This has been out for a while. I’m just not sure on how to blog about it… Basically the nice people at Austin Monthly Home created a timeline for Austin Architecture since well, the beginning, pre 1840, to present-day, choosing MJ Neal as an example of the present; in what what they call “neomodern.”
Alofsin, an architect and profesor at UT seems to have coined the “neomodern” moniker and although I disagree with his take of “it” not having a idelogical base, who am I to argue.
I’ll say this, one day, we need to put a book out. We’ll do it in collaboration with Thomas and Powei, we’ll dig into our archives and bring out the emails we wrote in dialogue with the neighborhood and amongst ourselves, eh boys?
We are definitely not the only ones that should be mentioned in the timeline, but I guess there wasn’t much space.
so… WOW, have we come a long way since the neighbors were calling the news on us complaining that we were building Texaco stations on their street. Let’s celebrate! I’m ready to party! Oh wait. There’s a WILD recession going on and, right, soon, maybe.
Thanks Austin Monthly! and thanks to my now most favorite person of all times, Rhonda Lashley, the writer.
Posted by Viviane
PS: Unfortunately and for reasons beyond our control, we don’t live in the Ramp House anymore, not since 2005… me miss you, house!
MJ and I love the idea of urban farming. We also turned practically vegetarian last year, with an emphasis in macrobiotics. We both enjoy cooking and make it up as we go, exploring all kinds of new dishes. Right now, we are on a diet of greens, grains, fruits, legumes, miso soups, etc of Japanese and Mediterranean influence. We’ve always eaten “healthy,” we thought, but we realized that eliminating most of meat from our diet was not only the sustainable way to go but drastically helpful to our health. We do eat sometimes a bit of meat or eggs coming from local farms like Food you can Trust, Alexander Family Farm or Betsy Ross that we have personally visited and that we trust a 100%.
This morning we listened to NPR’s program on Detroit and rejoiced, profoundly. There it is! The new world peeking…
I was opening files and this Skype chat between MJ and I came up. We were in the same city, yes, but in different houses, late at night (noooo we didn’t have a fight… it’s a loooong story… to be told another time) We had a deadline on an article we had been asked to write for our good friends at the Good Life Magazine so we both got on skype…
You won’t see a post like this every day on this blog, no sir
Chat History with
Created on 2006-12-07 22:51:33.
so we’re working remotely for this article. the beuty and the beast of technology
how are we to maintain a physical community with this?
it would be a long story to explain why we are not doing this in person, but it IS related to housing
ok the absence of housing then
well maybe it is also the absence of the ability for most to be “neighbors” these days or maybe that is a little to harsh
I liked your perception of the fence around our house, I’m going to paste it here
it is a beautiful metophor
a physical thing
a real thing
Our current house has a low chain link fence around the back yard. You know the type, the one your parents put up to keep the family dog from getting into their friend’s–read neighbors–yard and digging up the tomatoes. The fence dad would lean on while talking to Mr. Jones. The fence where Mrs. Jones would trade mom some tomatoes for zucchini. Well this fence of ours, has gates in it to the neighbors’ yards. Imagine that. Openings to my neighbors’yards. A gesture to the sense of community right there in my own back yard.
But these gates are covered with vines and have been wired shut. When? Why? What a beautiful thing those gates are.
(this is a goo “last line)I wonder if my neighbors would like some Squash?
is that goo or good?
maybe we should skip the IM thing and go home and get in bed
I like the tactile part
ok back to the article
somehow I think that the point you make about community is also related to “truth”
This is an experimental short film produced for the 20×2.org interactive show at SXSW. A divertimento on the poetry by Fernando Pessoa. Written, produced, scored, edited, and directed by Viviane Vives for Barcelona Films.
“AIA Austin is pleased to announce the results of the 2008 Design Awards Competition. The AIA Austin design competition seeks to recognize outstanding architectural projects by members and to promote public interest in architectural excellence. The jury met on April 4, 2008 at the Chapter office and reviewed sixty-eight entries from local firms and made the following selections:
(The highest award given in this program)
M.J. Neal Architects
And it goes on to list the other Honor Award (the fabulous Concrete Studio by Mell Lawrence, a must see) 3 Citation awards and only 2 Merit Awards… This year there were only 7 awards in total!
