Architecture Design

Zaha Hadid Dies At 65

Even as I type these words, I cannot believe that one of the greatest architects in the world, Zaha Hadid, died today at age 65. It seems impossible that this powerful, talented phenomenon of a person can be stilled.

It is also striking to me that one of my most cherished idols, passed away here in South Florida, in Miami, closer in proximity to where I live than I ever would have thought.  After all don’t giants pass from this world in far off places, like Mount Olympus.

This past December, I was invited to celebrate the launch of REVOLUTION PAVILIONS at Design Miami/a collection of limited edition pre-crafted home and pavilions designed by 30 of the world’s most acclaimed architects and designers introduced by real estate impresario, Robbie Antonio.

One of the two fully constructed pavilions there at the Design Miami/ was Zaha Hadid‘s curved VOLU Dining Pavilion.

A masterful fusion of lightweight engineering and precision fabrication, this pavilion elevated outside dining to an innovative level I have never seen before. As a born and raised New Yorker, who regularly fronts a wary sangfroid, I was awestruck.

For almost an hour I examined it – I walked around it, I sat around it, I took photos of it, I walked in it and finally sat in it.  Simply out, it is a spectacular structure that I love to own much less dine in.

This was just a tiny example of her work. Fortuitously, a much greater example, will be located here in Miami – the One Thousand Museum luxury residential skyscraper. Got fingers crossed that I will be invited to the preview when it opens in 2018 as I would love to take a closer look at this singular mind of genius that has left us foolish mortals behind.


Architecture Art Design Museums

Met Breuer Opens March 18th

 The Met Breuer media preview took place yesterday and what an amazing preview it was!

Formerly the home of the Whitney, the Met Breuer in New York City is now the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s new home for its modern and contemporary art collections.

The Met Breuer’s program spotlights modern and contemporary art in dialogue with historic works that encompass the full range of The Met’s vast collection. The building will host both monographic and thematic exhibitions, as well as new commissions and performances. The two inaugural exhibitions at The Met are Unfinished: Thoughts Left Visible, a cross-departmental curatorial initiative that brings together works by some of the greatest artists of all time, from Titian to Louise Bourgeois, who experimented with a non finito style; and the largest exhibition to date dedicated to Indian modernist Nasreen Mohamedi. Additionally, a music installation by Artist in Residence Vijay Iyer will activate The Met Breuer’s Tony and Amie James Gallery in the lobby  throughout March.

For those who could not be there in person, there was the Facebook Live live broadcasting a first look at the building and a walk through of the Nasreen Mohammedi (1937-1990) exhibition with Sheena Wagstaff, Leonard A. Lauder Chairman, Department of Modern & Contemporary Art and Brinda Kumar, who helped curate the show.

The Inaugural Season features:

  • Unfinished: Thoughts Left Visible, major thematic survey featuring unfinished works of art from the Renaissance to the present day;
  • Monographic exhibition of Indian modernist artist Nasreen Mohamedi;
  • Continuous in-gallery performances by Artist in Residence Vijay Iyer (through March 31, 2016), a newly commissioned sonic experience by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams, and an all-day performance in The Met’s three locations of the U.S. premiere of Karlheinz Stockhausen‘s composition KLANG;
  • Forthcoming exhibitions in 2016 season include rarely seen, early photographs by Diane Arbus (opening July 2016);
  • Mid-career retrospective of the contemporary painter Kerry James Marshall (opening October 2016), with a complementary “artist’s choice” installation of works from The Met collection;
  • Inhabiting Marcel Breuer’s Architecture, an exhibition of newly commissioned architectural photographs of four iconic Marcel Breuer-designed buildings (opening November 2016)

I will be sure to be visiting there soon!

More about the Met Breuer Inaugural Season here…

Architecture Design

New Release – The Surf Club from Assouline

New Release – The Surf Club from Assouline

Miami’s legendary Surf Club, led by the vision of Nadim Ashi and Fort Capital Management, will re-open in 2016 as The Surf Club Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences, with a pool of extraordinary talents that includes Pritzker-Prize winning architect Richard Meier

The Surf Club Book Image
In conjunction with the restoration of this historic siteAssouline has published The Surf Club, which celebrates the spectacular past, present and future of what many regard as the jewel of Miami Beach.

