Meditations on a strip mall
The New Virtualism: Beijing, the 2008 Olympic Games, and a new style for world architecture
SOMETHING SIGNIFICANT IS HAPPENING IN BEIJING. It has to do with proclaiming a new style of world architecture at the dawn of the twenty-first century. I call it “The New Virtualism,” and because there are now enough of these buildings in existence, for the first time I can describe the “looks” of this new style.
It is not that New Virtualist architecture is found only in Beijing. As a matter of fact, unlike past architectural styles, which were always regional movements before spreading their influence further afield, New Virtualism is the first architectural style in the history of the world that is immediately global in … » More …
Classic Houses of Seattle
When something is regarded as “a classic,” it is usually because the object has achieved the ability to express the cultural spirit of an era. Objects having this status are often considered as art, or at least as cultural symbols. And so we have classic cars, classical novels, classical music, and so on. We also have Classic Coke, so called because, after public outrage at trying to change the recipe of its brew, the soft drink company quickly went back to the original version—now dubbing it “Classic”—realizing that it was messing around with an established cultural icon. Caroline Swope’s Classic Houses of Seattle makes use … » More …