Friday, December 18, 2009

A 'new' architectural genre - the underground house / 'Нов' архитектурен жанр - подземната къща

Incredible Underground Residence in Switzerland

Earth houses designed by Peter Vetsch

Earth houses in Switzerland

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

IST International Meeting of EAHN

European Architectural History Network
Guimarães, Portugal - June 17-20, 2010

The time has come for scholars who share research and teaching objectives in architectural history to gather at a single pan-European meeting.
In accordance with the EAHN mission statement, this meeting proposes to increase the visibility of the discipline,
to foster transnational, interdisciplinary and multicultural approaches to the study of the built environment, and to facilitate the exchange of research results in the field.

Though the scope of the meeting is European, members of the larger scholarly community are invited to submit proposals related not only to Europe’s geographical framework, but also to its transcontinental aspects.
The main purpose of the meeting is to map the general state of research in disciplines related to the built environment, to promote discussion of current themes and concerns, and to foster new directions for research in the field.

Call for Papers and Discussion Positions.
Submission deadline: October 30th, 2009.

Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be sent directly to the appropriate session or round table chair;
abstracts are to be headed with the applicant’s name, professional affiliation [graduate students in brackets], and title of paper or position.
Submit with the abstract a short curriculum vitae, home and work addresses, email addresses, telephone and fax numbers.
Sessions will consist of either five papers or four papers and a respondent, with time for dialogue and questions at the end.

Each paper should be limited to a 20 minute presentation.

Abstracts for session presentations should define the subject and summarise the argument to be presented in the proposed paper.
The content of that paper should be the product of well-documented original research that is primarily analytical and interpretative rather than descriptive in nature.

Round tables will consist of five participants and an extended time for dialogue, debate and discussion among chair(s) and public. Each discussant will have 10 minutes to present a position.
Abstracts for round table debates should summarize the position to be taken in the discussion.

Papers may not have been previously published, nor presented in public.
Only one submission per author will be accepted.
All abstracts will be held in confidence during the selection process.
In addition to the twenty thematic sessions and five round tables listed below, open sessions may be announced.
With the author’s approval, thematic session chairs may choose to recommend for inclusion in an open session an abstract that was submitted to, but does not fit into, a thematic session.
Session and round table chairs will notify all persons submitting abstracts of the acceptance or rejection of their proposals and comment on them by November 30th, 2009.
All chairs have the prerogative to recommend changes to the abstract in order to coordinate it with a session or round table program. The selected speakers must return edited abstracts to chairs no later than December 31st.
Authors of accepted paper proposals must submit the complete text of their papers (for a 20 minute presentation) to their session chair or complete draft of discussion position (for a 10 minute presentation) to their round table chair by February 28th, 2010.

Chairs may suggest editorial revisions to a paper or discussion position in order to make it satisfy session or round table guidelines and will return it with comments to the speaker by March 31st, 2010.
Speakers must complete any revisions and distribute copies of their paper or discussion position to the chair and the other speakers or discussants by April 23rd, 2010.
Chairs reserve the right to withhold a paper or a discussion position from the program if the author has refused to comply with these guidelines.
It is the responsibility of the chair(s) to inform speakers of these guidelines, as well as of the general expectations for both a session and participation in this meeting.
Each speaker is expected to fund his or her own registration, travel and expenses to Guimarães, Portugal.

EAHN 2010
Escola de Arquitectura Universidade do Minho
Campus de Azurém
4800-058 Guimarães, Portugal
Phone: +351 253510503, Fax: +351 253510509

The Historic Centre of Guimarães is UNESCO World Heritage Site

DOCOMOMO - 10th International Technoogy Seminar

On 23 and 24 October 2009, the international committee for the documentation andconservation of buildings, sites and neighbourhoods of the modern movement(DoCoMoMo) organised a technical seminar in Wroclaw, Poland,
on the theme:
Concrete, the challenges of conservation.

The seminar illustrates the recentrestoration of the Centenary Hall in Wroclaw, built in 1913
by the German architect Max Bergand added to the list of World Heritage properties in 2006.
The event opens a platform for discussion on the different methods of conversation
utilised successfully on concretebuildings around the world.

Contact: Jadwiga Urbanik -


The UIA will celebrate the theme of architects’ energy versus global crises
Member Sections on 5 October, the 2009 World Day of Architecture. UIA
Louise Cox will pronounce the Union’s official statement from Abidjan,
where a UIA Bureau meeting will be held.

