Saturday, February 26, 2011

Training For The Big Top

That's my school on the news!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Landscapes of Extraction

I finally went to go see this show, Landscapes of Extraction, on view at Cooper Union, at the Arthur A. Houghton Jr. Gallery, an exhibit of photography by J Henry Fair of the devastation wreaked on our planet by the fossil fuels industry. Its only on view for another week, but you must go see it while you have the chance.  The photos are powerful, and we need to spread the word about what is happening to our planet!

The show was put together by the Cooper Union Institute for Sustainable Design, of whom my former professor Kevin Bone (and New York waterway expert) is the director, and the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture. 

Monday, February 21, 2011


A piano, a violin, a man, a woman, the color blue: mix it all up and you get the up and coming Chicago based band Paper Thick Walls.

Find more artists like Paper Thick Walls at Myspace Music

There's a diversity in the songs, yet unified by their own unique style.   But the song where their true originality and beauty shines through is in Infinite, where there is an almost clashing mixture of verse and chorus sounds that is unexpected and great, and then at the end it floats off on a tangent of ghost like voices.  Its the fact that it catches you off guard that makes it my second favorite.

But my absolute favorite song on the album is Masters At The Sea which makes me feel like what I would imagine it would be like to be out at sea, surrounded by the vast, unending, powerful, terrifying ocean, the big wall of sound like a wave.  When you hear the sad, urgent call of the guitar, violin, and piano, you know you are about to hear a tale of adventure, sadness, and beauty.

Band website design

Click here and here for more info and to listen to more songs by Paper Thick Walls!!

Saturday, February 19, 2011


Jazz At Lincoln Center: Lighting

This is part 2 of my post about Jazz At Lincoln Center, my case study for my architectural lighting class.  Here are some sketches of the space - specifically the Nesuhi Ertegun Jazz Hall of Fame - and how the lighting works with the architecture.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Monday, February 14, 2011

New Semester, New Site

This semester, for the first time ever here at Spitzer School of Architecture at City College of New York, the Master of Architecture program and the Master of Landscape Architecture program are working together on a collaborative studio.

This semester the focus is on housing for us architects (I still have no idea what the Landscape Architects do...but I'm trying to learn), and our site is in Soundview Park in the Bronx.

Here are some photos from our snowy visit to the site.

This housing development was built by the New York City Housing Authority.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

BIG is Coming to New York

Get Ready.

W57 - West 57th Residential Building from BIG on Vimeo.

Jazz At Lincoln Center

I'm writing about Jazz at Lincoln Center for an architectural lighting class I'm taking right now.

Jazz At Lincoln Center
Architect: Raphael Vinoly
Open since 2004, Jazz At Lincoln Center is a complex that includes three spaces for Jazz performances, an education center, a Jazz Hall of fame, as well as flexible event space.  It is located at 33 West 60th Street, on the 11th floor of the Time Warner Center in Columbus Circle, New York City.  While each of the three performance venues in the complex were designed to accommodate different performance and event needs, each venue in its own right possesses a level of flexibility as well.  
The Allen Room’s design is based on that of a Greek amphitheater and features a 50’x90’ glass window that provides views of Central Park and Manhattan’s skyline.  The movable structure and removable stage give the Allen Room the ability to host many different events.  The largest of the three venues, Frederick P. Rose Hall is considered one of the best places to hear Jazz music in the world.  It features movable seating towers as well as a stage who’s dimensions can be adjusted. The sound quality can be regulated to suit a variety of needs due to it retractable ceiling and acoustical banner and curtain system.  Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola, the third venue, is the most intimate and designed specifically for live jazz performances while still being able to accommodate a variety of seating arrangements.  
One of the greatest challenges in designing the complex was to ensure that in a venue larger than most places one goes to hear jazz, that the feeling of intimacy and the connection between audience and musician would not be lost.  The lighting plays a crucial role in this achievement.  In Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola, the venue I visited, I think that the lighting is very successful in achieving this goal.  The lighting is controlled in the warm cave-like space so that just enough is emitted to illuminate the musicians without making one feel as though they were surrounded by others.  It allows for a seemingly direct connection between oneself and the music.

Monday, February 7, 2011

William Castle: The Tingler!

After watching a video of a lecture by one of my creative role models John Waters, I was compelled to watch William Castle's The Tingler, made in 1959.  Its a movie about a parasite that lives in every human's spinal column that becomes bigger and stronger when a person experiences fear.  His movies were usually interactive and multi-sensory - at the screenings of the Tingler, the chairs would deliver an electric "tingle" to the viewers' spines, and in some movies he would provide scratch and sniff cards to the viewers, to be smelled at different points in the movie.

Next, I hope to watch Zotz, another William Castle movie about a coin with magical properties.