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A perpetual tourist who makes his own souvenirs: The intriguing work of artist Jorge Mañes Rubio

A perpetual tourist who makes his own souvenirs: The intriguing work of artist Jorge Mañes Rubio

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From China’s underwater cities to Amsterdam’s neglected neighborhoods to Italy’s looted ruins, Jorge Mañes Rubio seeks out forsaken places and makes art that memorializes, reimagines and reengages them with the world. His project “Normal Pool Level” — which emerged from his exploration of the cities, towns and villages submerged by China’s Three Gorges Dam Project []

What to do about Detroit? A Q&A with urban planner, Toni Griffin

What to do about Detroit? A Q&A with urban planner, Toni Griffin

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Everyone knows Detroit is in trouble. The list of problems assaulting the once-mighty Motor City is long and, from a look at national newspapers, incessantly documented. Most recently, the city filed for bankruptcy; its former mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick, was sentenced to 28 years in prison for public corruption. Since the booming 1950s, the city of Detroit []

5 TED Talks about bikes

5 TED Talks about bikes

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“I don’t think protected bicycle ways are a cute architectural feature. They are a right, just as sidewalks are,” says Enrique Peñalosa, the former mayor of Bogota, Colombia, in today’s talk. “Protected bikeways also are a powerful symbol of democracy, because they show that a citizen on a $30 bicycle is equally important to one []

Dhaka in pictures: a city of culture, opportunity and deprivation

Dhaka in pictures: a city of culture, opportunity and deprivation

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Nurur Rahman Khan was born and bred in Dhaka, Bangladesh. A practicing architect and university lecturer, Khan alternately marvels at the city’s convivial culture and bemoans its economic and structural deficiencies. He’ll brook no debate over the quality of Dhaka’s food, though: It’s miraculously good. Here’s a taste of Khan’s Dhaka, photographed by Mohammad Tauheed, a []

Christchurch in pictures: Life after a devastating earthquake

Christchurch in pictures: Life after a devastating earthquake

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Christchurch-based Danny Squires is director of Space Craft Systems and co-founder of WikiHouse/NZ, a global  project aiming to make it possible for anyone to design, download and “print” houses. Squires was going about his daily business in Christchurch on February 22, 2011, when a 6.3-magnitude earthquake ripped through the city, causing horrific damage and killing []

My City: Juliana Rotich on Ushahidi, BRCK and life in Nairobi

My City: Juliana Rotich on Ushahidi, BRCK and life in Nairobi

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Juliana Rotich was not expecting our interview to end in tears. Neither was I. But on reflection, we were both completely ok with it. After all, that’s what happens when terrorism becomes personal. For Rotich, that happened at the end of September, when al Shabaab terrorists attacked the Westgate Mall in the northwestern part of []

7 TED Talks on the need to encourage entrepreneurship

7 TED Talks on the need to encourage entrepreneurship

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Could unemployment be a factor that leads to terrorism? In today’s talk, peace strategist Mohamed Ali (not to be confused with the boxer) introduces us to the youth of Mogadishu, Somalia — 70 percent of whom are unable to find jobs. In this talk, Ali highlights just how appealing the messages of terrorist organizations and []

Sanctuaries of sound in New York City: Fellows Friday with Susie Ibarra

Sanctuaries of sound in New York City: Fellows Friday with Susie Ibarra

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Percussionist and composer Susie Ibarra is creating virtual sanctuaries for real cities. Working in collaboration with local artists, historians, architects, city planners and musicians, Ibarra and her partner Roberto Rodriguez — who together form Electric Kulintang — have created a musical pilgrimage that takes the public on a sound walk through 12 sites in Lower []

My City: An artist spray-paints Cairo’s uncertain future

My City: An artist spray-paints Cairo’s uncertain future

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Early one morning, hours before the sun would rise, Lebanese-Egyptian artist, activist and historian Bahia Shehab was alone on the streets of Cairo, spray-painting a stenciled message that spoke out against the stripping of veiled women. It’s a campaign she discussed in “A thousand times no,” her inspiring TED Talk, and it was not only []

My City: Inaki Romero Larrea on building a better Madrid

My City: Inaki Romero Larrea on building a better Madrid

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by Rebecca Smith Hurd Spanish architecture generally conjures images of grandeur, particularly when it comes to modernist and contemporary construction. Gaudí’s basilica. Calatrava’s bridges, airports and centers for the arts. Bofill’s state and corporate headquarters. Moneo’s museums. The list of splendiferous urban structures goes on and on. But not everything built on the Iberian Peninsula []

Madrid in pictures: architect Inaki Romero Larrea shares his Spain

Madrid in pictures: architect Inaki Romero Larrea shares his Spain

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by Rebecca Smith Hurd 29-year-old Iñaki Romero Larrea describes himself as an “urbanist before architect.” As one of the five members of design and architecture collective Paisaje Transversal, he is particularly interested in figuring out how to revitalize Spain’s cities without indulging in the time-consuming traditional bid process or incurring exorbitant construction costs. For the group, []