The international grand prize was awarded to Japanese architect Konishi Hikohito for a
rural residential complex named Aikoku farm, on Hokkaido island. The jury unanimously
expressed its admiration for the project’s simplicity, humility, and authenticity.
The first gold medal dedicated to the memory of Giancarlo Ius was awarded this year
within the programme of the Barbara Cappochin prize. The medal honours an innovative
project in the area of sustainability. Spanish architect Francisco Mangado received this
year’s award for the Spanish pavilion at the Saragossa World’s Fair in 2008.

Istanbul Technical University’s Taskisla faculty of architecture and Istanbul Bahcesehir
University will host an international symposium dedicated to revitalising the built
environment on 12 – 16 October 2009. Under the general theme of revitalising the built
environment, the symposium purposefully breaks with terms such as urban regeneration,
housing rehabilitation, upgrading and retrofitting, suggesting ‘requalifying’ as a means to
underline the multi-actor process, the multiple criteria, meanings and values that come
into play when existing buildings and public spaces in urban areas are adapted in order to
improve the quality of life for residents. This initiative, supported by the Turkish Chamber
of Architects, aims to better understand the relationships between new urban
dynamics and urban transformation projects within the global restructuring process.
For more information on the conference

The College of Architects of Chile will organise its national congress on 23 – 25 October
on the theme 21st century architects. Who are we? What do we do? What can we do?
Starting from these three questions, Chilean architects will bring into a new perspective
their profession, its institutional and professional framework as well as its technical, social
and ethical practices. This collective rethinking of how the association functions, its
national and local instances, educational and professional training programmes, financial,
constructive and technical processes will be used to develop strategies for action and
orient the profession toward its future.
Colegio de arquitectos de Chile

From 28 – 30 October 2009, Singapore will host its first International Green Building
Council conference on the theme Build Green. The Future is Now. This event is organised
by the Singapore Building and Construction Authority, with the support of the Singapore
Institute of Architects. With an emphasis on green building technologies and designs,
the conference will bring together eminent world experts, and will present Singapore’s first
zero energy building. UIA Vice-President Kazuo Iwamura will speak on the ‘Integrated
green design process’ as an international specialist and director of the UIA work
programme on sustainable architecture for region IV.

The Sao Paulo branch of the Brazil Institute of Architects announces the 8th Sao Paulo
international architecture biennial that will be held from 31 October to 6 December 2009,
on the theme Urban Echoes: spaces, connections, originality and sustainability. The
objective of this edition is to present a selection of international projects in architecture
and urban design that show the potential for great, positive transformation in
metropolitan centres and improve the quality of living for their inhabitants. Whether it
involves landscape architecture, lighting design, visual communication or urban
furniture and art, the projects in Sao Paulo will illustrate changes in cities that host major
international cultural or sporting events (Olympic Games, World Fairs, World Cup, etc.), in
the perspective of Sao Paulo’s plans for hosting the 2014 World Cup.
Bruno Roberto Padovano is the biennial’s general curator. An exhibition of projects by
students of architecture for urban services in public parks will also be presented.
Louise Cox will represent the UIA at this biennial.

On 17 to 21 November 2009, Puebla, Mexico will host the international architecture
congress organised conjointly by the Federation of Associations of Architects of the
Mexican Republic (FCARM) and the Puebla Association of Architects. The historic centre
of Puebla is classified in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The conference will look at
how historic city centres can revitalise cities, and examine the role of historic districts
and their cultural identity in the development of historic cities, and the particularities of
housing in these areas. The FCARM assembly will take place in parallel to this conference.
Also on this occasion, UIA President Louise Cox will receive FCARM’s presidential

Melinda Dodson is, following Louise Cox in 1994 – 1995, the second woman to serve as
president of the Australian Institute of Architects. Ms. Dodson has practiced in Adelaide
and Canberra where she managed educational, commercial, university and public health
facilities. In 2007 and 2008, she was president of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT)
chapter, where she made a strong engagement with the ACT government and Housing
Industry Association to promote sustainable social housing. Sustainable cities and
architecture are among the priorities of her presidential programme. Melinda Dodson
follows Howard Tanner as the institute’s president. President Elect Karl Fender will take
over the presidency in 2010.
Australian Institute of Architects

The Royal Institute of British Architects has, for the first time, a woman president. Ruth
Reed has extensive professional experience and has taught architecture since 1993. She
is currently Course Director of the Postgraduate Diploma in Architectural Practice at the
Birmingham School of Architecture and a partner of Green Planning Solutions, a firm
that creates innovative concepts for developments in sensitive rural areas. She has served
as president of the Royal Society of Architects in Wales, as a RIBA council member and as
Vice President of membership and chair of the RIBA CPD-sub-committee. Ruth Reed
succeeds Sunand Prasad as RIBA President.
Royal Institute of British Architects

