Friday, February 14, 2020

Draft of an executive order called “Making Federal Buildings Beautiful Again” shocks many

Chicago Sun Times

"Future federal government buildings, he decrees, should look like those of ancient Rome, Greece and Europe."

Artdaily News
"The order, spearheaded by the National Civic Art Society, a nonprofit group that believes contemporary architecture has 'created a built environment that is degraded and dehumanizing,' would rewrite the current rules that govern the design of office buildings, headquarters, and courthouses, or any federal building project contracted through the General Services Administration that costs over $50 million.

“'For too long architectural elites and bureaucrats have derided the idea of beauty, blatantly ignored public opinions on style, and have quietly spent taxpayer money constructing ugly, expensive, and inefficient buildings,' Marion Smith, the society’s chairman, wrote in a text message. 'This executive order gives voice to the 99 percent--the ordinary American people who do not like what our government has been building.'"

The draft is a particularly blatant slap to Mid-Century Brutalism, agreeably a style that provokes heated debate between foes and passionate fans.  Needless to say this "draft" decree (which one can only hope is a boondoggle of the current administration) has sparked fierce opposition from groups like the Society for Architectural History.

Brutalist J. Edgar Hoover Building (1962-70) in Washington, DC (photo by Aude, CC BY-SA 3.0 via WikimediaCommons)

Monday, February 10, 2020

Turner Prize 2019--Everyone's a Winner!

Four Finalists for the 2019 prestigious Turner Prize (bestowed annually to a visual artist born in or based in Great Britain in recognition of an outstanding exhibition or other presentation of his or her work) will share the honor of winner in 2019!  Read more about the winners here!

The artists - Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Helen Cannock, Oscar Murillo and Tai Shani - said they wanted to send a message of togetherness in troubled political times.

“At this time of political crisis in Britain and much of the world, when there is already so much that divides and isolates people and communities, we feel strongly motivated to use the occasion of the Prize to make a collective statement in the name of commonality, multiplicity and solidarity - in art as in society,” they said.

The jury accepted their request, and all four nominees were given the award in a ceremony at Dreamland in Margate.

                                                 --The Telegraph,  "Turner Prize 2019: everyone's a winner as nominees ask to share award 'at time of political crisis in Britain'," Anita Singh, 3 December, 2019

Monday, October 28, 2019

Four Artists shortlisted for the 2019 Turner Prize announces the four shortlisted artists for the Turner Prize:
Today, Turner Contemporary unveiled an exhibition of work by the four artists shortlisted for Turner Prize 2019: Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Helen Cammock, Oscar Murillo and Tai Shani. The exhibition will be held from 28 September 2019 to 12 January 2020 at Turner Contemporary in Margate. The winner will be announced on 3 December 2019 at an award ceremony broadcast live on the BBC as the official broadcast partner for the Turner Prize.

 Artist screenshot images from