August 26, 2012
SUNDAY FROM MY DESK
It is time for a break now and the place I need to be for true refreshment is by the sea. The breezes, the sounds of water on rocks, and smell of the salt; the waves, always better if it is a bit windy and a little wild, calm me like no otherplace.
Perhaps it is because I am the sign of cancer that this is so.
Walking adventurous paths, sitting in solitude on the rocks in the middle of the amazing nature preserve we have here in Portofino or watching for the legendary dragon that lives in the harbor for me is truly peace – a mysterious transaction between the infinity of the soul and the sea and the sky.
The Mies Van der Rohe Barcelona Pavillion could be the ideal home by the water. That is a fact. It was built in 1929 as a temporary exhibition pavillion for the World’s Fair in Barcelona, and was torn down a year later. Fortunately in the early 80’s several Spanish architects,from old photos and original plans, rebuilt it faithfully to the original as one of the most important buildings in the history of modern architecture.
This summer, Korea hosted the first Expo for The Living Ocean and Coast in the southern coastal city of Yeosu, as part of a United Nations Environment Programme.
It is the first exposition focusing on the oceans, coasts and islands of our world.
The wellbeing of humankind is linked to our oceans. They are under threat by pollution, rising sea levels and exploitation. To restore sustainable life to the ocean’s environment is a global responsibility and the preservation of the ocean
is essential to our survival.
Here, designed by Austrian architecture group Soma, the main Pavillion is called One Ocean, with wavelike solar powered gills along the facade that act as shades for the interior spaces.
When it comes to iconic magazines in architecture, the dream publication,
Terrazzo takes the lead. Founded by Ettore Sottsass and Barbara Radice in 1988,
they delivered 13 of the most beautiful issues ever,
with wonderful pages by a new generation of architects.
Julius Schulman was introduced to me by Helmut Newton. I had not really known about him as a photographer until this meeting.
We did an exhibition in 1997 and I myself collect a lot of them because he brought architectural photography to another level, showing more than houses – his photos were the dream of California living – a space filled with the visions and hopes of a whole new mid century generation .
Arts and Architecture was also interested in practical application
and sponsored to build a series of inexpensive homes using
high quality materialsfor families growing after WWII.
They invited then young and unknown architects including Richard Neutra, Charles and RayEames, Eero Saarinen and Pierre Koenig to draw up plans.
The CSHP included 35 designs. 24 were built, 22 still exist.
Here, #22, the Pierre Koenig Stahl House, one of the most famous.
Now that the walls at 10 Corso Como are fresh and ready for new ideas and many wonderful events happening in September,
I can sit and look at one of my favorite magazines.
Arts and Architecture started up in the late 40’s and through the 1960’s was the leading edge in ideas on art, music and architecture. The founding of the magazine was by architects so their introduction of multiples and high tech materials, now also on the edge of new architecture, was visionary. Here two covers from 1958 and 1960 that seem as though just made today.