VotW 09: Rob Carter’s Metropolis


A special thanks to Brand Avenue for turning us on to this unique video of the chronological transformation of the city of Charlotte, North Carolina. And here is a description of the work by the artist Rob Carter from his website:

Rob Carter’s work uses stop-motion animation, time-lapse video and large format photographs to spotlight iconic and political structures in our urban environment, especially sports stadia, skyscrapers, churches, and other historical landmarks. Cut photographic images and living plants are used to make often humorous retellings of history – morphing and recontextualizing architecture and urban development. Recent work draws parallels between the inspiration and power of the natural world, and human attempts to understand, manipulate and control it in the past, present and future.

Full Length Video
Rob Cater Bio

VotW 06: Carolyn Steel Speaks At TED


Here is a description of the lecture given by Steel from the TED website:

Every day, in a city the size of London, 30 million meals are served. But where does all the food come from? Architect Carolyn Steel discusses the daily miracle of feeding a city, and shows how ancient food routes shaped the modern world.

Cullum and Nightingale Architects
Review of “Hungry City” by Steel

Top 10 Urbanism Blogs

It is the beginning of 2008 and thus, time to review a few of our favorite sites as featured in our sidebars. Our first review centers around Urbanism blogs. The blogs are ranked in the order in which our editor finds them to be most relevant to the topic, by their visual appeal, and finally by the frequency in which they are updated. Of course this is a highly subjective selection and we welcome any comments or suggestions for blogs that we may not have featured here or elsewhere on our site.

01:: Where

“A blog about urban places, placemaking, and the concept of “place”.” Clearly one of the most comprehensive blogs regarding urbanism, the site features images, articles, reviews and a myriad of other writings pertaining to the subject. As the author indicates on the site’s homepage, “The professional planning and architecture communities are responsible for stewarding the most complicated — and, in terms of day-to-day impact — the most socially relevant area of the arts. But the importance of the work done in these fields is often overlooked by the public.”

Chilean blog regarding urbanism with a South American focus. The blog is a highly organized, visually stunning with an emphasis on quality writing as well as imagery and supporting diagrams.

Spanish blog featuring excellent photography, articles and presentations of both the built and un-built urban environment.

Recently revamped, this blog authored by Kazys Varnelis (Director of Network Architecture Lab, Columbia University) provides critical, in-depth analysis of issues both relating to and shaping today’s urbanism. The quality of the writing is among the best featured here.

Produced by Washington, DC native Richard Layman the blog in the author’s words, “…focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work–historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy–along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.” The site features articles on numerous happenings from both the DC metro area as well other urban regions in the United States.

A blog devoted to exposing, exploring and providing solutions to many of the housing crises found around our planet. The breathtaking photographs found here are sure to provoke reactions that hopefully will lead to better living conditions for those affected. Alternatively, many interesting and thoughtful designs are showcased as solutions to the overall problem.

Official blog for Architecture for Humanity: Minnesota featuring excellent articles, photographs and news articles pertaining to their organization. A must read for those familar with this AFH and their works.

A frequently visited site that features daily top photos, artworks, inventions, etc. that are both directly and indirectly related to urbanism. The tagline really says it all: urban design, culture, travel, architecture and alternative art.

Another mash-up style blog similar to Web Urbanist featuring photos, articles and “top” categories for your perusal and commentary.

Urban-ism is a blog that not only features photographs, videos and articles on urbanism, but also gives architectural criticism on projects predominately found in Canada.

Stewart Brand Speaks At TED

Here is the description of the edited speech given by Brand from the TED website:

“Rural villages worldwide are being deserted, as billions of people flock to cities, to live in teeming squatter camps and slums. And Stewart Brand says this is a good thing. Why? It’ll take you 3 minutes to find out. Music: Brian Eno, “Just Another Day on Earth,” from his 2005 album, Another Day on Earth.”

His comments and projections for the future of rural communities raises an interesting question. Who is going to grow the food for this ever growing population if we all eventually live in cities?

Kathryn McCamant On Dwell

Dwell magazine has launched a new series of videos on various topics that includes a collection of videos from various designers. The first in the Designer Series is architect Kathryn McCamant. Here is the description from dwell:


“As part of our Design Leaders video series, architect and cohousing expert Kathryn McCamant talks about a lesson learned from the Danes: Bringing houses together brings people together.”

In Context Article
McCamant & Durrett Architects Site