Historically, convening for social justice has taken place in the most informal settings, with many of this nation’s most important civil rights gatherings, for example, taking place in a church basement, a living room, or even around a kitchen table. The challenge of designing a building from the ground up that fosters discussion and renders this work visible and welcome to all is in many ways unprecedented. The Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership designed by Studio Gang aims to bring social justice topics up from the basement and squarely into public consciousness.

With its mission to catalyze positive social change, the Arcus Center works to develop emerging leaders and engage existing leaders in the fields of human rights and social justice. As a study center and meeting space, the building brings together students, faculty, visiting scholars, social justice leaders, and members of the public for conversation and activities aimed at creating a more just world.

The Center’s architecture supports this work in several important ways. Inside, the building’s visually open and day-lit interior is designed to encourage “convening” in configurations that begin to break down psychological and cultural barriers between people and help facilitate understanding. The presence of a living room, hearth, and kitchen for sharing food at the center of the building creates the potential for frequent informal meetings and casual or chance encounters.

Many decisions that architects must make about space—addressing, for instance, issues of accessibility or gender identification—have social justice repercussions. The integration of equitable practices directly into its design enables the Center to instigate positive social transformation at every scale. The building is likewise designed to respond sensitively to its distinct yet adjacent physical contexts: a residential neighborhood, the college campus, and a native woodland grove. Its tri-axial plan addresses and unites all three contexts with large transparent facades connected by concavely inflected arcing walls that embrace the interior space.

For the Center’s wood masonry exterior, a local but forgotten building technique was revived and brought into the 21st century. The wood sequesters carbon and provides a low-tech approach to achieving a high-performance building facade. The stacked wood material also works as a figurative extension of the trees in the adjacent grove landscape. This unique exterior challenges the Georgian brick language and plantation-style architecture of the campus’s existing buildings, while simultaneously honoring the masonry craft and those who constructed the college’s earlier structures.

Informed by the tenet that in a socially just world each person’s life is valued and their inherent dignity is recognized, the Arcus Center demonstrates that spaces for convening can and should be some of our most powerful. Read the rest of this entry »

LAAM is going to be situated within a residential complex, so it will work as the main access to the people living in the 111 apartments, which are going to be built later. The idea behind this conception is to offer something we could call “aesthetical quality life”. Thus the museum going to be a sort of meeting point for the residents and their visits.

In order to translate this context, Fernando Romero has proposed a building generous in terraces and open spaces to transfer the exterior context into the building. The terraces of the different floors can indeed be called “sculptural gardens”, since they will contain the art pieces at open air. This will emphasize the benefits of the tropical architecture, such as natural air circulation, access to open spaces, foliage and the presence of the sea and the sun. The terraces will also spark off the curiosity of the neighbors and the pedestrians strolling in Biscayne Boulevard, so it will also work as an invitation to visit the museum.

The different levels of the building define LAAM’S program. The first floor will be reserved to young and emergent artists; the second one will be for temporal exhibitions; the third floor will house a selection of 600 pieces belonging to the permanent collection; finally, a restaurant will crown the top of the building.

LAAM will not only be a flexible platform for the promotion of Latin American modern and contemporary art, but also its best ambassador in Miami: a venue where young and emerging artists will find an appropriate atmosphere, where tourists and locals will be able to discover the new artistic proposals and where the fans will have the chance of discovering one of the most ambitious collections of Latin American art. The aim is to transform LAAM into the most significant institution for displaying this art in America. It will be completely focused on promoting its knowledge through a continuous process of appreciation and reinterpretation of Latin American art and its diaspora.

Project: Museum for modern and contemporary art
Site: Miami, Florida, USA
Program: Three levels for exhibitions, parking and services
Construction area: 90,000 ft²
Architect: FR-EE / Fernando Romero EnterprisE
FR-EE Team: Fernando Romero, Sergio Rebelo, Unai Artetxe, Daniela Gallo, Sunny Ruoting, Celia Julve, João Urbano, Jessica Wang, Yuri Jeong, Alex Zee, Feifei Song, Qingyi Chen, Francisco Crisóstomo, Wen Zhu Read the rest of this entry »

The location became a Housing Expo at around 90 years ago as its quiet ambience remains from the inherited residential surroundings. However, after 11 months of research and analysing the environment, the convenience of people was adopted for their essential needs in everyday life with the flow of time. Having this condition, Timber Dentistry will stand as an iconic architecture that signifies its remaining value, which in the future, endeavours to mend the environmental conflicts.

