New York City

This week, all eyes of  New York’s contemporary art scene were focused on the opening of James Turell’s retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum. Two parallel exhibitions of James Turell’s work are also taking place in Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. What’s unique about the Guggenheim one, however, is the fact that it is dominated by a major site-specific installation that Turrell has designed specially for the museum. Houston and LA, on the other hand, are using traditional galleries to mount surveys of the artist’s work- Art.sy reports.

James Turrell, Aten Reign, 2013. Photo Credit : David Heald. Via: The Business Of Fashion 

Curbed Classics, a column in which Untapped contributor Lisa Santoro traces the history of classic New York City buildings, offers an exciting sneak peek into the upper-class Brooklyn resorts of the late nineteenth century.  The Manhattan Beach Hotel, Hotel Brighton, and The Oriental Hotel are now long forgotten but once used to cater to the sensibilities and interests of genteel and refined Victorians.

Oriental Hotel NYPL-thumb
The Oriental Hotel via the NYPL. Source: Curbed.

Los Angeles

LA Tourism is celebrating this month’s Gay Pride festivities with a special  nine-stop  LGBT walking tour that highlight’s L.A’s gay history. The itinerary spans over 24.5 miles so the company suggests using the metro in addition to your own two feet – LA Mag reports. (If you end up going you might want to show your LA pride with one of these funky t-shirts by Gay for America!)

Boston-based designer Peter Dunn is re-inventing the LA highway system map. The results are slightly reminiscent of London’s subway maps, according to Curbed LA. You can find the project on Kickstarter.


Messy Nessy Chic tells a remarkable story of a squatter who has called Pont Louis Philippe home for over 20 years. After serving seven years in the French Foreign Legion and traveling the world James B. settled into a tiny space that previously served as a storage place for road maintenance. The blog reports that James B. was already visited by the mayor of Paris twice, during the seasonal opening of the Paris beaches.

640x426x3188082057_9a7e889e34_z.jpg,qzz=1.pagespeed.ic._cYrdj6uoZ  Pont Louis Philippe via Messy Nessy Chic.

Speaking of surprising spaces in Paris, have you seen our last week’s piece on strange entrances reminiscent of Mayan Temples on Porte Champerret in the 17th Arrondisement?


One of our most thrilling finds this week is the Essential Guide to the Ruins of Super Science by Atlas Obscura. In his article, Eric Grundhouser demonstrates what happened to  famous large-scale science  facilities around the world, built in a brave attempt to understand the world, when they faced institutional mismanagement, lack of funding, or  obsolescence.

image Atomic Survival Town, Photo via Atlas Obscura.

The structures covered in the Essential Guide are sad shells of buildings that once used to be  vessels for a scientific exploration of  the world. But can architecture also be a vessel for social change? Herkes İçin Mimarlık, from ”Architecture for All,” is convinced that it can. The ArchDaily reports that his Istanbul- based non-profit is “devoted to offering architectural solutions to social problems facing Turkey today and promoting a participatory design process in architecture.” Take a look at a tumblr called #occupygezi architecture to find out more about Herkes İçin Mimarlık’s recent documentation of the temporary structures built by the protesters in Taksim Square.

Get in touch with the author @tendrebarbare.

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