Sancaklar Mosque Oct30

Sancaklar Mosque

An architect friend of mine was visiting Istanbul last month and asked me if it is easy to get a taxi from Taksim to Sancaklar Mosque. It takes about 100km to reach Sancaklar Mosque from Taksim – meaning it would cost a fortune for my friend to go there on his own. Since I was also curious to see the building, we have organized a minibus tour to the Sancaklar Mosque in the weekend. Most of the trip towards the eastern end of Istanbul takes place on a highway. When you have Italians with you, it is quite embarrassing to see Venezia Mega Outlet, Emaar Toscana (Toskana as they prefer to write) development on your way. An architect friend of mine was visiting Istanbul last month and asked me if it is easy to get a taxi from Taksim to Sancaklar Mosque. It takes about 100km to reach Sancaklar Mosque from Taksim – meaning it would cost a fortune for my friend to go there on his own. Since I was also curious to see the building, we have organized a minibus tour to the Sancaklar Mosque in the weekend. Most of the trip towards the eastern end of Istanbul takes place on a highway. When you have Italians with you, it is quite embarrassing to see Venezia Mega Outlet, Emaar Toscana (Toskana as they prefer to write) development on your way. Despite its out of context name, Emaar Toscana – located right in front of Sancaklar Mosque – is built on a beautiful landscape similar to Toscana. So one can argue it is a contextual name. Sancaklar Mosque is also part of this beautiful landscape of smooth hills full of grass. Which I am pretty sure will soon be construction sites of new...

Louvre Abu Dhabi Jan19

Louvre Abu Dhabi

As I approach Louvre Abu Dhabi by foot, I see three guys on a boat, right next to the bright white gallery box below the ground level, wiping the marks left by the sea where the gallery meets the sea. It takes energy and love to live with great architecture. You can not leave a piece of lemon on a beautiful kitchen counter built by natural stone. I believe living with great materials; great buildings require love and care, just like how beautiful clothes can not simply be thrown to the washing machine. Louvre is the most beautiful building in the United Arab Emirates. It provides an outdoor public space, shaded by a beautiful roof, surrounded and penetrated by water. One can spend hours going in and out of galleries, resting under the giant roof in the museum. This outdoor space is a unique experience in a country where it is only acceptable to be hanging outdoors only seven months of the year. The planning of the museum is divided into three clusters; one is the main exhibition space, second is the temporary exhibition and event space, third is the cafeteria and public building. The cafeteria is not extremely expensive and has decent food and a beautiful view of Abu...

The Broad Museum Oct16

The Broad Museum

The Broad Museum opened a month ago in downtown Los Angeles right next to Gehry’s Walt Disney Concert Hall. Architects of the Boston Institute of Contemporary Art and Highline of New York, Diller Scofidio + Renfro designed and completed their third landmark building in the United States. Broad Museum is probably the second most impressive building I have ever seen in Los Angeles after my first visit to Bonaventura Hotel. Los Angeles is, in general, not the best city for a certain kind of architecture. The skin of the building is rigid, wrapping sides, even internal ceilings. The ground level of the building is reserved for public space for ticketing and gathering and the back of house spaces, which the public can not access. The upper level is entirely open to the public and is for the permanent exhibition. The archive spaces can be seen behind glass yet can not be accessed, which is quite an unusual experience for a gallery. The ground floor has concrete organic walls and is like a cave while upstairs is well lit bright exhibition spaces. Broad is adding value to the trending downtown life of Los Angeles. The building is not an unwelcoming giant stand-alone sculpture like its neighbor; it is surrounded by charming cafes, other museums and is pleasant to be next to...

Glenn Small: Recovery Room Nov10

Glenn Small: Recovery Room...

