Green Square: Sydney, Australia

Australia’s largest urban renewal project is one step closer to the edge to fruition. Koichi Takada Architects revealed new renderings of Green Square — a mixed-use, multi-residential tower defined by two continuing loops, which will then define the Sydney Green Square Town Centre. The renderings are also labeled ‘Infinity by Crown’, which is really the perfect name to describe the architecture. Toggle between the first two images in the gallery above and try and imagine that 360 perspective.

The two loops connect, becoming a seamless and continuous part of the architectural fabric. The resulting design is one that is fluid, connected, activated and responsive to the urban context of Green Square Town Centre and its desire for a new vision of architecture.

(via KTA)

Contributing to the masterful flow described above is the pool. As you can note in the gallery, the pool almost looks submerged in the middle of one of the loops. It fits elegantly in the middle of a window in the larger context of the structure, which consequently allows for relaxing (future) photo opps whether poolside or across the street. Plus, if you take a dive in the pool, you can literally swim to the window and be practically above the street!

There are more subtleties to applaud like the general greenery and plazas, the horizontal waves on the windows contributing to the ‘infinity’ flow of the complex, and something to appreciate when looking at the study options (the models with the black background): the clean, parallel layers that control Green Square’s flow and form the smooth exterior facade. Just by looking at the gallery, I have an increased feeling of comfort as I write this. Once again, ‘Infinity By Crown’ is really the perfect name.

So, as I was writing this up, I was showing these renderings to a friend. He was blown away by them too and asked when and where this will be completed. When I said, Sydney, 2016, a lightbulb lit up and we are already planning an Australia trip for Winter, 2017. We’ll make our way to Sydney, see the Green Square fully completed, swing by the Sydney Opera House, befriend a few kangaroos, and then to Melbourne for the Australian Open and a chance to see Gowhere’s favorite tennis player Novak Djokovic still in his prime and where he’s had his most success. …Never thought I’d be this excited about something that’s still three years away…

Lounge at eye level to this pool

Pool design has always fascinated me. I love seeing the relationship of water and lounging placement further enhancing the general fun and relaxation of pools to begin with. The possibilities are endless and this particular example caught my eye on my Instagram feed tonight. I immediately transplanted myself on one of those couches and imagined my eye level matching that of the water. Can you imagine that too?

The source? None other than GLC (henceforth the #ism hashtag). He mixes in design photos with a variety of unrelated comical ones; plus, photos with the many artists and fans he links up with. Needless to say, the Chicago veteran is a fun follow on IG. Perhaps he can help out on the location of this pool?

An unrelated, bonus Instagram find below happens to parallel one of the many themes I’m currently reading in Phil Jackson‘s latest book, Eleven Rings. Via #TeamGowhere’s MiniMaxX, I thought this was worth the quick share as well:

//instagram.com/p/moRWGPthew/embed/

Avicii’s $15 million Hollywood home

It’s been a breakout year for Avicii, whose “Wake Me Up” single will be one that stands the test of time for the next 5 years. To cap off the year, he purchased this gorgeous $15 million dollar Hollywood home — the images being revealed today. McClean Design is the architecture firm behind the 6 bedroom, 7 bathroom, 7,007 square foot home and I’d like to give them a standing ovation for what they did to fill out those specs.

The L.A. views are simply breathtaking. They’re highlighted in the central points inside the house (the master bedroom, living area, etc.) to go along with the porches and open lounge areas outside the house, making for flawless execution. Adding to that are the cantilevers, the full-length glass (of course), the infinity edge pool, and even the countless amounts of fireplaces to add to the mood. Sure, I understand that Photoshop may have embellished much of the photos (especially the interior looks) but I don’t believe it’s that much of a stretch. My small beef? Not a fan of the lone, obtrusive skinny column in photos 3 & 4. Can’t the structural engineering be modified to support the cantilever with no column support there? Better question: can’t you just see an Avicii cameo now in the upcoming Entourage movie? Whatever the case, I think Avicii will have no problem waking up.

h/t EDM Sauce

‘Water Drop’ Museum Winner

Your Winner of the Week: Korean based architecture firm Archiplan for their first prize design of a contemporary art museum solely for the work of Korean painter Kim Tschang-Yeul. Actually, the big winner out of all of this is Kim. How cool is this: 1. an entire museum dedicated to your work and 2. the museum’s design is based off your work and philosophy. This makes the Michael Jordan statue outside the United Center seem tame.

