887 posts tagged with architecture.
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defensive architecture

Between 1942 and 1944 the German military erected a gigantic defensive wall along the Atlantic coast, running from France to Norway: more than 12.000 concrete bunkers were built. What remains of the Atlantikwall in Normandy. The Atlantic Wall Linear Museum. The Atlantic Wall and D-Day.
posted by nickyskye on Apr 21, 2007 - 13 comments

The Fifty-Nine-Story Crisis

The Fifty-Nine-Story Crisis. In 1978, renowned structural engineer William LeMessurier discovered a mistake in his design for the Citicorp (now Citigroup) Center. With hurricane season approaching, the skyscraper was in imminent danger of collapse. His handling of the situation has been praised as a "stunning example of good ethics in action" – but some disagree.
posted by smably on Apr 20, 2007 - 46 comments

Funky Furniture

The Obselisk. The bastard child of a Mensa quiz and rattan furniture. Getting apart is probably ok, but I don't want to put it back together - particularly after drinky-poo's. But certainly a talking point - particularly at $9,890 . Via
posted by ninazer0 on Apr 19, 2007 - 19 comments

Design like you give a damn.

The Open Architecture Network "is an online, open source community dedicated to improving living conditions through innovative and sustainable design." {via Cameron Sinclair's Ted Talk}
posted by dobbs on Apr 14, 2007 - 6 comments

cutting and folding, no glue

Kirigami is an ingenius way of cutting and folding paper, creating designs in many styles, often with a captivating simplicity. Some are like geometric lace, some are marvelous 3-D modular, while some are amazing architectural creations.
posted by nickyskye on Apr 11, 2007 - 21 comments

The acoustics of the theatre of Epidaurus

An ancient theatre filters out low-frequency background noise. The ancient Greek theatre of the Asklepieion of Epidaurus, built mostly during the 4th century B.C. and now a World Heritage Site, is renowned for its extraordinary acoustics. Researchers have figured out that the arrangement of the stepped rows of seats are perfectly shaped to act as an acoustic filter, suppressing low-frequency background noise while passing on the high frequencies of performers' voices. [Via MoFi.]
posted by homunculus on Mar 28, 2007 - 16 comments

Impossible Crystals

"This is a story of how the impossible became possible. How, for centuries, scientists were absolutely sure that solids (as well as decorative patterns like tiling and quilts) could only have certain symmetries - such as square, hexagonal and triangular - and that most symmetries, including five-fold symmetry in the plane and icosahedral symmetry in three dimensions (the symmetry of a soccer ball), were strictly forbidden. Then, about twenty years ago, a new kind of pattern, known as a "quasicrystal," was envisaged that shatters the symmetry restrictions and allows for an infinite number of new patterns and structures that had never been seen before, suggesting a whole new class of materials...."

Physicist Paul J. Steinhardt delivers a fascinating lecture (WMV) on tilings and quasicrystals. However, it turns out science was beaten to the punch: a recent paper (PDF) suggests Islamic architecture developed similar tilings centuries earlier.
posted by parudox on Mar 18, 2007 - 11 comments

Cuyahoga County Courthouse

The Cuyahoga County Courthouse is a magnificent building. [via]
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese on Mar 17, 2007 - 45 comments

President’s House

Welcome to the Rashtrapati Bhavan (inspired from):
posted by hadjiboy on Mar 10, 2007 - 7 comments

Extra space

This apartment is so cramped. I wish I could find a little extra space. (previously)
posted by caddis on Feb 28, 2007 - 22 comments

Tiny lives

Detailed images of a complete miniature city
posted by deern the headlice on Feb 11, 2007 - 41 comments

"The crazy notion that design not only was important but could also change the world"

Clip/Stamp/Fold. The current show at the Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York City explores an era when architecture was actually interesting. We go from "an elephant attacking the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan to a skyscraper made of Swiss cheese." On the way, we visit astronauts, bunkers, walking cities, and robots fucking – and it's all waiting for you inside these little magazines.
posted by BLDGBLOG on Feb 7, 2007 - 5 comments

