Art & Architecture

AZURE November/December 2018

Lively, fresh, forward-looking, but also socially relevant — this defines Azure, the leading design publication covering the expanding world of international contemporary architecture and design. Each issue delivers readers inspiring ideas and cutting-edge innovations, from state-of-the-art green building to the latest in furniture and home accessories from around the globe.

Azure Publishing Inc.
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8 Issues

In this issue

1 min.
we asked…

What design object would you most like to receive as a gift? ERIN DONNELLY Azure’s Senior Associate Editor The Resting Bear from Vitra, seen in our gift guide on page 42, is definitely top of my list this year (either turquoise or mauve is fine, thank you). But I’d also love to take the new wireless BeoSound Edge speaker (above) for a spin. It’s Michael Anastassiades’s first collaboration with Bang & Olufsen, and it’s essentially a wheel of sound that you roll across the floor to turn up the volume. Once the level adjusts, the speaker rolls itself back into place. Super cool, and apparently it sounds fantastic. What is the most impressive interior you’ve experienced lately? MICHAEL WEBB Writer, “Free Flowing” (page 064) Espai Transmissor, a tiny museum containing relics of a prehistoric settlement outside Sero,…

1 min.
collection o

With the official launch of Collection O, its inaugural line, Toronto’s Hi Thanks Bye has announced itself as one of Canada’s hottest emerging studios. Comprising five sculptural steel pieces (a laser-cut shelf, a geometric chair, a fringed floor lamp, an angular side table and a sleek bar stool) plus a shaggy wool rug, the series was introduced in a matte forest green so deep it appears black at first glance. Designers Stein Wang and Topher Kong, who established their brand in 2017, say that their own Chinese Canadian backgrounds inspired them to combine the aesthetic appeal of a traditional Chinese garden with the natural beauty of Canada’s islands, including Azure’s favourite architourism destination, Fogo Island. Hence the VO table, resembling a lily pad, and the OO rug, a collaboration with Toronto…

1 min.
raising the roof

Helsinki’s newest art museum has made quite an impression on the city, but not necessarily on its skyline. All of the freshly built gallery space at Amos Rex, a reincarnation of the half-century-old Amos Anderson Art Museum, is located underground. When the trustees of the Amos Anderson decided to move to Lasipalatsi, a distinguished functionalist pavilion built in the 1930s, they inherited the adjacent listed plaza, a former military parade ground that had to remain an open public space. That meant that the architects enlisted for the reboot, Finnish practice JKMM, had few options but to situate much of the 6,230-square-metre museum below grade. A happy upshot is the resulting “roofscape,” a uniquely whimsical plaza that has become a civic hit. The undisputed stars of the new square are the alien-looking…

3 min.
light house

Tasmania’s privately owned Mona museum (aka the Museum of Old and New Art) is designed to disconcert visitors – and its new AU$32-million addition is no exception. Simply reaching the wing – named Pharos, for the ancient Egyptian lighthouse – is an expedition akin to that of Theseus setting out to slay the Minotaur. There is no signage or clear path from the main entrance, where visitors descend a spiral staircase that winds deep into the museum’s belly. At the back of one of the lower-level exhibit halls, a glass panel conceals a light tunnel, dubbed Beside Myself, created by American light artist James Turrell. At the culmination of this tunnel is Faro, the new wing’s tapas bar. But don’t expect the confusion to subside there. Obscuring the restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows is…

2 min.
between the lines

In Spain, tile-spotting is a veritable tourist activity. In particular, Barcelona’s sidewalks – covered in patterned panot paving tiles designed by celebrated Catalan architects of past and present – are an ode to the material: Antoni Gaudí’s oceanic hexagons, among the city’s most famous, create an abstract vista of sea creatures along the Passeig de Gràcia. Spain is also the birthplace of modern hydraulic tiles, which first appeared in Catalonia in the 1850s. Add that legacy to the country’s enduring palette of bold geometric shapes and terracotta and you have the driving force behind the home of Laia Herrera and Biel Huguet, owners of the Mallorca-based tile brand Huguet. The couple’s 65-square-metre flat in Barcelona’s Gràcia district is a dynamic salvaging project marrying old and new. “We always try to work…

3 min.
scottish play

“We wanted to create a rhythm and music on the facades, the same way that nature, cliffs and water have rhythm. A big concrete box could never have given us that.” Japanese architect Kengo Kuma is in Dundee, talking about the new waterfront V&A museum he designed for the Scottish city. Jutting out into the River Tay, the structure’s angled facades, Kuma explains, are inspired by the rocky cliffs of northeastern Scotland, their jagged cladding comprising 2,429 precast concrete fins of varied depths and lengths. Structurally bold, the new £80-million building is composed of two inverted pyramids that rise as separate, twisting volumes at ground level and join together on the upper floors. “The main point of this split was to create a void that allows people to walk through the…