Art & Architecture

Dwell July/August 2018

Dwell is the unique modern architecture and design magazine for people who believe that good design is an integral part of real life. Get Dwell digital magazine subscription today.

United States
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6 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
design your life

Over the course of almost 18 years of publishing Dwell, we’ve worked with a ton of creative people—photographers, urbanists, designers, writers, landscapers, professors, illustrators, architects, builders, and more. Sometimes a rare bird comes along who is skilled in not just one arena but many. Dan Maginn is one of these people. Years ago we recognized Dan’s gift for creating buildings—he’s an architect with more than 25 years’ experience and a principal at DRAW in Kansas City—as well as his talent for communication. You see, Dan possesses the uncommon ability to distill the details of his day job—clients, codes, contractors—into understandable, pleasurable English. His style is neither stupefyingly dull nor excessively grandiose, but accessible and easy. Over the years, he has contributed a number of informative, humorous articles to Dwell on everything…

2 min.

I’m surprised that Dwell missed the obvious (to me) question regarding Jennifer Pattison Tuohy’s essay in the last issue [“Should We Stay or Should We Go?”]. The question is: How do we design houses to meet the environmental challenges they face? Each challenge mentioned in the article, whether wind, water or fire, can be overcome by designing for that environment. In each instance there is an opportunity to create elegant, economical, and useful dwellings designed to meet those challenges. Maybe Dwell should begin soliciting designers and architects for solutions. —Peter Danko,Peter Danko Design Inc. Editor’s Note: Architects and designers definitely play a role in meeting environmental challenges, and we regularly feature houses designed to withstand harsh conditions. However, some experts believe that, even with more resilient buildings, it may not be feasible…

2 min.
verbatim, what’s the most unusual question or command you’ve put to your voice assistant (siri, alexa, google,

After reading an email, I said thank you Siri. Siri responded with “I live to serve.” I asked Siri, are you alive? Siri answered, “I’ve been programmed not to discuss my exestential being.”JW Finkler I’ve programmed Alexa to respond to “open the pod bay doors” by turning on the foyer, living room, bedroom lights and TV/amplifier + speakers when I get home… and she responds “welcome back”. Alternately I’ve programmed Alexa to respond to “close the pod bay doors” by turning off all the lights except a bedroom lamp in the front of the house so it looks like we are home. It also turns off the TV and all the associated electronics. She responds “I’ll hold down the fort”. I have a similar command for when I leave during the…

2 min.
yellow time machine

“The first thing that struck us was that it was designed for its time. We wanted to open the space and create this hub.”Amrit Marway, architect Charlie and Lucy Barda’s townhouse in the Holland Park neighborhood of London is steeped in modern architectural history. It was built in the late ’60s as part of a development designed by Maxwell Fry and Jane Drew. The married architects envisioned buildings across the globe, working alongside the likes of Walter Gropius and Denys Lasdun, although they are perhaps best known for teaming up with Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret to create the Indian city of Chandigarh from scratch in the early 1950s. It was another pioneer who was the inspiration for the four-story home’s recent update, which includes a bright new color palette, a kitchen…

1 min.
build the future

Bringing STEM to the masses, Google’s AIY Projects released two cardboard kits in spring that contain everything you need to build a voice-activated speaker or an image-recognizing camera (seen here), which can be set up in about an hour and a half. Sweat equity aside, tech this smart is rarely so cheap: Each kit costs less than $100. If you prefer your gadgets premade, we’ve rounded up 50 new home-tech products at dwell.com/smart-tech-50. • Questions From AI architects to flying cars, will the revolutions of tomorrow cause more problems than they solve? • Products A smart-tech reviewer shares the devices she actually uses. • Thoughts Digging into the fate of privacy in the connected home.…

3 min.
will algorithms be the new architects?

WITH AUTOMATED CARS AND robotic assistants already a reality, the idea of using computer algorithms and artificial intelligence to design buildings doesn’t seem so farfetched. Some of architecture’s leaders are already employing a mix of these technologies, known as “generative design” or GD, which could soon transform the industry. At its simplest level, GD starts with a process—parametric design—in which designers enter a list of end-goals, or parameters, and software generates solutions to meet those goals. For example, if you want a building that is bathed in natural light, the computer might create designs with really large windows. It gets more interesting as the parameters get more numerous and complex and even start to include subjective goals, like comfort and well-being. One of the leaders in GD is Autodesk, the maker of…