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Climate Change: Will We See Floating Architecture?

“Given the impact of climate change, we can begin to think a lot more about the opportunity for living with water as opposed to fighting it,”

~Kunle Adeyemi, Architect

In an age where we grapple with the effects of climate change and rising water level across the globe, the question now becomes how will our cities properly deal with the challenge? Some in the architectural community put forward the idea that floating buildings will be the answer moving forward. These innovative ideas are being promoted in a wide variety of designs in various locations around the world. Solutions that are being offered range from floating prefab homes to entire neighborhoods that are totally amphibious.

Core samples, tide gauge readings, and most recently, satellite measurements tell us that over the past century, the Global Mean Sea Level (GMSL) has risen by 4 to 8 inches. However, the annual rate of rise over the past 20 years has been 0.13 inches a year, roughly twice the average speed of the preceding 80 years. When sea levels rise rapidly, as they have been doing, even a small increase can have devastating effects on coastal habitats. As seawater reaches farther inland, it can cause destructive erosion, wetland flooding, aquifer and agricultural soil contamination, and lost habitat for fish, birds, and plants.

With the ever-increasing threat of rising water, a community that has pioneered the idea of water-based living is the Netherlands. With over half of its landmass underwater, the Netherlands have mastered the art of water management, namely through an effective and creative canal system. Climate change has forced that creativity forward to find more ambitious ways to transform its cities. In Amsterdam, you will find innovative houseboats all around the city. One of the most creative designs is a slatted timber structure that floats and has one story submerged below the water level. Designs now exist for an entire housing complex that can float and is set on artificial islands.

Other examples of floating architectural design that are meeting the challenges of rising water levels can be found in Lagos, Nigeria, which is battling significant rises in tides and water levels. Architect Kunle Adeymi has designed numerous floating buildings in the region, including schools and radio stations. Other innovations are being offered by teams from the University of Coimbra, Portugal. Their idea was to design and build prefabricated houses that can be shipped and assembled anywhere in the world.

From The Design Studio

Collection from the ADG showroom

custom lighting, design, architecture

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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The Passing of an Architectural Giant

“Neave was a pioneer. He showed us how intellectual rigor, sensitive urbanism, and supreme design skill, with determination, could deliver wellbeing to the local community he served so well.”

Ben Derbyshire, RIBA President

An RIBA Gold Medal winner and one widely considered a giant for his contributions, the architectural community suffered the loss of Neave Brown at age 88. He passed on January 9th in London, England. Brown was a celebrated architect and social housing pioneer, best known for his work on three iconic post-war housing designs in London.

Brown was an American-born British architect and artist. He specialized in modernist housing and is best known for his modernist, high-density housing designs across the U.K. He is the only architect to have had all his UK work listed. In October 2017, he won the Royal Gold Medal of the Royal Institute of British Architects for his 1968 design of Alexandra Road Estate, which is now considered a landmark of British social housing.

The basic design of the complex was determined in 1968, but met with opposition from the Camden Planning Department, who believed that a low-rise development may not reach the required population density. The project was finally approved in 1969, the license granted in 1970 and construction began in 1972. The first residents settled in 1978, although overall it was completed in 1979. It was the first Alexandra Estate housing complex which won the postwar protection grade II in 1993 at that time it was described as “one of the most prominent groups of buildings produced in England since World war exceptional architectural interest.” The property was declared a Conservation Area in 1994.

The property consists of three blocks east to west in parallel, and occupies a site in a crescent shape. Rowley Way has its main entrance on the west, in Abbey Road NW8, the famous Abbey Road immortalized by the Beatles in Camden, in the city of London.

“He brought a thoughtfulness and generosity of spirit to his architecture which has been appreciated by generations of residents of his social housing. It was fitting that the RIBA Gold Medal award last year gave him the opportunity to experience the love that so many have for his work, and for the man.”

John Grindrod, author of Concretopia – a Journey around the Rebuilding of Post War Britain

From the Factory Floor

White metallic ring pendant in production phase 5

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#modernhome #floridabound

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Washington D.C. Architecture – Finding the Best of Pope

Washington D.C. is one of the top tourist destinations in the world. Every year, millions of tourists flood our nation’s capital for the multitude of attractions that make up the city. The city’s tourist venues are also noteworthy because of their architecture. The design, function and architecture of the city is unique. One architect contributed significantly to the face and function of the city.

The History of Washington D.C.

On July 9, 1790, Congress passed the Residence Act, which approved the creation of a national capital on the Potomac River. The exact location was to be selected by President George Washington and the land was donated by the states of Maryland and Virginia. Two pre-existing settlements were included in the territory: the port of Georgetown, Maryland, founded in 1751, and the city of Alexandria, Virginia, founded in 1749. The new federal city was then constructed on the north bank of the Potomac, to the east of Georgetown.

Washington, D.C., is a planned city. In 1791, President George Washington commissioned Pierre Charles L’Enfant, a French-born architect and city planner, to design the new capital. He enlisted Scottish surveyor Alexander Ralston to help lay out the city plan. The L’Enfant Plan featured broad streets and avenues radiating out from rectangles, providing room for open space and landscaping. He based his design on plans of cities such as Paris, Amsterdam, Karlsruhe, and Milan that Thomas Jefferson had sent to him.

The Influence of John Russell Pope

The work of John Russell Pope is the best example of the classical tradition of architecture in the United States. He was responsible for the classical elegance demanded by the federal government and wealthy private citizens during the first third of the 20th century. Most of Pope’s early designs were for very large houses for influential businessmen and other prominent people. His affinity for formal design clearly shows in his Georgian, Tudor and Federal houses.

