2012 New Practices New York
Center for Architecture
536 LaGuardia Place
Through September 8
When Joe Aliotta took over chapter presidency for AIANY in January he said he wanted to bring fresh faces to the profession. New Practices New York (NPNY) and the Emerging New York Architects (ENYA) competitions became the cornerstone of his Future Now theme for 2012. New Practices opened on June 14 and ENYA’s Harlem Edge show is opening on July 12 at the Center for Architecture. The NPNY competition was open to multidisciplinary firms undergoing the process of licensing. This year’s brought seven firms to the winner’s circle: ABRUZZO BODZIAK ARCHITECTS, Christian Wassmann, formlessfinder, HOLLER architecture, The Living, MARC FORNES & THEVERYMANY, and SLO Architecture.
At the opening of NPNY, the winners presented built and unbuilt work that ranged from the highly experiential, like SLO’s Harvest Dome, to the densely theoretical, like The Living’s Eames-ish 12 Powers of Ten.
As Aliotta had hoped, the opening night of the exhibit brought together established archifolk with the young firms. Mark Lamster was deep in conversation with Anne Guiney of the Institute for Urban Design, no doubt getting some pre-Biennale scoops. Our own editor-in-chief William Menking, who also served as juror for the competition, greeted UN Studio’s Ben van Berkel, while web editor Branden Klayko and Dattner principal Jeff Dugan speculated on the fabrication of the massive aluminum panels going up on Steven Holl’s Baker Field building at Columbia. Holler told AN about a new project he’s working on in Costa Rica, while Schachter brought us up to date on the relaunch of Harvest Dome.
We’re looking forward to the lecture component of the exhibition begining with formlessfinder tomorrow night, Thursday, June 28 at 6:00 p.m. at Axor, 29 Ninth Avenue, in Manhattan.
Here’s the complete schedule of presentations:
Practice Makes Imperfect – Presentation and Conversation with formlessfinder
Thursday, June 28th, 2012, 6-8 PM, Axor NYC
New Practices New York 2012 Winners Roundtable
Monday, July 16th, 2012, 6-8 PM The Center for Architecture
Presentation and Conversation with SLO Architecture
Thursday September 27th, 2012, 6-8 PM, Axor NYC
Presentation and Conversation with HOLLER architecture
Tuesday October 16th, 2012, 6-8 PM, Axor NYC
Presentation and Conversation with ABRUZZO BODZIAK ARCHITECTS
Thursday November 15th, 2012, 6-8 PM, Axor NYC
Presentation and Conversation with Christian Wassmann
Thursday December 13th, 2012, 6-8 PM, Axor NYC
Presentation and Conversation with The Living
January TBA, 2013, 6-8 PM, Axor NYC
ABRUZZO BODZIAK’s artist statement in NPNY catalog described the firm’s attraction to wide ranging influences from artist Dan Flavin and Robert Smithson to filmmaker David Lynch. But their wire paraboloid sculpture in the Center’s front window (see above photo) seems far more concrete than esoteric. This is a firm rooted in math.
SLO Architecture’s Harvest Dome made from umbrella skeletons was marooned on Rikers Island last year; the firm is gearing up to relaunch this fall. Amanda Schachter of SLO discussed the the hopeful relaunch (see video below). Only a small fragment of the original water craft was recovered and is on display as part of the exhibition.
“The city is the ultimate ecosystem and it influences the way we see everything.” The statement came from The Living regarding their design approach, which takes a very Eames-ian form of analysis at the Center, from the molecular on through to space, albeit with updated graphics.
Formlessfinder says its name is derived from the fact that the studio operates like a “‘finder’ in the sense of a search engine that can fluidly analyze a wide range of fields and produce diverse outputs (buildings, pictures, videos, models, products, data, software).”
Christian Wassmann chose three words to describe his firm’s design philosophy: “performative, analogue, alchemy.” But analogue meets binary in East Village Radio, a website with storefront on First Avenue. The somewhat-crude mockup of the beloved booth is on display at the Center, alongside renderings and photos of Wassmann’s other clean-lined built works.
Tobias Holler’s vision for Long Island finds a spiky representation on the walls of the Center where cone shaped formations rest atop a map of New York’s metro area. The formations correspond in scale to proposed population clusters along the length of Long Island. In Hollar’s vision, Long Island Radically Rezoned, pod-like population centers free up large swaths of green space to be reclaimed for nature.