Celebrating 70 posts with a project space update and some images from Art School (Dismissed)

It’s been some time since our last post on the project space, so we thought we’d celebrate our 70th (!) with an update on recent developments. As some of you may know, this blog has been TYPOLOGY’s virtual home while our website and physical space are under construction. Both have seen delays for various reasons, but we promise that things are continuing to move forward…

For those who don’t yet know, TYPOLOGY is a not-for-profit project space which will be housed within a historic school building currently undergoing renovation by Artscape, a local organization with an international reputation for city-building through the arts. Award-winning and multi-faceted projects at Wychwood Barns, the Distillery, and Gibraltar Point on Toronto Island have proven Artscape’s model of repurposing underutilized buildings for the benefit of the arts and the greater community.

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Looking forward, looking back: 12 years of the Serpentine summer pavilion (a typology)

This year’s recently unveiled Serpentine pavilion design by Ai Weiwei and Herzog & de Meuron is a wonderfully poetic exploration into the history and context of the pavilion project itself. Since 2000, when the Serpentine Gallery initiated its celebrated annual commission, the summer pavilion has become an internationally-known site for experimentation by some of the world’s most well-respected artists and architects, including Zaha Hadid, Olafur Eliasson, SANAA, and most recently, Peter Zumthor.

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Typologies within typologies: 100 Abandoned Houses and the Heidelberg Project

We love typologies here at Typologica—quite obviously, considering they are our namesake. All that collecting and categorizing serves us curatorially-inclined folk well, facilitating critical connection-making on so many levels. As a scientific method, the use of typologies has existed for centuries within a tradition of exploration, classification, and analysis, but from the late 1950s when Hilla and Bernd Becher famously debuted their photographic archive of industrial structures, calling it Anonymous Sculptures: A Typology of Technical Constructions, typological methods within art have become widely appropriated and applied to all manner of people, places, and things.

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On becoming Lebbeus Woods

“Dry your eyes, Lebbeus Woods explains why architecture school and years of unpaid labor might be worth it” is how Architizer tweeted their recent post summarizing Woods’ lovely and concise true story, “Why I Became an Architect”. Posted in two parts on his blog this past week, the story is in actuality less about why and more about how one becomes and architect—or any creative professional, really—and therein lies the essence of its hard-won truth.

Leading off rather nicely with a Gustave Doré image of Virgil and Dante at the entrance to Hell, Woods traces the outlines of his early interests and influences in Part One, focusing on his passions for painting and light. In Part Two, Woods details how these outlines slowly began to resolve into the fuller picture of his life’s work, providing reassurance and inspiration to any creative professional who may currently be deep in the throes of dues-paying, or what one might more productively call practicing, to become a full-fledged architect, artist, designer, etc.

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The submerged subway: NYC

Making the rounds this morning is a fascinating article on New York City’s ghost subway system, comprising dozens of partially built or fully built but never used tunnels and platforms interwoven among and between the city’s currently bustling tracks and stops. Mainly originating from the 1920s and ’30s, these forgotten subterranean spaces represent the thwarted ambitions of city planners who once envisioned an expansive, interconnected future for every neighborhood in New York—until the fiscal repercussions and socio-political re-prioritizations of the Great Depression and World War II changed everything.

Reading all this brought to mind Stephen Mallon’s stunning 2010 photographs of the MTA’s ongoing “loadouts” and “drops” of retired subway cars into the Atlantic Ocean for the dual purposes of disposal and reef building. Coming to rest deep in the waters off the Maryland coast, the skeletal remains of obsolete trains circumscribe a virtual space of the sub-marine variety, existing as yet another invisible incarnation of the New York subway system’s many lives.

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A brief respite from reality

Back in our museum days, we often extolled the virtues of the mid-afternoon nap to our superiors, who for some reason remained unmoved. Now, courtesy of the international architectural firm kawamura-ganjavian, we’ve found the accessory of (or perhaps for) our dreams, the OSTRICH pocket pillow. No more crawling under your desk for that much-deserved bit of rest and relaxation—with the OSTRICH you can power-nap in “privacy”. NOTE: Others will still be able to see you.

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What’s next for TYPOLOGY

Timed to coincide with Artscape’s groundbreaking and press announcements this past week, TYPOLOGY made its online debut. With the project space still under construction and a website in the works, it was admittedly the softest of openings, but we are thrilled to be official at last, and thankful for all the interest and support we’ve received so far.

Now that the proverbial dust has settled a bit, you may be wondering what’s in store for the coming year. We’ve been hard at work developing our programming for the first few seasons, and will continue to seek out artists, architects, designers, performers, writers, and curators with whom to collaborate on future exhibitions and events. Proposals and submissions will be accepted online once we launch our full website; in the meantime, please get in touch — we’d love to know what you’re working on.

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Scenes from a groundbreaking

Today Artscape celebrated the groundbreaking and naming of their new arts centre currently being renovated on Shaw, future home to 20+ artists and organizations including TYPOLOGY Projects. More photos after the jump!

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A decade+ of Serpentine summer pavilions

In 2000, the Serpentine Gallery in London initiated an annual commission for a temporary structure by an architect or design team who has not completed a building in England at the time of the Gallery’s invitation. Over the past eleven years, the Serpentine summer pavilion has become an internationally-known site for experimentation by some of the world’s foremost artists and architects. Above, the 2001 pavilion by Daniel Libeskind; below, the 2009 pavilion by Rem Koolhaas with Cecil Balmond from Arup.

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