MJ and I were stunned, this is such a tiny project (at only $40 per sq ft.) and it was competing against such heavy hitters, that we didn’t have many high hopes…
So, at the Saturday Gala, when the Merit and the Citations came and went, and the beautiful Concrete Studio by Mell Lawrence came in as the Honor Award winner, we were almost getting up to go, a bit dissapointed but happy to have seen some good architecture and greeted some colleagues and friends…
Then, on the screen, it appeared: “Pilates Studio.” by… M.J. Neal Architects. I looked at MJ in disbelief, “that would be us!” He had a funny look on his face as he buttoned his jacket in a hurry…
What a jury, Julie Eizenberg, AIA; David Baker, FAIA, Randy Brown, FAIA … they had the nicest things to say about the work, rigorous, sensual, creative… wow, I still can’t believe it, and the last award of the night, how about them apples, eh?
This award is not connected to the AIA National Institute Honor award for the Anthony Nak Project that we will pick up in Boston May 15.
Photo: Viviane Vives
MJ has been awarded the 2008 Silver Medal for significant contribution to architectural design from the Upsilon chapter of Tau Sigma Delta at Texas Tech University’s College of Architecture
He was very surprised and happy, we traveled to Lubbock so they could give the thing to him and so he could lecture them in exchange (not so sure about this barter here now, huh?)
OK, really, it was fun, MJ is a TTech alumnus and the students that hosted us (Adam Reed and Amber Howard) were intelligent, gracious and fun; we honestly had a great time with them and they took us to great restaurants!
– Publicatios in Serbia and Syria and other national magazines will be coming up as well, details on the next newsletter! project submission to be exhibited in the Architecture Gallery of the RIAI in 2008
I wanted to close with a couple worthy causes, our son Kilean participated in this video to help raise money for the Children’s Shelter.Gary Walker of TX-FX heads this remarkable effort every year!
No, this is not becoming a photography blog, but what can I say, I’m in a shooting mood. And we can all use a break from architecture once in a while.
Kiaron works at the grocery store and I’ve been wanting to photograph him for a while, then he shows up with a black eye (from trying to break up a fight he says.) So I ask him if he wants to do a short photo session and he goes, yes, my friends tell all the time me I should do that. So we shot yesterday. He calls me before hand hoping he doesn’t have to smile much because he’s sad. I say that’s even better. In 15 minutes we are in another world. Short session, but we decide to milk the black-eye, street-kid thing I mean, what else…
For what I can see, he’s actually pretty angelic and way sweet, but like I told him, the camera doesn’t know that…
Veronica, Roma, and Natalie have been getting together for fashion shoots for four years now, they are now fifteen, so do the math. They were joined by EvanA and Aralynne. Veronica is an amazing photographer herself and she chose the setting and orchestrated the get-ups and the do’s. She’s also a beautiful model (she’s the one in the “Kill your TV” t-shirt, a like minded soul!) They all are. Just incredibly talented.
I had such a good time that I’m considering getting back into photography, beyond architectural photography that is. I hope you enjoy these as much as I have shooting them and getting them ready for show. We had so many good pictures that it was quite the task.
Lauren Bard deserves also special credit. She was generous enough to let me participate, as were the girls… Lauren helped me with reflectors and what-not and managed some great shots of her own, on top of it.
Check the Pilates studio out! It’s open for business. Ann Arnoult is an excellent Pilates instructor and a former dancer at Ballet Austin. This project was built by Living Art, Austin. John and Mike’s building outfit.
Update April 22, 2008
Foda Studio created the three illustrations for the project, I think they are our good luck charm:
We are proud to announce that this project has won the 2008 AIA Austin top Design Honor Award! This makes us the winners of the top local design award for two consecutive years! Stand by for celebration party:-)