Pope’s practice grew to include churches, commercial buildings, and master plans for five colleges and universities. However, it was the monumental public buildings that truly characterized Pope’s work and on which his reputation rests. These buildings show his adherence to the classical tradition and demonstrate his belief that monumental architecture must have its roots in ancient Greece or Rome. Here are a few of the finest examples of his work in Washington D.C.:

The Jefferson Memorial – The Jefferson Memorial features circular marble steps, a portico, a circular colonnade of Ionic order columns, and a shallow dome.

National Gallery of Art’s West Building – What makes the West Building unique is its Neoclassical style. Inside the Italian Renaissance galleries, there is travertine wainscot and hand-finished plaster walls.

National Archives Building – The National Archives offers Corinthian columns and porticos in the outer structure as well as an exhibition, coffered half dome, and two large murals inside.

DAR Constitution Hall – The Neoclassical-style DAR Constitution Hall has over 3,700 seats and more than 50 boxes. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1985.

Work of Gerald Olesker in Washington D.C. at the Holocaust Monument

 

From the Design Studio

Sketch for a Spanish revival project 

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by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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Full Moon Rising Over Seattle Washington

Seattle Architecture: It’s Not All About The Space Needle

When you think of Seattle, most think of music, art and people that push the boundaries. If you ask about an iconic building, hands down, it is the Space Needle. Most images of Seattle feature this iconic building.

The Space Needle is a landmark of the Pacific Northwest, and an icon of Seattle. It was built in the Seattle Center for the 1962 World’s Fair, which drew over 2.3 million visitors. The downtown Seattle skyline, as well as the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, Mount Rainier, Mount Baker, Elliott Bay and surrounding islands can be viewed from the top of the Needle. The trip takes 41 seconds. On windy days, the elevators slow to 5 miles per hour. In April 1999, the Seattle’s Landmarks Preservation Board designated it as a historic landmark.

But architecture in Seattle is so much more than the iconic Space Needle. The feel and character of the city is reflected in the shapes of its’ architecture. The innovation of Frank O. Gehry bursts out of Seattle Center with vibrant colors and eccentric curves. Other landmarks turn heads and attracts visitors for its unique design. Here are just a few examples of the true architecture of Seattle:

Olympic Sculpture Park – The park was opened in 2007 and houses 25 permanent sculptures by celebrated artists such as Ellsworth Kelly, Richard Serra and Louise Bourgeois.

Pioneer Square – The classic historical enclave in Seattle.

Chapel of Ignatius – A place of Catholic worship for campus Jesuits, the abstract, modern chapel was built to be an instrument of shifting daylight, mirroring a spiritual journey, particularly the experience of a Catholic Mass.

Georgetown – An industrial neighborhood is a food and drink magnet that feels like it’s in the midst of a transition.

The Thompson Seattle – Located on an ideal corner, overlooking Pike Place Market. The exterior is inspired by the change in the street grid among neighborhoods and evokes a sense of ordered motion.

From The Factory Floor

Rock crystal chandelier crated and ready to go!

 

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By Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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archtoberfest, architecture, adg lighting

Let’s Celebrate Archtober Fest 2017

October is the month we set aside to celebrate all things architecture. Archtober Fest is a away to bring awareness and appreciation to the art and science of architecture. Across the U.S., various cities are celebrating Archtober Fest to bring awareness forward and celebrate the architectural landmarks that their great communities offer.

The earliest surviving written work on the subject of architecture is De architectura, by the Roman architect Vitruvius in the early 1st century AD. According to Vitruvius, a good building should satisfy the three principles of firmitas, utilitas, venustas. Our modern day equivalent would be durability, utility and beauty. According to Vitruvius, the architect should strive to fulfill each of these three attributes as well as possible.

Architecture is both the process and the product of planning, designing, and constructing buildings and other physical structures. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are often perceived as cultural symbols and as works of art. Historical civilizations are often identified with their surviving architectural achievements.

Here are some links to two of the best Archtober celebrations across the country:

NYC Archtober Fest – New York City’s Architecture and Design Month, the seventh annual month-long festival of architecture activities, programs and exhibitions taking place during the month.

San Diego Archtober Fest – San Diego’s Architecture and Design Month, celebration of San Diego’s built environment, will kick off with a rapid-fire show-and-tell, tours and talks, and conclude with awards for good and bad buildings.

In the spirit of the celebration, get out and explore the architecture of your city and region. It is all around us, but we tend to be focused on the day-to-day of our lives and miss the creative beauty that is all around us. Through their artistic and technical skills, architects translate the experiences of the culture into buildings that mark the passing of time.

From the ADG Jobsite

New custom designed lights in Malibu
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By Gerald Olesker, CEO ADG Lighting

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The Perfect Creative Collaboration for Your Lighting Design Needs

ADG Lighting is a leading creative custom design and lighting manufacturing firm. We are fanatical about using our 20 plus years experience to bring to life the vision of clients in a manner that evokes quality and style. This passion for design and quality have made for the perfect partnership with Dering Hall.

Dering Hall is obsessed with quality design and broadening the audience for the best the industry has to offer. Their mission is to assemble a community of the world’s leading creators in one place and to connect them with savvy and sophisticated consumers.

Our collaborative efforts allow us to showcase creativity in a manner that inspires both clients and designers alike. We are proud to share two of our recent features on the Dering Hall platform.

Round & Circular Flush Mounts

Featured in Dering Hall’s Round & Circular Flush Mounts. Kitchens and dining spaces are the ideal locations for flush mount lighting.

Mount Ring Ceiling Flush Fixture

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Vintage Pendant Lights

Featured in Dering Hall’s 40 Vintage Pendant Lights. Vintage and antique accessories add a sophistication and personality to any space in a home.

Vintage Cast Cameo Pendant

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From The Factory Floor

Our new Pop Pendant shipping out to a happy client!
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Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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