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Oscar Niemeyer to be Featured on the Streets of Rio

Contemporary Art Museum (MAC). Image © Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre Contemporary Art Museum (MAC). Image © Iñigo Bujedo-Aguirre

The work of Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer is currently being featured by the city of Rio de Janeiro. Throughout the month of January, mock-ups and engravings signed by the architect can be seen in Barra da Tijuca, in the city’s West Side. There, visitors can discover the history of Brazilian architecture and see some of Niemeyer's most famous work. The RioCVB created the exhibition to celebrate Niemeyer's legacy and showcase Brazil's landmark buildings.

Spotlight: Oscar Niemeyer

Cathedral of Brasília. Image © Gonzalo Viramonte Cathedral of Brasília. Image © Gonzalo Viramonte

Oscar Ribeiro de Almeida Niemeyer Soares Filho, or simply Oscar Niemeyer, (December 15, 1907 – December 5, 2012) was one of the greatest architects in Brazil's history, and one of the greats of the global modernist movement. After his death in 2012, Niemeyer left the world more than five hundred works scattered throughout the Americas, Africa, and Europe.

This Week in Architecture: Reduce, Reuse, Rethink

© Leonardo Finotti © Leonardo Finotti

It's easy to feel overwhelmed by the massive production of architecture today. Scroll through ArchDaily for more than a minute and even we'd forgive you for losing track of it all. But what seems like an endless scroll of architectural production doesn't quite fit with the popular movements surrounding resource sharing and community. 

Hidden among the mass production that has defined architecture in the last century is a germ - one that seems to be marching to the forefront of practice today. More and more designers seem to be taking on locally-focused and/or adaptive reuse works. Award shortlists today highlight not icons by recognizable names, but sensitive international works that are notable for their process as much as their product.

The common image of the architect may be of one obsessed with ego and newness, but practice today doesn't bear that out as much as it used to. This week's news touched on issues of reduction, reuse, and a radical rethink what architecture is in the 21st century. 

RIBA International Prize Aleph Zero and Rosenbaum

The Met Selects wHY Architecture to Renovate Rockefeller Wing in New York City

Michael C. Rockefeller Wing. Image Courtesy of wHY Architecture Michael C. Rockefeller Wing. Image Courtesy of wHY Architecture

The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City has selected Kulapat Yantrasast and wHY Architecture to renovate its Michael C. Rockefeller wing. With arts produced in Africa, Oceania and the Americas, the 40,000-square-foot wing is located on the southern side of the Fifth Avenue museum. The $70 million project aim is showcase the collection of arts and artifacts from sub-Saharan Africa, the Pacific Islands, and the Americas.

Frida Escobedo, Designer of the Serpentine Pavilion, Among 2019 RIBA International Fellows

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) unveiled the seven laureates of the 2019 International Fellowships,
a "lifetime honor allows recipients to use the initials Int FRIBA after their name," recognizes the contributions that architects across the world outside of the UK have made in the field of architecture. Previously awarded to architects such as Jeanne Gang and Phillip Cox, the annual Fellowship emphasizes not only the impact of architects' work in their respective homelands but also their global influence.

A juror's committee, consisting of Ben Derbyshire, RIBA President; Lady Patty Hopkins, a 1994 RIBA Gold Medalist; Bob Shiel, a professor at the Bartlett School of Architecture; Wasfi Kani, a 2018 Honorary Fellow; and Pat Woodward RIBA, of Matthew Lloyd Architects, awarded the 2019 Fellows. The fellowships will be presented in London in February 2019.

The laureates of RIBA's 2019 International Fellowships are as following:

Frida Escobedo

AD Classics: World's Columbian Exposition / Daniel Burnham and Frederick Law Olmsted

Viewed from the far end of the Great Basin, the Administration Building looms over the court of honor and the surrounding great buildings of the fair. ImageCourtesy of Wikimedia user RillkeBot (Public Domain) Viewed from the far end of the Great Basin, the Administration Building looms over the court of honor and the surrounding great buildings of the fair. ImageCourtesy of Wikimedia user RillkeBot (Public Domain)

The United States had made an admirable showing for itself at the very first World’s Fair, the Crystal Palace Exhibition, held in the United Kingdom in 1851. British newspapers were unreserved in their praise, declaring America’s displayed inventions to be more ingenious and useful than any others at the Fair; the Liverpool Times asserted “no longer to be ridiculed, much less despised.” Unlike various European governments, which spent lavishly on their national displays in the exhibitions that followed, the US Congress was hesitant to contribute funds, forcing exhibitors to rely on individuals for support.

Why is CDMX the 2018 World Design Capital?

Cortesía de Danae Santibáñez Cortesía de Danae Santibáñez

At first sight, when approaching CDMX from the sky, is overwhelming. A sea of buildings indicates an arrival to the fifth most populated capital in the world. The size of the city, makes it difficult to recognize its limits, so it is inevitable to use urban and suburban landmarks such as the Zócalo square (downtown), Tamayo Museum in Chapultepec Park (West), University City, the Frida Kahlo Museum (Coyoacán), and Ciudad Satélite (north exit), to orient yourself.

Located in a strategic geographical position within the traditional routes of design, the city benefits from the connections and close interactions with North America and Europe. Fortunately, these external tendencies are refined within the "local" filter; the vast history and tradition of indigenous Mexican cultures permeate foreign influences making them unique creations, with a marked interest in native materials and working techniques.

Massive Fire Destroys Brazil's 200-Year-Old National Museum and Its Collection

Embed from Getty Images

Brazil's National Museum, one of Latin America's most important museums, was completely destroyed by a fire that started at 7:30 pm on Sunday evening. It housed over 20 million items related to the history of the Americas, many if not all of which were lost.

A report in the Rio Times indicates that the museum had operated normally on Sunday and closed its doors at 5:00 pm, two and a half hours before the blaze began. The cause of the fire remains undetermined.

Brazilians and non-Brazilians alike took to the Twitter to express their grief and outrage. There were reports that fire hydrants were empty, causing firefighters to pump water from a nearby lake to quell the blaze. Many used it as an opportunity to slam the government, others to lament the choice of destination of funds to projects within the country.