Archive for August, 2008

Elgin Movement Recycled Cufflinks by SteamPunk

Dnc1085_cufflinks_elginovalsmall1
Move over Prina, there is a new kid on the block. Check out these tight cufflinks designed by Watch-cufflinks á la Steampunk; take a defunct designer watch, pull out the guts, slap on a link back and voila! you’ve just upcycled some junk into a fashion accessory guaranteed to start a conversation! Check out the huge selection and get yours here…

Rabbit Lamps will Conquer the Earth

Rabbitlamp
Just ran across these over at Dinosaurs and Robots and can’t get them out of my mind. And Mister Jalopy is right, they must be used in multiple, all over the house!
more here… and buy them here…

Theo Jansen’s Kinetic Sculpture is Alive! [almost]

Strandbeest8
These sculptural ‘animals’ are amazing; like a combination of DaVinci and David Cronenberg. Jansen has hit upon a form that resonates with my sense of the future/past as present; fairy tales, dinosaurs and mythical beasts.

They also make me think of the effects of space and time in the way Thomas Mann used space and time. Mann suggested [in The Magic Mountain] that movement through space has similar effects upon a person as those of the passage of time; distanciation, obfuscation and disorientation. Not ‘time-traveling’ but ‘travel-timing’; faster if not as permanent.

Anyway, check out the video too…

From Inhabitat:

“Theo Jansen has been creating wind-walking examples of artificial life since 1990. What was at first a rudimentary breed has slowly evolved into a generation of machines that are able to react to their environment: “over time, these skeletons have become increasingly better at surviving the elements such as storms and water and eventually I want to put these animals out in herds on the beaches, so they will live their own lives.”

Constructed as intricate assemblages of piping, wood, and wing-like sails, Jansen’s creatures are constantly evolving and have become excellently adapted to their sandy beach environment. The creatures sport legs, which “prove to be more efficient on sand than wheels . . . they don’t need to touch every inch of the ground along the way, as a wheel has to”. .”

read the rest after the jump…

Tom Kundig’s Delta Shelter…Again

Deltashelter
Tom Kundig has always been one of my favorite local architects. What’s not to love; a melange of rural sensibilities, modern aspirations and postmodern mash-ups. And while I’ve never really understood the argument placing his practice within the Modern movement, C. Mudede makes an interesting case for it in this brief article from The Stranger. Hopefully we will get a fully fleshed-out argument in the future…

From The Stranger:

    "The other modernism, the sort Kundig represents, retains the minimalism of zero-degree architecture, but it does not banish the processes of aging and physical change. In Kundig’s work, materials are not only exposed to time but time itself becomes a material. It is for this reason that his homes already have in them the majesty of their movement through time. "Buildings outlive people, you have to design with this in mind," Kundig points out. Buildings, like people, are not permanent; they have life spans, they are born, grow old, decline, and crumble."

To my thinking, Mudede doesn’t make a convincing case, but I’m up for more. [Kundig's aesthetic is far from 'zero-degree' IMO] Regardless, it’s always great to see Kundig’s work getting the attention it deserves. He’s a Northwest treasure.

Read the rest after the jump…

South Lake Union Discovery Center wins COTE award, 2008

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More good news for Seattlites; our South Lake Union Discovery Center earned an AIA/COTE Green Design award! One of ten awards given out this year, the Center is a model of green and modular thinking.

I love the design, and how amazing is it to be able to reuse these modules! Just unbolt and go, like an upscale shipping container, to any site you like. I read somewhere that an UW arch studio workshopped different ways to use them next and one group suggested upending them, transforming the horizontal into vertical! Just like playing with Legos back in the day! Congratulations to all…

From GreenSource:

“For moving purposes, Miller Hull’s team carefully determined the maximum dimensions allowed on the roadways to the most likely new locations, arriving at a 40-by-73-foot optimum bay size. Working with engineer Jay Taylor of Magnusson Klemencic Associates, the team chose a simple structural system of quadrilateral steel bents that could be fabricated offsite. With gluelam purlins supporting the roof, the bents create a clear-span structure in which a service corridor of restrooms, a catering kitchen, and a sales office sit “a bit like a mobile home” inside. The glass front slopes inward beneath deep overhangs, giving the building the feel of an oversized screened porch. The resulting quartet of modules easily bolts together at three joints to create an 11,000-square-foot building. Splice plates “zipper” the floor seams while the gaps in the standing-seam metal roof panels are bridged by a simple cap flashing. Mechanical units bolt to the top with minimal ducting routed under the bents.”