Orientation and shape of the surrounding residential influenced the silhouette of the structure’s west elevation. Gable roof that blends in the neighborhood transforms like drawing an arc towards the west side as its movement shows modernism. To give a warm impression to the exterior facade, natural materials of wood are used, where walls stand as a white canvas that complements cherry blossoms during its season.

The timber structure is enhanced by the transparency of glass, which captivates attention from the eye-level pedestrian located in the first floor. Timber material in inner space blends with the street of cherry blossoms, thus the Architecture itself aimed to blend the inner and outer spaces. “Tree brings sunny and refreshing weather to the circumference.” Intends to develop a reproduction method while preserving its historic context even in a small building.

Design by: Kohki Hiranuma Read the rest of this entry »


The urban strategy for the Cultural Auditorium of the City of Cuernavaca, Morelos, is based not only on the understanding of the historical, archaeological, social, cultural and environmental value of the site, but also in the potential of the urban context. The architectural and design components generate a dialogue with the natural elements in a way that the archaeological features and visuals are enhance.

The proposal is presented as a contemporary piece of architecture featuring flexibility, high-performance and the capacity to engage a dialogue with its natural and built environment. The structural design strategy, tectonics and materiality of the project feature a low construction cost but with a high quality investment impact for the city, guaranteeing a low maintenance and operation cost for the future.

The Cultural Auditorium is considered a strategic building for cultural and artistic activities to strengthen the history and tradition of the City of Cuernavaca.


  • Recognition and understanding of the historical and archaeological value of the site.
  • Open dialogue with its natural surroundings.
  • Innovation and permanence (flexibility and adaptability)
  • A place for all (inclusive, accessible, diverse and flexible)
  • Public space as a linking component of the social, cultural, educational and artistic activities.


The new Cultural Auditorium is integrated in the Cultural Corridor of the Morelos State Government, along with Teopanzolco Archaeological Site, the old Train Station, the Juan Soriano Museum, the Palacio de Cortés, the Armas Plaza and the Zócalo.  The strategy presents the auditorium as a key element for cultural, social and artistic development as well as a space for social integration and community life for all social groups.


The project general strategy (and competition brief guidelines) is centered in the analysis and recycling of an existing auditorium located in the middle of the site, taking full advantage of its main structure and footprint boundary in order not to generate new excavation areas that could endanger potential archaeological pieces.  The project proposes the addition of key structural elements to the existing ones adding more roof area for the 1,500-seat auditorium.  Such structure is design in a way to allow maximum transparency but with minimum visual impact, enabling for all kind of cultural, social and artistic events to happen while maintaining the horizontal profile that dominates the surrounding area.


The project sits in a 1,400-square-meter platform with retractable seats allowing a wide range of activities to happen, representing a spatial condition for maximum space use and profitability, ensuring economic income for maintenance and progressive modernization over time; the goal is to create a self-sustaining building.

The project also integrates sustainable and environmental design criteria, such as the optimization of environmental conditions like temperature control, rain water reuse, solar energy, waste recycling and so on.


The Auditorium is consistent and closely linked to policies, strategies and governmental programs established in the National Development Plan for cultural, art and social development.  The proposal creates a space for dialogue, interaction and social integration so much needed for the City of Cuernavaca.

The proposal creates a space for dialogue, interaction and social integration.  In recent years, Cuernavaca has been characterized as a city that promotes art and culture but still focalized on mid to high income population; the project aims to create a cultural platform with valuable experience for local and visitors alike, reinforcing the city’s cultural agenda.


The competition guidelines specified that no new structures or architecture should extend beyond the existing auditorium footprint, for that reason, the project proposal reuse the existing foundations and steel structure.  The original footprint geometry remains untouched but the usable area grows by “floating” walkable platforms to the north and south facades, taking advantage of the large span that the original column grid presents; thus, new space is created without the need to have new foundations or interventions on the natural soil.