The Surf Club Book Images

This gorgeous book also offers an interesting spotlight on the paintings of the historic cabanas done by Winston Churchill,whose works will be on exhibition throughout Atlanta this Fall

The Surf Club Book Images courtesy of Assouline
The Surf Club Four Seasons & Private Residences rendering courtesy of dbox



Modernism : Stirred not Shaken

Several years ago, I went to Palm Springs, CA for a conference and was fortunate to have some free time to go and explore my surroundings.

What I found there was cool architecture with cool people in the only place hotter than South Florida where I came from.

Now, there is a cool web series dedicated to Palm Springs mid-century modern design and culture called “Man About Moderism” from Modernism Week with the erudite, stylish Stephen Collins.

Hopefully, next year I will get to go to the fabulous Modernism Week event however until then, check out this “Man About Modernism” episode where we get a tour of Mr. Collins’ gorgeous home.

Architecture Design Design Miami 2013

#DesignMiami : formlessfinder x Design Miami 2013

#DesignMiami : formlessfinder x Design Miami 2013

formlessfinder has been selected to design the Design Miami 2013 Entrance Pavilion. Based in NYC, the formlessfinder team of Garrett Ricciardi and Julian Rose is dedicated to releasing the formerly siloed input and output aspects of architecture so that each project has the ability to have its own flavor.

As the press release states:

“Each December, Design Miami/ commissions early-career architects to
build a designed environment for the fair’s entrance as part of its biannual Design
Commissions program.

Harnessing multiple, often unexpected, properties of sand and aluminum,
formlessfinder’s Tent Pile pavilion provides shade, seating, cool air and a space to play for the city’s public. The pavilion appears as a dramatic aluminum roof miraculously balanced on the apex of a great pyramid of loose sand. Milled aluminum benches give resting space in the shade, where visitors will be fanned by the cool air naturally generated by the structure….
DesignMiami2013(1) DesignMiami2013(2)

The pavilion acts as a refuge for the more than 50,000 visitors who come to Miami for the
fairs each year, as well as inhabitants of the city’s South Beach neighborhood. It is
intended as a public installation that marries the practical requirements of shelter and
seating to spectacular creative architectural ideas from a young practice. Formlessfinder’s
Tent Pile engages not only with materials and aesthetics specific to Miami, but with the
location of the fair within the city–the pyramid of sand is there to be sat on and played in,
the cooling fans to be approached, examined and enjoyed. “We’re hoping to create
something that people would want to participate in,” says Ricciardi, and the result is a
structure designed to be occupied and explored, as much as it is to be admired. ”

For further information, please visit Design Miami’s website and blog, Design Log, for
regular news and updates.

Photographs courtesy of DesignMiami/ 

Architecture Design

House Vision 2013 Tokyo Exhibition

Back in March for almost three full weeks, the House Vision 2013 Tokyo Exhibition , a groundbreaking collection of seminars, installations and an expo, organized by Kenya Hara and Tsuchiya Sadao took place. House Vision seeks to introduce the current Japanese urban lifestyle and discuss how traditional Japanese design elements can be pulled into its future.


In the U.S. our connection to our homes and urban lifestyle is based on the “melting pot”, we take in influences from everywhere.  However, in Japan, the relationship between home design and  preservation of traditional Japanese culture is strongly connected.

A few things about this exhibition were very interesting to me. First, is the idea of  how “housing literacy” needs to be taught to the now maturing Japanese urban dwellers with emphasis on the “proper lifestyle” that is more a fit with their mature identity and thus will bring in happiness to their lives. This “identity” anticipates children moving out of the home and parents giving up having too much stuff. The mature Japanese urban dweller should be able to live in a smaller space that includes multipurpose appliances in a traditional Japanese living space design format.

This is totally different from the latest trend in the U.S. of generations families living together, as demonstrated by Lennar’s very successful NextGen homes. In a Nextgen home, a complete suite that includes a separate kitchen and living space can be added to the home.

In a way, our homes can be said to be ‘curated” by us; after all, we fill our homes with items that we hope represents our aesthetics and beliefs. Is it right to have all that stripped from you at a certain age because it is the “proper” way to live  is a question that comes up when listening to the House Vision discussions.