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Books do furnish a city - Paul Finch - April 2019

ALA Architect’s Helsinki library is a true civic landmark, writes Paul Finch. The Oodi Library in Helsinki is not in fact Finland’s central library, but the latest public face of a national library network which is part and parcel of that country’s history and cultural tradition. As a recent article in the Architectural Review (December 2018) noted, the transition from an oral to a literary culture only occurred in the 19th century, explaining the enthusiasm for the written word which then informed Finnish independence in 1917....READ MORE

Amos Rex - Jeremy Melvin - April 2019

It has always been possible to have a good time in Helsinki, despite decades of Russian domination, the harsh climate, and the grim granite-faced buildings with their strange figures from Nordic mythology painfully carved into their stone portals. For these reasons many of the city’s most exciting experiences were concealed under snow or needed determination to enter. From its opening last year, Amos Rex Art Museum, though, represents an important stage in a decades-long process which is turning the Finnish capital into one of the most appealing and engaging cities in the world...READ MORE

In Practice - Paul Hyett - April 2019

This is the first in a regular series of WAFN columns by former RIBA President Paul Hyett, a Principal in HKS Architects. ‘We shape our buildings and afterwards our buildings shape us’. What a call to arms by Winston Churchill: design really does matter. It should, as Lord Palumbo said, ‘lift the spirit’ of all who use, or simply pass by, your buildings....READ MORE


Foster in Palm Beach: Architecture for art’s sake - Paul Finch - April 2019

Foster + Partners has reworked and extended Florida’s Norton Museum of Art to create a building worthy of the mother of the arts, writes Paul Finch. Photography by Nigel Young. If architecture is the mother of the arts, does that mean architecture itself is an art? And if it aspires to be so, is it restricted to what Adolf Loos described as the only architectural types capable of being art: the monument and the tomb?....READ MORE


Off-beat - Jonathan Glancey - April 2019

Columnist Jonathan Glancey considers the virtues of uncomfortable architecture. April showers are commonplace in England. This spring, a shower fell inside the House of Commons, with MPs having to abandon an arcane debate on tax policy. ‘I hope I can complete my speech before rain stops play’, said Justin Madders, Member of Parliament for Ellesmere Port, a famously wet corner of England. ‘I think there is probably some kind of symbol, about how many people view how broken parliament is, going on here...READ MORE


Talking about ‘Flow’- Abel Maciel - April 2019

The conference theme for WAF 2019 is ‘Flow’. Here, architect and academic Abel Maciel discusses the implications for Blockchain on the built environment To fully grasp the potential impact of Blockchain on the built environment, it is worth taking a holistic view of Industry 4.0. Previous industrial revolutions were erratically distributed across the world, with change often taking significant time before affecting communities generally...READ MORE


Look at this - April 2019

Lake Victoria is the world’s most densely populated rural area, yet poor road and rail infrastructure mean that life-saving medicine and cargo often can’t reach those who need them most. A drone network could transform mobility in the region; could a drone-port, as an entirely new civic space, open up economic opportunities for the region?...READ MORE


Book recieved - April 2019

This month's short reviews cover:

New Chinese Architecture
Evolution. The work of Grimshaw Architects: Volume 4, 2000 -2010
New Chinese Architecture
Making Marks
Gordon Matta-Clark: Physical Poetics
Tower Bridge. History, Engineering, Design
The Buildings of England: Hertfordshire​



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