The program located on the north wing of the project is used to house the ticket and information booth, restrooms and wardrobe, while the south extension houses the stage and proscenium area.


The project proposal reuses the flat platform of the existing auditorium to locate the retractable seating area by just reinforcing and adding height to the existing columns, by doing so, the area is now able to host a wider variety of events such as music and theater performances, social and sports events, exhibitions and so on.

The interior space flexibility is reached through the implementation of a retractable seating system, guaranteeing the best visual and acoustic experience for 1,500 visitors.

An urban grand stair is located on the east façade of the auditorium reinforcing the link between the auditorium and the archaeological site; this geometrical gesture creates a direct dialogue between the spectator, the artist, the urban visitor and the archaeological site of Teopanzolco.


Lead Architects: José Muñoz Villers + Carlos Marín

Team: Claudio Nieto Rojas, Fernando Kido Kerse, Guillermo Delgado de Itta.


Urbanism: Victor Hugo Hofmann + Emma Morales

Landscape Architect: Taller Entorno / Hugo Sánchez + Tonatiuh Martínez

Acoustics consultant: Saad Acústica / Omar Saad

Structural Engineer  Estructural: Grupo Sai / Gerson Huerta

Theater Consultant: Chemtrol / Juan García

Consultant Archaeologist: Luciano Cedillo Read the rest of this entry »

Gravity Restroom

By: admin | November - 19 - 2014

In the midst of unprecedented chaos at Mongkok caused by Civil Unrest right next to Langham Place Shopping Center, one discovers a brand new Black & White Toilet with Futuristic Street Lamps called “Gravity Restroom” recently opened to the public. Built as part of Pegasus Entertainment’s first Flagship “Cinema City Langham Place” designed by Alexander Wong Architects, this futuristic-looking cinema has an entrance named “Rose Futura” in Ultra-Blue and Azure “Cloud Atlas Tunnels”. Inspired by the films of Hong Kong’s renowned Film Director Wong Kar Wai [from his debut "As Tears Go By" (1988 --- also called “Mongkok Carmen” in Cantonese) to "2046" (2004)], the design here is an homage to Hong Kong’s bygone “New Wave Cinema” with an unexpected Sci-Fi twist.

Design by: Alexander Wong Architects Read the rest of this entry »

Parametric Design In Urbanism

By: admin | November - 13 - 2014

The bias of SO/AP agency was to design an urban pattern generated by tools for parametric programming. The urban grid, the study of heights and typology of housing are the optimized results from simulations between a 3D parametric design software, and software for environmental analysis. All data as solar radiation, natural lighting condition, thermal performance and water consumption have been integrated to the urban design from the beginning.

In order to benefit of the ski lift both in summer and winter, the city is implanted at the foot of the skiing plateau and extends westward into the hillside in order to preserve as much plain in its natural states as possible. As this plain is serviced at is two end points, the projects also plan to build two gateway permitting simultaneous the access and the storage of the goods without having to access to the city.

Between these two extremities three poles can be distinguish, the first one is at the bottom of the slopes and is oriented in the winter sports, at the other end toward the plain the city is focused on the summer recreation. These two poles are connected through a third one which is more access on the residential and sports area. Read the rest of this entry »

X|A ATHENS Winter Workshop 2014: 15th-23rd of December 2014 @ Benaki Museum in Athens, Greece

X|Atelier is organizing an international intensive workshop of Advanced Architectural Design. The X|Pixel[ism] Winter Workshop 2014 is led by X|A principals Erick Carcamo (SCI-ARC) and Nefeli Chatzimina (USC) both Graduates of Columbia University in New York City, GSAPP AAD.

The X| Pixel[ism] Workshop is organized under the auspices of the Hellenic Institute of Architecture and the Athens School of Fine Arts. Selected Participants will attend the Computation Workshop, the Final Review and Exhibition at Benaki Museum of Athens from the 15th -23rd of December 2014. Daily meetings will take place from 10am to 6pm at the Benaki museum of Pireos 138.

