A guide to art in NYC, with families in mind.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

goARCHkids: Bite that Apple

A rainy afternoon, you need to do a bit of shopping anyway, kids are bickering, hit an Apple store. Architecturally, they are impressive with their 100 foot ceilings or however high they are. Back in the day, the serfs and peasants did not know how to read, so the architecture needed to appeal to their senses. They would walk into a medieval cathedral and their eyes would travel up and around. Wow, they would think, these ceilings are so high, this space is so magnificent, surely only God could provide us with architecture like this, architecture that defies reason because it is so big and awe-inspiring. So walking into the Apple store on 14th Street or the one on Broadway and 67th is a bit like that. Wow, you think. Then your children make a beeline for ALL THOSE IPADS! A wealth of ipads! Surely this largess, this beauty, can only come from one place. Apple it is! An architect friend of mine used to work on the Apple stores. He said the cost of the materials, importing them from god only knows where, all that gorgeous stone and stainless steel, was astronomical - just like a medieval cathedral. One big difference though is that the Apple stores, all designed by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, are child friendly. Not all the patrons are, but that extraneous space, the round little pouf seats, and especially those magical glass spiral staircases are an irresistible draw for the kids. Hand holding might be required depending on the age of the kid. Another difference worth noting is that while the glorious medieval architecture relied on appearing mysterious, the Apple stores celebrate construction. You can see the beautiful bolts in the glass holding things together. My kids actually ask to go to our local Apple store and I can get done whatever I need to efficiently and without being distracted, a rare thing indeed.
- Rudie Hurwitz