It’s Archiplan‘s immersiveness to Kim’s work and philosophy to be reflected in the architecture that really resonated with me. You can sense that in their brief statement:

We spent a long time understanding [Kim] – understanding his life, intention and his philosophy. It is necessary to transform his philosophy into a constructed architectural space.

The biggest illustration of how Kim’s philosophy is reflected is how his paintings’ signature water drop is included in the center of the museum’s design. First, read Kim Tschang-Yeul‘s comments on the water drop:

The act of painting water drops is to dissolve everything inside them and return them to a state of nothing. When everything like anger, anxiety and fear is brought to the point of nothing, we experience a state of peace and comfort.

Firstly, this is true. Think back to a time when you conquered those emotions: anger, anxiety, and fear. Isn’t that first moment of peace a wonderful feeling? We can visualize this experience the next time we feel angry, anxious, or afraid and return sooner to a platform of peace, especially as we become more mindful of it in the present moment. Archiplan’s overall design embodies the concept in Tschang-Yeul’s quote.

The natural segue to the photos above and below where we can see that the water sits at the lowest level of the building with a courtyard surrounding it. The water’s location, and the substance itself are embellished through light and shadow, and thereby form Kim’s water drop.

Kim’s water drop exists through light and shadow. The water drop becomes the ‘giver,’ origin, and the void of the light and the darkness at the same time. The darkness is empty, though, it’s full of potentials for life. The courtyard of Light at the center of the museum is the most symbolic space, where the light constantly appears and disappears through an ambiguous boundary.

Via Archiplan
Via Archiplan

This additional quote from Archiplan further relates the deeper relationship between the water drop and the (to-be constructed) water drop:

While many marveled at the substance of the water drops set against canvas, only a few are able to recognize the water drop as merely a medium by which to reveal the surface. As the water drop reveals the surface as a medium, this museum also becomes a medium and abstracts the idea of returning to the mother earth.

Aside from the deeper meaning behind the design and Kim’s work, the plan for the water drop courtyard brought me back to a personal memory. In fact, this was the first thing I thought of upon discovering the lead image of the museum, and thankfully recalling this childhood experience reeled me in to see one of the greater design and philosophy unions I’ve resonated with in recent memory. Alas, it was The Sims — a game I played back in high school for a couple of reasons: to design cool houses and create my family with alternative career paths. For my dream house, I designed a swimming pool at the center of an outdoor courtyard on the first level and surrounded it with two stories — the second containing balconies jutting out over the pool. This was my version of the “water drop”, with the deeper meaning being the ability to let my Sim land 12-foot cannonballs from the second floor balcony. Fortunately, Archiplan’s “water drop” is of greater deeper meaning, ha!

h/t ArchDaily (more images here)

Jellyfish House | Spain

Firstly, isn’t the name alone intriguing? The “Jellyfish House”!? Well, it’s probably the images that first sold you anyway. After all, you don’t see a glass-bottom pool everyday. Can you imagine: you go for a swim, only to see the interior of your house from underwater. Or better yet, you’re relaxing inside the house only to see this out of your peripherals: your guests seeing who can hold their breath underwater the longest. This isn’t a hypothetical; this can actually happen in the Jellyfish House as you can scroll through the gallery above to get a sense of how exactly.

I’ve loved the idea of the glass-bottom pool ever since Doug & Steve Butabi suggested it in A Night At The Roxbury (seriously, ha!), and I haven’t seen it executed quite like this. On top of that, the Jellyfish House’s pool is an infinity pool (!) that wonderfully blends into the scenery around the house.

Another feature I really enjoy is the ‘fast’ and ‘slow’ stairs. The ‘fast’ stairway is glass-enclosed and starts from the exterior, going straight up to the rooftop. So on those hot days in Marbella, Spain (you know, next time you’re there), you can just walk right up to the pool. The ‘slow’ staircase is the exact opposite: it stretches horizontally throughout the entire length of the house and features long treads that really stress the amount of ground covered. That contrast highlights each individual stairway even more.

I’ll let the architects, Wiel Arets Architects, have the final summation:

Taking full advantage of the ever-present Spanish sun, the Jellyfish House is an avant-garde expression of luxurious living; as most of its façades can be opened, and as its staircases are mainly outdoor, the house’s ever shifting boundaries between inside and outside are curiously blurred.

h/t Sourceable via the hometown staple Chicago Architecture Foundation | Images via Home Dsgn