Some drone footage of the current overall leader of the Volvo Ocean Race; MAPFRE in the doldrums on their way to Hong Kong after leaving Melbourne on the 2nd of Jan. I was very excited to see Australia as a late addition to the 8 month round the world ocean race after a 10 year hiatus. I went down to the pier and watched MAPFRE win leg 3 on their way into the heads on Christmas night and I also watched the full fleet for the start of leg 4. It appeared to be really intense and hard sailing through the roaring forties from Cape Town to Melb, very different to the footage shown here. Best use of a drone that I have seen to date but I am still rooting for team Brunel.
Via Volvo Ocean Race and Team MAPFRE.
“The people that run our cities do not understand graffiti because they think that nothing has the right to exist unless it makes a profit. The people who truly deface our neighbourhoods are the companies that scrawl giant slogans across our buildings and buses trying to make us feel inadequate unless we buy their stuff. Any advertisement in a public space that gives you no choice whether you see it or not is yours, it belongs to you, its yours to take, rearrange and re-use. Asking for permission is like asking if you can keep a rock someone just threw at your head.” Banksy.
I usually do something every year for Christmas, I think it’s a nice gesture and a little reminder that I am still here (Coostaaanza). Last year I had some tree/cards printed up on a extra heavy card stock and I think my clients and friends loved them, I’ve noticed some still have them standing up months after Christmas has passed. That feels good. The image above is the plan that I drew up, click more below and you’ll see the finished product. Merry Christmas.
Happy summer with some stunning footage of the Wally Class regatta from this years Voiles de Saint-Tropez.
Video by Guilain Grenier
Music by Path of Exile OST
via Sailing Yacht TV
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The Archibald Prize is in Melbourne at the moment but for a very short time, you should do yourself a favour and get along to the Geelong Gallery as this is the last week. The newish Geelong library by ARM Architecture is also an interesting thing to see (right next door). Better still check out the Geelong Government Building across the road, a whopper. The entrant above is made by the entire Boys of Sydney Grammar Edgecliff Prep School. Click below to see the write up.
This is the Solo House in Spain and I am a little obsessed with it. Brilliance designed by a firm, I think, are called either Office KGDVS or Goldsmith (I am really not sure). I have studied these photos, plans and renderings over the past few months and I would love to get into the minds of both Kersten & David to understand more about the house. Mostly because it is a concept made real which is always very exciting. You need a excellent client to allow such a pure idea to become a reality. I imagine the house would an fabulous experience. Built in 2017 and photographed by Bas Princen. Follow the jump below to see a plan. Via Archdaily, see more here in their super thorough blog post. If you want to read more about OFFICE, check out El Croquis issue 185.
*UPDATE: I just learned this house is available for rent at a boutique hotel site here. I also noticed another significant house called Casa Solo Pezo (cover shot of Superhouses) designed by Pezo & Von Ellrichshausen is also located on the land and also available to rent.
** UPDATE: I mentioned above that I would love to get into the minds of the architect… well wait no more, now you can read an interview with the architects over at the Arquitectura-G site, link to the article here, some great stuff in there for any archinerds. I also noticed Bjark & his 4 wives just stayed there, check out the time-lapse video on his Insta account.
This is the new Wally 100 footer called Tango. Lucca Bassani of Wally says the ‘racer cruiser’ is a important category for them, he notes they are built for racing but the cruiser component makes them a lot more enjoyable and in the long term, much more valuable. A pure bred hollowed out racer will very quickly lose much of their value, you can pick up an old VO70 for around $150K, a fraction of the new build cost. A Wally with an exquisite interior on the second hand market is still a valuable item.
Wally Tango is the fourth in this line of Wally Centos (100’s). Check out my previous post showing Wally 140 Esense here or the Wally motor Why here or Wally Barong D here. I think these boats are brilliant as the designers are way out at the edge of their discipline. Tango has an all star cast with Wally as the lead designer and Mills Design as Naval Architect while Pininifarina did the interiors, yep these are the same coach builders that have designed dozens of the worlds best cars for Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Peugeot, FIAT, GM, Lancia, and Maserati. Tango is 30.48m long with a lifting keel, weighs close to 50t and has a sail area of 640m2 and can take 6 guests with 2-4 crew, I suspect the cost is in the order of $20M again. Check out the huge sliding skylight to the master cabin, strange they have no side windows and also strange that loads of these boats seem to go for separate beds in the main cabin, kinda old school. All exterior photos by Giles Martin-Reget and interior photos by Toni Meneguzzo. Via yachtemoceans.com. (that does read Yacht-e-m-oceans… meh). Follow the link below to see every image that I could find as Wally are a little slower with their website and they also no longer post up plans but here is their site anyway.
The piece is a series of bronze & stainless steel planets placed around the bay in St Kilda in a replica scale model of our solar system, all the distances are perfectly to scale making it pretty big at 1:1,000,000,000 (this is the modern billion and not the million million as the British once used. The previous term made perfect sense however I suspect America’s wealthiest were impatient and wanted to identify as billionaires sooner after amassing a mere 1,000 million. This in-turn changed all the figures including a trillion, quadrillion, quintillion, sextillion, septillion, octillion, nonillion and decillion making none of them as clear as they once were. Apologies, I always seem to go off on these tangents).
