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Metropolis Magazine

At Washington University, A Cluster of New Buildings Enlivens a Neglected Part of Campus

Metropolis Magazine Ι Oct. 18, 2019 A middle-American Oxbridge, the campus of Washington University in St. Louis is staunchly Collegiate Gothic, all nested quads and pink granite buildings. It’s often hard to tell where one building ends and another begins. But traverse the campus to its far eastern edge and this monotony starts to let up: Cloistered space grows porous, and the chisel-and-hammer articulation of stone
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Virgil Abloh’s MCA Exhibition Reveals the Power—and Limits—of Design Disruption

Metropolis Magazine Ι July 15, 2019 Architecture is an attractive medium for the trendsetter-turned-multidisciplinary designer and artist Virgil Abloh. Because buildings are often the face of the establishment, they are ripe targets for subversion—Abloh’s calling card. So it’s no surprise that bits of buildings are strewn throughout Figures of Speech, Abloh’s first solo museum exhibition now open at Chicago’s Museum
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For the Atlanta-Based Firm BLDGS, No Building Is Beyond Rescuing

Metropolis Magazine Ι March 2019  Atlanta’s west side is strewn with recycling centers, warehouses, shipping companies, abandoned rail lines, and other markers of light industry. It’s a grimy setting but one that architects Brian Bell and David Yocum felt ineluctably drawn to; there, inside a former auto-parts shop in 2006, they founded BLDGS. A comically inadequate title card above the buzzer announces the firm’s pr
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With Haus Gables, Architect Jennifer Bonner Celebrates and Critiques the American Single-Family House

Metropolis Magazine Ι March 2019  There’s an irresistible meta-critique at the heart of architect Jennifer Bonner’s Haus Gables in Atlanta, asking: What if you blurred the lines between real architecture and the media and methods used to simulate it, namely drawings and models? A professor at Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) with a practice of her own, Bonner is fascinated by this potential interchangeability.
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Will the Culture of Good Taste Devour McDonald’s?

Metropolis Magazine Ι August 15, 2018 At a new corporate headquarters in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood, there’s a double-height lobby filled with green walls and massive art installations. Travel to its top floor roof deck and you’ll find a cozy fire pit next to a fitness center and bar (happy hours are on Thursday). Elsewhere, stair-seating terraces face floor-to-ceiling windows with views of the Chicago skyline.
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At the Venice Biennale, Jeanne Gang Uses Memphis’s Cobblestones to Reflect on Monuments and Messy Civic Histories

Metropolis Magazine Ι May 23, 2018 “How do you make the stones talk?” asks the architect Jeanne Gang. It’s not a philosophical posture, but an earnest question and one at the center of Studio Gang’s soon-to-open 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale installation at the U.S. Pavilion. The stones Gang refers to were plucked out of storage, but they were originally lodged at Memphis Landing, also called Cobblestone Landing,
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Chicago Exhibit Spotlights Charlotte Perriand’s Alpine Ski Resort

Metropolis Magazine Ι May 23, 2018  The most impressive item depicted at Matthew Rachman’s exhibit of Charlotte Perriand–designed furniture is conspicuously absent from his Chicago gallery—it was too big to fit. The object in question, a gleaming red and white prefab bathroom produced for the designer’s Les Arcs ski resort in the French Alps, was an inch too big to slide inside the Ukrainian Village space, even with
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Carol Ross Barney is Chicago’s New Daniel Burnham

Metropolis Magazine Ι January 2018 As a lifelong Chicagoan, Carol Ross Barney has seen the Chicago River transition from an effluent-filled cargo highway to a vibrant recreational spot, one where her grandsons go fishing. “They can throw their line in and pull out two- to three-inch fish immediately,” she says. It has even become a habitat for otters. As for people, the river has become an alternative commuting path:
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Does Apple’s New Chicago Store Have Something to Say About the Future of Cities?

Nov. 17, 2017 Ι Metropolis  The steel and carbon fiber roof of Chicago’s new Apple store is a few feet thick at its center, tapering down to inches at its edge. Starship metallic gray and rectangular, it resembles a closed MacBook laptop, which you can buy inside. The glass corners of the building, splendidly curved, call to mind the contours of an iPhone. In the parlance of Robert Venturi, it’s a “duck,” that is, a
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