Creating the framework for a consumer-oriented society

Unintelligent Design. The History Images of Sze Tsung Leong. "Then there's the other type of history that is recorded in the fabric of cities. This includes the houses that are being destroyed; it has to do with the history of quotidian things, really, the layers of history that have slowly accumulated. The loss of this fabric the spaces and histories particular to different cities means that the particular cultural value and artistic qualities they contain, are lost." also here and here.
posted by arse_hat on Feb 6, 2007 - 8 comments

dwarfing historic St. Petersburg

There are already some strange Soviet buildings. Gazprom intends to build these unusual skyscrapers in St. Petersburg. Maybe they will include caviar vending machines?
posted by nickyskye on Jan 18, 2007 - 25 comments

Mental Suburbia

Architecture in Second Life: Virtual Banality
posted by Falconetti on Jan 18, 2007 - 27 comments

Russian Bus Stop Architecture

The (previously mentioned) excellent webzine Polar Inertia has a great photo essay on Soviet Roadside Bus Stops. The crazy architecture & diversity are really interesting, as is the abject sparseness of territory around the stops. Via.
posted by jonson on Jan 11, 2007 - 18 comments

Fictional ruins from fictional worlds

Carl Zimmerman's Landmarks of Industrial Britain is a photographic series of fictional public buildings derived from small scale architectural maquettes. BLDGBLOG has an informative and entertaining writeup of these vaguely surreal works. There's something oddly compelling about photographs of things that don't quite exist.
posted by sidereal on Jan 5, 2007 - 5 comments

Homemade Wooden Skyscraper

The story of how Russian Nikolai Sutyagin began building his homemade wooden skyscraper, went to prison, lost most of his fortune & now lives with his wife in his unfinished masterpiece is a fascinating one. Many more photos of the structure can be found here. Via
posted by jonson on Dec 21, 2006 - 13 comments

"Your daily source for wonderful stuff."

Grandma's Kitchen (youtube), the Roller Toaster, the water-less washing machine, the sculptures of Gwon Osong, a crucifix-shaped mp3 player... some of the people and things found on CubeMe, a blog about "wonderful stuff".
posted by dobbs on Dec 20, 2006 - 13 comments

The Cliff House Project

The Cliff House was San Francisco Mayor Adolph Sutro's amazing 7-storey Victorian chateau built in 1896 and destroyed by fire in 1907. The Cliff House Project (photos) has a large and absorbing database of related material. [via the indefatigable gmtPlus9 (-15)]
posted by peacay on Dec 14, 2006 - 14 comments

Pencil Sketches of Palomar Observatory

Russell W. Porter was an amateur astronomer who helped design the 200 inch telescope for Mount Palomar observatory. His pencil sketches of the finished mechanism are remarkably beautiful.
posted by jonson on Dec 12, 2006 - 15 comments

A title's pointless. Who wouldn't click on a link called that?

Architecture and the Velvet Fist of Happiness - click 'view the book" in the top left. {Flash, slight sound, NSFW}
posted by dobbs on Dec 11, 2006 - 9 comments

The living is easy

The Central City by Steve Tanza
posted by klangklangston on Dec 10, 2006 - 4 comments

Vertical architectural gardening.

Vertical gardening in architecture. Gorgeous walls and other vertical architectural features covered in lush, growing greenery.
posted by loquacious on Dec 8, 2006 - 12 comments

Romanesque Churches of the Bourbonnais

Bourbonnais. No, not Bourbonnais, IL, but Bourbonnais, a historic province in France that flourished during the eleventh and twelfth centuries. In this area there are hundreds of churches built in the Romanesque style.

In 2004 Stephen Murray, an art history professor, and his students recieved a $500,000 grant to document, process, and archive data from the churches into a digital database, all available online.
posted by provolot on Dec 5, 2006 - 13 comments

Japanese Urban Ruins PhotoGalleries

Amazing collection of several galleries full of Japanese "urban ruins" photos, including abandoned amusement parks, refineries, apartment blocks, hospitals, schools, bowling alleys, & much more, including Battleship Island, the (previously posted) abandoned coal mining island off the coast of Nagasaki. Via.
posted by jonson on Dec 5, 2006 - 34 comments

What a pratfall!

