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mardakan castle

Mardakan Castle Is Set to Be Revamped

The restoration of the Mardakan Castle was recently signed and agreed upon between the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) and the State Service of Cultural Heritage Conservation, Development and Rehabilitation, under the Azerbaijani Culture Ministry. The latter is in charge of the protocols on the restoration.

The Mardakan Castle was originally built in the middle of the 12th century by Akhsitan I, son of Manuchihr III. At that time the castles and fortresses were built to protect against the enemy. So the previous life lived by the Mardakan Castle was rich and full, and now it’s time for a facelift.

The castle was originally built in a quadrangular form, has five tiers, and the entire castle consists of six rooms. There is an inner courtyard that is huge, 28x25m, followed by a round tower that is 22 meters in height, and contains 76 stairs inside the tower. It has been suggested that as many as 108 empty wells that are located in the courtyard were used to store food. Let’s not forget the moat located in front of the castle! This body of water is said to be 25 meters in depth. These details don’t take into account the richness in heritage and culture of that medieval era. 

It’s all about location location location! This motto used in current real estate also played a part during the medieval era. These fortresses were placed in specific locations to defend vital routes against the enemy. 

In Azerbaijan there are many castles and fortresses that primarily functioned as fortresses; some of these include the Gulistan Fortress, Sabayil Castle and Ramana Tower just to name a few. Their similarities were also their differences — each contains the strong rich architecture of the medieval era, each is different in specific detail. It is obvious all stood the test of time.   

Azerbaijan is an ancient country, it’s history is rich in culture and its architecture reflects that. This restoration is important, and the end result will be fascinating.

 

r lee miller architect

Privacy on a High Level in Homes Built by R. Lee Miller

Hidden in plain sight along a hillside in Palm Springs are rock dwellings otherwise known as Araby Rock Houses, created and built by organic architect R. Lee Miller. Miller liked to build in very difficult places, such as on the side of a mountain. His unique and well-designed structures were remarkable.

Miller built his unique homes in certain secret locations, such as the private community of the Andreas Canyon Club, founded in 1923. These are the “Where’s Waldo” of houses because they are camouflaged by their own surroundings. Miller went on to purchase 330 acres, just above Ramon Road with the intention of building another hillside community there; unfortunately, that plan never came to fruition.  

We know very little about R. Lee Miller. It seems that his architectural creations were a true representation of himself; he hid in plain sight.

Here is what we do know. Robert Lee Miller was born in Hill, Texas in the year 1887. He went on to serve his country in World War I. After he served his country, he trained as a civil engineer; after moving to Palm Springs, Miller took up carpentry and built many homes in the Palm Springs area, including a home for the president of US Steel. Miller also built an adobe and rock home next to the present day Moorten Botanical Garden for actor Reginald Owen. 

The irony is that despite Miller’s prolific work in building homes, he had not had any formal training in architecture. It’s as though he came out of nowhere, created and then just disappeared in plain sight, very much like the houses he built. You can learn more interesting information on early Palm Springs architects by visiting the city of Palm Springs website

From the Factory Floor

Work in progress

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by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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Deutinger Offers Shocking View Of Architecture

German-born architect, writer and designer Theo Deutinger’s most recent book, “Handbook of Tyranny” gives us a shocking view of how architecture and design help implement laws or obstruct individual freedom (depending on your point of view).

Deutinger wants us to question what we see in the landscapes we have come to love. This all started for Deutinger when he found out that big boulders were strategically placed in front of De Nederlandsche Bank in Amsterdam to provide an obstacle for bank robbers and their getaway cars from getting too close to the bank.

He gives stunning examples of how political power and authoritarian intervention has worked its way into our most illustrious landscapes. He tells his story primarily through technical drawings. He encourages the reader to question every fence and institutional design that was constructed to control human behavior.

Deutinger makes it known that there are non-human entities or acoustic controls that restrict, and otherwise govern and guide daily existence in our macrocosm. Many of these could be termed as cruelty, such as benches designed to discourage homeless people from using them; or gravel walkways that loudly warn if someone is approaching. These are used as a form of control.

Recent studies have shown that there are many high-pitched sounds that only young people can hear. So as a deterrent, many business owners have installed very high-pitched sounds to prevent teens from loitering outside their businesses.

Deutinger shows us that some of these deterrents that are in the architectural designs are engineering innovations. Others are small tweaks that are in the design themselves; they are supposed to provide security and safety for all. Perhaps this is a great example of the old saying “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

From the ADG Jobsite

Garage install flashback!

