. "The subjects, anonymous men in T-shirts and jeans that Wiley approaches on the street, are given the mantle of authority and grandiosity bestowed on figures such as Napoleon
in Jacques-Louis David's famous depiction with a rearing steed or the holiness of saints." (via
The Dervaes Institute
is an 'off the grid' homestead in Pasadena, CA and supports 4 adults full time. It also produces 3 tons of produce annually. It's all run from solar panels and biodiesel. Over 350 different plants and a handful of farm animals thrive on a 1/5 acre lot, not too far from the middle of Los Angeles. An 'urban homestead' indeed!
Photography of the unexpected and neglected architecture.
Romain Meffre and Yves Marchand travel the world photographing "singular and surprising buildings of all domains," mostly 19th and 20th century urban and industrial architecture. Don't miss the photos of Detroit (under Projects), or more of Marchand's stunning work at his personal site
What's behind Niagara Falls? Some dudes investigate
Birds that rap
and cows with accents
. The big picture is urban adaptation
, which is pretty cool. (...and the egg
City in Flames Twenty Five years ago
the City of Lynn
Massachusetts experienced its second great fire
. Devastating several downtown industrial buildings dating to the rise of the Shoe industry. All of which were undergoing redevelopment. While nowhere near as big as the Great Boston Fire
of 1872, or the various Chelsea fires
, the tragedy of the story
is the empty wasteland that still sits after all these years. Today the Boston Globe dug up several articles from their pre Web vaults. The Lynn Museum
has an exhibit, and the Lynn Library will have a slideshow.
Running from a voodoo spirit.
The urban game Crossroads
is one of the featured games from last weeks Come Out and Play (yes, another FPP!) Posting because this game is still running this weekend.
Using GPS cell phones,
players are trying to take over intersections in lower manhattan, like playing Go
. But the Baron Samedi
is in the grid with them, and one thing I know is that you don't want him to touch you... which is weird because he doesn't actually exist.
You end up getting chased down Hudson street by something invisible. Feels like the future.
Part of an exhibition called the Good Life
that closes this weekend.
"The streets of 2030's New York remain the only venues not under the thumb of the monolithic corporations. Manhattan’s three major hacker gangs have developed black-market technology that enables them to jack into the phone network though the payphone nodes, and redirect the payment deposited into that phone into their own coffers." The premise of a new cyberpunk novel? Nope. A new street game
you can play with your friends
The Conflux Festival
brings together mapmakers, urban adventurers, and performers to "investigate the physical and psychological landscapes of cities," NYC in this case. Tunnels and shortcuts
, turning city sound samples
into music, guerilla radio on unused FM frequencies
, and a nighttime game of pursuit
. My personal favorite
is tide-propelled commuting on the Tide and Current Taxi
. Via Flavorpill
Design Times Square: The Urban Forest Project
"brings 185 banners
created by the world’s most celebrated designers, artists, photographers and illustrators to New York’s Times Square. Each banner uses the form of the tree, or a metaphor for the tree, to make a powerful visual statement. Together they create a forest of thought-provoking images at one of the world’s busiest, most energetic, and emphatically urban intersections
." Including work by Milton Glaser
, the Walker Art Center
, and many, many others. Via Speak Up
Sewers of Canada
Many pictures of Great Canadian Drains.
Queen Street: Thematic Preview
- "Queen Street is one of Toronto's oldest, longest, and most varied routes. It began in 1793 as a line on a map, running dead straight for ten miles, in modern measure some 16 kilometres. It is the spine, the high street, the main street of many distinct, and quite different, neighbourhoods. The street's fine grain is a cavalcade of urban variety, where the grain is broken by parks, institutions, industry. Queen Street is a promenade of public life, one you can stroll for 16 kilometres. I have, all of it, often camera in hand: I wanted others to see it, to know something of its life. And its gifts — meant to be shared. Here I'll share with you some of what I have seen along, and just off, Queen Street."
Joe Nishizawa's new photojournalism book, Deep Inside
, is a visual exploration of the amazing, highly mechanized world under Japan's urban areas. This brief interview with the author
is accompanied by several interesting photos.
The Urban Pantheist
is the livejournal of Jef Taylor, where he works out articles for his two zines: The Urban Pantheist: Loving Nature while Living in the City
and Urban Nature Walk
. The LJ became a bit more as he embarked on a project called 365 Urban Species
, where he'll post a current photo and short article about a different living thing found in the city each day.
: Confused about when to answer your cellphone? Not sure when to take off your iPod? Baffled as to what to say to that guy you saw in that movie with that chick when you see him on the street? Worry no more. In too much of a hurry to read this long article from New York Magazine? This short guide
has you covered. Here are a few more New York specific examples
. When all else fails, ask Mr. Social Grace.
Naked in the Naked City.
Artist Miru Kim takes curiously compelling nude photos of herself in gritty and deserted urban settings like sewers
, subway stations
, railroad tracks
, abandoned factories
- Friends Of Vast Industrial Concrete Kafkaesque Structures - a photo essay on the concrete geometries of the Los Angeles River flood control channels. [via inhabitat]
Curating the City
A Flash exhibition exploring the past and present urban landscape of Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles. A modest topic explored in depth - which is perhaps what makes it so fascinating. The site includes a pdf guidebook
, in case you want to check out the bricks-and-mortar version.
