Icon 117: Skyscrapers

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Icon 117: Skyscrapers

Only 66 buildings over 200m were completed in 2012, according to the annual report of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, compared with 82 the previous year. However the report predicts that 2013 will break the record for newly constructed skyscrapers, most of which will be in Asia, largely as a result of the building boom in China. In this issue of Icon, we interview Adrian Smith, who led the design of SOM’s 828m-high Burj Khalifa in Dubai: the tallest building in the world. His new practice AS+GG is now working on the Kingdom Tower in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and its clients insist that it be even taller, at over 1km in height.

We also talk to Winy Maas, principal at MVRDV, about his pixel towers project, with which he hopes to explore a new typology of skyscraper. And we take in the view from the Shard in London, and wonder we’re so fascinated with views.

Up front, there’s Morphosis’s natural history museum in Dallas, David Chipperfield’s Café Royal, a fuss-free curtain by the Bouroullec Brothers, a hotel for star-gazers in Chile, Dutch design pair Os & Oos, Zaha Hadid’s Broad Museum, classic furniture by Jules Wabbes, a house that uses 6,000 glass bricks, and Nendo’s bowls that quiver in the breeze.

Plus: 24 pages of the latest designs from Scandinavia in our Scandinavian Design Report.

In Review: Stefan Sebök, the forgotten modernist; the last British pop avant-garde; how London Bridge crossed the Atlantic, and the driving force of cinema.

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