Assembly and Orhan Ayyüce present Glen Small: Recovery Room, a selection of the architect’s proposals. The show is on view from November 9 through 30. Opening reception is Saturday, November 9, 7-9 pm. Exhibition hours are Wednesday through Sunday, noon-6 pm. Assembly is located at 2045 S. La Cienega Blvd. Ample parking is available in the lot adjacent to WSS Shoe Warehouse at the same address. “When he saw the Green Machine, he said, ‘we’re going to build this thing.’”  – Glen Small quoting Los Angeles city planner Calvin Hamilton Oregon and Nicaragua-based architect Glen Small’s mid-career proposals still inspire radical reconsideration of our notions of environmentalism, housing, and urban development.From the 1960s-80s, a body of visionary yet mostly unbuilt designs placed Small at the centre of key discussions of architectural experimentation and ecological consciousness in California, and studying alongside him was anassumed part of one’s education during the founding decades of the Southern California Institute of Architecture.His ingenious Green Machine (1977-80), a sustainable, low income residential community using stacked Airstream trailers as interchangeable living modules, was nearly realised before funding disappeared with the start of the Reagan era. A series of further professional disappointments soon followed.Thirty-plus years later, his proposals still exist as such – not as suggestions for monuments, nor as “paper architecture,” but as thoroughly worked out architectural propositions. Projects like Turf Town (1983) are made all the more relevant by comparison with contemporary commercial development projects. Details of a work like Biomorphic Biosphere Megastructure (1969-77) may be elegant, but these qualities are never separate from a primary function as architectural program. The flickering ethos of early SCI-Arc lies at the heart of his work,though Glen Small still represents positions often considered too experimental in the current state of education and emerging practices. With this exhibition of original models, drawings, published material, and a series of events, Assembly® revisits and hosts anew the conversations and methodologies Small has sustained throughout his career. On display: Green Machine, an almost constructed vision from the late...

John Ridley @LAFilm Nov05

John Ridley @LAFilm

John Ridley was at Los Angeles Film School on 30th of September for the 12 Years a Slave screening. Meltem Öznalcı watched the movie and the Q&A for BoPaper in Los Angeles.

Led Zeppelin Jul03

Led Zeppelin

I was recently watching the Kennedy Center Honors for Led Zeppelin, which was back in December 2012 (I just discovered it through a friend’s Facebook link with the flashy title “Look at Robert Plant in tears!” so of course, I had to see him crying) It was the most touching performance, showing Heart perform “Stairway to Heaven”, their all-time-classic. Touching, because you could definitely see real emotion in Robert Plant’s eyes as they get watery, immediately as the song starts. But it was just as much of a treat to see the expression on Jimmy Page’s face as he listens. He really is impressed by how good Nancy Wilson is with the guitar. This coming from a living legend, considered by some as the best guitar player of all time, is no small feat. How can I describe the pleasure and approval on his face? You need to watch the video for yourself. As Heart kept unveiling surprises within the performance, both Plant and Page take pleasure in it like children. It starts off simple, with Ann and Nancy Wilson and a guitar. Then it keeps adding on drums, chorus, and lighting. Nothing extraordinary there, though it doesn’t hurt that they show the Obamas rocking to the music, also nodding their heads in approval. You also get to see Yo Yo Ma’s mini “head bang” during the infamous guitar solo…totally rocking to it, right before Ann Wilson sings “…And as we wind on down the road…!” you can really feel the build up and the audience’s anticipation right before that pivotal moment. I found that I got goosebumps and had to watch the thing over and over, which is something I always do when I sort of fall in love with a performance. It’s...

