Photos: library building inspired by brain

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NewImageFelix Loechner created a gorgeous photo series documenting the Philologische Bibliothek on the campus of the Freie Universität Berlin. Designed by architect Norman Foster, the library's form was inspired by the human brain. See the photos over at Designboom.

Effort to make a house from the SF Bay Bridge scrap

ScrappppWhen the newly-replaced Oakland span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is demolished in the next few years, the scrap will be sent to China. David Grieshaber has other plans for it. He's launched BayBridgeHouse.org, an effort to recycle just a bit of the material into a house and multi-use space.
The project plans to build one of the most advanced eco sustainable houses to date, using recycled pieces of the bridge as the structure of the building. We are looking for creative out of the box designs that preserves the historic look and some design elements of the Bridge. Concrete, steel and glass, we do not intend to use any wood and plaster as a building material. The designs must utilize as much of the old bay bridge in the design as possible. This includes trusses, steel I-beams, steel girders, steel plates, wires, gates, fencing, ladders, walkways, concrete, and any other parts associated with the bridge. The location of the house will have a view of the New Bay Bridge.
Bay Bridge House (thanks, Jason Tester!)

Horse on roof

Stephen and Pat raise horses in New Brunswick. One of them, however, knows how to raise itself.

"They think it's not real," Stephen said. "They think you've Photoshopped it, but it's real and it really happened." [CTV via Arbroath.]

Sunlight reflected by building melts car

A London man blames a new 37-story skyscraper under construction for melting his Jaguar. Apparently, sunlight reflected off the building, known as the "Walkie-Talkie," and melted parts of the car. According to the BBC News, the construction company left a note on the man's car and paid for repairs. The City of London has closed three parking spots as a precaution while the situation is under investigation. This reminds me of the Mythbusters' "Archiemedes Death Ray" episode which I happened to have just watched again yesterday!

Pile of logs cabin

NewImage Dutch cabaret performer Hans Liberg commissioned Piet Hein Eek to design him a delightful log cabin that from the outside really looks like a pile of logs. (via accidental mysteries)

Concert Master: A new way to choose a classical concert

In my professional life, when I’m not posting about music on Boing Boing, I run the digital team for the Los Angeles Philharmonic. People often tell us that they’re curious to come to one of our concerts, but don’t know much about classical music and or which concerts they might like.

So today, after much agonizing and formulating and coding, we are launching a beta version of Concert Master. It’s a web app that asks you a handful of questions about yourself and recommends concerts based on your answers. It’s meant to be a fun experience that takes some of the intimidation out of classical music and points you to the performances most suited to your taste. If you’re in LA or a fan of the arts, we’d love your thoughts.

In other LA Phil news, our website that celebrates 10 years of the LA Phil at Walt Disney Concert Hall went live today as well.

Is this bridge ugly?

A new bridge in Dresden, Germany, was deemed so hideous that the UNESCO has delisted the entire city from its World Heritage index. The removal, protesting the construction's marring of historical city views, makes Dresden the first city to exit the United Nations' tally of the world's beautiful and important places.

Corpse army undermines Abbey

Bath Abbey is among England's most majestic examples of Gothic architecture, looming over the small Roman-founded city like a giant tombstone. Which is apt, because it is threatened by thousands of bodies "jammed in" to shallow graves beneath it, accumulating over the centuries to the point where they now threaten its foundations. [BBC]

Molars colonized by ambitious antiquarian architecture


This pair of striking images of teeth colonized by ambitious antiquarian architecture are part of a campaign for Maxam toothpaste from JWT Shanghai; the slogan is "Don't let germs settle down."

MAXAM Civilization-Egypt / Civilization-Rome / JWT Shanghai (via JWZ)

Dead WalMart reborn as library


A dead WalMart in McAllen, Texas has been remodelled as a library, making it the largest single-floor library in the USA. It's award-winning design makes excellent use of all that space -- two football fields' worth -- and includes an acoustically separated teen space.

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Building the prefab Contemporary Resort at Walt Disney World


Imagineering Disney has a great gallery of construction shots of the Contemporary Resort, a huge, modernist A-frame structure whose rooms were all prefabbed offsite and crane-lifted into place.

WDW Construction: Contemporary Resort

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UFO Futuro Houses of the 1960s-1970s

As a youngster, my dream was to live in a Futuro House, the UFO-like prefab homes designed by Matti Surronen and available for purchase new in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Only 100 or so were built around the world but quite a few survive to this day, in varying states of decay. In the video above, urban explorer The Unknown Cameraman visits Futuro Houses in New Jersey. You can also see many more photos of these otherworldly abodes at Cult of Weird.

3D printed book of textures and reliefs


Tom sez, "I have been thinking for some time how it would be nice to produce a 3D printed book of textures and reliefs. To publish and distribute all the wonderful architectural patterning and decoration we enjoy here in Chicago and beyond. This is the prototype for that idea. The subject matter for this book is derived from 3D scans made of sculptures and reliefs, found at The Art Institute of Chicago and The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The scans were all produced using a regular DSLR camera and a software package called 123D Catch. By taking multiple digital photographs of a subject, the user is able to create a lifelike 3D scan of an object, person or architectural feature."

Tom's book is available as a free, downloadable shapefile on Thingiverse.

Orihon (Accordion Book) (Thanks, Tom)

Turning 425sqft of Manhattan into a tardisoid bigger-on-the-inside home


Architects Specht Harpman converted a 425sqft Manhattan micro-apartment into an amazing, multi-tiered living space by building up into the apartment's 25' (!) ceilings. It's got a bit of that shipbuilder's vibe, with cabinets built into everything, including the staircases. I love the tiny swatch of grass, too. I live in a very small place, and looking at this makes me want to explore how to cram more into our little place -- we get about 650 sqft of livable space out of an 18' square/22' tall place that's laid out in two storeys. Using this kind of technique, it seems like we should be able to get a much more livable and spacious place.

Manhattan Micro-Loft | Residential | Specht Harpman

Digital Grotesque: complex, 3D-printed room


Digital Grotesque is an ambitious architectural project using 3D printers and game-of-life-style algorithms to produce a room whose walls, baseboards, ceiling and moldings are all a-crawl with the most astonishing array of forms and complexities. They've completed a 1:3 prototype, which is presently on exhibit in Basel, and are proceeding to print out the full-scale item.


the prototypes show a regard for both material sensitivity and the limits of technologically manipulated form-- millions of grains of sand bind together to create a new typology of sandstone and subsequently treated to be glazed and gilded. drawing from the algorithmic confines of the game of life and cell division, a set of simple geometries met with minimal parameters begets a highly involved form. the result is rich, shimmering composition ridden with impossible undercuts and a transcendental sense of the limits of technology. the term grotesque is derived from the unplanned complexities of a water-shaped grotto, itself a naturally occurring architecture long regarded for the uncanny presence of human-sized spaces in various landscapes.

digital grotesque showcases 3-d printed room by michael hansmeyer

(Images: Digital Grotesque)

(via Dvice)