Archive for September, 2008

Project H Math Toys: Vote Now!


Just as soon as you can, head over to Project H Design and vote for their latest project; designing educational math toys for developing and US retail markets, based on the Kutamba AIDS Orphans School in Uganda (an Architecture for Humanity building).


Northwest Film Forum’s “Local Sightings” Film Fest, 10.3-8.08

Found this in my inbox and thought I’d pass it along. Should be a doozie!


Live bands, DJs, unique drinks…free haircuts!



Pecha Kucha Night at CoCA, Seattle. Thursday 7pm

Just found out about this one and won’t be able to make it because I’ll be in San Jose covering West Coast Green. But you all should go! These are great…

Please join CoCA as we play host to Pecha Kucha Night. This month’s theme is "Trouble". You’ve got some, we got some – let’s share. We’ve
assembled an incredible roster of writers, visual artists, race car
drivers, actors and other creative luminaries. Share ideas, see great
work – we’d love to see you there!


Wabi Sabi, Biogerontology and “The Book of Tea”

by Daniel Flahiff

“It is essentially a worship of the Imperfect, as it is
a tender attempt to accomplish something possible in this impossible
thing we know as life.”

– Kakuzo Okakura
The Book of Tea

via Whisky River

carriage house

In art school we called it Wabi Sabi, in reference to objects that are imperfect, decaying or in various states of entropy. Picture an old barn, a rusty shovel, or even a rock worn smooth by rushing water, but be sure to leave out the romanticism. Wabi Sabi embraces and celebrates decay, acknowledging it as an essential part of life. The movement of all matter in the universe from order to chaos, from organization to disorganization.


Top 5 Picks: Venice Architecture Biennale, 2008

La Biennale di Venezia 2008!

The theme of this year’s Biennale of Architecture in Venice, which opened on Sunday, is ‘Out There: Architecture Without Building’ so we thought it appropriate to review it from afar, from ‘Out Here:‘ as it were. Curator Aaron Betsky has this to say:

"Architecture must go beyond buildings because buildings are not enough. They are big and wasteful accumulations of natural resources that are difficult to adapt to the continually changing
conditions of modern life…Most buildings are ugly, useless and wasteful"



DIY Tiny Houses; The Time has Come

Great article in the NYT on Wed about the small house movement. It certainly seems like its time has come. Tumbleweed Tiny Houses, weeHouse, and others are making their move and with great success. And while some companies would like to sell us the ‘prefab’ version of the small house, I am more interested in the DIY versions; a punk-inspired ethic using scavenged, used and abused materials and doing it all yourself.


The Fabulous Stains at Grand Illusion 9.12.08

FabulousstainsThis rarely-seen cult classic never recieved a theatrical release! I saw a crappy VHS copy in college and haven’t seen it since. Great cameos from The Tubes, The Clash and The Sex Pistols.–and now the awesome Grand Illusion theatre in Seattle is screening it tomorrow night in celebration of its release on DVD.

As soon as I get done typing, I’m clicking over to Amazon to pre-order my copy.

See y’all tomorrow night!

Architecture 2.0: Koolhaas v. Napoleon III

Rem_koolhaas_2 9869004d5f61029_2

In today’s Seattle Times, Mark Rahner talks to architect Rem Koolhaas about ego, empathy and architecture. What I find particularly insightful is Mr. Koolhaas’ vision of his role, both then and now, as a facilitator, teammate, and bureaucrat.



Coolest Doghouse Ever by Graypants


Looking for something different for Fido’s birthday this year? Well look no further. This custom dog house from the architectural duo ‘Graypants’ should do quite nicely. Taking their cue from modernism’s spareness and penchant for glass curtain walls, the design duo has crafted a fabulous little abode for your pampered canine.


BLOOMhouse Finds Life After Solar Decathalon

The BLOOM was one of my favorite contenders at the last Solar Decathalon and now it seems to have found a new home. The famed Texas MacDonald Observatory is the lucky recipient of this great structure, which, in its new environment, seems to be thriving:

From Treehugger:

"When we arrived, Sam pointed out that the batteries were way
overcharged. Even though the state-of-the-art inverters are set up to
divert the excess energy to the three hot water heaters and outdoor
Dutch Tub (which can hold five people by the way), there was still too
much charge in the batteries. Our job was to waste as much energy as we
could to bring the energy stored in the battery bank back down to a
safe level. We left the doors open, while we used the AC, the
microwave, the full size freezer/refrigerator, the convection counter
stove and oven, and we also had music playing through the giant plasma
flatscreen TV for hours. Hap even let the on-demand water heater run for an hour to heat the Dutch Tub.

By morning, we were able to bring the energy storage to just above
its ideal limit capacity. But by then, the sun was beginning to rise
again and restart the cycle. Once the sun gets through its morning
stretching routine, the up to 5 KILOwatts
the panels gather, prevents any appliances from accessing the battery
bank. At that point, all the power comes directly from the panels. Even
the most wasteful occupant couldn’t use more than the energy the panels
can capture. Did I mention the plug in electric cart outside? It
doesn’t put a dent in the system."

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