I recently worked with the Canary Project on “Solar Sun,” their large scale installation in South Africa for 350.org, an organization that works to bring awareness to global environmental issues. The intent was to arrange a happening of people and things on the ground so they’d be visible from space and photographed via satellite. (I haven’t seen those photos yet.) Canary had the great idea to use solar cookers to cook food for a huge feast of people on picnic blankets arrayed like the rays of the sun and then to give the cookers back to the community. I worked with them to develop the design and to provide logistical instructions for materials and laying everything out on the ground with no eye from above. Neither I nor Ed and Susannah at the Canary Project had much control from here in the States aside from the set up instructions we gave. But from 350.org’s flickr stream it looks like things went pretty well!
A while back while we were building out J.D. Fisk and making all the plywood cabinet carcasses, my buddy Jake found this little guy and put it in my hand. “Buck shot,” he said. Yeah right, I laughed, but as we crouched around he explained that– of course– plywood comes from trees and trees come from wooded areas where people go to hunt and whatever doesn’t hit an animal is bound to hit a, wait for it…. tree! I’d never seen that before. It’s a beautiful little artifact in the life of an under appreciated building material.
This is a fascinating story from last week’s NYTimes that tells of a 30yr old unsolved murder case featuring a vicious town bully who was gunned down in broad daylight, the dozens of eyewitnesses who saw nothing and the prosecutor who fought in vain against the town’s resolve to secrecy. I see this is a case where good old fashioned people and community succeeded where the protective infrastructures of modern society failed.
NW corner, 34th & 8th.
I forgot to post this from the night before Thanksgiving. Since grade school I’ve tried to make a tradition of going to see the Macy’s Parade balloons being blown up on 77th. But I never noticed the inflation instructions before. I am generally fascinated by written or illustrated instructions. These are quite strange. (Click on the image to see it a little bigger….)
Delighted, tickled inside, warm withed with nostalgia. These are some ways I’d describe how I felt when I went looking for gifts for my two year old and came upon the one and only Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine on Amazon. Not for this year I think. But I’m amazed and thrilled to see it still in production. This was definitely one of Santa’s finer creations.
A friend on Facebook linked to this amazing presentation and history of Colorforms on the site of Mel Birnkrant, the inventor and toy designer who would breathe decades of life into the previously invented and wildly simple toy. Take the time to go through this and read his story. It’s really great.