Fast Flux Opening, Studio-X Soho

Fast Flux: New Art from Lithuania Opening
Tuesday 10 September 2013, 7:00-8:30pm
Studio-X NYC, 180 Varick St., Suite 1610 (map)

Free and open to the public. No RSVP required.

This opening marks the beginning of Fast Flux, a residency and exhibit by young Lithuanian artists from Rupert at Columbia University's Studio-X NYC.
A panel of speakers will discuss the exhibit, the role of art and architecture in Soho, and the role of Lithuanian artists George Maciunas and Jonas Mekas in the establishment of the arts community in the area.

Juan de Nieves, Director, Rupert, Vilnius, Lithuania

Inesa Pavlovskaite, Co-Curator of Fast Flux, curator, Vilnius, Lithuania

Lytle Shaw, Associate Professor of English, NYU, Editor, Chadwick Family Papers

Kazys Varnelis, Co-Curator of Fast Flux, Director, Network Architecture Lab

Mark Wigley, Dean, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, Columbia University

In August 1966, George Maciunas set out to found an artists collective in Soho with the help of Jonas Mekas. Together, they envisioned a Kolhkoz with a Fluxshop and a 120-seat cinema at 16-18 Greene Street, just east of the entrance to the Holland Tunnel, in an area that was the site of Manhattan’s first Lithuanian-American community.

Although the Greene Street cooperative was not to be, Maciunas would go on to develop a series of lofts in Soho, all the while lurching from one crisis to another as he faced issues with money and deadlines. In November 1975, thugs hired by electrical contractor Peter D. Stefano administered a severe beating, causing Maciunas to lose an eye. Ten years after Maciunas had begun his project in Soho, he set out for New Marlborough, Massachusetts, where he would purchase a farm in hopes of starting a new, exurban Flux collective. His obituary in the May 11, 1978, edition of The New York Times was titled “George Maciunas, Artist and Designer Organized Fluxus to Develop Soho.”

In the thirty-five years after Maciunas departed Soho, the postmodernization of the area has long been complete. Not only is the industry in the area long gone, so are the art practices that eulogized it. Contemporary Soho is a preeminent location for flagship stores, boutiques, and a new infrastructure of media and design that services  the needs of this global city.

On the farthest western reaches of Soho, Studio-X NYC, part of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation's global network of urban research labs, offers a site to investigate, if only temporarily, possible transactions between art and architecture, New York and Lithuania.

Between Tuesday, September 10, and Friday, October 4, 2013, Studio-X NYC will host a group of Lithuanian artists whose work will explore these transactions of art and architecture (real estate), New York (the core, the global hub) and Lithuania (the periphery, that which makes the core possible).

The exhibition will be open for public view Monday through Friday, from 1 to 6pm daily, or by appointment.

Sponsored by Rupert, the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture, and the Network Architecture Lab and Studio-X at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University.





A Machine That Makes The Land Pay

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In his famed statement on the skyscraper as a machine to make the land pay, Cass Gilbert was not so much speaking of the magic of the skyscraper but rather of the immense value of land in the metropolitan city core.

A Saturday on Strava, Mapped « Strava Engineering

A Saturday on Strava, Mapped « Strava Engineering:


On Saturday July 20th Strava athletes covered 4,890,000 miles in over 326,000 combined hours. To get a look at what all that riding looks like [Paul Mach] built the Saturday on Strava Heatmap, a visual on all those miles, broken down by hour.

archimaps: Floor plans for the Villa Virginia,...


Floor plans for the Villa Virginia, Stockbridge

This is rather nuts to find on Tumblr as I grew up here.

Before you come to the conclusion that I’m filthy rich, my father bought the place for very little as it was near ruin. As a retired artist, he spent a decade fixing it. And my spent a decade, I mean spend a decade of hard work. It was, well, crazy to live in a place like this. It took 3 days to cut the grass every two weeks.

In the winter, we could only afford to heat the wing at the top left of the lower level. The rest stayed between 45 and 50 degrees (Fahrenheit not Celsius). I lived in the sewing room on the second floor and we used two electric space heaters to keep that warm. It didn’t work very well.  I think that’s why I still get bronchitis often and I can’t handle cold rooms in the winter. 

My parents sold it when my father started his museum in Vilnius. It’s amazing how little you can get for a place like this if your kitchen is essentially still from 1917 and most of the bathrooms don’t work. The present owners ripped off the original red tile roof and put on a slate roof even though my father had it registered as a National Historic Landmark. I’m afraid to think of what has happened inside.

Perhaps this is why bricks and mortar bookstores are having...

Perhaps this is why bricks and mortar bookstores are having trouble staying in business?

Thank you, @bookculture.

Unbelievable “nail houses” around the world

Unbelievable “nail houses” around the world:

In China, a "nail house" is a home whose resident refuses to leave in order to make way for new construction. Builders have to elaborately construct around it, often leaving behind an eyesore so awesome that it’s almost a sculpture. Here are some of the most famous examples of nail houses.

Unbelievable “nail houses” around the world

Unbelievable “nail houses” around the world:

In China, a "nail house" is a home whose resident refuses to leave in order to make way for new construction. Builders have to elaborately construct around it, often leaving behind an eyesore so awesome that it’s almost a sculpture. Here are some of the most famous examples of nail houses.

Modernism for Sale (near NYC)

My neighbor Joyce just sent me this listing for a Deck House for sale down the street. It’s in Montclair, a train town 45 minutes from Manhattan by train (30 minutes by bus or car in off hours). I can’t say enough about Montclair. It has good schools, it is diverse in race and income, there are few chain stores, it is community and neighborhood oriented, there are huge numbers of parks, and the food is good. The house is on Highland and you’re on the highest point west of Portugal (not counting midtown’s skyscrapers which may or may not be visible from this house), sort of the Hollywood Hills of the east.

There aren’t many Deck Houses left that haven’t changed hands and there’s not a lot of modernism near the city.

It needs some restoration, but we can go over that. The house is on a half acre of land.

Contact her if you’re interested (you can also ask me for more info).

A letter to Rem Koolhaas

A letter to Rem Koolhaas:
July 16, 2013

Dear Rem Koolhaas,

we have never met, or so it seems. We are a non-relevant group. We are about half of the humanity, maybe more. We are also about 20% of our and your profession, maybe less. We are architects, yet female.

We have seen you signed the retroactive campaign about Denise Scott-Brown’s spoliation of the Pritzker Prize. That made us feel better about the fact that again, a white male in his late 60′s has been given power, this time over the Venice Bienniale. We thought you might help. Maybe not.

We have scrutinized the 2012 edition by your predecessor David Chipperfield and found the number of female participants appallingly low. We though you could do better. But then, someone said you appointed Hans-Ulrich Obrist for the Swiss Pavilion.* **

“Women are the ghosts of modern architecture, everywhere present, crucial, but strangely invisible,” says Colomina. Please make sure we are not side-lined, invisible, marginalized once again at the 2014 Architecture Biennale.

We would like you, for next year’s edition, to say F*ck Old White Men and give space to women in architecture: the talented, unjustly ignored architects, that happened to be female.

Through positive action and representation, we believe gender equality to be fundamental and hope you do too.

Hopelessly yours,

Die Architektin (Verein für)

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