As part of an ongoing academic research, X|A workshops introduce participants into contemporary discussions of formal exploration in Architecture and Art. Through technical attainment of design and digital production the X|A Workshops give the opportunity to students of Architecture and Art, Professional Architects, Designers and Artists to challenge new design territories. Our goal is to explore innovative, potential architectural expressions of the current discourse around Form through computational tools (Autodesk MAYA). We will focus on technique elaboration, material intelligence, formal logic efficiencies and precision assemblies as an ultimate condition of design. The workshop will develop and investigate the notion of proficient geometric variations at a level of complexity, so that questions towards geometrical effectiveness, accuracy and performance can begin to be understood in a contemporary setting. The workshop is a discourse based in the use of multi-layered techniques and production processes that allow for control over intelligent geometries, calibration of parts, and behavioral taxonomies, normalizing an innovative held of predictability.

For more information: www.xatelier.com/workshop

To apply: workshop@xatelier.com


Taking a non literal approach to the idea of plasticity PLYGROUND designed by Daniel D. Gillen is made with only three materials, plywood, sod and bolts, it is 100%  recyclable and re-usable.  Think of PLYGROUND as a 3d puzzle, wherein these pieces can be taken apart and re-assembled in 3 alternate configurations.  Four puzzles in one, now that’s plasticity! ‘PLYGROUND’ is an installation that brings together the community and academia by creating a place for endless possibilities.  PLYGROUND’s interactive landscape is perfect for reading, chatting, relaxing, and dreaming.  PLYGROUND sets a new precedent by bringing parametric fun and digital fabrication to the next generation of designers, our youth. Create a great spaced see how people interact in unintended and exciting ways.  How would you enjoy PLYGROUND? Read the rest of this entry »

“In the World” Category of Best Communicator Award 2014, the first Prize was granted to STONE GROUP INTERNATIONAL, with the project “Breathing Life into 12 Mythic Marbles” by Architect Michalis Theofilou. The award received the President  & CEO of the company, Yiannis Antoniadis.

A prestigious jury has been appointed for the Best Communicator Award for exhibitors attending Marmomacc and Abitare il Tempo who enhanced the importance of their exhibition space and exhibits as a means of communication.

They awarded Stone Group International for having “created an evocative set-up capable of combining the myths of ancient Greece with contemporary stone processing”.

Company’s marketing department along with the associate architects of ARCHKT Ltd and dolphins // communication design team, applied Moire Technique ( two almost similar patterns on a flat or curved surface) under Gestalt Principles ( the whole is other than the sum of its parts),  to create “12 Mythic Marbles” projectile motion, activated every time by visitors steps.

They have transformed company’s Booth into a theatrical scene of 144 sq m, where an art craft work force created the leading actors, the “12 Mythic Marbles” sculptures. Behind them, a unique visual movement displayed their aerial figures and their sculpture enactment in an unforgettable way.

The team thought of marble’s role not only as something static, tough inside, cold and isolated material as being referred according to its geological resources, but also as energetic “universe of value”.


Stone Group International is a leading world marble supplier, an ambassador of Greek marble and entrepreneurship worldwide, with presence in more than 72 countries.

Company’s expertise is based on in-depth knowledge of materials - seeking, finding, selecting, processing & trading more than 300 types of marbles, granites & natural stones, with annual capacity amounted to 650.000 m2 under the most innovative mechanical equipment.

The company cooperates with the largest clients globally and their renowned architects, for the specification of marbles in commercial & residential building projects.

-Stone Group International


-Awarded 12 Mythic Marbles


-Yiannis Antoniadis Interview at 49th Marmomacc



Iosif Iosifidis

Marketing Director


Mark is a speculative project by Atelier Crilo based on the reuse of an existing and abandoned building. Starting from the implosion in the facade at the ground floor it’s possible to climb up to the roof through the sculptural shape in corten steel, a rough and rusty material that articulates the distribution inside and it provides an added structure to the new slabs. The design goal is the infiltration inside an existent building and it can be replicated with different forms in saturated urban contexts and in historical backgrounds. For this reason Mark is part of a larger research project called “Urban Infiltrations” thinking that it’s possible to transform the city starting to small interventions for the qualification of existing buildings by inserting new activities and creative possibilities.  Read the rest of this entry »