Hayao Miyazaki’s Final Film Screens in Japan, and Other News

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Image courtesy of Studio Ghibli

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Hayao Miyazaki’s Final Film Screens in Japan

If you’re sick of Barbie and Oppenheimer discourse, some respite may come by means of the latest film by Studio Ghibli. Hayao Miyazaki recently released How Do You Live (titled The Boy and the Heron outside Japan), billed as the beloved director’s final film after a string of threats to retire. Set during World War II and focusing on a young boy named Mahito whose mother is killed in a fire, the film appropriately explores themes of memory, loss, and moving on using Miyazaki’s unparalleled storytelling and signature animation technique. The studio declined to pursue PR for the film—it released only a single promotional poster—and a U.S. launch date remains undisclosed, though Japanese critics had rave reviews. —Ryan Waddoups

&ldquolThe Space of Light” by Tadao Ando. Image courtesy of Museum SAN

Tadao Ando has unveiled The Space of Light, a meditation Pavilion in South Korea.

The Space of Light, a new meditation pavilion designed by Tadao Ando, has opened at Museum SAN in Wonju, South Korea. The square concrete structure features narrow slits on the roof that allow intense sunlight to illuminate the interior walls, creating a solemn and contemplative space. While reminiscent of Ando’s Church of Light, the pavilion distinguishes itself with an open cross-shaped opening in the ceiling, allowing direct interaction with nature. The pavilion marks the tenth anniversary of Museum SAN and is part of an exhibition showcasing Ando’s works, held inside the main museum building.

Houston approves a high-tech artwork by Riccardo Mariano that will generate energy.

Houston city officials have approved a proposal for the Arco del Tiempo, a public artwork designed to generate clean energy and aid in the post-Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts. The arch, covered in solar panels, is expected to produce 400 megawatt-hours of electricity per year, supplying power to the Talento Bilingue de Houston theater and the surrounding park. Inspired by sundials and optimized for energy efficiency, the design aims to symbolize the city’s commitment to renewable energy and sustainable development while providing a visually engaging experience for the public.

Photography by Robin Utrecht/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

VanMoof, the Dutch e-bike maker that touted its financial prosperity, is bankrupt. 

VanMoof, the e-bike manufacturer known for being the “most funded e-bike company in the world,” has been declared bankrupt in the Netherlands. The court of Amsterdam withdrew the suspension of payment proceeding and declared VanMoof’s Dutch entities bankrupt while legal entities outside the Netherlands remain unaffected. Administrators have been appointed to assess the situation and explore the possibility of selling assets to a third party for a potential restart. VanMoof owners are now uncertain about the future of their specialized e-bikes and are advised to download their e-bike’s digital key for backup.

The Mäusebunker laboratory, a Brutalist landmark in Berlin, is saved from demolition.

Berlin’s Mäusebunker laboratory, a notable example of Brutalist architecture, has been granted historical monument status by local authorities, saving it from demolition. The concrete building, designed by Gerd and Magdalena Hänska, had faced opposition and campaigns for its preservation. Its distinctive pyramid shape, blue pipework, and triangular windows have made it a subject of debate, with potential for future use as a cultural center or innovation hub highlighted by the State Monuments Office’s report on the building.

Sherburne Museum is the latest to drop Adjaye after sexual misconduct allegations

David Adjaye has been dropped by Shelburne Museum as the designer for their planned Perry Center for Native American Art following accusations of sexual misconduct. The $12.6 million building, set to open in 2026, was intended to showcase a significant collection of Indigenous art. Adjaye Associates had been selected from a pool of 17 architectural firms, but the museum’s decision comes after several institutions, including the Multnomah County Library and the Studio Museum, disengaged from planned Adjaye projects due to the allegations. Shelburne Museum, however, remains committed to moving forward with the project as a national resource for Indigenous art.

Image courtesy of Treetop Trekking

Today’s attractive distractions:

Central Park’s “Paddleball Paul” is having nothing of the pickleball craze.

A TikToker claims that a Skims bodysuit saved her life after being shot.

Divorce parties—once described as a “really fun funeral”—are on the rise.

Canada welcomes the largest outdoor trampoline park in North America.

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