The Hunterian Gallery, Glasgow, has one of Mackintosh’s houses bursting from its brutalist concrete panelling.
The 70’s building is clad in a reconstruction of the house where Mackintosh lived, positioned roughly 100 meters from where it had previously existed. With the front steps removed, this strangely places the front door several feet off the ground.
The Montreuil Conservatory, by Claude Le Goas, 1976. Each of the metal pods on the façade is an acoustically separated practice room. It is an exceptionally advanced building, featuring an irrigated steel structure which has beams filled with water to slow their disintegration in the case of a fire.
Pablo Bronstein’s full scale Pavilion for the Monuments exhibition at Lismore Castle, Ireland, tests out the language of his drawings. It’s a thin printed graphic held up by scaffolding at the front and rear. The story goes that the design originally only had scaffolding behind the image, but when builders who were installing the graphic sent work in progress photos, Bronstein asked them to keep the “real” scaffolding up. It looks fantastic set in the topiary of the castle, but it feels very much like a drawing, rather than a 3D work. It is more akin to Matthew Darbyshire’s recent work The T Rooms, which is interesting as both artists are represented by Herald Street Gallery.
The EcoHat isn’t a beanie made of hemp, it is Richard Rogers’ contemporary chimney.
“Were “EcoHat” to come up in passing, you would most likely think of something chunky, organic, and woolen–—perhaps a beanie with earflaps to keep you toasty while chained to a logger’s truck. But in fact, the EcoHat is an innovative environmental housing feature created by British architects Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners (the new name for Richard Rogers Partnership) for the wonderfully un-British Oxley Woods development. The colorful set of detached homes is situated on the edge of the much-maligned planned community of Milton Keynes, about 50 miles northwest of London.
Designed in response to a government competition to create a £60,000 ($121,000) eco-friendly home, the panelized Oxley Woods houses are manufactured off-site, transported, filled with recycled-paper insulation, and erected in about seven days. To minimize costs, service areas such as kitchens, bathrooms, and heat controls are standard on all homes, though the buildings vary in size from 700 to 1,615 square feet.
Another standardized feature is the EcoHat. Perched atop the roofs of each of the 145 houses, this is a powerhouse of energy efficiency in a small aluminum box, delivering a neatly packaged system that combines solar power with a home’s circulatory system. Within the EcoHat, solar power heats air as it enters through the roof. This warm air then passes through filters into the living space, or can be used to heat water by means of a heat-transfer coil.
“Inside the EcoHat is a tried-and-tested system called Sunwarm,” explains Andrew Partridge, an associate at Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners. “What we did was manufacture housing that allows us to fit the Sunwarm to all of the properties. In it is a dry solar panel collector, which air is passed over.”
The EcoHat is as typical of the Oxley Woods design as an old-fashioned chimney. The unit is easily accessible from inside the home, allowing for repairs and updates to technology without the need for a cherry picker.
The EcoHat’s casing conceals its unsightly gadgetry, while still allowing the solar panels to be angled for maximum efficiency. “Sometimes in environmental housing you have to orientate the houses quite vigorously,” says Partridge. “This allows for the house to be orientated in any direction, while the EcoHat always points in the appropriate direction for solar efficiency.” To that end, the architects claim that the Ecohat-wearing home can offer up to 50 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions.
Time will tell whether the EcoHat will be the feature that marks a new generation of British homes, but if it becomes half as ubiquitous as the top hat or the bowler once was, then this piece of rooftop millinery will undoubtedly be declared a resounding success.”
Gorgeous models from Nat Chard’s most recent project, The Institute of Paradoxical Shadows. Expect to see more of it in his upcoming book with Perry Kulper as part of the Pamphlet Architecture series, and on his website
Ada, formerly Group 41, are running a series of two week schools in London, Warsaw & Poncé-sur-le-Loir this summer.
CAN will be tutoring at London II and are in the process of recruiting enthusiastic and exciting students for:
This two week course, based in central London, will combine the fields of performance art and architecture, using techniques from both to guide participants in how the internet can be used as a tool to generate anything from a 2d image to a full performance piece.
During the first week students will be taught how to take a 2-dimensional image and distort/glitch and extrapolate it in such a way as to generate the unexpected. Various form generating techniques will be used to guide the students, teaching them how to explore ideas quickly. Each day a new performance piece will be produced from an idea with everyone working together to document, present and discuss their unique piece. Students will be introduced to the work of various performance artists alongside the piece generation techniques.
The internet will be used as the departure point for this exploration and we will encourage students to see this vast resource not just as a research tool but as a starting point for creativity.
During the second week, the pieces produced in the first week will be brought together, and as a group, the students will develop, design and build a larger piece which will be shown in a final performance on the last day of the school. The students will learn the tools of collaborative working, set design and building as well as developing their performance work from the previous week.
Throughout the course, everyone will act as artist and teacher, finding new ways to talk about the work and their contribution. This course will include visits to key venues such as ‘The Live Art Agency’ and other London exhibition venues.