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by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

 

 

FRANCE FIRE NOTRE DAME

Notre Dame Cathedral Fire Inspires Unity and Hope

The French people and the world watched in horror as the flames engulfed the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral and the spire fell in flames. Our imaginations ran wild as we imagined the potential loss of not only a sacred place of worship, but rare artifacts that were housed within the gothic walls. As the flames were subdued by a gallant fire brigade, news travelled quickly that the initial damage appeared to be minimal, along with a heroic fire brigade chaplain saving numerous artifacts. But the true damage to the Notre Dame Cathedral has yet to be assessed or determined. The question that now presents itself is what is the true structural damage to the building and what will it take to restore the architectural splendor of this grand building.

Construction of the Notre Dame Cathedral began in 1160 A.D., and is surely one of the finest examples of gothic architecture in the world. The project brought together many of the style’s characteristic features of large windows, vertical stresses and slender, pointed arches. The Notre Dame Cathedral inspired the building of a series of great gothic cathedrals across northern cities such as Chartres, Rouen, Amiens and Reims. The structure brought new levels of refinement and artistic expression into style through the magnificent height of the spaces, the unique ornamentation, and the whimsical effects of the stained glass on the light. The Notre Dame Cathedral and similar structures sent a powerful message to the people about Christ, saints and other important figures such as kings and lords of the area.

Only time will tell what the true impact of this devastating fire on this iconic landmark, but the tragedy has moved the people of France and the world into unity. Last reports indicate that donations have been made for restoration which exceed $1 billion. The government of France has energetically committed to absolute perfection in the restoration, no matter how long it takes or what the cost will be. It reflects the inspirational power of the Notre Dame Cathedral on the global community to come together as one.    

From the ADG Job Site 

In Palos Verdes, our project manager Nikki is ensuring the ADG Advantage is taking place with our new kinetic chandelier.

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by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

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Hidden Hills Estate Features ADG Custom Lighting

This gorgeous Hidden Hills estate is the epitome of quality and luxurious design. It is currently on the market for $17.5 million and listed by Marc Shevin of Berkshire Hathaway.

To accentuate and refine the design quality of the home, ADG Lighting was commissioned to design and custom manufacture lighting fixtures throughout. The wide-open floor plan prominently features high volume ceilings, glass sliding walls and magnificent picture windows which flood the home with natural light. This Hidden Hills estate offers 11,850 square feet of living space, including 6 bedrooms with an additional 2,300 square feet of living space over the four-car garage. It is loaded with amenities which include a private study, a spa with steam shower and sauna, along with a mirrored gym. There so also a 4-stall barn with turnout, as well as multiple fruit and shade trees.

ADG Lighting enjoyed the opportunity to design and build lighting throughout the home, including the gas lights on the pathway and leather-wrapped pendants featured prominently on the property.

Special Thanks to ~ Marc Shevin

Berkshire Hathaway Home Services – California Properties

From the ADG Job Site

Thanks William Hefner for having us at your beautiful midcentury reboot. We appreciate helping to design and fabricate this 17-foot long skylight. Three cheers to collaboration and working together! 

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by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting

 

paradise-wildfire

Paradise Reimagined

Paradise, California was the living embodiment of its name. It was surrounded by miles of beautiful forest, mountain streams and clean air. It was just the place to unplug, refresh and relax in one of the most scenic locations in California. All of that picturesque beauty went up in flames during the Camp Fire in November 2018.

For Paradise, this fire devastated not only their property, but their community and the future of the residents for generations to come. It was complete and total devastation. The Camp Fire has gone down as the worst wildfire since the Cloquet fire in 1918, and is on the global record as one of the deadliest fires in history.

With the help of Cal Poly College of Architecture & Environmental Design, you will see Paradise reimagined and the scenic community rise from the ashes of devastation. Students traveled to Paradise earlier this year and spent time in the region and with community members to better understand their needs and what their vision for the future was. Led by Stacey White, Cal Poly faculty and lecturer in the architecture school, the students embarked on a design and rebuilding plan for Paradise that focused on the vision of the residents to give them their community back.

On February 22nd, Cal Poly students met with the residents of Paradise in Chico to present their initial ideas and get feedback from the community. The students presented 36 projects for review. The students will take this information back to Cal Poly and refine those projects down from 36 to 20 final projects. The groups will meet again in April to discuss and refine the final 20. The final projects will then be submitted to the community of Paradise in June for community approval.

The architecture students from Cal Poly are truly giving back to the residents of Paradise and the state of California in ways that just cannot be measured in dollars and cents. These students embody the spirit of California and the architecture profession.  

From the ADG Jobsite

We designed the furniture and covered window panels depicting familiar California scenes at the Farmer’s Insurance Agency in Granada Hills…

ADG jobsite custom lighting

by Gerald Olesker, CEO, ADG Lighting