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Monthly Archives: August 2018

colmar, france, architecture, adg

Colmar Architecture Dazzles Travelers off the Beaten Path

Colmar, France is a picturesque village in the northeastern part of France, along the Rhine River and the German Border. This historic region of France is known as the Alsace region and reminds visitors of being in Venice. Colmar features cobblestone streets running alongside the canals, which are surrounded by half-timbered medieval and early Renaissance buildings stacked above. The town dates back to 800 A.D. and has been ruled by Germany, Sweden, Italy and finally France. It is also the birthplace of Frederic Auguste Bartholdi, who is best known as the sculptor of the Statue of Liberty.

The main attraction to Colmar is the architecture. The Renaissance architecture of the region dates between the 14th and the 17th centuries in Europe. It demonstrates a conscious revival and development of elements of ancient Greek and Roman thought and material. It stylistically followed Gothic architecture, and was succeeded by the Baroque style of architecture. Renaissance architecture places style emphasis on symmetry, proportion and geometry.

Colmar features secular and religious architectural landmarks that reflect eight centuries of Germanic and French architecture and the adaptation of their respective stylistic language to the local customs and building materials, such as pink and yellow Vosges sandstone and timber frame. The picturesque city’s architecture remains amazingly intact and transports the traveler back to the earliest part of European history. The Old Town is a beautiful historic area and lies between the Rue des Têtes, the Rue des Clefs, and the Rue des Marchands near the Place de la Cathédrale. Admire the rebuilt Gothic church of Collégiale Saint-Martin. Visitors can see the Ancien Corps de Garde, which has been everything from a marketplace to a justice hall to a themed military housing district. One of the oldest buildings in Colmar, The Maison Adolph, was built in 1350 for the Adolph family.

A visit to Colmar will take you back to the earliest history of Europe. There are so many architectural attractions and features, one can get lost appreciating and exploring the grandeur for days.

From the ADG Jobsite  

Our ring pendant at a high rise in San Francisco, in collaboration with Triomphe Design

adg-custom-lighting

 by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

 

pritzker architecture prize, Stephen Breyer

Pritzker Architecture Prize Committee Now Led By Supreme Court Justice

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer has been named as the chairman of the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize committee by the family that sponsors the prize. He will head a seven member jury of experts from around the globe. Tom Pritzker, executive chairman of the Chicago-based Hyatt Hotels Corp, stated:

“His devotion to civic-minded architecture underscores the mission of the prize and his unparalleled ability to guide a group deliberation is essential in creating a unified voice within this diverse and internal panel of jurors.”

The Pritzker Architecture Prize is awarded annually to honor a living architect or those architects who have distinguished themselves through work that displays commitment, talent and vision in architecture. The award was founded in 1979 by Jay and Cindy Pritzker and is funded by the Pritzker family, with the Hyatt Foundation serving as a corporate sponsor. It is most often referred to as the Nobel Prize of Architecture and has a steadfast reputation for recognizing architects irrespective of race, nationality or ideology. Some of the most notable architects who have received the coveted award include Frank Gehry and I.M. Pei.

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer was born in San Francisco in 1938 and attended Harvard Law School, where he joined the Harvard Law Review and graduated magna cum laude in 1964. He went on to teach as Harvard Law for over two decades. He subsequently served as an assistant prosecutor during the Watergate hearings and was sworn in to the Supreme Court by President Bill Clinton in 1994. Justice Breyer has never studied architecture, but has a long-standing devotion and interest in the field. In 1999, he was one of  the two judges who served as advisors to the architects of the federal courthouse in Boston which opened in 1999. He has been a distinguished member of the Pritzker Architecture Prize jury since 2011.

From the ADG Jobsite

A collaboration with M. Elle Design

 adg lighting m elle designs

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

 

bad kissingen, architecture

Bad Kissingen is a Retreat for Aristocracy

Travel is Europe has never been more exciting than now, thanks to the openness of the European Union and the promotion on social media. Most everyone is familiar with the most high-profile attractions of Europe, such as Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower and the Colosseum in Rome. Because of the influence of digital media and social sharing, the most amazing locations in Europe have been opened up to the world. These sights and locations have only been notable to local tourism or the fortunate few who have been able to spend extended  amounts of time on the continent. Now, the hidden wonders of Europe are being opened up to the world, and anyone can plan a trip to previously obscure locations for a monumental experience, avoiding the largest of the tourist traps.

One of these special locations is Bad Kissingen, Germany. For centuries, the Germans have believed in the curing treatments found in localities across the country, thus the town would be designated a ‘Bad’ or ‘cure spa’, thus the name of Bad Kissingen. The town is located in the Bavarian region of Lower Franconia on the Saale river. The town traces its roots back to the year 831 A.D. It was developed into a spa in the 1500’s. Because of the special geographic location and sheer beauty of the region, the Kings of Bavaria and renowned architects created a magnificent city on the Saale. It quickly became the favorite location for the nobility and aristocracy of Europe. Prince Otto von Bismark spent a great deal of time in Bad Kissingen, conducting affairs of state and entertaining royalty, along with taking in the ‘cures’ the town became famous for.

