Metropolis Magazine - Metropolis Magazine April 2010

 

Space Craft

In Re:Crafted (April; $50) Marc Kristal highlights 25 buildings in which site-specific designs produce exceptional architectural spaces. When it comes to defining craft, Kristal, a longtime contributor to Metropolis, invokes the former Supreme Court justice Potter Stewart on pornography: “I know it when I see it.” A more exact definition lies somewhere in the selected projects, including an art center…

Honest Effort

In its unusual take on the desk lamp, the Swedish architectural studio TAF opted for a deliberately naïve form. The Wood Lamp, produced by the Scandinavian design group Muuto, is constructed almost entirely from pine and embellished only with butterfly bolts and an unexpectedly flashy green cord. Sure, it’s something an extremely savvy student might have pulled off in shop…

The Shield

A noisy freeway inspires an ingenious sound wall for an affordable-housing complex in Silicon Valley.

Social Fabric

Teixidors is a textile company with a conscience. Since 1983, the nonprofit, which produces a variety of wool, linen, silk, and cashmere products, has employed men and women with mental disabilities in a cooperative workshop in Catalonia, Spain. It takes up to four years for a weaver to learn how to use the complicated hand-operated looms well enough to work…

Brass Works

In choosing brass for the w102 desk light, David Chipperfield gave his slender new design for Wästberg a decided stateliness. But while the material may evoke cherry-paneled banks and library reading rooms, it’s hardly an exercise in nostalgia: LEDs and supple rubber accents—as luxurious as leather—keep it fresh. April 1, 2010 Categories: Uncategorized

Mix It Up: The Deal

Todd DeGarmo, the CEO of Studios Architecture, is clued in to an elemental truth about architecture: “We have learned that there is no project without a deal.” And for 200 Fifth Avenue, which was at one point slated to become condominiums, Studios played an important role in helping David W. Levinson, the chairman of L&L Holding Company, close the 2007…

Mix It Up: Signage

Studios Architecture treated the Grey interior as if it were working for two clients: the creatives and the corporate staff. That left Paula Scher, who handled the environmental graphics, with a dilemma. “They thought we would try to unify the space with the signage program, but that seemed like it would look rather ridiculous,” says Scher, a partner at the…

Mix It Up: Lighting

On a sunny winter afternoon, the lobby of 200 Fifth Avenue is glowing brightly, thanks to dozens of light sources trained on its white terrazzo floors and limestone walls. David W. Levinson, the owner of L&L Holding Company, “wanted it to blow away all the other lobbies in New York,” says Clark Johnson, the lighting designer for the building’s public…

Mix It Up: Preservation

Because 200 Fifth Avenue is a historic building, the plans to renovate it had to run an all-too-familiar gauntlet: New York City’s Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), long seen as an enemy of modern additions. But in this case, most of the updates involved the interior, with two crucial exceptions: the entrance on Fifth Avenue and a 15-story curtain wall, to…

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