Thursday, January 28, 2010

VideoLoop!

parkour motion reel from saggyarmpit on Vimeo.



videogioco-loop experiment from donato sansone on Vimeo.

Hydrology

Via Bustler


London-based Plasma Studio has won the first prize in the competition for the International Horticultural Fair in Xi’an, China. The project comprises of the redevelopment of a large area between the airport and the ancient city center of Xi’an, known as the home of the Terra Cotta Army.

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Final Master Plan

Plasma Studio proposes three distinct buildings of 10,000 m2 in total within a proactive and sustainable landscape. The project is a collaboration of Plasma Studio (building design) with Groundlab (landscape and urban design) and will be completed by 2011.

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Understanding of Natural Cycles

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Exhibition Center Perspective

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Exhibition Center Landscape

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Exhibition Center Perspective

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Exhibition Center Floor Plan and Section

Vegetated States

Via SFgate

The vacant lot sits idle behind a chain link fence on the... Michael Macor / The Chronicle

The vacant lot sits idle behind a chain link fence on the North East corner of Harrison and Folsom Streets on, Saturday June 27, 2009, in San Francisco, Calif., while developers decides how to fill the empty spaces before construction begins.

An empty development site on Rincon Hill's Fremont Street...

An empty development site on Rincon Hill's Fremont Street becomes a sculptured habitat in the conceptual design "Vegetated States" by Sarah Kuehl, Owen Kennerly, Adam Greenspan and Sarina Bowen.

An aerial view of the conceptual design "Vegetated States...

An aerial view of the conceptual design "Vegetated States: Growth between Booms" by four local designers: Adam Greenspan, Sarah Kuehl, Sarina Bowen and Owen Kennerly.


The proposed "Vegetated States" on Fremont Street -- conc...

The proposed "Vegetated States" on Fremont Street -- conceived by Sarina Bowen, Adam Greenspan, Owen Kennerly and Sarah Kuehl --would include a metal fence of bird shelters along Fremont Street. This diagram shows the different birds the team hopes to attract.

The topography of the proposed "Vegetated States" on Frem...

The topography of the proposed "Vegetated States" on Fremont Street by four local designers: Sarina Bowen, Adam Greenspan, Owen Kennerly and Sarah Kuehl.

The proposed "Vegetated States" on Fremont Street -- conc... Owen Kennerly, Sarah Kuehl / Sarina Bowen, Adam Greenspan

The proposed "Vegetated States" on Fremont Street -- conceived by Sarina Bowen, Adam Greenspan, Owen Kennerly and Sarah Kuehl --would include a metal fence of bird shelters along Fremont Street.

How a development site-turned landscaped habitat would lo... Adam Greenspan, Sarina Bowen / Sarah Kuehl, Owen Kennerly

How a development site-turned landscaped habitat would look in several years from Zeno Alley in the conceptual design "Vegetated States" by Sarah Kuehl, Owen Kennerly, Adam Greenspan and Sarina Bowen.


Sunday, January 24, 2010

School Bridge by Li Xiaodong














Edible Schoolyard










via archdaily.com

Work AC, in collaboration with Edible Schoolyard NY and the Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse Foundation, is designing a new schoolyard for PS216 that will offer the young New Yorkers a different learning experience. The Edible Schoolyard is designed as a series of interlinked sustainable systems where the building will produce energy and heat, collect rainwater, process compost and sort waste with an off-grid infrastructure

The school includes a kitchen classroom and mobile greenhouse where children are brought together in a learning environment that also promotes eco-friendliness. The roof of the kitchen classroom, a room that provides the facilities for up to 30 students to prepare meals together, channels rain water for reclamation. The mobile greenhouse extends the growing season by covering 1600sf of soil in the colder months and gardens will allow the children to care for plants

A systems wall, a series of spaces that include a cistern, space for composting and waste-sorting, solar batteries, dishwashing facilities, a tool shed and a chicken coop, rests on the opposite side of the yard

The project is a great way to introduce sustainable methods into children’s lives at an early age. The “edible” element will definitely pique children’s interests and help the next generation realize the importance of the eco-friendly movement

Friday, January 22, 2010

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Maps - Yeah Yeah Yeahs



Pack up
I'm a stray
enough
Oh say say say you'll
Say say say you'll
Say say say you'll
Say say say you'll
Say say say..


Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Maps...........
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you


Made off
Don't stray
Well my kinds
Your kind
I'll stay the same


Pack up
But don't stray
Oh say say say
I'll say say say..

Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Maps...........
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Maps...........
Wait.
they don't love you like I love you

Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Maps...........
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Wait.
They don't love you like I love you
Maps...........
Wait.
they don't love you like I love you

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Places left behind

Via reclaimedland.sg

Balik kampung

A group of elderly residents brave hungry mosquitoes and a clampdown to call a derelict plot home

Senior citizens like Ah Or are drawn to Kampung Sungei Pandan because it reminds them of the villages they were resettled from in the 1970s, under Singapore’s urban renewal programme. Photos by SAM KANG LI

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BY SERENE CHEONG

IT’S 530AM as Yeo Buck Chwee leaves his three-bedroom apartment at Clementi Avenue 4. The 85-year-old enjoys a cup of kopi-O or black coffee at the nearby coffeeshop before heading down a bougainvillea-lined path towards Ulu Pandan Park Connector.

But instead of joining the other early risers who gather at the scenic water-front park to cycle or practise tai chi, a form of Chinese martial arts, Yeo passes a sign that reads ‘Private Land, Trespassers will be Prosecuted’ to reach his ‘second home’.

Set along an abandoned railway track owned by KTM Malayan Railway, this home is literally just a roof over his head – a hut consisting of zinc panels held up by metal scaffolding. Around it are farm plots where he spends his mornings weeding and watering rows of sweet potato plants, as he has been for the past three decades.

But he is not alone. This place is also home to some 30 senior citizens who visit daily. Affectionately known as Kampung Sungei Pandan to them, they gather here to farm or chit-chat over cups of tea.

Kampung Sungei Pandan sits on land the size of two soccer pitches. It is located at Clementi Avenue 4, above a gas pipe that belongs to the Public Utilities Board. The collection of farm plots is bordered by HDB blocks, the Clementi Avenue 6 flyover and Sungei Ulu Pandan. It runs along the KTM Malayan Railway built on land belonging to Malaysia, thus making it difficult for Singapore’s authorities to develop the site. Hence, the state has left it alone... or at least for now.

Kampung Sungei Pandan sits on land the size of two soccer pitches. It is located at Clementi Avenue 4, above a gas pipe that belongs to the Public Utilities Board. The collection of farm plots is bordered by HDB blocks, the Clementi Avenue 6 flyover and Sungei Ulu Pandan. It runs along the KTM Malayan Railway built on land belonging to Malaysia, thus making it difficult for Singapore’s authorities to develop the site. Hence, the state has left it alone... or at least for now.

Kampung, which means village in Malay, also refers to a rural way of life in Singapore that has made way for today’s modern living.

“Being out in the fields gives me a break from the four concrete walls of my home,” Yeo explains. He likens the open spaces of Kampung Sungei Pandan to those at his old village along Sixth Avenue, now a prime real estate area where million-dollar properties stand. Yeo and most of the regulars were relocated in the late 1970s under the nation’s urban renewal programme.

Nicknamed Ah Or, a reference to his tanned complexion in Hokkien, he prefers the kampung setting to the air-conditioned rooms found at the nearby Clementi Community Centre, which conducts many activities for senior citizens like him. There, for less than $100, Ah Or can pick up calligraphy or learn to play the guzheng, a traditional Chinese string instrument. Yet, even if they were for free, Ah Or would not be the least bit interested.

“Community centre activities and elderly-friendly exercise parks are boring,” he says, adding that he enjoys spending time at Kampung Sungei Pandan as it gives him the freedom to pursue what he wants, when he wants to.

HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS

Many years ago, 10 other farming enthusiasts, including 53-year-old Cai, took the cue from Ah Or and began growing sweet potato and yam on adjacent plots.

They became fast friends, tilling each other’s lands and even arranging barbeque get-togethers at the hut.

Back then, armed with crude tools and determination, Cai and his friends cleared weeds and chased out snakes from the once-vacant plot of land. They also raised funds for the setting up of a Taoist altar and purchased potted plants, carpet grass and a lawn mower.

Undisturbed by any concrete structures, regulars like the freedom of space that Kampung Sungei Pandan provides.

Undisturbed by any concrete structures, regulars like the freedom of space that Kampung Sungei Pandan provides.

“We contributed our household items and belongings, each of us had a part to play in the construction of this shelter,” says Cai. He sifts through items such as plastic chairs, foldable tables and a rusty electric stove to look for faulty ones to throw out, and adds, “It’s messy, but it really looks and feels just like home.”

Urban sociologist Ho Kong Chong cites the kampung as an example of how people can create places of their own, a process he calls “place making”. The professor from the National University of Singapore (NUS) also suggests that the kampung has fostered a sense of community among residents through the sharing of memories.

