All posts filed under: Architecture

The Vanishing Architecture of the Wildwood Motels in New Jersey

Through a rare combination of economics, geography and chance, the island of Wildwood contains a national treasure: the highest concentration of mid-century modern hospitality architecture in the United States. In a new photobook published by Booth Clibborn-Editions this June, Havens, a professor in industrial design at Philadelphia University, photographs the kitsch and nostalgic aesthetic of Wildwood’s unique modernist architecture. Built in the late 1950s and early 1960s, Wildwood’s motels were developed in anticipation of the arrival of the Garden State Parkway, a four-lane toll road that would ultimately run the length of New Jersey, bringing with it a flurry of tourists from the surrounding states. Talking to The New York Times, Havens said: “The hotels were the backdrop of my summer. We would always pile in the car and drive around and look at all the hotels in the same way families drive around and look at Christmas lights at holiday season. Once they started to disappear, I realised just how much I took them for granted.” Entitled Out of Season: The Vanishing Architecture of the Wildwoods, …


GB. England. Canterbury Cathedral. (Christ’s)

From 'The English Cathedral', a Book published by Merrell in October 2012. Between 2010 and 2012 Peter Marlow photographed the Nave's of all forty two of England's Anglican cathedrals using only natural light at dawn.  Marlow’s  photographs are accompanied by his commentary on the project, including sketches and preparatory shots; an introduction by V&A senior photography curator Martin Barnes on the tradition of church photography in England, and a concise summary of each cathedral interior by architectural historian John Goodall.


Late photographer Peter Marlow’s final exhibition to launch in Coventry Cathedral

In 2008, Marlow was commissioned by Royal Mail, on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of the completion of St Paul’s Cathedral, to photograph six cathedrals. The resulting images of Lichfield, Belfast, Gloucester, St David’s, Westminster, and St Magnus in Orkney were issued as a set of six commemorative stamps. This week, at the historic Coventry Cathedral, the work will be displayed for the first time in one of the spaces featured in the series, the first time the project has been exhibited outside of London. Once the commission was complete, Marlow was inspired to continue the project and in the following four years shot all 42 of the cathedrals of the Church of England. This endeavour can be viewed as a contemporary update to tradition of church photography in England, particularly the work of Frederick Evans and Edwin Smith. ‘”I began by photographing the aesthetic highlights of each building, but the images seemed to merge with one another,” Marlow said on completion of the series. “In order to differentiate each place, I needed to find …


Divine Projections: The Beauty of Places of Worship, Regardless of Faith

After years of monastic life in a Buddhist forest monastery in the jungle of Thailand, Ernst Christen returned to the hyperactive Western world. Although now a “convinced atheist,” Christen, a Swiss photographer, would find solace in the peace and tranquillity of the places we use to worship God, whomever He may be – the chapels, churches and cathedrals, and the mosques and synagogues too. “I began to visit every temple, every mosque, every church and every synagogue that crosses my way,” he says. Christen, born in 1964, worked as a project manager in the automotive industry. He quit and decided to travel the world on bicycle, before becoming a Buddhist Monk in Thailand. He now lives near Solothurn in Switzerland In all the coming and going of visitors, Christen would find a quiet corner, and work on finding a way to capture the spirituality of the place. “It is not the building itself that I want to photograph,” he says. “What I am trying to capture is its noble and contemplative atmosphere.” In doing so, he realised how difficult it …


Markus Brunetti’s Monumental Church Façades

He got the idea for it while travelling through the continent with his partner, Betty Schöner, in their so-called “expedition truck”. A vehicle they’d converted themselves, the truck allowed them to live and work on the move, travelling from country to country on what the Bavarian calls their “Grand Tour”; it also allowed them to take time out from their busy working lives as commercial photographers, and to let projects unfold at their own rate. Born into a family of builders and architects, Brunetti soon found himself drawn to the sacred places they were passing on the way. “During the first year of our journey, I developed a precise visual idea of how to approach the series – a very clear, minimal, reduced representation of the façades, an idealised picture so to speak,” says the 50-year-old. “I studied the original drawings and plans of the façades I was interested in. The technical realisation developed over time and is something I refine and improve on with each new work.” All of the churches and cathedrals in …



Infinite spaces: How architectural escapes can endlessly extend into the landscape.

A new photography book by James Silverman, the Gothenburg-based photographer, seeks to demonstrate the ‘uninterrupted flow between interiors and exteriors,” he writes. “Architecture [that] is defined by elements that absorb, reflect, or deliberately break with their surroundings.’ According to a 2014 poll; clergymen, CEOs and agricultural & horticultural workers make up the top three in terms of job satisfaction. Whilst photographers do not come anywhere near the top ten, one suspects James Silverman’s particular niche – that of photographing luxury houses –  should chart well. Infinite Space is a compendium of such locales – an elegant selection of images seeking to identify and celebrate cutting-edge residential design. Silverman has spent the majority of his career in Sweden, and the country’s aesthetic style is evident in his work. Initially studying fine art at Chelsea School of Art before dropping out of a graphic design course at Manchester, the Brit discovered photography whilst journeying to India and Thailand “with a terrible point-and-shoot camera.” He reflects: ’The images were either too dark or too light […] I wanted to …


