Filmmaker Mikey Pease made a short of the sun setting on Tokyo set to the bouncy soundtrack of the shop downstairs. This short film is a mini moving snapshot of the city coming to life, as the work day ends.
Pease won a BAFTA in 2011 for his short film “The Eagleman Stag”, an inventive stop motion animation made entirely from the foam found in chair seats.
Australian photographer Ward Roberts makes dizzyingly sublime photographic images by layering several individual images of Hong Kong. He seek minimal forms and colour in the landscape and then shoots from various perspective points. The end result is a dimensional statement on the opacity, transparency and reflection found in contemporary architecture.
“I find myself drawn towards repetition in colour, shape, space and form. When it comes to shooting, I am always trying to find the cleanest composition. I have recently made the decision to focus my style more towards minimalism as I find it to be a very pure form.” - Ward Roberts
Archinect: “In Focus: Ward Roberts”
“Something very interesting happened in Formula One racing, if you wanted to win, you used to bet your budget on a good car and a good driver. Nowadays, to win the Formula One race, you need a team of people to monitor the car in real time, thousands of sensors collecting information from the car transmitting this information into the system and then processing it and using it in order to back to the car with decisions and changing things in real time, as information is collected.” - Carlo Ratti
Architect Carlo Ratti shares a series of innovative projects that incorporate affective and sensory architecture. No longer are buildings static forms that house our activities. New technology allows us to implant sensors into our space and give us information about how we live. No longer is the computer located in a shell on our desktops but rather is a network of small nodes hidden throughout the open air, just like molecules of water that make a cloud. Ratti runs the MIT Senseable City Lab - which uses sensors and small electronics to infiltrate our built environment and give back data that describes how people move and operate within the city. He notes that cities are only 2% of the earth’s land mass, but contain 50% of the earth’s population, account for 75% of our energy consumption and 80% of our CO2 emissions.
In this short talk, he cites the example of tracking cell phone use in Rome during the final World Cup game when Italy won, visualising surges of communication and radio silence, climaxing in a giant party in the city’s main square. His lab tracked thrown away cell phones and realized they didn’t end up where you would think they would. He also describes projects that take this data to create interactive environments, such as a pavilion with walls made of water and a flexible three dimensional “screen” made up of thousands of LED pixels flown on mini-helicopters.
The Selby is in your home
The Selby showcases the homes of creatives, showing how their environment externalizes their unique way of thinking. From Cecelia Dean in Manhattan to Christian Louboutin in Paris to Karl Lagerfeld’s bookshelves, see how urbanites make their space home.
Group show in Glass House
International super-curator Hans Ulrich Obrist will curate an exhibit in Glass House, the former home of renowned modernist architect, Lina Bo Bardi.
The house was her first built work, completed in 1951 and still stands as a preeminent example of modernism in South America. The reinforced concrete house sits on top of thin columns that allow the landscape to flow under it. Built in the middle of São Paulo It was the first home built in the neighbourhood Morumbi, which was then the last vestiges of the Mata Atlantica, a specific type of rainforest that used to surround São Paulo. Over time, the forest enveloped the house. Now, the gardens are a time capsule in the center of the city of the flora that used to thrive in this area.
Between 15-20 artists and architects will be invited to engage with her legacy to create projects in the Glass House. “It’s going to be an homage, and a discreet intervention in the house”, he says.
“But linear time is a Western invention,
time is not linear,
it is a marvelous tangle
where, at any moment,
points can be selected and solutions invented,
without no beginning or end.”
- Lina Bo Bardi, 1994
Saraceno’s Cloud City
Tomas Saraceno’s Cloud City opened on the roof of the Metropolitan Museum of Art a few days ago. The sculpture is a cluster of interconnecting mirror pentagon forms, that string together like a molecular structure. Saraceno’s work is at once artwork, architecture and scientific experiment. His work has consistently made us re-examine our experience inhabiting and interacting with our environment. See the precarious installation process here.
tomás saraceno: cloud city on the met roof
Worlds within Worlds
Powers of Ten is a visual adventure through scale. We rarely think about it as we move through our streets and pavements, all scaled to fit our human perspective, but the universe is vast as it is minute, astronomically incomprehensible and atomically invisible to us. The film demonstrates that as we move to the outer extremes of scale, we find marvellous units that coexist to make a whole, inconceivably interrelated when viewed within our limited perception. However, math, technology and science and the Eames’s unique filmmaking allow us to see beyond.
Primarily known as contributors to modernism through their furniture design, the Eameses were also filmmakers and philosophers. The couple used the format of short films to explore experimental ideas about the bigger picture, philosophy and their more personal interests. The film was made in 1977 and is an adaptation of the book Cosmic View: The Universe in Forty Jumps by Dutch educator, Kees Boeke.
Paul Noble, Welcome to Nobson
From Gagosian Gallery press release of his last show in 2011:
Noble’s intricate graphite drawings describe Nobson Newtown, a place composed of labyrinthine edifices and deserted topography embedded with modules of dense detail. Employing cavalier projection—a cartographical method characterized by a high viewpoint—Noble meticulously delineates a wealth of elaborate architecture and open urban spaces. These phantasmagorical landscapes allude to sources as diverse as ancient Chinese scrolls, Fabergé eggs, Henry Moore’s sculptures, and paintings by Hieronymus Bosch. The encrypted fictions of Nobson Newtown are dizzyingly complex—visual articulations of the tensions between disorder, perversion, and logical schema.
“I use the devices of technical drawing. These devices help shine the sharpest light on the things I depict. I am against hierarchies and perspective. I arrange the objects of my drawings on a spatial plane using cavalier projection. The origins of this projection lay in military cartography - fore, mid and background are got rid of and everything depicted is equally close and far. The viewer becomes the architect and the drawing, an architectural plan. He or she is no longer earthbound but hovers like an angel over the described scene, taking in the entire design.
I was raised on the north-east coast of England, and this has conditioned my aesthetic. I think like the flat, grey skies of wintery Whitley Bay - tonally. I use very hard pencils, very rarely softer than 4H. Sometimes the pencils are so hard it seems they would rather scratch a hole in the paper than give up their pale graphite.” - Paul Noble