Christopher Beanland

Christopher Beanland writes about architecture, the arts and the media.

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Christopher Beanland: Architecture attack - what’s with our appetite for destruction?

If you went to the National Gallery and tore up a Titian, you’d be arrested. But what about blowing up a historic building which has defined a place and its people; a building in which sweet nothings have been uttered and lives altered? Go for it! It’s strange how our attitudes to destroying art and destroying architecture are so different.

Gateshead Car Park, Owen Luder, Gateshead

Concrete buildings: Brutalist beauty

The stark civic megaliths of the 1960s have been reviled for decades. Now, we are being seduced again by their concrete charms

Take a punth on it: From Veganuary to Decembeard – How each month of the year became a charity endeavour

Chloe Nicholls is one many people who will forego club-toilet vomiting, hangovers, and insufferable Bonnie Tyler karaoke renditions this month. "I'm actually looking forward to detoxing this New Year," she explains. "I've always wanted to do it." January was always a time of restraint – but lately it's become the atheist's answer to Lent, with huge numbers of people in Britain staying off the sauce for the duration.

Who would click to ‘like’ these buildings? The grand, bland plans for tech behemoths' HQs

The tech giants are getting architectural – but their plans are big, not clever

The pride of Sarajevo: How football is uniting a once bitterly divided nation

With Bosnia and Herzegovina qualifying for their first ever World Cup, football is playing a cruical role in binding a once bitterly divided nation

82-year-old Ruth Flowers, aka Mamy Rock, has been DJing since 2010

Tea dances to techno: the rise of the older-school DJ

The decks are no longer a place for spring chickens. Superstar DJs are knocking on: Tiesto is 44, Carl Cox is 51 and Pete Tong is 53. These guys should probably be in their shed tinkering with the mower. But in fact, there are even older spinners on the decks.

'Temperatures on the new boris buses hit a sweat-producing 30.4c last month'

On the buses: Public transport is undergoing a technological transformation

From hybrid engines and guided busways to coders' coaches and Formula One flywheels, Christopher Beanland reveals some of the latest innovations...

Enco in Palm Springs

Palm Springs, California: The enduring appeal of a desert playground

Palm Springs has long been the favoured resort of stars and architects, as Christopher Beanland discovers

Food that will serve up a serious debate

A dinner party with a difference will be serving up quirky dishes like “deconstructed caldo verde” (all the ingredients of soup served dried on a plate) and “the Lusophere Flip” (sous vide fish with sauces from former Portuguese colonies Macau, Goa, Brazil and Angola – which were once poor but are now thriving). The idea is to provoke debate about architecture and cities. “These Planetary Supper Club dinner parties are about getting people talking about the events of our time,” says artist and cook Zack Denfeld of the Center For Genomic Gastronomy, who devised the menus for the event, as part of Lisbon's forthcoming Architecture Triennale. “The fish dish for example is about imagining a more horizontal world where ideas, food and people flow equitably around the Lusophere.” Denfeld will also dish up Cobalt 60 BBQ Sauce (above) created with plants bred from mutations – which questions how we use and abuse intensive agriculture and bioscience in the kitchen.

Judge a book by its cover version

The Bookshop Band are Britain's only literary band. “We've just written a song inspired by Damian Barr's Maggie & Me,” says Ben Please. The Avon trio are fresh from a UK tour of independent bookshops and last month played Glastonbury. Authors who've had their books immortalised in song love it: “Rachel Joyce brought her family to see us when we played at a shop near her home,” says Please.

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