June 20, 2014

Siberian Denisovans

DenisoviansIn the Atapuerca Mountains in northern Spain, 400,000-year-old bones found in a cave have yielded the oldest decoded human DNA – over 6,000 ancient bone samples belonging to 28 ancient humans have been found.

The DNA reveals a close genetic relationship with Denisovans, an archaic human group found in Siberia, rather than with the Neanderthals commonly found in Europe.

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Until now, these sister families of early humans were thought to have resided in prehistoric Europe and Siberia. But paleontologists write in a new study that the bones of what they thought were European Neanderthals appear genetically closer to the Siberian Denisovans, as shown by maternally inherited “mitochondrial” DNA found in a fossil thighbone uncovered at Spain’s Sima de los Huesos cave. The Sima hominins could also be a completely independent group that mingled with Denisovans, passing on their mitochondrial DNA, but it would be hard to explain why they also have Neanderthal features. In the end, the identity of these ancient people remains a mystery, and further work is needed to clarify their identity. As with the Denisovans, only the decoding of the full genetic map or genome, and not just the mitochondrial DNA, will provide convincing evidence of Sima family history. This article really makes you wonder what humans will look like and be like another 400,000 years from now. There have been catastrophic events in the distant past where entire species who roamed our planet millions of years ago have been eradicated from existence. Will the same fate happen to our species?

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June 19, 2014

Into the Light Hotel by A31

i2tl5A31 have designed a hotel model for the 100% Hotel Show in Greece.

Perfectly attuned to the facilitators’ intentions to generate an exhibition that will enhance the visitor’s stimuli through experiential events and activities, the project “Into the Light Hotel” was created in order to promote a timeless architectural approach of an exemplary Greek hotel model.

The challenge for A31 was to create an exemplary hotel space that also coincides with the Greek landscape, while also using the landscape to the space’s benefit. A31 focused on the beautiful Greek light and with the beautiful materials selected, allowed the light to emerge and thrive within the hotel.

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At the same time, the use of slim materials is consistent with the new construction ethics that prevent excess usage of raw materials, while making the building eco-wiser and lighter.

““Into the Light Hotel” introduces the visitor to the 100% Hotel Show through a path that triggers memories linked to the way we perceive light as it effortlessly fits into all our experiences. The project aims to highlight the plasticity of architectural volumes and components, as well as the materiality of the walls and the utilitarian objects.”

i2tl2“Into the Light Hotel” unfolds in 5 main sections:

1) The reception: An urban space which introduces the visitor to the concept and paves the way for the conquest of the integrated experience that shall follow. “Into the light – The installation” by A31 triggers memories and feelings and “The meeting”, a striking sculpture (1,80m) of Yiannis Moralis included in the scenery, prove the ability of art – when integrated appropriately- to “add” to the space and enhance the aesthetic result.

2) The Lobby: A place which allows connection with the mountainside of the mainland. Stone and burnished rusted steel illustrate the raw beauty which fascinates through the mere lack of any pomposity.

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3) The Dining Room: A synthesis between classic and modern, allowing the harmonic conjunction of not only the elements included, but also the people for which it is intended.

 

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4) The garden: Arid plants in a sand pit compose a landscape that resembles that of the Greek islands. The water element, inextricably connected with the Mediterranean landscape, couldn’t of course be absent from the scenery.

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5) The Room: A contemporary space with cement floor, white furniture and built-in bed, which could be found in a Cycladic hotel, comforting the visitor with its welcoming nature and its unpretentious feel.

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Additionally, the lobby features the artwork of Apollo Glykas which is a modern take on Shadow Theatre. “The applications of light through different perspectives and filters (modern trellises, skylights, pergola) trigger the visitor’s emotions, since surprise is being succeeded by warmth, feeling of safety and intimacy. In this experiential manner the visitor is not simply required to “grasp” the space, but actually enters and “fits” right into it, in an exact simulation of what should happen in an ideal hotel.”

ho_150614_14-630x420As guests pass through each section of the hotel, they come across the materials used while also absorbing additional information about each selection. A31 has created a space not only of pristine contemporary design elements, but a mecca for guest’s own Inspiration.

