Junya Ishigami’s Enormous Helium-Filled Monolith

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Junya Ishigami (also identified by Junya Ishigami + Associates) has long been known as someone averse to the labeling or differentiating between art, design and architecture. Case in point, one of Ishigami’s most famous works which straddled various disciplines, and even played with ideas of weigh and weightlessness. Titled Cuboid Balloon, the helium-filled reflective vessel filled the hall with it’s five-story presence when it was installed at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo. Although it appears massive, and therefore massively heavy, it is actually weightless (as seen in the video link below, when a museum staff member pulls it down with one hand). The reflective material responds both to its environment and surrounding architecture, but also to the people around it, an important creative rule for Ishigami’s work.

In a review of the architect by Magali Elali for All Items Loaded, they described the artist-slash-architect-slash-designer as such.

“Junya Ishigami is one of the most controversial architects, for his artistic approach to his practice has helped to redefine the ever closer boundaries between art and architecture. He draws inspiration from the way nature appears to man and aspires to an architecture that floats, is infinite, transparent and has hardly any substance. It is not the logic of the design of a building that should stand out. Ishigami wants his buildings to appeal through their new spatiality and environmental richness. His work is a quest for the pure and essential in architecture.” (via 2headedsnake and allitemsloaded)

Zacharie Gaudrillot-Roy’s Haunting Photoseries Erases Buildings, Leaving Only Their Facades

Zacharie Gaudrillot-Roy

Zacharie Gaudrillot-Roy

Zacharie Gaudrillot-Roy

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Zacharie Gaudrillot-Roy is a French photographer whose Facades series is a personal exercise in land and city-scape photography, with one major difference. In each photo, the Lyon-based Gaudrillot-Roy digitally edits each image so that building itself is erased, leaving only the structure’s front, or facade, present. Now on his third iteration of the series, each village or city building carries ominous, almost surreal connotations of civilizations being abandoned, wrecked by recession, or left to slowly disintegrate. However, the images retain a still, quiet beauty, and are haunting in their simplicity.

Says the photographer, “The façade is the first thing we see, it’s the surface of a building. It can be impressive, superficial or safe. Just like during a wandering through a foreign city, I walk through the streets with these questions: what will happen if we stick to that first vision? If the daily life of “The Other” was only a scenery? This series thus offers a vision of an unknown world that would only be a picture, without intimate space, with looks as the only refuge.” (via skumar’s)

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Christopher Janney Bathes Travelers With Sound And Technicolor Light

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Christopher Janney’s work often activates multiple senses simultaneously, using both visual and auditory stimulation to evoke emotional responses to viewers. Calling it a ‘sonic portrait’ of Miami, his work Harmonic Convergence combines sound, light and interactive elements to emulate a positive experience of place in an otherwise sterile airport environment.

Located in a pedestrian walkway leading from the car rental buildings to the airport proper, Janney replaced the existing windows with a prismatic arrangement of colored glasses. Columns and design elements were also repainted white, to better catch the sun’s lights streaming through the colored glass. This was Janney’s second installation at the airport, succeeding his previous piece, Harmonic Runway.

Like most of his work, sound plays an important part of this installation as well. According to Jenny Filipetti at Designboom, “Speakers installed at regular intervals along the walkway create a continuously changing ‘sonic portrait’ of South Florida as they play the sounds of tropical birds, thunderstorms, and other environments native to the region. Video sensors at either end of the passageway track visitor movement, causing changes in the density and composition of the sound piece relative to the number of passengers in the space.” (via designboom)

Finland’s Lighting Design Collective Transforms A Silo Into A Modern Lighthouse

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Helsinki, Finland is already known for its beautiful landscapes, sonorous Baltic coastlines and for its focus on civic design (the city having been named the World Design Capital of 2012). To celebrate this honor, Helsinki tapped Madrid-based design firm Lighting Design Collective (LDC) to create a permanent urban art light piece.

Named for the repurposed oil silo, Silo 468 is a project for the cities residents to enjoy from the inside and out. The silo’s walls feature more than 2,000 perforated holes which echo ideas of a traditional lighthouse, displaying an incredible light show for Helsinki’s Kruunuvuorenranta district. While the coastline is illuminated by the modern lighthouse, the inside of Silo 468 offers a different, more intimate experience. Painted a deep, captivating red, there is an additional light show for citizens to enjoy.

The Director of LDC, Tapio Rosenius, fully explained the project. “At night 1250 white LED’s flicker and sway on the surface of the silo controlled by a bespoke software mimicking swarms of birds in flight – a reference to silo´s seaside location. The prevailing winds, well-known to those living in Helsinki, are used to trigger different light patterns in real time.

‘The enduring fascination of the complex movement of light and the amazing location by the sea will make this a captivating experience for the visitors and the residents of Helsinki.” (via designmilk and u1u11. Photos by Hannu Iso-oja, Tuomas Uusheimo, and Tapio Rosenius.)

