Design

Places that Work: Milwaukee Art Museum

Image courtesy the Milawaukee Art Museum, Photo: Timothy Hursley. Whenever I’m in the Quadracci Pavilion at the Milwaukee Art Museum, I have to catch my breath. Being there is an exhilarating, intensely positive experience. The space works hard to prepare visitors…

Places that Work: IND Airport

While checking in at the Indianapolis International Airport, I was thrilled to find a number of biophilic design principles in use, particularly in the airport’s Civic Plaza. IND is the first greenfield airport built after 9/11, designed by HOK, and…

Places that Work: The Grainger Ballroom

The Grainger Ballroom, in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) building, is a terrific place for listening to music. It’s a room where the design works to make the audience comfortable, and this, in turn, allows us to respond emotionally to…

Places that Work: Miniature Rooms

A15: New York Parlor, 1850–1870, c.1940, Mrs. James Ward Thorne, Miniature Room, Mixed Media, Interior:  12 3/8 x 17 1/2 x  21 in., Scale: 1 inch = 1 foot, Gift of Mrs. James Ward Thorne. The Thorne Miniature Rooms at the Art Institute…

Places that Work: Art Gallery in Christchurch

Courtesy of The Buchan Group. Photographer: Murray Hedwig At the Christchurch Art Gallery in New Zealand, you can observe how the building’s   design connects to the natural environment that surrounds it, as well as its cultural ties to the town…

Places that Work: A Rural Library

Library visits may be fewer in December and January as avid readers plow through their holiday cache of books. But that trend might not apply to the Round Top Family Library in rural Round Top, Texas. Here, on a recent…

Places that Work: The Swedish Embassy

The House of Sweden (Swedish Embassy) in Washington, DC is a striking manifestation of Swedish culture; in fact it may be among the best architectural embodiments of culture/brand I’ve ever visited. As the year winds down, you may see this…

Life, Edited.

The heyday of the McMansion has been on its way out for quite some time – perhaps more by economic circumstance than by fashion of choice – but Treehugger.com founder Graham Hill is out to actively sway our consumption preferences.…

Places that Work: Apple Stores

Setting the right mood and sending the right message are keys to the success of any space, whether it’s your design for a holiday party or architects’ spaces for successful retail environments. The Apple stores, designed by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson,…

Places that Work: A Room at the Met

Places succeed when they support people’s activities. An office works when employees can collaborate and concentrate, whenever they need to do so. A concert hall performs well when the whole audience can see and hear. Such places are designed to…

Places that Work: Palmer House Lobby

Privacy, both physical and electronic, is a hot topic these days. The recent uproar surrounding Google’s changes to their privacy policies shows just how much it matters in virtual space. So does the continuing battle we wage to keep our…

Accessibility Watch: Furniture

This summer, to mark the 20th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, four new rules were proposed by the federal government. These amendments could make the design of objects and interfaces more accessible to people of all abilities. While some…

Places that Work: II, The Rookery

On a recent visit to Chicago, I ducked into the light court at The Rookery on the corner of Adams and LaSalle. I do this every time I’m in this city on the lake, because I love the space. As…

An Experimental Approach to Lighting

In the June issue of the magazine, David Sokol writes briefly about the lighting manufacturer iGuzzini's new U.S. showroom. Below is an expanded version of Sokol's text, with more details on the company's history and products. Even if you’re not…

Book Review: The Grid Book

The Grid Book wants to show us that the history of building, composing, computing, mapping, lending, painting, printing, trading, and writing—the history of modern existence, in other words—is really a history of the grid. This is ambitious. By a bit…

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…