More stories about COMMENTARY

  • What's Trending Reflects a Return to Order

    Comfort is king? Aaron Betsky isn't so sure he likes how we're hearkening back to older times in an attempt to be progressive.

  • Architects, it's Time to Wow Us Again

    Foster & Partners was chosen to redesign 425 Park Avenue, and Aaron Betsky fears that yet another bland box will hit New York's skyline. It's time to break out of boring boxes, he says.

  • The Ideological Divide Between Cities and Suburbs

    The line between cities and suburbs is generally the line between Democrats and Republicans. Aaron Betsky says that this also represents the preference for community or isolation.

  • DNA Testing to Trace Lumber's Origins

    Illegal logging and forged certification threaten the integrity of sustainable lumber. Solving the problem is DNA testing for wood, Blaine Brownell reports.

  • Urbasee Anchors Virtual Architecture to Context

    French company Urbasee designs GPS-enabled software for iPads that tethers virtual models to life or locates models on proposed sites, Blaine Brownell reports.

  • A Stay in Arne Jacobsen's Room 606

    The SAS Radisson Hotel proves a stark, comfortable, beautiful contrast to other resting stops in Copenhagen on Aaron Betsky's last visit to the Danish city.

  • Amsterdam Firm Debuts First Mobile Printing Pavilion

    Amsterdam-based DUS Architects debuts the first mobile 3D-printing pavilion, big enough to print furniture, Blaine Brownell reports, presenting a flexible option for mass-customizable furnishings and small architectural components.

  • 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.