concerning architecture, design a building that leaves them speechless.

I'm not trying to dictate anyone's impressions here. I'm merely offering a bit of an informed opinion on the subject of this building and asking people to open their minds a bit. I think a museum curator or a director would only ask the same.

Holl designs through a very highly conceptual and creative process of watercolors, model iterations and material explorations. He tends to start with an idea about light or space. Then he builds a 'spatial narrative' around these themes. So in this case the visitor follows one main arterial passage (the sinewy threads) and 'happens' upon individual galleries (the fragments). It's merely a conceptual way of thinking about architectural procession.

As for Gehry, well he acts as a sculptor with architecture as his medium. And Thom Mayne works very iteratively in a manner not too dissimilar to Holl's. In the offices of all three of these architects you will undoubtedly find dozens of models for each project. Compare that to most normative practices where you get a couple sketch models and then a presentation model at most. It's an entirely different method of working, but both are equally valid.

And for your argument that the public shouldn't have to interpret architecture, think about architecture as a refined form of building, much like literature is to speech. Architecture critic Colin Rowe had this to say on the subject. I hope you'll read it if it doesn't bore you :

"For, the requirements of professional empire building apart, the demand that all buildings should become works of architecture (or the reverse) is strictly offensive to common sense. If it is possible to define the existential predicament of the art or architecture, one might possibly stipulate that architecture is a social institution related to building in much the same way that literature is to speech. Its technical medium is public property and, if the notion that all speech should approximate literature is (undoubtedly) absurd and would, in practice, be intolerable, much the same may be said about building and architecture. There is no need and no purpose served in insisting that they be identical. Like literature, architecture is a discriminatory concept which can, but need not, enjoy a lively commerce with its vernacular. And if it should be apparent that nobody is, in any way, seriously the loser by the existence of refined and passionate modes of concatenating words, the value of a parallel activity should scarcely require to be excused."
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 6:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LMich View Post

"Oh, it's so cool because it's different, and because the general public won't 'get it.'"

LMich, you usually impress me with your commentary but this is one of your more poorly conceived statements.

Please read my first post and see if it at least lessens the intensity of your belief that the statement above is what architects are trying to do.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2007, 7:44 AM
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MY EYES! MY EYES! Those are the ugliest public structures I've ever seen. I cant decide whether they look like the storage sheds at the high school across the street, or a trailer park in Bakersfield.

Time, NY Times, etc. raving about this place seems like a bad chapter out of the emperor's new clothes. Somebody tell these people that they are making their opinions worthless to the general public.
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