 

Submitted by Coco

Source: Contemporist

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June 18, 2014

Weiden + Kennedy’s New York Office Space

W+KAmerican firm Work Architecture Company (workAC) designed the new 50,000 sq.ft office space for renowned advertising agency Wieden + Kennedy. It embraces urban density as its motto, with a minimal compression of individual work spaces that open up room for a gradient of diverse collective spaces. The overall architecture moves away from the “office as a playground,” to put work back at the heart of creative work.

Because work at Wieden + Kennedy is highly collaborative, workAC designed the widest possible range of discussion spaces to accommodate meetings

W+K2and gatherings of varying size,privacy levels, and duration. More traditional meetings can be held in conference rooms that range in scale from smaller, intimate “phonebooths,” to formal conference rooms.

 

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A circular shaped, walnut-clad “coin stair” features bleacher seating. Glass walls create a sense of lightness and transparency, and the coin stair and spiral stairs connect all three floors vertically.

 

The office also includes a multi-purpose gym on the 7th floor that doubles as a conference room for lectures and film screenings.

W+K4W+K5Employees can use the outdoor park surrounded by blueberry bushes on the 6th and 7th floors, which is completely wired for power, music and wi-fi.

 

 

 

 

Submitted by Caity

Source: My Modern Met

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June 17, 2014

Pocket Park

Pocket-ParkA formerly small, plain parking lot in downtown San Diego’s East Village community has now been transformed into a mini park where residents can gather and play in the heart of a very busy urban area.

The innovative little “pocket park,” as it’s called by developers, is snugly situated in a 2,500-square-foot space between buildings at 13th Avenue and J Street, right next to the Mission Café at 1250 J Street.

It is officially open to the public and is filled with families enjoying the extra space to play and mingle. It includes wooden pallets to climb and sit on, as well as big letters painted on the ground to mimic a word search game.

 

Submitted by Crystal

Source: NBC San Diego

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June 16, 2014

Museo Soumaya

SoumayaThe Soumaya Museum plays a key role in the reconversion of the area: it acts as an initiator in the transformation of the urban perception. Its avant-garde morphology and typology define a new paradigm in the history of Mexican and international architecture. From the outside, the building is an organic and asymmetrical shape that is perceived differently by each visitor, while reflecting the diversity of the collection on the inside. Its heterogeneous collection is housed in a continuous exhibition space spread over six levels, representing approximately 60,000 ft². The building also includes an auditorium for 350 people, library, offices, a restaurant, a gift shop and a multi-purpose gathering lounge.

The shell of the building is constructed with 28 steel curved columns of different diameters, each with its own geometry and shape,

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offering the visitor a soft non-linear circulation all through the building. Located at each floor level, seven ring beams provide a system that braces the structure and guarantees its stability. The top floor is the most generous space of the museum; its roof is suspended from an impressive cantilever that allows natural daylight to flow in freely. In contrast, the building’s envelope is nearly opaque, offering little and scarce openings to the outside. This gesture can be interpreted as an intention to create a protected shelter for the art collection. The façade is made of hexagonal aluminum modules that optimize the preservation and durability of the entire building.

 

Submitted by Dwayne

Source: Pinterest

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June 15, 2014

Kelly Behun’s Weekend House in the Hamptons

Hamptons1Whether it’s furniture or interiors, it’s clear that Kelly Behun has an enviable style all her own. If her design savvy doesn’t make you bow down, her weekend house in Southampton will certainly make you do so.

 

The house itself was designed by Brian Sawyer and John Berson of Sawyer / Berson, but the interior is all her own.