Alice Aycock’s Exceptional Architectural Drawings

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Alice Aycock is mostly known for her important oeuvre of sculptural and installation works, which have spanned decades and include exhibitions at some of the most important cultural institutions around the world. Aycock, however, is also a master draftswoman, creating works on paper that problem-solve her idea of “nonfunctional architecture,” often taking on forms reminiscent of diagrams and blueprints. As Aycock eloquently explains, the medium and its strengths are vastly different in 2 and 3-Dimensions - “Drawings aren’t bound by the physical—the imagination can run freely.

These sumptuously drawn pieces offer a new realm of possibilities, not simply tied to her sculptural works, but also a visual representation of how the artist’s mind and complex process unfolds. “Viewers are accustomed to seeing Ms. Aycock’s work in its final form, large-scale installations and outdoor sculptures, but her drawings show a mind at work, solving problems and breaking new ground. They also provide further evidence of her ideas and sources, offering clues to their meaning.”

Part of the exhibition series, ALICE AYCOCK Drawings: SOME STORIES ARE WORTH REPEATING, these drawings can be seen in a two-part drawing retrospective, the first of which was Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, NY and the Grey Art Gallery at New York University. The Exhibition then travels to University Art Museum at the University of California, Santa Barbara and the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, CA January 25th – April 19th, 2014. (via butdoesitfloat)

Alex Chinneck’s Incredible House Complete With Sliding Exterior

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Alex Chinneck is a London-based artist and designer, recently responsible for an installation that cleverly combines both disciplines. In Margate, a tiny town in Kent, England, a dilapidated home in the Cliftoncille district which had laid in ruins for months has been transformed. By remodeling the brick exterior and exposing the building’s top floor, Chinneck has altered the facade of the building to look as though it has become a single sheet and slid from the rest of the house.

Playfully titled From the knees of my nose to the belly of my toe, Chinneck extends his experimentation for surreal constructions and alterations of ordinary buildings (past projects include 312 identically smashed windows near the Olympic Stadium, and a melting brick wall). In an interview with Dezeen, Chinneck stated I just feel this incredible desire to create spectacles, I wanted to create something that used the simple pleasures of humour, illusion and theatre to create an artwork that can be understood and enjoyed by any onlooker.

Chinneck goes on to state some intentions of the piece, though admits they mostly have come after the piece’s construction. ”It has social issues, it struggles with high levels of crime and the grand architecture has fallen into a fairly fatigued state,” says Chinneck, “I increasingly like that idea of exposing the truth and the notion of superficiality,” he explained. “I didn’t go into the project with that idea, but as it evolved I started to like that.

From the knees of my nose to the belly of my toe can be seen at  1 Godwin Road, Cliftonville, Margate UK, until October 2014, when it will again be turned into residential housing.

(via ignant and dezeen)

Filip Dujardin’s Fictional Photographs Of Real Buildings

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Filip Dujardin - Photograph

Filip Dujardin - Photograph

Filip Dujardin photographs buildings that are post modern and mundane. They are nondescript and unassuming. He has a way of spicing things up, though. With the help of Photoshop, Dujardin uses these photos and remixes them into structures we’ve never seen before and could never exist in our world. His series of images, titled Fictions, is just that, but done so seamlessly and with such mastery that we might think they are real.

Dujardin’s work contains some spectacular things. Buildings are labyrinths and Escher-eque in their construction. You could travel the same path over and over again, but never get anywhere. Oh well, who cares? You probably can’t even get inside. They don’t have entrances; they are simply a mass of siding and concrete.

Dujardin’s architecture is a mass of things that we love looking at buildings.  Surface decoration is more important than structural integrity. Take, for instance, the windows. In multiple photographs, he’s adorned building with all different factory-style windows.The varying color and size is a design decision, and he places them in clusters. Likewise, he uses the repeating of balconies, ducts, and vents to create patterns. Metal siding is collaged based on color combination than anything having to do with an actual building.

We can try to apply logic to Dujardin’s structures. We’re probably familiar with these types of buildings, and expect them to look a certain way. But, with Dujardin’s doctored photographs, we cannot. Instead, we can admire them for the fantasy that they are.

After gazing at Dujardin’s work for awhile, it occurs to that this series was probably a lot of fun to create. It’s the digital equivalent of playing with Legos. There are a lot of pieces, and with the help of Photoshop you can cut them up, flip them, and arrange them however you wish.

Indoor Clouds Created Tetsuo Kondo Architects

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Tetsuo Kondo Architecture indoor clouds

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The architectural firm Tetsuo Kondo Architects makes creative use of a unique material: clouds.  They carefully manipulate the humidity and temperature in buildings to create indoor clouds.  This eventually creates three distinct layers within the room with actual clouds gathering in the middle.  The firm uses the space to allow visitors to experience the cloud from below, within, and above.  In a way clouds are architectural components of the natural world that serve several practical purposes.  Tetsuo Kondo Architects pull these clouds inside not only as a strange material, but also as a symbol of the relationship between architecture and the surrounding environment. (Via Collabcubed)