“When people intermingle or pursue a common activity, there is a possibility that they will move on to negotiate and solve problems together,” Prof Ho says.

“Urban planners should think beyond just constructing static spaces that are void of character and instead place more attention on the nurturing and retaining of social spaces, such as the kampung,” he adds.

SHORT-LIVED HAPPINESS

In 2000, word spread that someone had struck lottery after giving offerings at Kampung Sungei Pandan’s Taoist altar. This news attracted visitors from as far as Changi, and a flood of donations allowed the devotees to convert the altar into an elaborate concrete shrine.

But this also caught the attention of the land owners. Cai recalls the day in 2002 when the Malayan Railway authorities came by for the first time and ordered the demolition of the shrine. Since then, the devotees have left Kampung Sungei Pandan in a dilapidated state. They are unwilling to rebuild the place for fear of a second clampdown.

In this manner, there is a lack of a long-term relationship with the physical environment, says urban planning expert Ooi Giok Ling. This discourages a sense of ownership among residents and they become unwilling to spend time and effort on its maintenance, she says.

The place has been left dilapidated since the first eviction order in 2002 as the regulars do not want to see their time and effort gone to waste again.

The place has been left dilapidated since the first clampdown in 2002 as regulars do not want to see their time and effort go to waste again.

“This hampers grassroots planning activities and gives the space a temporary look, exactly the kind of problems that the authorities dread as it is untidy,” adds the professor from the Nanyang Technological University.

For Florence Ghng, who gets a bird’s eye view of Kampung Sungei Pandan from her 10th floor apartment, the sight of brown muddy ponds and messy zinc roof panels isn’t a pretty one. But the 48-year-old hardly seems to mind.

“It’s good that these senior citizens have a space to do something they love and enjoy, like rearing fishes, gardening or just chatting,” she says. “How else would they pass time?”

Having moved into her apartment at block 305 in 2001, Ghng recalls how her elderly father noticed the vegetable plots downstairs and wished he had such a kampung under his own block.

But unlike Ghng, not all residents have been supportive of the kampung. Over the years, others have complained about dengue threats at the compound, leading to frequent visits by officials from the town council and the National Environment Agency.

In order to quell such fears, 58-year-old Sunny rears fishes in the ponds to prevent the breeding of larvae. The regular at Kampung Sungei Pandan is thankful that besides these checks, the authorities have pretty much left him alone.

“They know we’re just regular folks,” says the technician. “The police came to check if Mas Selamat was hiding here,” he recalls. “I told them this place is like a kampung, we’re all friends and everyone knows everyone else. Even Mas Selamat wouldn’t dare to hide here lah!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Desire of Wills


How often would you stare at something, hoping that you can catch some sort of response? The anticipation of seeking these moments of change peaks to the realm of paranoia. What if there isn’t any form of dialogue in the first place established by this act of observation and that being observed? What if there isn’t any form of deeper connection, but rather just a one-sided perspective of voyeurism? Is the subject even aware that an innate desire of contact is being conjured by a will of focused anticipation? Could it be in fact, lying motionlessly in wait for the exact response from the observer? Could there possibly be the scenario that both are actually observing the other through a mental looking glass, contesting the will to make the first move, like the deer that tenses in the wait for the lion’s first leap of aggression or who finally succumbs to her fear and makes that first dash of life. What if all these are just illusions of grandeur, conjured to satisfy the unfulfilled desire of the subconscious trying to make contact with both minds?

Yet at that moment of intense contemplation, the subject unexpectedly responds with a greeting of kindness, sweeping you off all feelings of anxiety and worrisome, rendering your silly thoughts into sweet nothingness...

The Third & the Seventh

The Third & The Seventh from Alex Roman on Vimeo.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Of Soulmates and Wind-Up Birds

"Is it possible, in the final analysis, for one human being to achieve perfect understanding of another?
We can invest enormous time and energy in serious efforts to know another person, but in the end, how close can we come to that person's essence? We convince ourselves that we know the other person well, but do we really know anything important about anyone?"

Haruki Murakami, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

And if we do, is our attempt to connect and immerse in complete understanding, existing only on a minute plane of the multi-faceted nature of the other? Which in comparing to the rest of the essence, becomes totally irrelevant? Yet we hold that knowledge so dear that it creates an illusion of understanding and generates our version of the other in us, that we blindly pay homage to and seek to find solace in? What if soulmates never exists, but only people with what little understanding of each other, connected on insignificant strings that forms only part of the greater balls of linen? This is what relationships gladly live in denial.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Mary, Mary, Quite contrary

Mary, Mary, Quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With charming smiles, And inquisitive tells,
And so my heart grows...