Monday, April 28, 2008

on the road + online

Lake Ponchartrain Causeway
Lake Ponchartrain Causeway, originally uploaded by regional.modernism.
Photo courtesy of the New Orleans Virtual Archive (coming soon!)
I'm working on a method of translating the processes learned in this semester's course into a system for capturing the digital photos taken by summer study programs and travel fellowships. I have a number of recommendations for integrating or mashing up different technologies. The online toolkit includes: EditGrid, MapBuilder, Flickr and Blogger.*

Before the trip, I can assist the faculty in setting up a spreadsheet for the base itinerary in EditGrid.** EditGrid is a online spreadsheet that can be shared and updated by multiple users. It's a great tool for a collaborative project.
  1. We will keep the data simple and relevant:building name, architect(s), and location (street address, city, country).
  2. We will also add a group tag or ID to all sites: This could be a course ID (DSGN652) or relevant word string (TSAJapan08). Essentially, this tag that will identify any images uploaded to different Flickr accounts as being part of this image collective.
  1. The EditGrid itinerary spreadsheet should be updated regularly to reflect actual sites visited.
  2. This task can be delegated and shared by members of the group.
  3. If anyone in the group has an iPhone, the itinerary can be updated in real time.
  1. In EditGrid, export as csv.
  2. Then go to MapBuilder, and import the intinerary.
  3. MapBuilder will generate coordinates for latitude and longitude.
  4. One can also then export the data from MapBuilder and import it into Google Maps or Google Earth via GPSVisualizer.
  • Upload images to Flickr using the Flickr Uploadr relevant to your OS:
  • Upload images of a single building at a time
  • Place them into a Set
  • Set name = Building name
  • Copy and paste the relevant line of data from the EditGrid itinerary
  • into the description
  • and into the tag
  • Photographers should also add their own name
  • into the description
  • and as a tag
  • Tags
  • Place phrases in quotes.
  • Individual words do not need quotes.
  • ex. "Bibliotheque Nationale" "Henri Labrouste" "11 Quai François-Mauriac, Paris, France" tsaParis08 "Victor Jones"
  • Images should also be mapped / geo-tagged in Flickr.
  • Flickr> Map> Organize > Your Map
  • Select: Your non-geotagged content
  • Shift-select images to map
  • Find a location: enter location data
  • Drag images to the appropriate point

BLOGGING THE TRAIL. Travel groups or fellowships may wish to set up a blog to create an online travel journal. Then one can simply select an image in Flickr and click "blog this" to generate a post.

Presentation at Tulane School of Architecture on Wednesday, April 30 at 11 am. Richardson Memorial Hall (#4 on campus map) room 204.

*One will need to register in EditGrid and MapBuilder. Flickr requires a yahoo mail account and Blogger requires a Google mail account.

**I would have used EditGrid in our course mapping project, but I only discovered it (with thanks to Alan Gutierrez) after the maps had been created.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Music and Architecture

Nick Spitzer and Jonn Hankins are coordinating a discussion of the relationship between our rich architectural and musical heritage on Friday April 18 at 8 pm at the Sound Café, 2700 Chartres Street.

The discussion will be a component of the Center for Black Music Research conference on the black music diaspora. It will feature banjoist and bandleader Don Vappie, rhythm and blues pianist Eddie Bo, trumpeter and singer Lionel Ferbos, saxophonist and clarinetist Alonzo Bowen, and Earl Barthé, a plasterer who views music as an influence in his work.

Our music, architecture are linked, Lolis Eric Elie

George Williams Band, Jazz Funeral on Hilary Street, Bernard Lemann, photographer. New Orleans Virtual Archive, Tulane School of Architecture

Monday, April 14, 2008

21st century in the 11th ward

This is a whole lotta house on a seriously small lot. The Tulane URBANbuild Protoype 03 house is approaching completion at Seventh and Dryades in Central City. Students developed multiple protoypes in a semester-long design studio prior to the build this spring. The design is sensitive to our vernacular architecture in spirit, but not in style. The house is raised on piers to protect it from minor street flooding and benefit from a cooling breeze underfoot. The mandatory front porch is ample and inviting. An upper balcony provides a more discreet view of the street theater that often unfolds in the neighborhood.
The URBANbuild house may not have the brackets or columns and cast iron details that typify our 19th century housing, but it is not a replica of a facsimile.* It has integrity. As the students labor to complete the house in the next few weeks, stop by and check it out. This is a fine example of Regional Modernism.

* Much of the new housing being constructed in the city are pale and cheap imitations of our historic architecture.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

National Maritime Union

by Ben Wasserman
In the early 1950s Albert Ledner got the commission for the National Maritime Union’s hiring hall through a close friend. He was to complete 14 buildings for the Union between 1954 and 1968 – in cities from San Francisco to San Juan. This included 3 in New York City and one in New Orleans. The most famous and dramatic of these is the Curran/O’Toole Building in Greenwich Village, NYC. These NMU buildings were striking examples of Ledner’s eccentric take on Modernism. Due to the similarity of these buildings and the number of different cities they were built in, looking at the New Orleans building will be an excellent way of analyzing the regional character of the building.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

New Orleans Civic Center

De Lesseps “Chep” Morrison’s tenure as mayor of the City of New Orleans was characterized by a wave of new construction – highways, bridges, schools, etc. The crowning achievement in this building frenzy was the Civic Center, serving as a physical manifestation of the transparent, efficient, streamlined and functional government he sought to give the people of New Orleans. Comprised of City Hall, the State Office Annex Building, the Civil Courts Building, and the Main Library, the Civic Center was an $18 million investment. The list of architects who collaborated on the complex reads like a roster of the most notable practitioners of the modern style in this city: Goldstein, Parham & Labouisse; Favrot, Reed, Mathes & Bergman; August Perez and Associates; and Curtis & Davis. Now, with two of the buildings on the verge of being demolished, one wonders how the built integrity of the entire complex as well as the legacy of Mayor Morrison, a politician who believed in the social potential of architecture, can fully be preserved.

by Megan Lubaszka