Thursday, November 18, 2010

More for Less in Print


Arquitectura Viva has published some of the debates of the International Congress Architectue: More for Less organized last June in Pamplona by the Foundation Architecture and Society (see my post from June 20th). The book publishes "interviews conducted by five prominent critics with the participants, which cover a broad generational and geographic spectrum, offering a kaleidoscopic portrait of our time", according to an AV press release. Texts in English and Spanish.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Manuel Vicent on the Sagrada Familia

The legendary columnist of El País (who is by no means an architectural philistine), has this to say about the consecration of Gaudi's nearly-completed Sagrada Familia by the Pope on his recent visit to Spain:
One of the worst nightmares imaginable would be to dream that all of Barcelona had been designed entirely by Gaudí.... Fortunately he only built a few significant buildings and for this reason he is considered  a genius....  The only saving grace, if any, of the Temple of the Sagrada Familia, was the fact that it was unfinished, the dream of a genius driven crazy by mystic reveries. Now it will be completed with the money of tourism, and when its walls are finally enclosed, there will be no one inside but Japanese tourists.

Manuel VIcent
El Templo
El Pais, Sunday, November 14, 2010, last page.
Web version (in Spanish)

Photo of the completed nave
from the Sagrada Familia web page.

Quoted text translated by DC.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Mathias Goeritz

Works on Paper, Models & Sculpture. A rare show on a fascinating figure in Mexican art and architecture at the Caja Negra Gallery in Madrid through January 7, 2011. Goeritz was born in Danzig (today Gdansk) in 1915 and grew up in Berlin, where he studied art, philosophy and art history. He escaped from Germany during the War, traveling through Morocco (1941), Granada (1945) and Santilla del Mar, Spain (1948), where he participated in founding one of the first resuscitations of contemporary art in post-Civil War Spain, the Escuela de Altamira, a group that included Ángel Ferrant, Eduardo Westerdahl and Joan Miró. He was invited to teach architecture at the University of Guadalajara in Mexico in 1949, and settled there permanently. Among the works he created there are monumental sculptures designed with Luis Barragán, the Museo del Eco, restored and reopened in 2005, and the 1953 Manifiesto de la Arquitectura Emocional.

Mathias Goeritz
Works on Paper, Models & Sculpture
November 11, 2010  - January 7, 2011
La Caja Negra
Fernando VI 17, 2º l
28004 Madrid

Image from the Caja Negra web page.
News source: Tectónica Blog

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Francisco Mangado & John Pawson in the Glossies

Two of my articles have come out in glossy Spanish magazines this past week. The first focuses on Francisco (Patxi) Mangado's Centro Hípico in Ultzama, built for his daughter, a champion horseback rider, and for the retreats and seminars organized by his Architecture and Society Foundation. The article appears in the weekend color supplement Fuera de Serie of the business newspaper Expansión (no web page version yet, but stay posted). The editors used the oversize newspaper format to great effect with a double-page spread of the Olympic-size covered training track. It was an opportunity to present Patxi's arguments for a more restrained and disciplined architecture to a wider audience.
Incluso en sus obras más pequeñas, se nota su sello característico, lo que él mismo describe como una cierta "mineralización" de sus formas. "La arquitectura más que nunca requiere un tiempo de reflexión que se traduce en densidad, en intensidad," mantiene, una actitud que contrapone a las "caligrafías superficiales" que ve en las obras de muchos arquitectos de moda. Lo que Mangado está buscando, y lo que encontramos en el Valle de Ultzama, entre las líneas de los robles y el río, es una arquitectura intemporal, sin fecha de caducidad. 
The second article is a brief introduction to John Pawson in the November issue of Gentleman, which you can still find on Spanish newsstands. Pawson has a show, Plain Space, at London's Design Museum through January, that is accompanied by a new monograph by Phaidon.
"Es muy complicado hacer que algo parezca sencillo." John Pawson

Minimalismo al servicio de la hípica
Ultzama Equestrian Center by Francisco Mangado.
Fuera de Serie, No. 304, Expansión, October 29, 2010m pages 18 -20.

El arquitecto nómada
Introduction to John Pawson interview
Genleman 79, November 2010, pages 68 - 72.

Photo 1:
Centro Hípico, Ultzama by Francisco Mangado

© Pedro Pegenaute

Photo 2:
John Pawson, Ceramic Goblet 
Available in the Design Museum gift shop