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While the spaces look sleek and lush, they also look warm and inviting, like you should kick back and watch the water. The wood framed, floor-to-ceiling windows frame views of the beachfront property while continuing the look of the wooden details and furnishings throughout.

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The kitchen is outfitted with open walnut shelves and Carrara marble. A custom walnut-slab bar was brought in for extra seating next to the walnut table that Behun designed.

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The table in the center is one that Behun designed herself with a base made out of hand-cut ceramic mosaic tiles that hold the Macassar ebony top.

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The simple, modern staircase is made of plaster and looks to be one solid piece. The blue sculpture reminds you that you’re close to the water.

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Submitted by Caity

Source: Design-Milk

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June 14, 2014

The Invisible Kitchen

Invisible KitchenJust because it’s a kitchen doesn’t mean everything have to be out and on display all the time. i29 interior architects designed a non-traditional kitchen that feels more like pieces of furniture and architecture as opposed to cabinets and appliances. The result is a system that seems to disappear helping to blend the living space with the kitchen. The idea was to scale the design back to the minimum, removing any superfluous elements and leaving only the necessities. They managed to incorporate all of the water, cooling, and electrical connections within the black island that has a surface of only a couple of centimeters thick. Crazy, right? The large, sliding white wall panels conceal all the necessary kitchen appliances and storage. When the panels are shut, the kitchen appears to not be a kitchen at all.

 

Submitted by Crystal

Source: DesignMilk

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June 13, 2014

Romanian Pub Transports Visitors to a World of Steam Punk

6131Stepping into the pub Joben Bistro is like entering an unbelievable steam punk fantasy. Located in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, the unique pub was designed by the studio 6th Sense to look like a space pulled straight from the pages of a Jules Verne or H.G. Wells novel. Divided into three rooms with an array of theatrical installations and interesting design elements, Joben Bistro is both cozy and industrial, featuring an abundance of copper pipes, exposed mechanical gears, distressed wood furniture, and beautifully warm lighting.

It’s the details that really set the pub apart as a truly inspired steam punk space. Dozens of quirky objects line the walls and hang from the ceiling, each with its own touch of pseudo-Victorian or retro-futuristic style.

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From the LED zeppelin emitting a spooky glow overhead, to the mounted deer head sporting a monocle and other mechanical parts, to the lampshades shaped to look like top hats, each fantastical element of Joben Bistro blurs the line between fiction and reality, taking visitors to a whole other world of fantasy and science fiction.

 

 

Submitted by Ximena

Source: My Modern Met

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June 12, 2014

World Cup Wonders

It’s no surprise that one of the biggest events of 2014 will be the FIFA World Cup. Hosted in Brazil, the World Cup gives the nation a chance to strut out it’s very finest for a global audience. For this very special event, Brazil has constructed 5 brand new stadiums in 5 major cities where games will be held. Now these aren’t your run-of-the-mill, every day stadiums, but gorgeous works of architecture fit for the games they will host. You can learn about all the new stadiums at ILikeArchitecture, but we’ve highlighted a few shots that we feel take the “cup.”

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Arena Corinthians, Sao Paulo, Brazil

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Arena da Amazônia, Manaus, Brazil

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Arena das Dunas, Natal, Brazil

Submitted by Coco

Source: ILikeArchitecture

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June 11, 2014

Naturally Light

NaturallyLight5In fashion, what is old often becomes new again. Trends fade in and out, and re-emerge when the time is right. Today, the collective minds of designers around the world must be thinking…light! Natural or blonde woods have been around since the dawn of furniture making, and they’re making a come-back in fresh designs. We are seeing new products from trend-forward designers utilizing light woods to emphasize form, and impart a sense of airiness. Certain light woods like Oak or Ash can also lend depth to a piece with the graphic nature of their grains. And it doesn’t hurt that the bright, cheerful colors of summer pop beautifully off of these natural finishes. Whatever the reason, we’re glad to see this trend around again, and we hope it stays for a while.

 

Submitted by A. Kanjanakaset

 

 

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