Videos Highlight Diversity of State’s Award-Winning Architecture

On May 20, Texas Architects Design Awards jurors — David Salmela, FAIA, of Duluth, Minn.; Steve Dumez, FAIA, of New Orleans; and James Russell, FAIA, of New York — met at the Society’s headquarters in Austin. They spent nine hours reviewing 257 entries before selecting 12 projects for Design Awards. Several times the jury expressed difficulty in choosing the winners—a confirmation of the elevated level at which architecture is practiced in Texas. The videos in the gallery above premiered at an awards ceremony on October 28 during the Texas Society of Architects 72nd Annual Convention in Dallas. Each project also…

What Makes a Building an Icon?

What makes a building an icon? One characteristic is distinct contrast with its context, in form and/or exterior material, that draws attention to the building and away from its surroundings. Iu + Bibliowicz Architects’ Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York City is iconic by virtue of its the six-story articulated glass-clad rehearsal spaces that turn the corner of 55th Street and Eighth Avenue. It stands in stark contrast to the red brick buildings that comprise that Midtown Manhattan neighborhood. Another way a building can be considered an icon is through an exceptional reconsideration of program and internal organization.…

Brochstein Pavilion and Asia Society, Highlights of Houston Visit

by Tyler Rudick CultureMap Houston Nov.16, 2011 For more than 30 years, architecture critic Paul Goldberger has made a successful run of casting public judgment on some of society’s most complicated and expensive building ventures from his desk at both The New York Times and The New Yorker, even earning a Pulitzer Prize in 1984. In a recent talk at the University of Houston’s College of Architecture, Goldberger lectured on the social and cultural value of architectural criticism, an interesting topic in light of the downed economy and slumbering construction industry. Although taken almost verbatim from a 2003 speech posted…

Unexpected Encounters with Architecture

The Shape of Texas, Volume 20, Episode 4 Located along the north shore of Lady Bird Lake in Austin, Miro Rivera Architects’ Trail Restroom is the result of a long-standing partnership between the non-profit Trail Foundation and the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department. With the entire A/E team donating their services, the construction process exemplified the unique nature of the project. The architects printed a full-sized plan and laid it out themselves on the site. The steel fabricator then erected all 49 panels in one day for a captivating work of brutal simplicity.

Book Explores Frank Lloyd Wright’s Sacred Architecture

In Frank Lloyd Wright Sacred Architecture: Faith, Form, and Building Technology, published by Routledge, Anat Geva, Assoc. AIA, introduces a theoretical framework of the conceptual model illustrating the relationship between faith, form, and building technology in sacred architecture. “The book offers scholarly discussion on the application of this conceptual model to Wright’s religious projects with analytical drawings and photographs,” said Geva. “This unique contribution will be useful to all those interested in Wright’s architecture and theory as well as in the study of sacred architecture.” Geva’s analysis applies the model to Wright’s main design concepts of nature, democracy, and freedom…

Member Spotlight: Brandrup, Hays, and Black

Melissa C. Brandrup, AIA, 2011 Award for Young Professional Achievement in Honor of William W. Caudill, FAIA Melissa Brandrup, AIA, is the current President of AIA El Paso. She specializes in urban planning and green building and has worked in locals throughout the U.S. and the world. Recently, she served as a primary architect involved in the urban planning of a 6,700-acre project in China. After arriving in El Paso about three years ago, Melissa joined the AIA leadership and became a charter director for Eco-El Paso. As one of its directors, she helped promote sustainable building practices and teach…

2012 “Best Architecture and Design Schools” Includes Two in Texas

In its entirety, “America’s Best Architecture & Design Schools” is an annual report comprising several distinct surveys that rank undergraduate and graduate architecture, landscape architecture, interior design, and industrial design programs. For the 2012 edition, 360 firms in the four professional fields participated. Each respondent has direct responsibility for hiring and/or supervising recent graduate new hires in one or more of those fields surveyed. Practitioners selected to participate were drawn from a DesignIntelligence database of leading firms defined by both revenue and reputation. With regard to architecture programs alone, practitioners from 185 leading U.S. architecture firms participated in the current…

Texas Architects Announces 2012 Leadership

2012 Texas Society of Architects President Craig Reynolds, FAIA Craig Reynolds, FAIA, is a managing principal/president with Brown Reynolds Watford Architects. Established in 1984, the firm found a niche in institutional architecture, working for those within governmental entities, school districts, and universities. Reynolds graduated from Texas A&M University with degrees in environmental design and architecture. He served as president of AIA Dallas in 2004 and is the recipient of many honors and awards, including the 2009 Award for Community Service in Honor of James D. Pfluger. His community service has resulted in the planning and funding of $2.7 billion of…

Tommy Neal Cowan, FAIA, Receives Lifetime Achievement Medal

Tommy Cowan, FAIA, retired from Graeber Simmons & Cowan in 2009, where he was a founding principal and managing partner of the 50-person Austin architecture firm. Previously, he worked for 3D International and Brooks Barr Graeber & White. A self-described “Austinite for life,” Cowan earned a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Texas at Austin in 1968 and a Master of Architecture in 1970, while teaching and working full-time for Brooks Barr Graeber & White. . His interest in design and architecture began in the fifth grade when a teacher invited him to compete in Austin’s Wellesley Junior Art…