50 Norman Takes Greenpoint All the Way to Japan, and Other News

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50 Norman in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, by Schemata Architects.

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50 Norman Takes Greenpoint All the Way to Japan, and Other News

A former car garage in Greenpoint can now take you all the way to Japan, courtesy of new occupant 50 Norman, a marketplace for a trio of spaces offering the best of the country’s design and cuisine. Jo Nagasaka, founder of Tokyo’s Schemata Architects, worked with that city’s TANK group of craftspeople and Brooklyn-based Japanese design and construction team BLANK to refit the garage for retail using reclaimed wood from demolished Kyoto abodes. Graphic designer Rikako Nagashima of Village conceived the sandblasted signage.

The industrial minimalism is a good match for Cibone Brooklyn, the Japanese design destination’s first US location, and its collections of Yoshinori Takemura ceramics and Oigen cast iron kettles. Need tea? Nearby, Dashi Okume offers Ume Kombu varieties, along with custom-made dashi packs and other delectations. And in the back, House Brooklyn shows how the experts do it: Chef Yuji Tani’s seven-course tasting menu combines French technique with Kyoto flavors, in New York City at last. —Jesse Dorris

Heatherwick Studio’s proposal for a “motorcycle amphitheater” at Harley-Davidson’s headquarters in Milwaukee. Image courtesy of Heatherwick Studio

Heatherwick Studio is designing a “motorcycle amphitheater” for Harley-Davidson.

Heatherwick Studio has been commissioned to create a park beside Harley-Davidson’s headquarters in Milwaukee, which will feature an amphitheater that can accommodate up to 700 motorcycles for rallies. Developed by the London-based studio in partnership with HGA, a local firm, the park will be built on a “dull parking space” next to the existing office using 10 types of locally sourced brick and weathering steel. It’s set to open in 2024 as the first phase of a larger plan to revamp Harley-Davidson’s offices on the site it was founded in 1903.

Nike executive chairman Mark Parker has been named chairman of the board at Disney.

Mark Parker, the executive chairman of Nike, has been appointed as the next chairman of the board of The Walt Disney Company. Parker has been a member of Disney’s board for seven years. Parker succeeds Susan Arnold, whose 15-year term limit will end after the company’s next annual meeting of shareholders. Parker will remain as Nike’s executive chairman. “During his four decades at Nike, Mark has led one of the world’s most recognized consumer brands through various market evolutions and a successful CEO transition,” Arnold says. “He’s uniquely positioned to chair the Disney Board during this period of transformation.”

Despite owing $616 million in membership dues, the U.S. may soon rejoin UNESCO.

The United States may rejoin UNESCO, the United Nations culture and education body, more than four years after its most recent departure in 2019. An article in the $1.7 trillion Omnibus Appropriations Bill, passed on Dec. 22, paves the way for the Biden administration to rejoin, finance the organization, and pay the $616 million debt accumulated in membership dues. The most recent departure of the U.S. from Unesco came in 2019, when President Trump withdrew, citing “anti-Israeli bias.” This move came as a result of a 1990 law that forbade funding to any international body acknowledging Palestine as an independent state.

The Orange County Museum of Art designed by Morphosis Architects. Photography by Mike Kelley

The Orange County Museum of Art will close for three weeks to finish construction.

In October, the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) unveiled its new $94 million, 53,000-square-foot building, a swooping tour de force designed by Morphosis as the jewel of Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts. As Carolina Miranda noticed in the Los Angeles Times, however, the building wasn’t fully finished. “Trims sat unfinished or didn’t line up,” she wrote. “Some of the white terracotta tiles that cover the building’s facade were haphazardly installed, wrecking the precise geometries of a design that ripples and torques.” The OCMA announced it will be closed from Jan. 23-Feb. 13, 2023 to complete the remaining work. 

Carlo Ratti proposes the world’s largest solar farm for Rome’s World Expo 2030 bid. 

Carlo Ratti Associati, with architect Italo Rota and urbanist Richard Burdett, has unveiled the design of a solar farm as part of the master plan for Rome’s bid to host the World Expo in 2030. Proposed to cover an area of 1.615 million square feet, the plan would repurpose Le Vele, the massive sports complex designed by Santiago Calatrava, and would become the world’s largest urban publicly accessible solar farm with an estimated production capacity of 36 megawatt-peak. The complex energy grid is complemented by the use of “energy trees” that open and close their panels throughout the day to harvest energy and shade visitors. The plant is expected to power the exhibition site and decarbonize surrounding neighborhoods.

This year’s Hugo Ball Prize will no longer take place due to antisemitism concerns.

The Hugo Ball Prize, an award facilitated by the German city of Pirmasens, has been suspended this year because of the antisemitic views held by the prize’s namesake. A foundational figure of the German Dada movement, Ball explained what he viewed as a period of decline in his country as being caused by the Jews in his 1919 publication “On the Critique of the German Intelligentsia.” This year’s awardee, the filmmaker Hito Steyerl, fellow awardee Olivia Werzel, and the prize committee have chosen to suspend this year’s award, which gives 10,000 euros ($10,750) to an artist once every three years.

Elvis Presley’s 1962 Lockheed 1329 JetStar. Image courtesy Mecum

Today’s attractive distractions:

Elvis Presley’s long-dilapidated private jet sells for $260,000 at auction.

Vincent Callebaut uses AI to reimagine Paris as a breathing, green city

Pour one out for Ronzoni, which is discontinuing its star-shaped pasta.

The humble MetroCard has also served as a blank artistic canvas.

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