All items from Web Urbanist

Cool Vernacular: How Regional Ceiling Heights Shape Room Temperatures

[ By WebUrbanist in Architecture & Houses & Residential. ]

Modernism sought to bring a healthy uniformity to architectural design, in part through with clean lines and material minimalism. New technologies like air conditioning also allowed for an unprecedented level of global standardization in terms of temperature-controlled spaces. Of course, this often meant disregarding local traditions that had been successful for centuries (or longer). Among the regional strategies that got lost along the way was a seemingly small but critical factor: the variable heights of rooms humans build and occupy.

As a vernacular design critic who goes by Wrath of Gnon explains, “Before the International Style (modernism) in architecture, our ancestors knew how to adapt the room heights according to the climate, achieving maximum effect (comfort) for the least effort (energy). Today we trust in the grid and so build 8-9 ft rooms from Bermuda to Reykjavik.”

Gingerbread City: Hyper-Detailed Edible Replica of New York Built to Scale

[ By SA Rogers in Art & Sculpture & Craft. ]

It’s not unusual for architecture enthusiasts to drool over elaborate scale models, but edible materials definitely add an extra dimension to our hunger for accurate miniature details. More than 200 pounds of gingerbread, 60 pounds of royal icing and 10 pounds of gum paste and pastillage went into the making of this holiday masterpiece completed by “gingerbread architect” (it’s a thing) Beatriz Muller for Williams Sonoma.

Tinsel Towns: 10 International HOLLYWOOD Sign Homages

[ By Steve in Culture & History & Travel. ]

The iconic ‘HOLLYWOOD’ sign has loomed over La La Land for almost a century, inspiring overseas wannabes to “sign” up with homegrown copies.

Hurray for HOLLYWOOD signs – may they be fruitful and multiply! And multiply they have, though the “original” itself is a shortened version of a “HOLLYWOODLAND” sign erected in 1923 to advertise an under-construction housing development. As time passed and the sign became symbolic of Tinseltown, municipalities far and wide were moved to stick their own monikers on the nearest available mountainside. The “RASNOV” sign above, situated a little too conspicuously in front of a 13th-century fortress in Transylvania, salutes the rugged region’s recent prominence as a major motion picture filming location.

The Great Wave: Iconic Hokusai Work Splashes Across Moscow Apartments

[ By SA Rogers in Art & Street Art & Graffiti. ]

In Moscow, the iconic “Great Wave off Kanagawa” woodblock print by Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai has reached greater heights than ever before as it breaks across the facades of six apartment towers. The print stretches from one building to the next as it crests and falls, taking up a total of 645,834 square feet.

These towers join three additional buildings to form Etalon City, a new mixed-use complex in the lush residential South Butovo area of southwest Moscow. The other, more irregularly shaped structures feature graphic abstracted silhouettes of Chicago, New York, Barcelona and Monaco, while the six “Great Wave” towers are located along the highway for maximum visibility.

Best of the Year: 10 Projects Honored at World Architecture Festival 2018

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Cities & Urbanism. ]

When you’re judging thousands of architectural projects from all around the world, even the process of narrowing down the shortlist to 535 has got to be hard. This year, the World Architectural Festival (WAF) had its biggest year yet with submissions from 81 countries, and in November, the shortlisted teams presented their designs to a jury of more than 100 international judges in Amsterdam. More than 35 winners took home prizes in categories like Small Project of the Year, Use of Color Prize, Use of Certified Timber Prize and Leisure-Led Development. Here are 10 standouts from those winners, including the World Building of the Year – see the rest at the WAF website.

World Building of the Year 2018, supported by GROHE: WOHA Architects – Kampung Admiralty, Singapore, Singapore

Pinecone Treehouse: Naturally Shaped Wonder in the California Redwoods

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Houses & Residential. ]

An enormous glittering inhabitable pine cone dangling from the majestic redwoods in Alameda, California could be transplanted to your very own backyard. Built by Dustin Fieder of O2 Treehouse, this highly unusual structure is equal parts sculptural wonder and enchanting getaway with its faceted glass exterior taking inspiration directly from its environment. The Pinecone Treehouse spent much of the last year available as an AirBnb rental, and now it’s up for sale.