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    ArchitectureWeek Notes No. 527
    Dear ArchitectureWeek Readers,

    ArchitectureWeek No. 527 is now available on the Web, with these new design and building features, and more.

    thumbnail

    Coop Himmelb(l)au designed Central Los Angeles High School #9 for the Visual and Performing Arts for a site on the northern edge of downtown Los Angeles, California. Photo: Duccio Malagamba/ Courtesy Prestel

    HS#9 BY COOP HIMMELB(L)AU
    by Sylvia Lavin

    "Revolution 9" is a song recorded by the Beatles and released on The White Album in 1968, that heady year when students were demonstrating across Europe, the Vietnam War was at a fever pitch, and Coop Himmelb(l)au was founded in Vienna. The song has been described as the best-known work of avant-garde music and the most disliked moment of any Beatles album.

    Key to the work's Jekyll and Hyde reputation is that unlike most Beatles songs, with their sweetly straightforward lyrics and comparatively unencumbered sound, "Revolution 9" is frustratingly difficult to understand.

    For some, this suggests a connection to musique concrète and opens the Beatles up to more than just a pop music legacy. For others, however, the song's sampling of bits of music by Sibelius and Beethoven opens the Beatles up to accusations that they abandoned their audience and the band's obligation to make listeners feel good.

    The result has been a mash-up of interpretations and misinterpretations, the most famous being the one celebrated by conspiracy theorists who listen to the song backwards and claim that when John Lennon repeats the words "number nine, number nine," he is confirming — in secret code intelligible only à la Leonardo da Vinci, in reverse — that Paul McCartney had died and had been replaced by a doppelgänger in 1966.

    It is uncanny how much of this description applies to Coop Himmelb(l)au's High School #9. And I don't just mean the uncanny coincidence of the number nine itself, but of the trauma of interpretation and value that the two number nines have produced.

    Like the song, the building has been both celebrated for its radical form and chastised for its apparent abandonment of its obligation to its audience who are used to and therefore may still want conventional school buildings. Indeed, of all of the relatively recent public commissions in Los Angeles, from Frank Gehry's Disney Concert Hall to the Caltrans Headquarters by Morphosis and Renzo Piano's Broad pavilion at LACMA, the high school is the most classically avant-garde.   >>>

     
    P&P Image

    RTKL has revealed its competition-winning design for the Zhangjiagang Twin Towers in Zhangjiagang, China. Image: © RTKL

    People and Places
    by Nancy Novitski

    RTKL in Zhangjiagang, ChinaLeo A Daly in Boca Raton, FloridaWoods Bagot in Bendigo, AustraliaAtelier Bow-Wow with Fiedler Marciano Architecture in New York, New YorkBöge Lindner K2 Architekten in Hamburg, GermanyZGF Architects in Portland, Oregon

    Zhangjiagang — 2011.0804
    International architecture firm RTKL has revealed its winning design for the Zhangjiagang Twin Towers in Zhangjiagang, China. RTKL's competition entry included architectural design for the first phase of the project, which encompasses twin towers 268 meters (879 feet) and 188 meters (617 feet) tall, respectively, connected by an elliptical atrium, along with a master plan for the second phase of the project, which covers four retail and 16 residential buildings. The taller building will contain a hotel and serviced apartments. The atrium will provide social gathering space, and is also part of a multilevel, 60,000-square-meter (650,000-square-foot) retail, dining, and entertainment center.

    Set to open by the end of 2015, the development is part of a larger urban planning effort to shift the center of the city to Ren Min road. The developer is Jiangsu Shagang Group Hongrun Real Estate Development, a subsidiary of a major steel conglomerate in China's Jiangsu Province.   >>>

     
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    Tanner Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects designed a graceful apartment addition to the owner's existing studio space in a former paint factory. Photo: © Stan Musilek, Sharon Reisdorph

    San Francisco Rooftop Apartment
    by Julio Fajardo

    This apartment, within an old paint factory in San Francisco, was created when the owner decided to add a home to his studio. It was important to separate the work area from the personal, which occupies a new level built atop the original rectangular structure. Tanner Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects designed the addition and renovation project.

    A mezzanine containing the kitchen, bathroom, and storage space connects to the upper level, which holds the living room, dining room, and bedroom.

    Each successive level enjoys better illumination, beginning with the darker studio and culminating on the top floor where large windows and a terrace offer impressive views of San Francisco and the bay.

    The sliding doors, installed upon the metallic structure to which floor-to-ceiling windows are fixed, separate the various sections of the upper level. The absence of walls emphasizes the feeling of spaciousness and allows light to pass from one area to another.

    The kitchen and bathroom occupy a level slightly below the rest of the residence, although visually they are connected to the top floor. The abundant light from the terrace illuminates this intermediary level, which acts as a transitional space between the work area below and the home area above.   >>>

     
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    GstarCAD Software Integrates with iPad - AECCafe.com, 2011.0810

    New USB 3.0 Spec Could Deliver Up to 100 Watts - News Factor, 2011.0810

    iPhone 5: iOS 5 Beta Version Issued to Developers. - Christian Science Monitor, 2011.0808

    NEC MultiSync EA232WMi Monitor - Cadalyst, 2011.0804

    Autodesk Building Design Suite Premium 2012 - Cadalyst, 2011.0804

    Inaugural Revit Technology Conference 2011 in the US - AECbytes, 2011.0804


     
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    thumbnail

     

    Contents, RSS, and Surface of the Week

    Banded running-bond brickwork on upper stories with supergraphic arches running repeat in cast concrete or stone (WA-294)

     

    Architecture Quiz this week's new question...

    For what building is Charles Garnier (1825-1898) most famous?

     
    Architecture Answer for last week's quiz...

    Connect each of the following pre-Columbian sites with the culture that created it.

    Site
    A. Machu Picchu
    B. Chichen Itza
    C. Monte Albán
    D. Tenochtitlan

    Culture
    1. Aztec
    2. Maya
    3. Inca
    4. Zapotec and Mixtec


     
    thumbnail

     

    Classic Home 059 — Urcel Daniel house, by Gregory Ain, Architect

    "This house was built in Los Angeles in 1939 on an extremely steep site. The foundation is an 8- by 20-foot (2.4- by 6.1-meter) concrete caisson with rigidly braced 4- by 4-inch (10- by 10-centimeter) posts, 4 feet (122 centimeters) on center. The exterior construction is stucco on metal lath. A large window on the south looks out over an adjacent lot, which is considerably lower. Otherwise, the main windows do not face the street or adjacent property.... "

     

     
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