Bad Kissingen is know for the grand splendor of the architecture. From the Regentenbau and Arkadenbau buildings, to the Wandelhalle complex and Casino Lutpold, visitors are immediately inspired by these impressive buildings. These magnificent structures are surrounded by three expansive formal gardens and parks. Luitpoldpark was inspired by English landscape gardens, the Kurgarten incorporates many baroque elements, and the Rose Garden is arranged in impressive geometric shapes. The entire complex of parks, gardens and buildings nestle up to the slow moving Saale river which wanders through the town. This makes for a breathtaking tourist experience once reserved exclusively for the nobility and aristocracy of Europe.

Travel On!

From the ADG Jobsite

Hotel fun and construction in San Luis Obispo with Carrie!

Adg Slo Hotel Architecture Lighting

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

los angeles, historic architecture, adg

Los Angeles Celebrates the Return of the Pup

Who says you can’t teach an ‘old dog’ new tricks! Thanks to the 1933 Group, the iconic Los Angeles Tail O’ the Pup will be coming back into service very soon. The Pup was one of  the finest examples of mimetic style architecture that dotted the landscape of Los Angeles. It is one of the last surviving buildings in this style within the SoCal region.

The Tail O’ the Pup was designed by architect Milton Black in 1946 and opened to a typical Hollywood welcome of search-lit, star-studded fanfare that only Los Angeles can offer. During the 1980’s, it was scheduled for demolition, despite being a highly popular eatery and a regular feature location for TV, film and commercial programs. This effort met with a loud outcry from the Los Angeles community. As a result, the Pup was moved from its original location at La Cienega and Beverly Boulevards, to the nearby location it last occupied on North San Vicente boulevard.

In December 2005, the Pup was evicted and moved to a storage warehouse in Torrance. It was subsequently declared a cultural landmark by the city of Los Angeles. While the owners tried to find the right fit for a new ownership partner for the Pup, the structure was donated to the the Valley Relics Museum, where it waited on restoration. Recently, the Blake Family (owners) found the right partner for the Pup in the 1933 Group.

Currently, the 1933 Group is seeking the right street-facing location in either West Hollywood or Hollywood and is committed to bring back the menu people crave. They know they have one of the coolest, most iconic bits of Los Angeles culture and they want to totally respect that history.

From the ADG Jobsite    

New chandelier for a modern home, in collaboration with Details a Design Firm.

adg, custom lighting, architecture

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

 

fbi

FBI Building Becomes the Target of POTUS

 

The FBI and the President of the United States (POTUS) are squaring off again for what appears to be another battle royale! No, this time it is not about Russian collusion, James Comey or the dozens of other political battles that rage between POTUS and the FBI. This battle is about the existence of the current FBI HQ in Washington, DC. Will it continue to stand or will it be relocated to the suburbs? That is the question that has lit a fire between the two opponents.

From 1908 until 1975, the FBI was located in the Department of Justice (DOJ) building in Washington, DC. This was an ideal arrangement, as the DOJ is a parent organization to the FBI and makes perfect logistical sense. Due to the growth of the FBI and the expanding role of the organization in the long term, a decision was made to house the FBI in a separate building away from the DOJ. This also met higher level security requirements for the safety and appearance of an independent investigative agency. A formal request for the project was approved in 1941, but was delayed due to the onset of WWII. The second request was made in 1962 for the new construction, which was approved. In October of 1967, the National Capital Planning Commission approved the project with 2,800,876 sq. feet of space for a planned 7,090 employees. The building had to meet height limits on one side of seven stories and 11 stories on the other, complying with the current DC code requirements. Construction started in December of 1967 and finished in May 1975. The building was officially named the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building in May 1972 by President Nixon, two days after Hoover’s death.  President Ford officially dedicated the building in September of 1975.

This historic building is now showing its age, and there is a movement afoot by POTUS to raze the structure. This is where the battle begins. POTUS has submitted a plan to destroy the building and construct a new facility on the existing grounds. He believes it to be the “ugliest of all ugly buildings” in DC and needs to go. The second plan submitted by Government Accounting Office (GAO) is to tear down the building and construct a new HQ building in the Virginia suburbs, where their current training academy is located. Detractors of POTUS say that he is trying to control what is built on the existing property when the FBI leaves. It just happens to be across the street from the Trump Hotel. They claim POTUS wants total control to prevent any competitor’s building near his property. The detractors of the GAO plan state that the Virginia move is significantly more expensive, and the fact that two Democratic Senators from Virginia are leading the effort makes it an immediate dead issue.

As the political battle rages between the FBI, POTUS, the GAO and Congress, the real focus is diminished. The real issue is that the current J. Edgar Hoover FBI HQ is a historical landmark. We should be debating a functional and respectful design that is befitting the status of all other landmarks of our nation’s capital.

From the Factory Floor

Fixture arrived safely in Utah!! Great collaboration with M. Elle Design and Forest Studio.

 by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting