Data + Design Project

East Meets West: Zhu Jinshi’s ‘Boat’ Installation

Monday 04.01.2013 , Posted by

Zhu Jinshi Boat 4

It’s a huge structure, but it weighs only a small fraction of most things its size. That’s because the floating tube featured here is built out of 8,000 sheets of rice paper, 800 shafts of bamboo, and cotton. Chinese abstract artist Zhu Jinshi installed the 12-meter long hanging structure, called Boat, last month at Art13 London, a new international art fair where the highly experiential piece featured as the centerpiece for the show. [Read more...]

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Two Superb, Hand-Drawn Maps of London

Monday 03.25.2013 , Posted by

Wellingtons Travel Map of London 2

When I visited Rome last summer I picked up a free, hand-drawn map of the city. To be honest I wasn’t expecting much, but when I started navigating using the small map, I was astounded at the detail it contained in each hand-drawn line. To be finding my way around the ancient city using only someone’s fine penmanship was like stepping back into the bygone era of hand-made cartography. Today we have Google Maps. It’s a tool which blows away any hand-created map as far as accuracy and search-ability, but something is certainly lost in the aesthetic beauty and ability to roll out a large city on the table before you. These fine maps of London from Wellingtons Travel, bring back the maps of old and do it with useful style. [Read more...]

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Bringing Iconic London to Burning Man 2013

Tuesday 03.19.2013 , Posted by

London_BRC_Burning Man 2013 -1

It’s less than six months until Burning Man begins, so the large scale art installations and their creators are beginning to surface, making their needs for support known. Each year, hundreds of unique art installations are displayed at Black Rock City, the temporary community of 50,000-plus people that attend Burning Man every Summer. Large, medium or small, there are all sorts of amazing art projects that are brought to the gathering each year. One large scale project titled “London BRC” is beginning its campaign for support and it looks to be an amazing project if it can be made a reality. [Read more...]

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Visualizing Major Causes of Death in the 20th Century

Tuesday 03.19.2013 , Posted by

Wellcome Collection 20th Century Death Visualized header

I recently had the pleasure of attending a talk by the provocative philosopher John Gray as he discussed his new book – The Silence of Animals: On Progress and other Myths. During the engaging talk (which you can listen to here) he made a strong case for the idea that, while technology has progressed substantially over the last centuries, society and human behavior has not. Are we all just animals with mobile phones and machine guns? As we’ll see from this excellent graphic detailing the major causes of death in the 20th century, John Gray may be on to something. [Read more...]

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Debt-Free: The Piano Tuner Who Chooses to Be Homeless

Wednesday 02.20.2013 , Posted by

Richard the Homeless Piano Tuner 4

Many people in our modern world feel trapped in the rat race, daily struggling to make ends meet in their constant battle against bills… but for what? For Richard Roberts the answer after he looked around his apartment was simple: he didn’t need all this stuff. His TV and Playstation sat idly while he worked all day as a piano tuner trying to pay off years of remaining school debt. What use was an apartment if he didn’t have the time to enjoy it. Robert’s unusual and minimalist solution: go homeless. [Read more...]

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UK Road Safety Posters from the WWII Blackout

Monday 02.04.2013 , Posted by

UK Road Safety Poster WWII Blackout 55

During the German bombing raids of WWII city dwellers in Britain were subjected to long nights of complete darkness to protect them from being spotted from above. Called the Blackout, it was a dark foreign world for people accustomed to the brightly lit city, and one which posed new challenges many weren’t aware of. These road safety posters from the period (1939 – 1946) point out some of the hazards people needed to watch out for as they tried their best to “keep calm and carry on.” [Read more...]

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Living Modern Art: Duo Pranks Tate Modern & Saatchi

Thursday 01.31.2013 , Posted by

Gallery Hijack

Ok, confession time. The last time I visited the Tate Modern there were a number of exhibits which people just didn’t seen to “get.” Richard Sarra’s Trip Hammer, Martin Boyce’s Gate (We don’t meet here. We are always together first.) and anything made by Charlotte Posenenske had people with puzzled looks surrounding them and muttering sentences like “I just don’t get how this is art…” To most observers – modern or not – these industrially-styled artworks are hard to understand. So, when I found a room filled only with a ladder, some plastic, an electric lift and a sign reading something like “This space undergoing renovation,” I couldn’t help turning the sign around and seeing what happened. Surprisingly, people almost immediately showed up in the room, stood looking past the rope surrounding the equipment and started analyzing the fine art they were observing. It happened… over, and over, and over… and no one once said they thought it wasn’t art. So when I found this museum hijacking video by a duo going by the names of Doug and Mikael, I couldn’t help but love it. [Read more...]

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Detailed Beauty: A Critique on Architecture & Society

Saturday 12.22.2012 , Posted by

Mark Lascelles Thornton The Happiness Machine 1

In his exquisitely detailed exploration of world architecture British artist Mark Lascelles Thornton has created something to both admire and to stir up conversation about the state of society. Titled, not a little bit sarcastically, “The Happiness Machine”, his yet to be completed masterpiece is a collection of world skyscrapers from London, Chicago, New York, Shanghai, Taipei, Kuala Lumpur and more. [Read more...]

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Real Cities Become Floating Islands in the Sky

Tuesday 11.13.2012 , Posted by

If you remember the 80s cult classic The NeverEnding Story, you’ll recall the desperate part of the film when the world of Fantasia begins to crumble away, leaving little more than a small island of rock remaining to stand on. Now, award-winning art director Reinhard Krug has created a series of imagination gripping images which seem to bring that story to our world, manipulating aerial photographs of major cities so they appear to be floating on rock. Here the resemblance to the NeverEnding Story ends, however as Krug’s images are far more serene – placing the cities gently in a sky of puffy clouds. [Read more...]

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Life is like ice cream, eat it before it melts.

Saturday 10.13.2012 , Posted by

Life is like ice cream, eat it before it melts. One lick at a time. That’s what Alexandra L Plesner believes. From a young age, she has been an ice cream enthusiast. Who hasn’t? But her penchant for ice cream was passed down through five generations of running a well-known family owned an ice cream shop in Austria. To pay an homage to the family business while pursuing her artistic side, she founded an artist collective in London dedicated to ice cream, which she believes is a symbol of life’s fragility. Here she works as creative project manager. The goal? “I Scream Factory explores perceptions of life through the medium of ice cream by delving into the metaphoric possibilities of the product.” [Read more...]

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