Went to a bar tonight that used to be great, a neighbourhood bar in the old Arts Club Theatre. What happened? 14 sports TV screens happened, a contempo remodel, and all the clientele that comes with that stuff. This town just took a turn for the douche.
Posts Tagged ‘Vancouver’
A small selection of architectural photographs by Vancouver photographer Krista Jahnke. Trained as an architect at Carleton University, Jahnke also has a BFA in photography from Vancouver’s Emily Carr University of Art and Design. She’s taken some of the best shots of the Eames House I’ve seen. There are many photographs of that iconic house out there in the world, but Jahnke’s photos somehow situate the house in its environment in a different way.
See Jahnke’s site for some Vancouver architectural masterpieces and landmarks, both public buildings and private houses such as the Merrick House, and other sites abroad. She is also an award-winning designer. See here (P. 66)
Above, Vancouver’s Robson Square from above, showing the “Pop Rocks” white bean bag public seating installation by Matthew Soules and AFJD Studio; Jahnke was involved in the project as official photographer.
George Norris, the artist who made what is arguably Vancouver’s most famous piece of public art—a giant steel crab in front of the Vancouver Museum and Planetarium—has died in Victoria. It’s odd that so few know Norris’s name, considering the crab’s popularity, how prolific he was in his career, and his long art teaching career in Vancouver and Banff.
Vancouver does have a long history of ignoring its own artists even as they’re celebrated elsewhere, but I’m still surprised that so many of Norris’ public pieces have been removed and destroyed, including the tall steel piece below which used to stand outside Pacific Centre downtown. This post is just a small reminder of Norris’ work. Find more information— here and many more works here.
One of Norris’ most popular works is the frieze on the exterior of the post office at 8th and Pine (I believe that’s the corner). Photo below.
Norris was trained in Vancouver and London at the Slade School. Norris is the uncle of award-winning Vancouver artist Arabella Campbell.
The largest clear-span wooden building in the world, constructed entirely without glue wood, was built as a U.S. military air station hangar. It is now the Tillamook Air Museum in Oregon. More info here and Wikipedia.
It’s nice to see communities saving these old military hangars. It is a tragedy that Vancouver lost its 5 vintage military hangars at Jericho Beach in Vancouver in the late 1970s. They were beautiful. I heard about the Tillamook hangar from Vancouver architect Mark Osburn who was, incidentally, responsible for the interior refurbishment of one of the Jericho hangars for UN Habitat 1976.
There’s been a lot of talk lately about wooden skyscrapers and large wooden buildings, as if it’s a new thing. The architecture of this hangar is an unsung feat far preceding these newer, much-hyped ideas.
There are different criteria for ranking wooden buildings by size; as noted above the Tillamook hangar is the largest clear-span wooden building. It is not the tallest, and it may not be largest when measured by square footage of usable floor space.
Other large buildings, based on various criteria:
Tōdai-ji in Nara, Japan
Metropol Parasol palace in Sevilla, Spain (freestanding structure, not enclosed building)
Sutyagin House, Russia – largest wooden single family house, built by Russian gangster
Wooden skyscrapers are planned for Austria and Norway and more recently one has been proposed by Vancouver’s Michael Green. And of course there was the Wood Innovation and Design Centre to be built in Prince George, British Columbia, meant to be the tallest wood building the world, but so far unbuilt due to monies promised by the BC gov’t but not budgeted for or delivered.
Kibune Sushi is one of my three favourite restaurants in Vancouver. I would have promoted it more in the past, but like many others, I suspect, I’ve selfishly tried to save it for myself. However, on behalf of the lovely owners and staff of this restaurant—Endo-san and Yoko and all our other friends there—I wanted to give it the recognition it is due. I wanted to remind Vancouverites that older, perfect restaurants like this still exist in Vancouver despite our runaway development problem. Kibune has been in this Yew Street location for 31 years, owned and run by the same people, people who have never let the quality of the food drop and who have kept the beautiful interior virtually changed.
The place was a favourite of Bill Reid, who lived nearby—my aunt and I used to take him out for lunch there when he was ailing. It was his choice. I sometimes see David Suzuki there, and the walls are lined with messages from many illustrious types who’ve visited. Ask to see the lovely killer whale drawing Bill Reid made for Endo-san (it’s a copy, since the original was becoming threatened by theft or wear and tear).
I only expose this secret now because in Vancouver’s distorted real estate climate, I want to support smaller, non-franchise restaurants to make sure they survive and thrive. I really hope this place remains a beautiful refuge for decades more.
A few doors up Yew Street is Hapa Izakaya, full of giant TV screens, hockey and the same clientele you’d see at a sports bar. It’s more busier than Kibune is, which seems a travesty. In any other city you wouldn’t even be able to get a seat at Kibune.
As far as the menu goes, the goma-ae spinach salad (actually closer to an ohitashi in style) is by far the best one in Vancouver. Even for those who shy from the idea of eel, the barbequed unagi is completely addictive. For those who love tuna, the tuna bowl (tekka donburi) contains some of the best sushi tuna you’ll ever find. Any of the sushi is good. Try the gobo (burdock root) salad too – faintly spicy in an interesting way. It’s worth trying the specials on the board or just ask what’s good.
Lastly, for a designer, the interior of Kibune Sushi is perfect in every detail. (I’ve written about it before, in the context of the poverty of most Vancouver restaurant design.) In particular, notice the joinery’d eaves and shingled roof over the sushi bar as well as the beautiful handmade booths with peeled log posts and ricepaper screens. One of the screens is missing its ricepaper, and I’m almost certain my nephews had something to do with that, for which we apologize.
If you know me and are wanting sushi, or are coming in from out of town and want to see it, contact me and I’ll join you there.
Kibune Sushi , 1508 Yew Street at Cornwall (next to the Starbucks), Vancouver. Ph: 604-731-4482