More stories about COMMENTARY

  • Visiting the Biennale's Country Pavilions

    Most country pavilions shown work that represent each country's hopes and fears, but not what is being built or will be built in that country, Aaron Betsky says.

  • Zeolites Used to Reduce Off-Gassing in Wood Products

    Since formaldehyde, used in particle board and other building materials, has negative health effects in large amounts, scientists in Germany have found minerals to absorb formaldehyde emissions. But it's only a stopgap, says Blaine Brownell, to a larger problem.

  • Thomas Struth Displays Beauty in the Ordinary in Venice

    Though some exhibits and pavilions disappointed Aaron Betsky at this year's Venice Biennale, he did find that the theme of "common ground" can still provide a place for documentation, experimentation, and social action.

  • Architecture That Inspires Exercise

    The parkour, or freestyle, movement is a sport that invites kids and adults alike to treat the city as a gymnasium. One great example is the MountMitte climber's paradise in Berlin, Blaine Brownell reports.

  • Printing LEDs on Paper

    Illuminated wallpaper or light-emitting curtains could happen, thanks to a new process for developing LEDs, reports Blaine Brownell.

  • Making Landscapes from Bottle Caps

    Artist Heidi Fowler uses bottle caps filled with junk mail to make beautiful landscapes for an exhibit in Maryland, writes Blaine Brownell.

  • Design Finishes Last in the 2012 Olympic Games

    Zaha Hadid, Foreign Office Architects, Thomas Heatherwick, and Anish Kapoor, among others, were behind London's Olympic Games, but from NBC's coverage, you'd hardly know, Aaron Betsky says.

  • Architecture Think Tank Promotes "Hardcorism" Manifesto

    A manifesto for the "hardcorism" architectural theory is making its way around the Web, but Aaron Betsky has his doubts about how hardcore it actually is.

  • Solar Cells for Windows Harvest Infrared Light

    The solar-harnessing window has long been on the green-building wish list. Researchers at UCLA may now have a solution, Blaine Brownell reports.

  • Beatbox Pavilion Exhibits Design's Ascension at the Olympics

    The Beijing Olympics launched the new era of designer Olympics, and this year's Olympic Games in London prove the trend with examples such as Asif Kahn and Permilla Ohrstedt's Coca-Cola Beatbox pavilion sculpture.