Connectivity – A College Landscape

The quadrangle of any college is typically the epicenter of social engagement and communal activities; it serves as multi-purpose platform for all manner of collegiate gatherings. Take a visual trip to Trinity College in Canada and you will be captivated by a truly alluring quad landscape. Designers from gh3 in Toronto transformed the campus courtyard with a rather simple but universally engaging symbol of connectivity.

The iconic symbol of ‘Chi’ served as the creative jumping board for the team. Chi is believed to be the fundamental life force that flows through all things. It is frequently translated as “life energy,” “life force,” or “energy flow.” Inspired by this principle, the designers created a flowing pattern to superimpose over the central lawn, offering a visually embellished, yet grounded space. Students can ‘go with the flow’ as they move along the stamped path and connect with one another.

Staying aligned with the firms approach to sustainability, the designers made sure to consider the existing trees when renewing the space. A vertical fertilization plan was assembled to help aerate the tree roots and a structural geo-textile was installed under the span of the lower Quad to prevent re-compaction.

‘Our work is visually engaging, with the underlying philosophy that the best way of encouraging sustainable thinking is to bond people to their environments through deep understanding, and by making good design an indispensable part of everyday life.’ – gh3 design

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Photo credit: open source

“We design with the intention that our projects will last for centuries, and the pragmatic awareness of the importance of ease of maintenance, durable details, and good value for investment.” -gh3

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A Fish Out of Water – The Yodogawa Technique

Reminiscent of the works by Tom Deininger, the Japanese art group, Yodogawa Technique create impressive sculptural pieces using miscellaneous found objects within the area. Traveling beyond their home base of Yodogawa in Osakathe, the artists move into various communities in search of materials for their upcycled, somewhat guerrilla style art.
Discarded tires, random pieces of plastic, broken bottles, mangled wires, old toys, basically all manner of garbage is the goal. Once collected, they go to work assembling their vision into reality by utilizing only what they find on site.
Their volunteer efforts win them attention and accolades with the locals as they transform what used to be an environmental eyesore, into an impressive piece of art.
This method of community clean up instantly makes use of the garbage on site. Instead of moving trash into plastic bags and then hauling it to a landfill, they are utilizing skill and imagination to condense large littered areas into poignant visual treasure. While some pieces are featured in galleries, many are showcased within the environment.

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”Chinu, Uno”, 2010, garbage based sculpture
”Gin Chinu”, 2009, garbage based sculpture
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”Chinu, Hamburg”, 2009, garbage based sculpture
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”Chinu, Hamburg”, 2009,working process
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”Yogyakarta’s arowana”, 2008,working process1
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”Yogyakarta’s arowana”, 2008,working process2
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”Yogyakarta’s arowana”, 2008,working process3
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”Yogyakarta’s arowana”, 2008, performance view
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”Yogyakarta’s arowana”, 2008, installation view
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”Chinu, Osaka Bay”, 2007, garbage based sculpture
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”Nakdong Chinu”, 2006, garbage based sculpture
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”Tama”, 2003, garbage based sculpture
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”White rooster”, 2011, garbage based sculpture
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Growing Glass Gems

Glass Gem Corn is an intriguing varietal that produces rows of glimmering, opalescent kernels that seem to bloom like heirloom jewels.

Like many heirloom treasures, Glass Gem corn has a name, a place, and a story. Its origin traces back to Carl Barnes, a part-Cherokee farmer living in Oklahoma. Barnes had an uncanny knack for corn breeding. More specifically, he excelled at selecting and saving seed from those cobs that exhibited vivid, translucent colors. Exactly how long Barnes worked on Glass Gem—how many successive seasons he carefully chose, saved, and replanted these special seeds—is unknown. But after many years, his painstaking efforts created a wondrous corn cultivar that has now captivated thousands of people around the world.

- Native Seeds

Native Seeds, a nonprofit seed conservation organization based in Tucson, Arizona procured some of the seeds and grew them on. They say, “we are lucky enough to have grown and admired this extraordinary corn ourselves. Rest assured, this is no Photoshop sham. It is truly as stunning held in your your hand as it is on your computer screen. When you peel back the husk from a freshly harvested ear to reveal the rainbow of colors inside, it’s like unwrapping a magical present. And this is a gift that is meant to be shared far and wide.”

For more information of this heirloom variety and options on how to purchase this seed, visit the Native Seeds blog or Seed Trust.com

http://img2.joyreactor.cc/pics/post/art-%D0%BA%D1%83%D0%BA%D1%83%D1%80%D1%83%D0%B7%D0%B0-164142.jpeg

Image Credit: Google

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Image Credit: Google

Image Credit: http://garden.lofthouse.com

Image Credit: Google

Image Credit: Google

Image Credit: Google

(If you are the photographer of any of these images – feel free to contact organicgreenroots@gmail.com for proper image credit).

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Breathing Billboards

Like most Angelenos, artist Stephen Glassman spends too much time stuck in traffic.

Choked with smog and surrounded by concrete, steel, and advertising, the experience of driving in LA can feel like the ultimate disconnect from other humans and the environment.

Urban Air seeks to subvert that daily alienation — one billboard at a time.  The idea is pretty simple: Take disused billboards, remove the commercial facade, and install a living, breathing cloud forest of bamboo. This will be part aerial garden, part public art project, but it is also a quiet call to action and awareness about climate change.