read the rest after the jump…

Top 10 Architects who are not Architects

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Got this email this morning; ‘Arthur Erickson…Canada’s most famous architect and the first to put Canadian architecture on the world map.’ is no longer allowed to call himself an architect because he will not take the 18 required hours of continuing ed. every year to certify him as such. Hilarious, if it wasn’t so absurd and it made me think of all the influential ‘architects’ in modern history who had no formal architectural training. Here is my first-pass at a top ten list. I’m sure I missed many more so shout-out your favorite non-architects and we’ll get a top 100 list going…

1. Tadao Ando, Japan

2. Charles Eames, United States

3. Buckminster Fuller, United States

4. Carlo Scarpa, Italy

5. Luis Barragan, Mexico

6. Bruce Goff, United States

7. Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Great Brittan

8. William Morris, Great Brittan

9. Gerrit Th. Rietveld, The Netherlands

10. Mary Jane Colter, United States


Of course, this list could go the other way too, as in the ‘Top 10 Architects who became Something Else…’ Beginning with Sergei M. Eisenstein and moving on from there…

The Bill Nye Interview at TreeHugger

Billnye
When we lived in Hollywood, I used to see the willowy Science Guy walking the Topanga Canyon trail with friends and dog in tow, so I feel a particular affinity, however unfounded, for Bill (we’re that close) one of my childhood heroes.

If you feel the same, be sure to hit the interview over at TH.

From the interview:

TH: And maybe you can give us one great eco-experiment or
investigation that you can suggest our readers try at home to better
understand environmental issues?

BN: You know, I did some research into what were the most heavily
traded commodities in the world. The first, of course, is oil… But the
second is coffee, which surprised me. It’s not something you need, like
wheat or rice, but something you can choose to buy… So I’d ask you to
keep a running record of how much you spend on coffee and bottled water
for a week or even a month, and compare them. It’s amazing what you’ll
find… And if you can convince people to change some really basic habits
you can really change the world… Just think of the enormous impact
coffee consumption has on the planet.

read the rest after the jump…

“Love of bustle is not industry”

Lucius Annaeus Seneca (often known simply as Seneca, or Seneca the Younger) (c. 4 BC65 AD)

Tom Kundig’s ‘Delta Shelter’

Deltashelter
Tom Kundig has always been one of my favorite local architects. I mean, what’s not to love; a melange of rural sensibilities, Modern aspirations and Postmodern mash-ups. And while I’ve never really understood the argument placing his practice within the Modern movement, C. Mudede makes an interesting case for it in this brief article from The Stranger. Hopefully we will get a fully fleshed-out argument in the future…

From The Stranger:

"The other modernism, the sort Kundig represents, retains the
minimalism of zero-degree architecture, but it does not banish the
processes of aging and physical change. In Kundig’s work, materials are
not only exposed to time but time itself becomes a material. It is for
this reason that his homes already have in them the majesty of their
movement through time. "Buildings outlive people, you have to design
with this in mind," Kundig points out. Buildings, like people, are
not permanent; they have life spans, they are born, grow old, decline,
and crumble."

To my thinking, Mudede doesn’t make a convincing case, but I’m up for more. Regardless, it’s always great to see Kundig’s work getting the attention it deserves. He’s a Northwest treasure.

Read the rest after the jump…

Philippe Stark’s Rooftop Windmill is Beautiful, of course

4design4550
Yes, he’s a pain in the a**, but at least he’s starting to walk the ‘green’ talk. Have a look at this rooftop wind turbine for residential use. If he can pull it off, even half of it, it will be his best work to-date:

From IHT:

"Take Starck’s claim to have "invented a concept called Democratic
Design," which, he says, gives everyone high quality products at
affordable prices. Sounds great, but didn’t the modern movement try to
do that for most of the 20th century? And how can he claim to have "won
the battle" by designing "a chair that sells for less than €100," or
$157, when that’s still too expensive for most people? Let alone the 90
percent of the world’s population who are too poor to afford the
basics? What has Democratic Design done for them? "Oh please, I’m not
God," pleads Starck. "I’m just a designer, and I’m doing my best.""

read the rest after the jump…

 

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