Open in October 2008, the museum of Estonian architecture dedicated its first exhibition
to national realisations built between 2000 and 2008. Over one hundred projects of
varying scales illustrate the economic growth and the vast wave of constructions that has
swept Estonia in the first years of this new century. The exhibition catalogue, prepared
by its curator Pille Epner and Tuuli Aule, was recently published.
300 pages - bilingual Estonian/English
Price: 10 euros + shipping
Contact: Estonian Union of Architects

From 4 - 7 November 2009, this programme will meet in Brussels, Belgium, in particular
to plan its contribution to the next UIA world congress that will take place in Tokyo in 2011.
Contact :
Michel Kalt, programme director

The Chamber of Architects of Turkey (CAT) and its Ankara branch are organising a
congress dedicated to architecture and children on 18 – 21 November 2009. Archild 2009
is an initiative on the part of the chamber to provide forum for sharing theories and
practical experience on how children perceive cities and architectural works. This event is
supported by the UIA and will enjoy an important contribution from the UIA work
programme Architecture and children. Programme co-director Ewa Struzynska will give
the main conference, and Hannes Hubrich will preside the conference in conjunction with
Nimet Özgönül. Topics to be discussed include: the environment through children’s eyes,
children and space, and activities with children. The work programme will hold a meeting
immediately following the congress, on 22 November, in Ankara.
Programme co-directors:
Ewa Struzynska:
Hannes Hubrich:

On 5 – 6 November 2009, the city of Salta, Argentina, will host a work programme
meeting on the theme of architecture for tourism in fragile environments – the Latin
American experience. This meeting will take place within the framework of the first
international congress on architecture and the environment organised by the college of
architects of Salta on 2 – 4 November 2009. The congress will focus on sustainability in
relation to architecture and urban and territory planning. UIA Past President Jaime Lerner
will be among the speakers at this event, along with Janna Mitsou, UIA work programme
director, who will present sustainable development experiences on the small islands in
eastern Greece.
Janna Mitsou, director of the UIA work programme Architecture and tourism

Friday, July 24, 2009

Competition for Image Models of 20th-century Architectural Heritage

The French Ministry of Culture (Direction of Architecture and Heritage – DAPA)
and the International Union of Architects
an international student competition
for digital representations of landmark 20th-century buildings

The panorama and 3D models designed will be based on digital photographs and developed using the Autodesk softwares ‘Autodesk ImageModeler’ and ‘Autodesk Stitcher’ (made available to the participants free of charge for three months).
The competition will be launched during the European Heritage Days
on September 19–20, 2009.
Projects submissions are planned for April 2010.

The grand prize winners and all projects selected at the national level will be exhibited at the Venice biennial in September 2010.
The digital presentations of all selected projects will be posted online at

French Ministry of Culture and Communication (Direction of Architecture and Heritage), French National Center for Scientific Research (UMR-CNRS 694 MAP),
International Union of Architects,
Docomomo International.


Information forwarded by
the Docomomo International
Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine
Palais de Chaillot 1, place du Trocadéro, F-75016 Paris
t +33 -1 58 51 52 65

This project focuses on an international student competition for digital representations of landmark 20th century buildings.
The competition will be run entirely through the Internet.An initial national competition will be carried out by the UIA Member Sections and thewinners of the national selections will be submitted to the international jury.

The panoramas and 3D models designed for this competition will be based on digitalphotographs and developed using the Autodesk software‘Autodesk® ImageModeler™’and ‘Autodesk® Stitcher™’.
This software will be made available to the participants freeof charge for a period of three months.
Created in 2002 in the framework of an agreement between the French Ministry of Cultureand Communication (direction of Architecture and Heritage),
the French National Centre for Scientific Research (UMR-CNRS 694 MAP)
and the International Union of Architects,
the site aims to identify and promote architectural works around theworld that have left their mark on 20th century architecture.
The international committee

for Documentation and Conservation of buildings, sites and neighborhoods of the Modern Movement, DoCoMoMo,
is also participating in this project.