Image © Laurent Kronental

Retrofuturism – imagining a future that never arrived

In December 2005, then would-be Prime Minister David Cameron faced down Tony Blair in the House of Commons by telling him: “You were the future once.” Because it was true, it stung as a criticism and it stuck as a soundbite. But it also contained something deeper – the inescapable truth that, no matter how shiny with promise the future may seem, the lustre will probably fade with time. Both Noritaka Minami and Laurent Kronental are interested in this tarnishing process, and both have undertaken long-term projects documenting buildings that once stood for hope and progress. Minami’s 1972, which has just been published as a book, focuses on the Nakagin Capsule Tower in Tokyo’s Shimbashi district. Designed by the Metabolist architect Kisho Kurokawa, it symbolised a future in which design would stimulate social change, based around efficiency and equality. With 140 dwellings arranged between its 13 floors, each home measured just 2.3m x 3.8m x 2.1m, and they came equipped with built-in furniture (including a toothbrush). Minami hadn’t originally intended to shoot the Nakagin tower. …


Universite Ibn Zohr de Laayoune|  Academic building| Regroupement d'Architectes El Kabbaj, Kettani, Siana| Laayoune, Morocco| egroupement d'Architectes El Kabbaj, Kettani, Siana|2015/04/25| Paypal : 7KN42986UK329905S

Constructing Vision: Award winning architectural exhibition opens

Photography and architecture form an unlikely alliance. Photography is time, architecture is space. Architecture is volume, photography is flat. Buildings are made to last, where photography is endlessly reproducible, endlessly malleable, in our digital age. Yet since the photograph’s conception, the two have been inseparable. Be it a bitumen-coated plate or a memory card, photography is our primary medium to communicate and digest architecture, constantly transforming how we perceive and value the world. Building Images, an exhibition of the best architectural photography worldwide, explores the complexity and power of this relationship, showcasing a myriad of interpretations and representations some of the world’s most renowned architectural photographers have to offer. The exhibition, which opens on the 4th of February, features the winning images from The Arcaid Images Architectural Photography Awards 2015. Divided into four categories methodology – Building in use, Exteriors, Interiors and Sense of Place – Building Images demonstrates a broad range of photographic styles and approaches to the medium as well as featuring a diverse set of outstanding architectural forms. Work from overall winner …


© Vincenzo Montefinese

IPA 2016: Announcing the Single Image runners-up

Last month we announced the winners of the 2016 International Photography Awards, with Juno Calypso winning the Series Award for her project Joyce, and Felicity Hammond winning the Single Image Award for her image Restore to Factory Settings. Competition in the Single Image category was fierce, with over 1500 entries from 92 different countries spanning from portraiture to photojournalism, landscape to fine art. As entries were whittled down to the final few, there was spirited debate among the judging panel, which included TJ Boulting’s Hannah Watson, Magnum Photo’s Emily Graham, Tate’s Emma Lewis and photographer Ewen Spencer. This week we’ll be announcing the runners-up, starting with the Single Image category.   Vincenzo Montefinese Indelible images documenting the ongoing migrant crisis has gripped the world in the past 12 months, so it came as little surprise that this year’s IPA received several strong entries depicting scenes of broken borders and desperate families fleeing conflict. Yet Italian photojournalist Vincenzo Montefinese’s approach was different. His shortlisted image was taken in his hometown – the southern Italian city of Taranto, in which …


Live music inside L'Altro Mondo, Rimini, 1967. © Pietro Derossi

The radical architects who designed the discos of post-war Italy

As Italy emerged from World War II in the 1960s and 70s, the country found itself in need of reinvention. With the shadow of Mussolini and fascism looming large, the country set out to rebuild itself economically, culturally and socially. Out of this period of great transformation and uncertainty came the avant-garde designs by architects from the Radical design movement.  These architects, constrained by what they saw as the limits of post-war modern design, wanted to redefine the role of architecture in society. Inspired by the opportunity for experimentation, many viewed discotheques as an ideal vehicle for their creative drives. Innovative architects like Gruppo 9999, Superstudio and UFO designed a number of nightlife spaces that opened across the country. Radical Disco: Architecture and Nightlife in Italy, 1965 – 1975, is currently on show at the ICA until the 10th January and displays photographs from this fruitful, if brief period in Italian culture. As Sumitra Upham, co-curator alongside Catherine Rossi, tells BJP, the architects saw discos as an ideal avenue for the new ideas they wanted …


Million Mask March: Anonymous white collars on their lunchbreak

Jonathan Meades, one of our great commentators on the built environment, once wrote: “We are surrounded by the greatest of all free shows. Places.” This idea drives Nicholas Sack’s Lost In The City, a new photobook published by London’s independent publishers Hoxton Mini Press, the eighth instalment of the publisher’s ongoing East London Photo Stories. “This is an ongoing, long term adventure for me really,” Sack says in a bar in the Square Mile, the heart of London’s financial industry, and the locale for his photography series. “I’ve been walking around this area for 30 years taking pictures,” he says. “What attracts me to the Square Mile is this collision of architecture, the old and the new; 17th century Wren churches slap bang next to a modern tower of glass and steel. That’s the joy of London to me, it wasn’t planned in the way that Paris was.” The work of Richard Rogers and Norman Foster, two of the heavyweight architecture triumvirate in the building boom of the 1970s and 80s, can be spotted amongst these arrangements. But Sack …


BJP Staff