Sunday, July 31, 2005

Renzo Piano, the greatest architect you've never heard of.

When you want a flashy, expensive and noteworthy building you turn to Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaus or Daniel Libeskind. Unfortunately, not every building can be a signature piece. When you want a conservative building executed well, you turn to Renzo Piano (Slate article).

While the other architectural wunderkinds have been rebuilding city skylines with bold statements in metal and glass, Piano has been quietly designing buildings in Europe and Asia. I was reminded of him while watching a documentary on Kansai airport in Osaka, Japan.

Piano is scheduled for what they'd call a breakout fairly soon. In the same way that Gehry exploded from architectural obscurity to the mainstream after the Bilbao Guggenhiem, I think Piano will similarly acsend after the London 'Shard of Glass' is built. It will soon be the tallest building in Europe, especially striking for a city not especially known for skyscrapers. Soon afterward, people may revisit his other works such as the New York Times building, Pompidou Centre and other works and discover a deep and varied portfolio worthy of some of the same recognition as the other household names.

Monday, July 25, 2005

My 'habit' is becoming a 'problem'

I bought a new lens for my D70. This is now my fourth lens and it cost more than my D70 body itself. I know I have a problem. I told myself I wouldn't buy any new equipment until I sold something... but the lens spoke to me in a high pitched begging voice "take me home... take me home..." and I couldn't say no to such a well-engineered piece of Japanese glass.

My new Nikon 80-200 f/2.8D will keeping me company on my latest trip.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Canada's Economic History

I meant to post this a few weeks ago, but lost track of it. Here's a little economic quiz for Canadians. Apparently only 1 in (some insanely high number of people) could get 20 out of 20. I got 16 out of 20. How well can you do?