Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Banksy ALERT!

"Sweep" Banksy

Time Magazine offers a sweet little slideshow of Bansy works in conjunction with this article about a hilarious encounter between the pseudonymous Banksy and the Council of Westminster in London.

We promise not to post about Banksy again until 2009. But, we do love the way he plays with architecture. Also, his work stirs up community and forces it to engage in a dialogue. Very healthy. No? OK. No more Banksy before 2009.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hallowgreen : BOO!

For designers who are looking for a counter-intuitive Halloween object to carve, this is it!

Here are the directions:

# Slice off bottom of watermelon so it won't roll around.
# Peel green skin off of the watermelon.
# Score brainy folds in white flesh.
# With a sharp paring knife, carve channels out of melon to resemble cortical folds.

BOO! Again!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Banksy's Pet Store

Famous British graffiti artist Banksy's first ever New York exhibition closes October 31. Get there if you can. The Big Apple for Halloween, think about it. Banksy's art installation, "The Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill," will go down in art history. You will want to have BEEN there. Asked "Why a pet shop?" Banksy replied, "New Yorkers do not like art, they like pets. So I made a pet store."

Banksy's exhibit, a departure from his politically infused graffiti, features animatronic figures of familiar food, such as chicken. He puts the figures into weird situations that do not defy imagination, but, rather, boggle the mind. Banksy is attempting to explore our relationship with animals and the ethics and sustainability of factory farming, moving the viewer to question his or her conception of food and their relationship to it. A vegetarian will be the first to get it.

For those who won't make it to New York, here is the website for the exhibit. It is loaded with videos. Warning: Do NOT look at the sausage video. We're just sayin'. Here, also, is a good slide show provided by the BBC of images taken inside the fake pet shop.

The Banksy “Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill” is open daily from now until Halloween, 10am until midnight! Midnight! Its location is 87th west and 7th. Not only is the exhibit free, but you’re allowed to take pictures/videos, too!

Event Alert!!

October 29, 2008

The Metropolis Tour: Brilliant Simplicity at MICA

Metropolis magazine and the Maryland Institute College of Art present a conversation with editor in chief Susan S. Szenasy on the pressing need for research in design. Szenasy will screen Brilliant Simplicity: 15 Designers Research Collaborate Innovate, a short film that traces the many ways innovation can happen. The Metropolis Tour was designed to challenge you to rediscover the innovator within. Sponsored by Haworth, Interiors from Spain, Shaw Contract Group and Wilsonart Contract. 7 p.m., Free. Maryland Institute College of Art, The Brown Center, Falvey Hall, Baltimore, MD.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

World Architecture Festival : BARCELONA

Only seven days remain before 224 architecture firms from around the world prepare to compete for only one prestigious award. Showcasing all of the 722 projects submitted, the World Architecture Festival, 22-24 October, is the first event of its kind dedicated to architecture and architects from across the globe. Paul Finch, Editor of London's Architectural Review and Director of the awards, said that they wanted to “create an event where architecture was first in the chain”.

Participants at the event are aiming for one thing - to be the sole possessor of the World Building of the Year Award 2008. Despite the most diverse range of buildings competing there will be only one winner and there is no telling whether it will be a national stadium or a public toilet, anything goes.

Monday, October 13, 2008

China's Wild West

Yellow Sheep River Valley, China

We are very interested in how a sense of place manifests. Certainly the vernacular architecture of a place makes it unique. We came upon this slide show that James Fallows of The Atlantic magazine put together following a trip to western China, away from the urban spectacle and manufacturing prowess in eastern China. Fallows is interested, among many things, in how digital technology has transformed the tiny village of Yellow Sheep River. His story is about how two Taiwanese businessmen happened into the most rural part of China and thought: Let's bring it from the 15th century into the 21st.

It is an intriguing story. We recommend Fallows' article, "How the West was Wired," as well as his slide show. However, we were wowed by the slide show images of wind farms and the vernacular architecture as well as the village's physical community form. See what you think.

Friday, October 10, 2008

The car that might blow you away.

On October 9 MDI unveiled its answer to the need for clean air and urban mobility - the AIRPod. The AIRPod runs on compressed air! With its low price, zero pollution, high range and playful and futuristic design, the AIRPod marks a turning point in the nexus of automobile and urban transportation. And it will cost less than a Euro per 200 km to operate.

We are keeping posted on the vehicle which is promised to be available in the USA by 2010, with orders being taken in 2009. Here's the latest news in the bottom right corner of this link. Whooosh!