So the scale basically means that every metre is equivalent to 1 million kilometres, the full model is 5.9km and includes our friend Pluto. You start the walk or cycle at the St Kilda Foreshore Skatepark, here you’ll easily spot the sun, you then journey along the promenade northwards and off to the side of the walkway you’ll find the series of large Bluestone plinths with an a explanatory plaque on the side and planet atop, some of the planets are pretty small and hard to find so download this little guide booklet, link to it here or scroll down below for a low res map. Saturn’s rings have been vandalised a little by some nuff nuff which is unfortunate but easily repaired. Thankfully the thickness of the rings is not accurate as they are up to 80,000kms in diameter and a little as 10m thick so to scale that approximates to 0.01 microns. A single micron is used to measure bacteria and not visible to the naked eye and a strand of human hair is 50 microns.
I was lucky enough to be a guest in this house and I could barely contain my excitement but then the house ‘happened to me’ and it instantly calmed my nerves. The house is unbelievable in it’s purity of concept, form & design. Built as a bridge structure it makes reference to one of Glenn Murcutt’s mantras in ‘touching the earth lightly’. It may appear heavy but only the four supporting columns touch the ground with the earth underneath undulating and rolling naturally as if the building has been placed rather then built. I heard Sean speak about the house at a lecture once and he said his client wanted to feel the weather after a long and uncomfortable stint in Singapore air-conditioning so his solution was to make the bedrooms and bathrooms accessed via the elevated external walkway. The house is fully open and connected to the outside yet simultaneously very well secured and private. If you study the house plans and images you will see the extraordinary details and continuation of concept though-out. The house won the AIA Robin Boyd Award in 2006 and it is, in my opinion, probably one of Australia’s greatest houses. Check it out in the dedicated issue of El Croquis 165 along with other works by Sean Godsell Architects. I also invited Sean to speak for the AAA some years ago and he gave an excellent lecture and tour of the RMIT Design Hub, link to that tour here.
Sorry for nerding out here but I think this stuff is important to architects and their practices; I can’t wait for the technology of holograms to catch up to the movies with holograms. Check out these fantastic images from the Star Wars franchise (as a side issue, when did we start calling a movie series a franchise? I am fully aware they are now just cash machines but do we really have to call them a franchise rather than a piece of entertainment… I digress). The original Star Wars hologram scene with R2-D2 & Luke was captivating, even more so when you consider it was 1977. The more recent version pictured above with BB-8 is quite spectacular. I suspect these scenes are easily created as a post production digital effect for the big screen and some of the technology already exists with augmented reality however a fully fledged hologram is yet to appear in reality, I apologise for the terrible pun there but I couldn’t think of any other way to put it. The Star Wars franchise has holograms littered throughout the film with small droid projections, in car / spaceship dash projections, big central meeting tables as pictured below and even little hand-held devices, they’re treated like the norm.
Some conceptual studies that help us convey our ideas to the client. This is a little project for an extension to a small weatherboard beach shack on the Mornington Peninsular in Victoria. Only minor alterations are proposed to the existing building with a new sloped wing that hugs the existing structure to add just that little bit more. This new form follows the slope of the land and orients itself to the north for the sun. It also provides the new wing with privacy and a connection to the rear yard. Currently in planning so check back again to watch its progress, look in our projects as it will be updated once completed, follow the link below to see a few more of these images.
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In the genre of Koyaanisqatsi, the Qatsi trilogy, Baraka & Home; a recently released movie ‘The Bomb’ is both scary and excellent. Very topical viewing in the current climate of Little Kim and Donny Small Hands and all of their posturing. You can catch the movie on Netflix, iTunes and a bunch of other outlets. Music by The Acid who are also touring music festivals with live performances. Thanks to Hendo for pointing me to this film.
Congratulations to the Save our Sirius campaigners for their courtroom victory in July of this year. They appealed former Heritage Minister Mark Speakman’s decision not to list the Sirius building on the State Heritage Register, refer to my previous article here. The judgement of the NSW Land and Environment Court (Sydney’s VCAT) stated the minister erred in overstating the financial hardship to the state and also in failing to consider the heritage significance and advice from the state and council’s own heritage advisors.
Unfortunately the State have appealed the decision and have reconfirmed their commitment to sell the site so there is still plenty of work to be done. We hope the new heritage minister will do the right thing and approve the suggested listing, we hope that Property NSW (the social housing dept) will reconsider and look to restore the building, we also hope they return the existing tenants to their homes and that the building is maintained as a working piece of history. I’m proud to have supported this campaign and kudos to architect and AIA NSW chapter president Shaun Carter for initiating this movement, you should be very proud of your achievements so far.
The original woodblock print is pretty well known, called ‘The Great Wave off Kanazawa’ (1834) it was created by the famous Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849 edo period), the NGV currently has a show with over 300 of his works. The great wave is a print therefore apparently very common with approximately 5000 in circulation of varying quality and prices fetching around $150,000. To celebrate that piece I thought I’d post one of my favourite works by Marcel Cousins ‘The Wave’ 2002. This work eluded me when Helen Gory Gallery showed his work some years back, his other works in the series are just as beautiful and very collectable.
Marcel is now represented by This is no Fantasy Gallery in Melbourne, link to them here.