Wednesday, April 7, 2010
1 - Cut the plastic bag with the utility knife using as a template one of your shoes.
2 - Glue both sides of the insole using silicone. Leave a small gap in the upper portion of the insole. Let the silicone dry for 3 hours.
3 - Add the soil through the gap using the funnel.
4 - Cover the gap with silicone once you are done with the soil. The insole should have 70% of its capacity used by the soil. Repeat 1 through 4 to create the other insole.
5 - Place the insole in the shoe.
6 - Stand and walk on it.
Check this video out with instructions and a brief idea.
1. Instructions on planting the seeds (Japanese Red Maple) available in the cache.
2. Template for others to use while trading in the seeds.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Here is the documentation of phase II of my DIY project. The project is split between two parts: an easy to build momentary switch that has numerous uses and folded trapezoidal (diamond) pleated forms made of various materials that are lit with LEDs.
This is the step-by-step process to making the switch, which in this example, is actually housed in the freezer bag the kit is shipped in. Alternatives to the freezer bag are floor tiles or cushions.
the process, which will be described in greater detail in phase III when it is uploaded to instructables.com
These are three forms I constructed. After experimenting with different materials, paper vellum was the best for strength and flexibility, and did not require scoring (like most plastics). Paper vellum also retained the diamond structure best when stressed and diffused the light source better than regular paper. The forms are lit with various iterations of the switches.
This is a diamond pleat template I created for download. The red lines represent valley folds and the blue lines represent mountain folds. I will also put detailed instructions on instructables.com on how to fold and form this structure, with tips on how to modify it based on the number of intersections and folds.
Both texts discussing responsive architecture address how a multitude of artists, designers, and architects are researching and exploiting smart and responsive materials, collaborations with nature (i.e. the Solar Collector discussed by Matt, Susan, and Rob Gorbet), growth structures, and biomimicry as foundations for their work. Naturally, I was drawn to Steve Vogel’s excerpt from the text discussing forms of biomimicry that could and are applied to new architectural designs. I was recently introduced to a book titled Biomimicry: Innovation inspired by Nature by Janine Benyus that discusses these issues in great length both inside and outside architectural design. I think it is interesting that architects and artists took this long to start actively using natural design in their work and unfortunately, instead adopted the attitude that technology improves upon nature, a trend that I am attempting to dispel from my own work. This text and Benyus’ book offer great insight into engineers and artists pioneering technological breakthroughs by recognizing and replicating nature’s hidden marvels. It is refreshing to find so many inspirational inventors now collaborating with nature and borrowing concepts from biological and ecological systems instead of building on top of them. I find it interesting that these new thought processes are ultimately coming to the forefront due to failed human engineering in the past. I am not trying to say that historically, natural design was completely dismissed, but it wasn’t the first frame of reference in design (specifically in brick and concrete rudimentary structures). These new technologies and designs are teaching us how to live in harmony with nature and its inhabitants that have preexisted human beings by thousands of years, rather than trying to dominate them. Our extremely unnatural technologies will leave the earth unsuitable for life, if not improved upon now by creative innovators starting with us.
The work is partly defined by an orthagonal projection of the type Iwamoto defines. In my case, this was achieved using satellite technology from our friends at Google, and a typical display of such: a two-dimentional map. This is probably the most common type of orthogonal projection we use in everyday life. Painstakingly I adapted one of my drawings as representative of dots on the map, and a dataset was created of real-life locations (the addresses where various postcards and artistamps were sent).
A second technology that Iwamoto discusses was used in Network as Metaphor: Andyland- Ukraine, namely a laser cutter. However, this was a different part of the process. Using a symbolic form rather than creating different forms, per se, the sue of the laser cutter to create perforations for artistamnps reflects on the changing tools (new media) artists and governments have at their disposal.
Yet a third aspect of Digital Fabrication is present in the work. That of the changing perspective gained through the aggregation of the real and virtual, projected and actual. While the orthogonal-cartographic view was useful, an effort was made to break down this view into different perspectives to personalize and get a glimpse of the contemporary art scene in Ukraine. The thesis questioned the media landscape, and investigated what was essential for artsitic discourse there. Artists' blogs and websites, digital media, mail art and other ephemera were the replacement parts for the original romanticized landscape. [pictured: Blog of Lubomyr Tymkiv, Ukraine]
To continue in English, press "1".
The conversational aspect of Responsive Architecture / Performing Instruments resonated with my current work. Omar Khan and Philip Beesley are concerned with architecture as conversation in the section entitled Mutual Relations. My thesis work, Network as Metaphor: Andyland-Ukraine (2010) architected an unstructured structure to which respondants were to respond. The resulting conversations and the possibility of capturing those "transitional objects" are on display in the Great Space April 6-10, 2010. And like the transitional objects Philip Beesley suggests, such as dog toys and mobile phones, the postcards and related ephemera are just that - ephemeral remnants and symbols of an even more ephemeral conversation that is past, present and future. They are "threshold" objects that are part of me, the artist, and part the respondants (and now partially physically on display in the gallery). The conversation is the hybrid form.
[pictured: installation of Network as Metaphor: Andyland-Ukraine, with mail art and prints by Lubomyr Tymkiv, Ukraine]
Continuing the theme of geometry and language (as well as architecture) several media forms were explored in creating the work, and language is at also play. Web, email, as well as postal mail were the media geometries used. I do truly believe that media are architected and have specific structures (think network television's primordial one-to many architectural model which has only recently changed). Ukrainian, English and Russian were explored in the work, and English and Ukrainian mostly used. I wasn't really sure of what to expect, but I've found myself inside of a pitched cultural battle with this work along the lines of Russian vs Ukrainain language use in government (civic), schools, media (including web) and other public spaces. Thus language as a media architecture is also relevant here.
Again, artists, designers and architects incorporating digital techniques with no qualms about the efficacy of doing so. This text provided an interesting and cohesive insight into the advantages of parallel design processes (computer-aided design and fabrication). Projects such as Digital Weave, Mafoombey and (Ply)wood Delaminations show the potential for repetition and recursion combined with cheap and readily-available materials. This is not a new aesthetic, as is mentioned in the text and evident from the work of luminaries like Le Corbusier, but access to digital processes and computer-aided tools has created a fairly democratic (within the very developed world) playing field for artists and designers. This type of work is the very opposite of abstract art, it is concrete art. Particles are formed, repeated, translated and scaled to form clouds that reflect the individual parts, but are greater than their gross sum.
Science already has a legacy of vocabulary to discuss these types of formations, but how can we grasp this aesthetic properly in the world of art? The forms are often beautiful in a way that successful figurative art has been for 1000 years—an accurate sculpture of a figure is pleasing to the eye and mind for its mimicry of shapes with which we are well accustomed (e.g. Michelangelo’s David). Similarly, the Programmed Wall, for example, reflects sinusoidal patterns found in nature, constructed with the same accuracy and consistency as natural formations, and therefore it is pleasing to the eye and mind. These forms and patterns are embedded in our development as a species—we have known them forever and have looked at them, either consciously or unconsciously as a species for all time.
What interests me most about this type of work is what is beautiful about these structures beyond the presence of accuracy and repetition—what is next for this type of work? Architects are naturally thinking of the aesthetic married to structural benefits, but what of artists? What do these forms reflect from the deeps of our minds? Why is geometric repetition in nature beautiful?