The Berlin District Court has ruled that Deutsche Bahn must rebuild whole sections of the new Hauptbahnhof according to the architect's plans, setting a spectacular precedent. Berlin's new main train station, the Hauptbahnhof, cuts a solitary figure in the surrounding wasteland as it awaits an urban development that will complement its ambition, aesthetics and vast dimensions. But the verdict pronounced by the Berlin District Court on Tuesday November 28 has brutally nipped this development process in the bud. The judges ruled that the German rail company Deutsche Bahn has unlawfully violated the intellectual property rights of the station's architect, Meinhard von Gerkan. The rail company must rebuild the station according to the architect's plans. The station opened in May this year after a 13-year construction period.
posted by parmanparman on Dec 4, 2006 - 41 comments

"An ultra-urban island of individuality in a sea of look-alike dwellings"

The Playboy Townhouse. Posh Plans for Exciting Urban Living, circa 1961. via
posted by Chrischris on Dec 1, 2006 - 25 comments

Rome as very few can picture it

Another incredible cityscape drawn from memory by the amazing Stephen Wiltshire (previously featured). The same clip on YouTube for those who don't like wmv's.
posted by flabdablet on Nov 23, 2006 - 41 comments

The purpose of architecture is to shelter and enhance man's life on earth and to fulfill his belief in the nobility of his existence.

Panopticon : a type of prison, designed by a philosopher, that through a cunning scheme of probability, architecture and observation provides the 'sentiment of an invisible omniscience'.
posted by 31d1 on Nov 12, 2006 - 51 comments

De architectura - Vitruvius' The Ten Books of Architecture

De Architectura, known also as The Ten Books of Architecture, is an exposition on architecture by Marcus Vitruvius Pollio. Originally in Latin, here it is translated into English.
posted by nthdegx on Nov 9, 2006 - 15 comments

Nikos Salingaros, Architecture Theorist

Nikos Salingaros is a mathematics professor and architecture theorist. His career has crossed disciplines: after starting out as a painter, Salingaros earned a Ph.D. in theoretical physics and published work in mathematics and physics. In 1983 Salingaros helped edit Christopher Alexander's book The Nature of Order (here are Salingaros' notes on the book), and thereafter began a career as a noted architecture theorist in his own right. Salingaros is an advocate for "new urbanism" in architecture, and he champions the ideas of architect Léon Krier (the "godfather of new urbanism") with the "pattern language" theory of Christopher Alexander (wiki). The excellent arts blog 2Blowhards conducted a fascinating five-part interview with Salingaros: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Salingaros just published a new book, A Theory of Architecture (2Blowhards discusses it here) with a preface written by HRH the Prince of Wales (wiki).
posted by jayder on Nov 5, 2006 - 13 comments

The quick brown fox

Ancient Alchemical Alphabetologists. From the wonderful Giornale Nuovo: Basoli's fantastical architectural alphabet, Steingruber's blueprint alphabet, De Bry's Biblical decorative alphabet, and general figurative alphabets.
posted by Falconetti on Oct 21, 2006 - 14 comments

Oh, my! It's OHNY!

It’s NYC’s 4th Annual Architecture Week! These seven days included a weekend of free exhibitions: Five boroughs of interesting locations to see! Download MP3’s of "podcast tours" for selected sites. Missed it? Don’t worry, you can catch up.
posted by bodega on Oct 9, 2006 - 4 comments

Plan of St.Gall

The Plan of St.Gall - QTVR models and hi-res zoom-able images - an idealized plan for an entire 9th century monastery complex.
posted by stbalbach on Sep 28, 2006 - 5 comments

Being and Seeming: the Technology of Representation

Being and Seeming: the Technology of Representation an essay by novelist Richard Powers
posted by MetaMonkey on Sep 24, 2006 - 11 comments

17th Century Chinese Fortress Villages

Tu Lou, ("earthen structures") are massive, fortress like dwellings, native to the Hakka people of China's Fujian province. Distinguishing features include a central courtyard, multiple levels, a lack of windows on the ground floor, a single, heavily fortified entrance, and dozens of homes all wedged together. The buildings are ringed with a one meter thick outer wall, feautre no concrete or steel; living quarters on the upper levels are largely built from wooden beams, jointed with pegs. A typical structure would take several years to build.
posted by jonson on Sep 21, 2006 - 17 comments

Why do they sell hot dogs in tens and buns in eights?

