September 16th, 2015
The Duke, the Landscape Architect and the World's Most Ambitious Attempt to Bring the Cosmos to Earth:
Last fall, a hand-picked group of the world's top theoretical physicists received an invitation to a conference about the multiverse, a subject to which many of them had devoted the majority of their careers. Invitations like these were nothing unusual in their line of work. What was unusual was this conference was not being hosted by a university or research institute, but rather by a Scottish Duke.
And its organizer was not a physicist, but a landscape architect by the name of Charles Jencks. […]
[Via The Morning News]
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February 9th, 2015
Robert Bruno's Steel House is a sculpture more than it's a home:
Robert Bruno labored for decades to build one of America's most striking houses, but died before he could complete it. Is there a way to preserve his work and legacy?
How on earth haven't I seen this before? Surely it should have shown up in some science fiction film or TV series as the alien base or the hero's desert refuge or a parked spaceship?
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February 4th, 2015
Design Milk on the Curtain Door by Matharoo Associates:
[The Curtain Door…] is most definitely a door like no other I've seen. The massive door is made of 40 sections of thick Burma teak and sits between the entrance's concrete walls. Each section has been carved to incorporate 160 pulleys, 80 ball bearings, one wire rope, and a hidden counterweight.
File under "Gorgeous, but possibly a tad high-maintenance".
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May 31st, 2014
Geoff Manaugh, on the work of 19th century surveyors in California who set out to map out the borders between counties:
Like a dust-covered Tron of the desert, surrounded by the invisible mathematics of a grid that had yet to be realized, these over-dressed gentlemen of another century helped give rise to an abstract model of the state.
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May 5th, 2014
19 feet down and 9 feet to the west of the original site:
Like the Pentagon, its better-known counterpart in the United States, Britain's Ministry of Defence building is a fairly mundane, if gigantic, office block camouflaging a much more exciting subterranean realm of secret tunnels, bunkers, and – at least in the MoD's case – a perfectly preserved Tudor wine cellar. […]
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March 9th, 2014
Meet Čumil the Peeper:
His name is Čumil and he is either resting after cleaning the sewer or is looking under women's skirts. […]
[Prompted by the header image of this New Statesman article about Slovakia]
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February 24th, 2014
Roentgen Objects are genuinely remarkable pieces of furniture:
The furniture is a process – an event – a seemingly endless sequence of new spatial conditions and states expanding outward into the room around it.
Each piece is a controlled explosion of carpentry with no real purpose other than to test the limits of volumetric self-demonstration, offering little in the way of useful storage space and simply showing off, performing, a spatial Olympics of shelves within shelves and spaces hiding spaces.
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March 12th, 2013
John Naughton's Shards B&W:
Best viewed as big as possible.
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January 6th, 2013
BLDGBLOG relates the story of a 'Test Room' in Eugene, Oregon:
In August 1965 […] "ads in the local newspaper… promised complimentary checkups at the new Oregon Research Institute Vision Research Center." But these promised eye exams were not all that they seemed.
The office was, in fact, a model – a disguised simulation – including a "stereotypical waiting room" where respondents to the ad would be "greeted by a receptionist" who could escort them into a fake "examination room" that turned out to be examining something else entirely.
I guarantee that you won't guess what they were testing for.
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