A visual tour of downtown Los Angeles, now and then:
Walking City - "Referencing the utopian visions of 1960’s architecture practice Archigram, Walking City is a slowly evolving video sculpture. The language of materials and patterns seen in radical architecture transform as the nomadic city walks endlessly, adapting to the environments she encounters."
A Short History of the Highrise A four-part NYT interactive documentary by Katrina Cizek on apartment buildings through the ages, part of the National Film Board of Canada's HIGHRISE project (Previously).
The SCI-Arc Media Archive features 600+ video lectures on modern architecture and design, with an emphasis on Southern California.
Highrise: One Millionth Tower is an interactive documentary, architectural visualization, and virtual transformation featuring a highrise development in Toronto. Presented by the National Film Board of Canada. (via Chrome Experiments)
This weekend marks the time of the Hajj, a core pillar of Islam in which great tides of humanity venture to the ancient city of Mecca to honor God. Predating Mohammed's birth by centuries, the pilgrimage comprises several days of rites, from congregation like snow on Mount Arafat and the ritual stoning of Shaitan to the circling of the sacred Kaaba (the shrouded cubical monolith Muslims pray toward daily) and kissing the Black Stone (colored by the absorption of myriad sins, and believed by some to be a fallen meteorite). While the city has modernized to handle this largest of annual gatherings -- building highway-scale ramps, gaudy skyscrapers for the ultra-rich, and tent cities the size of Seattle -- it remains mysterious, as unbelievers are forbidden from entering its borders. Richard Francis Burton became famous for touring the city in disguise to write a rare travelogue, but contemporary viewers have a more immediate guide: Vice Magazine journalist Suroosh Alvi, who smuggled a minicam into the city to record The Mecca Diaries [alt], a 14-minute documentary of his own Hajj journey. Browse the manual to see what goes into a Hajj trip, or watch the YouTube livestream to see the Grand Mosque crowds in real time.
Tetragram for Enlargement is an architectural video installation by Apparati Effimeri that decorates, distorts, and eventually explodes the fortress Rocca Malatestiana. [Italian] [more inside]
Architectural critic and writer Reyner Banham loved Los Angeles. (Last link is a BBC documentary, circa 1972, 52 minutes -- NSFW at 47 minute mark) [more inside]
We need a way to have, buy, and sit on fewer and better things. — from the CICINA, a 20 minute video presentation on their effort to compare all things in a massive bracketed set of 214 binary judgements. Which is better: Apples or Oranges?
Primal source at GLOW (video), Burble London (an implementation of Open Burble) (video), Evoke (video) - the transformative artworks of Haque Design and Research. Interview with Usman Haque. Previously.
Open House, Home Turned Upsidedown "This house at 15 S. Putnam has stood victim to the elements – it’s been vandalized, looted, and its leaking roof has made it uninhabitable. In June 2006, the structure was condemned by the city due to structural problems, destined for demo. But now – thanks to cooperation between the University of Buffalo School of Architecture, Harvey Garrett, and home owner Dennetta Stikkel – new, and decidedly unique, life will be breathed into the otherwise abandoned house. Under the direction of Professors Frank Fantauzzi and Brad Wales, the project architect, 14 graduate students will be working creatively to revitalize the structure. It is a unique opportunity for the students to use their classroom architecture training in a real-life application." Quoted from Buffalo Rising Story Longer story on the completed project at Artvoice.
Business POV It is a forum for state-of-the-art business journalism using an innovative format: online video. Viewers can watch new, completely original, locally produced video profiles of companies, people and products that fall into our three main interest areas: innovation, entrepreneurship and the creative culture (advertising, graphic design, architecture, the arts). New content is posted Monday-Friday. Check out the archives section (Jason Fried, from 37 Signals is interviewed). Enjoy!
Soft Cinema is a software+video project by media-theorist Lev Manovich, which 'mines the creative possibilities at the intersection of software culture, cinema, and architecture.' While perhaps more intriguing in prospect than in practice, it seems at least a noteworthy attempt at making something new. A DVD version of the project was released earlier this year.