The World Cities Culture Report
Nov27

The World Cities Culture Report

The report recognises that revitalising and capitalising on a city’s cultural life plays out differently in vastly contrasting contexts.

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A Chinese Utopia?
Oct02

A Chinese Utopia?

Review  by Pierre Shaw  [ Oct 2016] Shenzhen is the city of miraculous conception, born from nothing and yet emerging now as one of the planet’s most ferociously rapid urban developing city. From humble border town beginnings just 35 years ago, Shenzhen has thrown itself onto the world stage projecting its population from 300,000 to 12 – 15 million (no-one seems to know the exact figures). It is yet another step in China’s march...

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Church on the Beach
Apr07

Church on the Beach

Austin Williams | 7 April 2016 From Nantes to Naples, Bruge to Budapest, many key European cities have churches at their centre. Regardless of denomination, the centrality of these churches has tended to convey a certain historic gravitas, dignity and authority to the civic sphere. Originally built as bastions of power, tradition and religious dogma, churches have survived, in many instances, as the genius loci of urban space. Recall...

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Wang Shu. Who?
Feb10

Wang Shu. Who?

Wang used his reclusive decade to reinvent himself as ‘a scholar, a craftsman, and an architect, in that order’. He emerged as a self-professed member of the literati: Chinese intellectuals who used painting and poetry to display their erudition and superior cultivated status.

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Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy
Sep18

Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy

   – by Rozie Saunders – In October of 2010, Ai Weiwei filled the turbine hall at the Tate Modern with 100 million handmade porcelain sunflower seeds. In April 2011, he was arrested by the Chinese government and held at a secret location in solitary confinement for 81 days. His passport was confiscated for four years and not returned until July, this year. For the first time since Sunflower Seeds, Ai Weiwei has been able...

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Playing Rough
Aug01

Playing Rough

Review by Matt Bloomfield | 01 August 2015 This summer in London has seen the opening of two exhibitions, both set against a backdrop of brutalism and with a pronounced vein of playfulness. The RIBA Gallery is currently occupied by The Brutalist Playground, an interactive installation created by architecture and design collective du jour- Assemble, in collaboration with artist Simon Terrill. Meanwhile, the Hayward Gallery on the...

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A Tale of Two Cities
Jul13

A Tale of Two Cities

by Rozie Saunders | 10 July 2015 Are soaring property prices that push young Londoners out of their city, simply a price for London’s global success? Is London becoming a millionaires’ playground rather than a bustling model of urban living? We report on the city’s perceived identity crisis. London is allegedly losing its sense of self. The consensus seems to be that ordinary people are being priced out of the housing...

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‘What is public space’ Future Cities Salon, Porto
Jun22

‘What is public space’ Future Cities Salon, Porto

Alastair Donald | 22 June 2015 In Porto this week the Future Cities Salon continues its series of discussions on the future of public space.  Early 20th century Modernism sought to provide public open space within cities as a release from the confines of overcrowded, unsanitary slums. Nowadays, public space is everywhere but there is less recognition and more proscription about what and who it is for. Many 20th-century residential...

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White City Black City
May21

White City Black City

Rozie Saunders | 20 May 2015 Sharon Rotbard’s “White City Black City: Architecture and War in Tel Aviv and Jaffa”  is much more than just an architectural history of Tel Aviv and Jaffa. The author, an Israeli architect and writer born in Tel Aviv, explores its development, and its sister city Jaffa through the lens of someone who has lived there continuously for decades. A critical examination of the accepted history of...

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In defence of a Defence of Stars and Icons
Apr15

In defence of a Defence of Stars and Icons

Austin Williams | 20 April 2015 It is a sad indictment of current architectural debate (as well as critical political debate more generally) that Patrik Schumacher’s latest article is creating such a fuss. Fans of Walter Benjamin – the unread darling of the Situationist mainstream – wouldn’t dream of criticising his statement “The public must always be proved wrong, yet always feel represented by the...

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