Architectures of Control in Design. A blog examining product designs intended to restrict or enforce behavior. In the built environment, we see speed bumps and roundabouts with intentionally obscured visibility; in the digital environment, we see various species of DRM and trusted computing; and in other commerical products, we see car hoods only openable by licensed dealers, printer cartridges for only one sort of printer, and a set of shoes for children which detects the amount of steps they take in a day and translates that activity into the amount of TV they may watch. The control may be for economic reasons, for reasons of safety, or even simply to enforce social nicety - and for each of these reasons are the implications worth regarding . [via the excellent things]
posted by Sticherbeast on Sep 14, 2006 - 27 comments

How to Create an Aerial Panorama from Google Earth

How to Create an Aerial Panorama from Google Earth. The Digitally Distributed Environments blog, and others following their tutorial, have created Google Earth panoramas of Belgium, Moscow, Paris, New York, London and the Sydney Olympic Site. They also note Panogames, who use a similar process to create panoramas from videogame worlds. This follows their Frank Lloyd Wright architectural/videogame walkthrough demo using the Half Life 2 engine [mefi thread] following which they appear hard at work formalising a clear method for importing CAD models into Half Life 2 for architectural visualisations.
posted by nthdegx on Sep 9, 2006 - 11 comments

We can rebuild it.

Frank Lloyd Wright in Half Life 2 a machima walkthrough of the Falling Water / Kaufmann House. (youtube) (higher res version - 57mb) (slightly more information)
posted by crunchland on Aug 31, 2006 - 37 comments

Forestiere Underground Complex

In the early 1900's, Sicilian immigrant Baldasare Forestiere moved from New York the San Joaquin valley, California. Working alone during his spare time and using only hand tools, he spent 40 years sculpting an underground home and garden [Real] that's a work of art and architectural engineering known today as the Forestiere Underground Gardens. [Gimages]
posted by CodeBaloo on Aug 19, 2006 - 11 comments

Designs for an American Landscape

The decade between 1922 & 1932 was not a good one for Frank Lloyd Wright; his star had faded in the US upon his return from Japan, and even though his most prolific years were still ahead of him, he had trouble finding work, and was evicited, his fabled home siezed by creditors. The Library of Congress hosts a fantastic collection of 5 projects he undertook during this era, none of which ever came to fruition. All that's left are his extensive blueprints, perspective drawings, and scale models carved specifically for the exhibit.
posted by jonson on Aug 14, 2006 - 15 comments

The Persians Call it Nesf-e-Jahan (Half The World)

Esfahan is home to the Blue Mosque and other buildings with their unique blue tiles which are beautifully shown in photographs by flickr's horizon. Esfahan is a world heritage site and is home to many examples of traditional Persian Architecture which is made up of eight traditional forms which taken together form the foundation on which it was based in the same way that music was once based on a finite number of notes.
posted by adamvasco on Aug 10, 2006 - 19 comments

Prints by Michael Burghers

Large scans of plates, largely for Robert Plot’s Natural History of Staffordshire (1686). You can view more of Burghers work here.
posted by tellurian on Aug 9, 2006 - 6 comments

Quicktime VR photos of Tokyo

Quicktime VR photos of Tokyo - tunnels - night - large drains - buildings - etc. The nav is mainly in Japanese but the "VR List" link, lower right, seems to be the main index.
posted by carter on Jul 26, 2006 - 9 comments

Artist stroke Mass-Murdering Fuckhead.

The art of Hitler. For sale. What a roundabout way to up the value of your paintings.
posted by 6am on Jul 16, 2006 - 66 comments

Schaulager, Basel

Schaulager, Basel, Switzerland. "If art is not seen it is dead. If art is not conserved, it decays. Schaulager - a new type of space for art." Originating from the Emanuel Hoffmann Foundation, whose collection is stored at Schaulager under optimal conservation conditions, Schaulager is an institution dedicated to contemporary art – its conservation, research and dissemination. Building designed by architects Herzog & de Meuron.
posted by booksprite on Jul 12, 2006 - 5 comments

some massive urban machine

Flipping through the sales booklet, which has pages of unit plans, is like reading the assembly blueprints for some massive urban machine with interlocking component parts... The end result is a staggering 76 floor plans in 221 units—with none repeated more than a dozen times and well over a dozen of them unique. via BLDBLOG
posted by signal on Jul 12, 2006 - 7 comments

Surreal in the jungle

Edward James (1907 - 1984) was a millionaire Scottish, art patron and surrealist who moved to Mexico in 1947 to grow orchids. After the orchids were destroyed by a freak snowstorm in 1962, he decided to switch to experiments in architecture. He built a monument to surrealism called Las Pozas, just outside of Xilitla. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Jul 11, 2006 - 21 comments

Disused architecture

Abandonded buildings: photos of.
posted by econous on Jul 7, 2006 - 20 comments

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