Friday, July 17, 2009

Moscow Heritage at Crisis Point

SAVE, Maps and Docomomo International
second edition

Buildings under threat include internationally famous landmarks: the Bolshoi Theater, Mayakovskaya Metro Station, Monuments of the avant-garde, plus buildings that are an inseparable part of Moscow’s identity like Children’s World Department Store and the Central House of Artists.
This report was possible due to the late scholar of Russian architecture Catherine Cooke [see In Memoriam by Denis Sharp on].
The report is a follow up to the 2007 report, a bombshell that focused national and international attention on the crisis that Moscow’s heritage is undergoing.
Despite the successes of the report, including the listing of 3 buildings, the destruction continues.
The new report details the changes of the last two years—what new losses the city has suffered, which buildings are under continuing or new threat, why this is happening, and also outlines the path for a more sustainable future for the city.
This new report from SAVE Europe’s Heritage and the Moscow Architectural Preservation Society (MAPS), with support from Docomomo International, condemns the losses while illustrating the astonishing range of historic building in Moscow, from medieval churches to elegant postwar modernism—all threatened by the furious pace of redevelopment of the city by a coterie of property developers during the tenure of Mayor Yury Luzhkov.

Press conference: July 22, 5pm
Schusev State Museum of ArchitectureMoscow, 5,
VozdvizhenkaWrite to
More information at

Modern Heritage and the City

Docomomo Chile Third National Seminar
Valparaiso, November 2009

Docomomo Chile will hold its Third National Seminar in Valparaiso on November 18-20, 2009. The main theme of the seminar, in consonance with the next International Docomomo Conference in Mexico 2010, will address the relationships between modern heritage and the city.The city of Valparaiso, included in the World Heritage List, provides a paradigmatic urban landscape in which to confront the reality of the traditional city and the modern heritage, in the broad—and local—realms of the urban fabric, the territory, and the coast.

Docomomo Chile ще проведе своя Трети национален семинар във Valparaiso на 18-20 ноември 2009.
Основната тема на семинара, в съзвучие със следващата международна конференция на Docomomo International - Mexico'2010, ще се обърне към връзките между наследството на модернизма и града.
Град Valparaiso, включен в Листата на световното наследство, предоставя един парадигматичен градски пейзаж, в който да се противопоставят реалността на традиционния град и наследството на модернизма в общия и в локалния контекст на градската среда, територията и крайбрежието.

Scientific committee: Claudio Galeno (U. Católica del Norte, Docomomo Chile) Horacio Torrent (U. Católica de Chile, Docomomo Chile) Hugo Mondragón (U. Católica de Chile, Docomomo Chile) Humberto Eliash (U. de Chile, Docomomo Chile) Jorge Ferrada (U. Católica de Valparaíso) Luis Valenzuela (U. Católica de Chile) Marcela Hurtado (U. Técnica Federico Santa María) María Dolores Muñoz (U. de Concepción) Nelson Vásquez (U. Católica de Valparaíso) Pablo Ortúzar Silva (U. de Valparaíso) Carlos Eduardo Días Comas (UFRGS, Docomomo Brasil) Louise Noelle Gras (UNAM, Docomomo Mexico)
Abstracts (in Spanish) are to be sent to before July 15, 2009.

Maximiano Atria, secretary general
Docomomo Chilee

Friday, July 10, 2009

Robin Hood Gardens: Re-Visions

RIBA, London
July 4–August 26, 2009

Alongside the continuing campaign for Robin Hood Gardens, the Twentieth Century Society has organized an exhibition at the RIBA Gallery, entitled Robin Hood Gardens: Re-Visions.Featuring archive material on the estate, a series of new images from acclaimed architectural photographer Ioana Marinescu and a new documentary film on the estate by NFT student Martin Ginestie, the exhibition will also include recent projects about Robin Hood Gardens completed by diploma students at the University of Greenwich.Launch Party on Tuesday 21 July, 6:30pm.
Gallery 2RIBA, 66 Portland
PlaceLondon W1B 1AD
The Twentieth Century Society

Information forwarded by the International committee for documentation and conservation of buildings, sites and neighborhoods of the modern movement
Docomomo International
Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine
Palais de Chaillot1, place du Trocadéro
F-75016 Paris
t +33 -1 58 51 52 65e