Glassman has created a Kickstarter page and is currently raising funds to implement the pilot forest above an LA freeway.  If the campaign is successful, Urban Air will be the first intelligently engineered, wifi monitored, green billboard, ever. Future plans include creating a “kit” that would enable any standard billboard to be easily transformed to a green, urban forest. The long term vision is to nurture a takeover of old billboards around the world.

To help make this vision a reality – Check out their kickstarter page.

 

 

 

Urban Air | Stephen Glassman

 

Click here for a video introduction of the project.

Willful Suspension of Disbelief

German-based artist Cornelia Konrads creates surreal, site specific installations using materials naturally available at each location. Her ability to deconstruct, elevate, and pause tangible materials offers a sense of whimsy, simultaneously making space for the present moment.

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

Moment of Decision (2004) – snow suspended in animation.

‘remember next spring’ is a shower of seeds suspended in time, waiting for their place in the earth – (2003).

Geumgang International Nature Art Exhibition.  (Korea)

remember next spring (2003)

remember next spring (2003)

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

The Passage (2007)

A doorway into the forest – an entry into nature.

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

The Passage (2007)

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

The Passage (2007)

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

The Passage (2007)

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

the gate (2004)

Installation on the remains of two gate posts – France.

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A closer view – the gate (2004)

intérieur en passant

Installation in an ancient greenhouse

intérieur en passant (2004)
Chemin d’Art, Jaujac (France)

intérieur en passant

intérieur en passant

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

“Pile of Wishes” (2004)

pile of wishes

pile of wishes (2004)

pile of wishes

pile of wishes (2004)

pile of wishes

pile of wishes (2004)

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

Le Mur (2006)

Gravity Defying Land Art by Cornelia Konrads sculpture land art installation

Le Mur (2006)

piled up

piled up (1999)
Wintergärten, Hannover (Germany)

piled up

piled up (1999)

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piled up (1999)

Tree memorial.

Piled Forest.

Piled forest.

Full portfolio here.

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Bikes, Beer and belts.

Portland has all the good ideas.

An 8th generation Oregonian, Geoffrey Franklin owns and operates Walnut Studiolo, a leather accessories shop in Portland, Oregon. A small, family run artist studio that specializes in leather accessories for bikes.

One accessory in particular is gaining attention, and for good reason. The 6 Pack Bicycle Frame Cinch marries two of Portland’s many loves, pedal powered transportation and  microbreweries. (Portland is home to more than 40 breweries—more breweries than any other city in the world).

And if you love bikes but prefer vino, you’re in luck. Bottle Belts are designed to secure a nice merlot or just about anything cylindrical- or bottle-shaped to your bike’s top tube. A bottle of water will fit just as securely as cabernet.

Walnut Studiolo handcrafts a multitude of  daily items helping to replace the ‘throw and go’ mentality with ‘reduce and reuse.’

”Bicycle accessories are my core focus but I love good design.  My goal is to make high-quality, beautiful, durable, and most of all functional solutions to everyday problems. Thank you for buying small and handmade. I put my heart in everything I make.” – Geoffrey Franklin.

So what’s the lesson here? Ride your bike, enjoy life and support small artisans and businesses.

 

6 Pack Bicycle Frame Cinch

6-Pack Bicycle Frame Cinch

 

Bike Bottle Belt

Bicycle Bottle Belts

Stylize with a selection of  colors.

Bicycle Can Cage

Bicycle Can Cage

Bicycle Can Cage

Bike Strap-Downs

Enough to share.

Adjustable-Size Drink Handle

All photos courtesy of walnutstudiolo.com

A Tiny Hand Out

You’re quickly navigating your way through the busy streets as a litany of thoughts storm throughout your mind. A tugging urgency propels you to take faster steps, you round a corner and suddenly notice a tiny hand, a hand holding a flower, a flower meant for you.

In this moment you stop. Are you inclined to create space within your day to reflect upon random generosity? Would such guerrilla philanthropy inspire you to pay it forward?
Ornamental Thoughtfulness is a public arts project that attempts to provoke such feelings by installing several tiny bronze hands in public places throughout central Wellington, New Zealand.

The purpose of these hands is to hold offerings, small gestures of thoughtfulness to whomever notices. These offerings are meant to engage passers with anonymous tokens of generosity. A silent act of kindness that the artist hopes will create a butterfly effect of positivity or at the very least, interrupt the everyday mundane with anonymous kindness and memorable beauty.

These little hands were placed in busy walkways, shortcuts, and along the streets where people often walk while on their way to school or work. The artist and educator, Mary Whalley would sometimes place a scroll of paper in the hands with  messages like, “The hands mark my walk from home to work”. When she later visited the hand the message had been taken and replaced with other messages like, ”I am reading Hemmingway and live here too, on Vogel st.”

While some passers only accepted the random donation, (even taking the hands altogether) others left their own unique offerings including flowers, toys, drawings, notes, and tokens from their pockets.  For six weeks the artist interacted with the community through a passive yet exciting method that in the end simply encouraged playful benevolence and brightened the day of many – with just a tiny little hand.

Vibol Moeung of Foxtree Studio – video.  Zach Webber – music.

I am currently working on a small publication that documents “Ornamental thoughtfulness” and the conversations that it sparked. If you have any questions please email me: mary@marywhalley.co.nz.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>I’ll let you know when we launch the publication.” src=”<a href=http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_ma0hkn3M3a1rb5bdno1_500.jpg&#8221; />


All photos courtesy of Ornamental Thoughtfulness.

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