Monday 26th June 2017

Ricardo Bofill

This beautiful series of films by Alberto Moya for Nowness, looks at architects homes and work spaces. My favorite so far is that of Ricardo Bofill. I am a huge fan of his, his aesthetic in my eyes is perfect – modern, green, simple, unexpected.

Opulent Charm

I know I’m a little late to write about this but I can’t stop thinking about it. The Bureau Betak set for Dior Couture earlier this year was out of this world! The white scaffolding and pink carpeted floor, with a mirrored ceiling and walls created a beautiful endless maze. Amid the Rocaille-style architecture of the Musée Rodin, Simons and team erected a futuristic scaffolding maze inside a simple white box, that proved even the humblest materials can assume an opulent charm in the hands of a master.


These architectural structures have always intrigued me, imposing, space-age, futuristic.. During the 60s and 70s in former Yugoslavia previous dictator Tito commissioned them to be built as memorials of the Second World War. Twenty years ago there were thousands of them many of which were destroyed in the 1990s. The ones that remain were either too large to knock down or too remote. Photographer Jan Kempenaers has travelled around the Balkans documenting them. These structures are incredibly beautiful and bold, showing the fine line between architecture and sculpture.


Margaret Bursa

Margaret and I know each other from the Bartlett School of Architecture in London. Know as Mags amongst her friends, her work carries a distinct “Bartlett” flavour yet she has managed to push the boundaries of it and started many new trends throughout the school. Her style and approach to Architecture is unique and has always been inspirational to me.

I am happy to be able to share with you her work, which are true pieces of art. Mags describes her works as “fuelled by the need to express the materiality, colour and richness in the details of the everyday through an assemblage of design components. The models and drawings are both an interplay of these observations and responsive spatial design.”

Mags’s work is so wonderful it is inspiring and beautiful – makes me sad that I am no longer an architect. Lets hope one day we can experience one of her colourful creations in real life. For now we can enjoy her incredible drawings and models which are precise, colourful and architecturally expressive.

Text by Margaret Bursa:

The New Local is a social manifesto, designed to challenge the accepted architecture of the suburb and then the metropolis reflecting changing attitudes to life and our daily pattern of work, rest and play. My resulting architectural design – housing, parkscapes, and playgrounds, are investigated at scales ranging from the masterplan to a focus on the details of the everyday.

The Czech town of Zlín is the site of a social, industrial and architectural experiment begun by Tomas Bata in 1894. However, his shoe-making factories that were once the town’s driving force no longer operate and so the social and commercial structure of the town and its suburbs are in decline. Responding to the New Local Manifesto a layer of facilities is laid over and interwoven into the residential neighborhoods where seven housing typologies are afforded dual functions of work and domestic life such the House of Drink, where both production and consumption are combined.



The New Local in New York creates a ‘landscape of movement’ that takes the form of a condensed urban playground on the west side of Manhattan, overhanging onto the River Hudson. The landscape responds to the principles of the New Local in Zlín, making a shift of small town social relationships to a neighborhood in the metropolis. This shift responds to the needs of the work-propelled urban dweller. It is also inspired by the ongoing relocation of immigrants and cultures to America, in particular Sokol, a Czech mass-exercise movement, promoting togetherness, flocking, fresh air and cultural pride.

The resulting architectural landscape is conceived as a life-size topographical map, using and respecting nature to create a building that will blur and soften the edges of lower Manhattan to allow nature and society to meet. In addition to creating movement through exercise, the building will breathe and exercise to create energy.



James Nizam : Traces Heavens

These images are a result of a series of photographs for an exhibition called ‘Traces Heavens’ by James Nizam. They are the result of a lot of patience on behalf of Nizam. They are large black and white photographs which document light sculptures that he creates in darkened rooms and adds artificial fog to intensify the rays of light. For some of the pieces, for example for Shard of Light (the first image) he harnesses the procession of the sun using jury-rigged setups that capture and manipulate sunlight into sculptural form. The resulting light sculptures establish a correspondence between room and camera as light capturing structures and extends it in time and space to the capture of solar phenomena within ancient astrological observatories such as those at Chaco Canyon or Xochicalco. These pieces are incredible solar recordings which establish poetic connections between the cosmos, photographic apparatuses, architecture, perception and the mind. 

Noemie Goudal

I have been quite a fan of Noemie Goudal’s work for some time. Noemie is a young French, London-based photographer, having completed her Masters in Photography at the Royal College of Art. Her work is always the most beautiful compositions and installations – mixing the man-made world with the organic. It is part sculptural, part installation – there is sensation when you look at her work fantasy meets reality. She creates a dream like world that is somehow sinister due to her play with perspective and amazing sense of escapism.


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