URL Shorteners

URL shorteners are in our lives since 2001 (1), making it easier to share long URLs through instant messaging, social media platforms and even IRC. Even though they were a huge help for people using chat systems in which clickable URLs were not natively supported (like early massively multiplayer online games), they became an indispensable part of our lives with the rise of Twitter. However, it is not all sunshines and rainbows and beautiful, short links with these services as they have downsides as well. One of the many handicaps of heavily using these services is that they make every link posted through them reliant on the URL shortening service as well as the target web page. While we are having enough trouble keeping stuff online despite the costs of doing so going steadily down (Jeremy Keith’s post on the day Geocities died perfectly reflects my feelings on this matter (2), having to rely on one more service to be able to look back on what we have posted or viewed greatly reduces the usability of the archival abilities of the tools and services we use day to day. Another downside of URL shorteners is the security threats they pose. While most of the online population learned not to open every link sent their way one way or the other (rickroll link), it is very important to remember that these services are essentially masking any URL fed to them and they can be used very effectively for phishing and similar malicious activities (3). Even though major URL shortening services let users preview their URLs (4), you know how many of these links you previewed before opening them. All in all, URL shorteners are a mixed bag we have come to rely on and there is...

Patrik Schumacher Lecture, UCLA Nov19

Patrik Schumacher Lecture, UCLA...

On the 18th of November, Zaha Hadid’s longtime partner gave a very interesting lecture at UCLA, Perloff Hall. The practice has been known for the paintings of Zaha Hadid even a decade ago. There was only a few construction sites of the architecture office. The Wolfsburg Volkswagen building in Germany was a great step among the BMW plant in 2000s for turning the spectacular and unique style of Zaha into a physicality. The One North Masterplan, science city in Singapore also proved the masterplan schemes are not destined to be an unbuilt cool vision. Patrik has shown astonishing construction photos of the complex concrete structures on site in the first half of the lecture which pleased the audience who came for the fest of pretty images. In the second part of hıs lecture, Patrik almost started another lecture on his personal architectural theory. The architectural theory of Patrik Schumacher is shaped under the roof of infamous architecture school of London, the Architectural Association. Being one of the directors of the Design Research Lab (AA-DRL) Patrik has been questioning the capacity of the parametric software plug-ins in order to create more intelligent forms that are responding to the demands for using the space more efficient. He talked about orientation, for example the curving walls guiding the user through his journey in the Building. The primitive symbology of buildings as a subject being not questioned and waiting to be evaluated by architects. The very academic approach of Patrik inevitably raises questions in our heads on how the running business partnership works in Zaha Hadid Architects. Even though Hadid comes from an academic background spending years teaching AA Diploma 9, taking over the unit master position from Rem Koolhaas and Elia Zanghelis, her approach has been challenged...

Jazz Playlist Apr23

Jazz Playlist

Here are some of the songs we take from a great musician, Kerem Görsev‘s Twitter, supporting the #cazhareketi jazz movement for Turkey. listen to the whole playlist on YouTube – BuildingOfficeTV Channel 47:18 minutes Art Tatum art tatum – blues in c (1954) Robert Farnon robert farnon – the way you look tonight robert farnon & george shearing – how beautiful is night Tony Bennett tony bennett – the shadow of your smile (1966) Frank Sinatra frank sinatra – call me irresponsible frank sinatra – fly me to the moon frank sinatra – for once in my lifetime frank sinatra – moon river frank sinatra – nice and easy frank sinatra – summer wind frank sinatra – the way you look tonight frank sinatra – witchcraft John Coltrane john coltrane & johnny hartman – dedicated to you Nat King Cole nat king cole – fascination Kerem Görsev began his adventure in music at the age of 6 when he started studying piano at the classical music conservatory in Istanbul. He continued his musical education at the Istanbul State Conservatory for twelve years until he started to play jazz. His first admirations were for Parker and Miles. After this, he has always liked bop and bebop music. This influence has been persistent throughout his professional life. Kerem Görsev never fails to mention how good he feels when listening to Bill Evans. In the early years of his career, he has performed at the various clubs in Istanbul both with Turkish and foreign musicians. He has performed in two concerts with Elvin Jones Jazz Machine in Eskisehir Festival in 1999. Recognized as a talented composer and pianist, he has started his recording with his first album “Hands and Lips” in 1994. Since then, he has produced a total of...