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WEEKLY EMAIL: FEBRUARY 18, 2010


Better Living Through Artistry

FEATURED THIS WEEK : JESSICA HELFAND

Better Living Through Artistry

Spend one day in the streets of Ahmedabad, India, with their maniacal motorists and daredevil rickshaws and you immediately recognize the oasis of quiet that the temple or mosque provides. Step into SEWA's Trade Facilitation Centre, where hundreds of women cut and sew, measure and mend, bind and stencil, and you realize you've entered a parallel kind of environment: it's a design temple.
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PLACES : TIMOTHY MENNEL

Working for the People

Earlier this week on Places architectural historian Keith Eggener explored a perceptual link between Robert Moses and the architect-vigilante played by Charles Bronson in Death Wish. Power broker, master builder, public servant — the life of Robert Moses was nothing if not big-scale. It's a life that would seem made for some sweeping narrative treatment — a movie by Orson Welles, an opera by Robert Wilson. Or a novel. To complete his doctoral degree in geography, Timothy Mennel produced not a typical dissertation but instead Everything Must Go: A Novel of Robert Moses's New York. For Mennel, the creation of a work of fiction, based on the facts, afforded the freedom to probe the complexity of Moses and his era — a complexity we inevitably grasp only in partial and contingent ways. Here we present an excerpt from a chapter that finds Robert Moses and Frank Lloyd Wright — his cousin by marriage — motoring through Harlem and the Bronx. 
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OBSERVATORY : CHRISTIAN WIMAN

Five Houses Down

I loved his ten demented chickens
and the hell-eyed dog, the mailbox 
shaped like a huge green gun.
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CHANGE OBSERVER : MEENA KADRI

Finding Innovation in Every Corner

"I prefer to see the poor as a provider than a market — with their limited material resources driving knowledge-intensive, informal innovation," says Anil Gupta, founder of grassroots organizations to uncover, share and refine the inventions of India's impoverished.
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PLACES : KEITH EGGENER

Lethal T-Square: Architecture, Violence, Renewal

Today we are increasingly aware that our infrastructure is literally crumbling and technologically dated, and that cities across the nation and around the world are stressed as never before. Little wonder that the late New York City master builder Robert Moses continues to cast a long shadow. Here architectural historian and Places contributing editor Keith Eggener makes an intriguing analogy between Moses, who titled his autobiography Public Works: A Dangerous Trade, and the vigilante-architect of Death Wish, the 1974 movie that turned Charles Bronson into an action-hero movie star.  
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OBSERVATORY : ERIC BAKER

Today, 02.13.10

Here are Today's images.
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OBSERVATORY : ALEX KNOWLTON

Dream Job: Interview with Film Graphics Designer Eric Rosenberg

In 1991, like the storied naïf who gets off the bus in Hollywood to make it big in pictures, Eric Rosenberg abandoned his career in editorial design at Business Week with only a single movie-related project in hand and headed West.
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PLACES : NATE BERG

The Olympics and the City

On Friday February 12 the 2010 Winter Olympics begin in Vancouver. Like other host cities, Vancouver had to plan for a sprint and a marathon — it had to develop, finance, design and build a range of sport and residential venues that would not only make the two-week event a big success but also, when the world had gone back home, become a vital and enduring part of the city fabric. Vancouver planning director Brent Toderian spoke recently with journalist Nate Berg, of Planetizen, about how the city, known for progressive planning and green thinking, was meeting the Olympic challenge. 
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PLACES : ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY

Phoenix – Barcelona: Cities in Transformation

Arizona State University
Symposium: 2.8.2010
Exhibition: 2.8.2010 - 2.26.2010


This month ASU will sponsor a symposium and exhibition which builds on the work of a previous exhibition and symposium, The Desert as a Client, held in Barcelona in October 2009. 
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OBSERVATORY : ARS LIBRI LTD

Hungarian Rhapsody

This collection is a record of the immensely productive life of György Kepes, it includes crates of notes and manuscripts from his books — many of them lavishly illustrated with original drawings and diagrams; heavily annotated sketchbooks crammed with compositions for paintings and stained glass; photographs, as well as pictures acquired for publication purposes and incidental examples of his own drawings, watercolors and other works of art.
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PLACES : ALAN THOMAS

Chicago Self-Park

For several years Chicago-based editor and photographer Alan Thomas has been focusing on the city's self-park garages, large multistory structures that provide "a particular way of framing the cityscape beyond." Here, with a gallery of Thomas's photographs, we continue to look at the architecture of parking, at more "houses of cars." 
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CHANGE OBSERVER : JULIE LASKY

DesigNYC

A star-powered matchmaking organization pairs New York designers with social causes. According to co-founder Wendy Goodman, DesigNYC focuses "on one simple idea: Good design, effective design, makes people feel better."
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Audio: Design Matters Archive

AUDIO: DESIGN MATTERS ARCHIVE

Bad Boys of Design

Designers Michael Ian Kaye, Mark Kingsley, Petter Ringbom, James Victore and Armin Vit.
Listen >>
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CHANGE OBSERVER: PROJECT ARCHIVE

Project

Kick4Life

AIDS education mixes with soccer in plans for a new Lesotho stadium.
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OBSERVATORY ARCHIVE

past post past post past post

PLACES ARCHIVE: SUMMER 2000

Portfolio: Uneasy Spaces

New York City photographer Elizabeth Felicella focuses on what she calls "landscape of security."
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