Architects' Council of Europe

7th July 2009
The latest Architects’ Council of Europe (ACE) quarterly survey shows that the impact of the economic crisis on the architectural profession is deepening.
The construction sector is often recognised as a good barometer for indicating the vitality of the general economy. Within that sector it is often the architectural profession that first feels the cold wind of a recession and the warm breeze of a recovery.
For this reason, the ACE initiated in 2009, a series of quarterly surveys of the opinion of practising architects on the impact of the economic crisis on their offices and workload. These surveys are based on a questionnaire that is available in 14 European languages. Each survey is opened for a period of two weeks and all Member Organisations of the ACE are invited to inform their members that the questionnaire is open and available for answers beyond the sample of volunteer architects already available to the ACE.
The second and latest survey was run between the 15th and 29th June and the results indicate that the mood in the profession is significantly more pessimistic than it was just three months ago, in April 2009. The number of responses was nearly double that of the first survey – an indication of the interest that it has generated in the profession across Europe.
In fact 62% of respondents said that the current situation is “Bad” or Very bad” as compared to 46% in April 2009. Confirming this relative pessimism just 8% of respondents in June said that they thought the situation was “Good” or “Very good” as compared with 15% in April.
When is comes to the employment situation, the ACE can report that nearly one in three architects offices has seen a decrease in staff numbers since the nominal start of the crisis in September 2008. The expectation of those who responded in June is that staff numbers will decrease in 23% of offices in the coming three months. On the positive side, 7% of architects offices have seen an increase in staff numbers since September 2008 although the survey does not permit the ACE to say how many new jobs for architects this represents.
These results are bad news for the European Union as a whole and should be a call to action for politicians at all levels in European governance. The ACE and its Member Organisations, who stand ready to contribute to well-framed actions, believe that immediate increased public investment in sustainable construction and, in particular, energy efficiency upgrading of existing buildings would be an appropriate starting point.
A presentation of the results of the survey can be downloaded at:
The Architects' Council of Europe (ACE) is the European organisation representing the architectural profession at European level. Its headquarters and Secretariat are located in Brussels. Its growing membership consists of Member Organisations, which are the nationally representative regulatory and professional bodies of all European Union (EU) Member States, Accession States, Switzerland and Norway. Through them, it represents the interests of about 480,000 architects. The principal function of the ACE is to monitor developments at EU level, seeking to influence those areas of EU Policy and legislation that have an impact on architectural practice and on the overall quality and sustainability of the built environment.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand

The Fountainhead /Изворът e роман
Ayn Rand от 1943 г.

Това е първият голям литературен успех на Айн Ранд и неговите достойнства и филмови авторски права и донасят слава и финансова сигурност.
Заглавието на книгата има отношение към твърдението на Ранд, че
"егото на човека е извор за прогреса на човечеството".
Aрхитектурната тема
Ранд посвещава своята книга на съпруга си и на
Ранд избира архитектурата заради аналогията, която предлага за нейните идеи, особено в контекста на възхода на Moдерната aрхитектура. Тя й предоставя подходящо средство за представяне на своите идеи - че индивидът е най-висшата ценност, а eгоизмът е добродетел.
Чрез The Fountainhead/Изворът определенията на Ранд за "егоизъм" и "самоотверженост" се разграничават от обичайната им употреба. Вместо да използва "себелюбив" в оътрицателен смисъл, тя използва термина в смисъл на придържане към собствените идеали като защита срещу влиянието на другите. "Самоотверженост/жертвеготовност" противостои на концепцията на главния герой Роарк за егото.
Централните образи - архитектите Питър Кийтинг и Хауърд Роарк са антиподи
Кийтинг проектира в духа на историческия еклектизъм и нео-класиката, дори когато типологията на сградата е небостъргач. Той следва и уважава старите традиции. Той преработва промените, предложени от други, отразявайки еклектичните насоки и готовността си към приспособяване, характерни за прехода към ХХ век.
Роарк търси истината и честта, и ги изразява в своето творчество. Той е безкомпромисен, когато се предлагат промени, като отстоява траекторията на Модерната архитектура, въпреки общественото недоволство от стремежа към подчертаване на индивидуалното творчество. Индивидуалността на Роарк възхвалява модерните архитекти като безкомпромисни и героични майстори.
Разпространена и неоснователна спекулация е, че Роарк е вдъхновен от американския архитект Frank Lloyd Wright - нещо, което и Ранд и Райт отхвърлят. Ранд, обаче, веднъж е поръчала на Райт да проектира лятна къща за нея; но тя никога не е била построена. Най-многото, което може да се предположи е, че някои от описанията на сградите на Роарк наподобяват тези на Райт: забележителен пример е къщата "Хелър" - първият реализиран проект на Роарк - силно издадена над ръба на стръмна скала, чието описание напомня на прочутата творба на Райт в Пенсилвания Fallingwater/Къщата над водопада .