(fahr'muh'deli'fi'kay'shun), n. 1. The process of turning all of Philadelphia's vacant and abandoned lots into urban farms. n. 2. An entry in the UrbanVoids
international design competition to redo Philadelphia's inner city.
is a Japanese movement that eschews the fast-paced consumption of modern urban life for the slower pace of farming and small villages
. It emphasizes self-reliance, sustainability
, and the appreciation of leisure. From some perspectives, it can be seen as a reaction to hazards in the modern world
or as a peer to Shinto
and modern schools of thought
or Battleship Island
is 480 x 160 meters and was home to more than 5000 people
for more than 40 years it is a microcosm
of 20th century industrial development
. A soundtrack
to the photos. Or take the multimedia tour
. Urban exploration
is nothing new. It has been posted about before
, what is new is this stunning example
of the gymnastics in action. Watch, enjoy.
Transit in Detroit
details an urban planner's initiative to cut the costs of the city's traffic congestion-relieving highway expansion by proposing a transit system combining light rail and bus-rapid-transit. [More Inside]
and Britain of Drains
. Cool urban exploration photos from underneath England by International Urban Glow
David Brooks makes an interesting point.
Rebuild New Orleans to ensure that the cycle of generational poverty is broken. Does this seem like social engineering? There is a precedent
for this, though. Can it--should it?--be done on a citywide scale? Should the government meddle this much in the day-to-day lives of people?
Post No Bills.
At the intersection
one may unexpectedly
, or at least humor
. Henry Ho shines a light
on it. (42 pages. Or view all thumbnails together)
"New Mexico, Cleaner than Regular Mexico"
This isn't the first time that Urban Outfitters has crossed the line of good taste. Two years ago, [Urban Outfitters] stopped selling a game called "Ghettopoly" after protests by black civil rights leaders. Last year, it halted sales of a T-shirt that read "Everyone Loves A Jewish Girl," surrounded by dollar signs, after the Anti-Defamation League objected.
As could be expected, not everone
finds this stuff funny.
Is a "virtual" Philly even better than the real thing?
Well, GeoSim Systems
thinks so. Except for the aroma of freshly-grilled cheesesteak, at least. Their "Virtual Philadelphia" is the most detailed urban imaging system I've seen yet, and you can read about the monumental process of turning photographic images (taken from both aircraft and street-level) into this incredible rendering in a February 17 NY Times article
(reg req). And - as expected - Google wants to get in on the action and do the same thing
in San Francisco. via BB
Sunlight is escaping many of our neighborhoods! The future home of Teardrop Park South, which will sit in building shadows almost year-round and seemed destined to be the darkest of ...
no, wait ... Heliostats!
Action Squad – Urban Adventurers
"In a nutshell, Action Squad explores. This generally occurs late at night, to aid in avoiding other people, particularly those with badges and funny blue uniforms. We climb buildings, sneak into factories, crawl through all kinds of tunnels, spelunk old brewery caves, poke around abandoned buildings, and run across the rooftops."
Missions of the Action Squad are fully documented with descriptions, photographs (historical & intraoperative) and sometimes maps but always with a sense of wonder at the urban flotsam they enjoy exploring. This is my particular favourite
but poke around, there's a fair bit in this gem of a site worth exploring from the armchair. [via]
: one of the more striking uses of Processing
I've seen so far. And quite urban-like, no? via Computing for Emergent Architecture.
Cleveland bloggers are organizing
against a giant suburban-style shopping plaza called Steelyard Commons (to be built on the site of the city's historic steel factories), which will include an immense Wal-Mart at its core. After City Council passed legislation in February to prevent Wal-Mart from adding a grocery store (causing the Bensonville bullies to "pull out" and scuttle the project), the developer was aided and abetted behind closed doors
by Cleveland's mayor, Queen Jane. Despite the mayor's proclamation of "no public money" or tax abatements for the project, there's plenty of evidence
to the contrary.
Metropolis ex nihilo?
Construction of New Songdo City
, South Korea, is now underway. Within 10 years, a fully planned city of 100,000 people will spring up on a man-made island. It is intended to be a new, multi-national commercial hub for its booming Asian region. The developers
say all the right things - cultural facilities, mixed use buildings, ample greenspace, etc. - but can a diverse, livable city really be so easily manufactured?
Cop shoots from patrol car.
Beautiful and fascinating photos taken by an on-duty police officer in southwest Atlanta. Thumbnails are cropped, click to see full photo. (via things)
) brings together young artists, designers, cooks, hotel industry professionals and managers to develop and implement their own ideas.
These will be presented to the public in 3 sites (hotel, factory, warehouse) in Copenhagen for three weeks in April.
"21 Artists. 61 Rooms. 13 Countries" via
[Parts I & II, each a 15:00+ minute
An urban planning film from 1939 that takes a nostalgic look at country life, compares it to the hustle and bustle of 1930s big city life, and presents a utopian alternative.
The City, Parts I & II, can be found at the Prelinger Archives
if you want to read about them before you commit to watching the 30 minute movie. I tripped across this while surfing around on the forums
: The urban planning portal. Also notable: Music by Aaron Copland
is New York's perennial next-year neighborhood, perenially held back by huge housing projects and bad transportation, despite some ambitious proposals
. Ikea's proposed store
has been the subject of a long battle
between "it'll bring jobs" and "it'll destroy the neighborhood". It's finally going to happen, and soon these buildings
will be a parking lot.
Like lane markings, but better.
Montreal artist Roadsworth transforms street markings into boots, bullets, and zippers. Sad postscript? He's been busted
The connections between post-war urban reconstruction, demographics, social engineering, and eugenics are explored in this treasure trove of links
, from things magazine
Assorted Street Posters
- "This collection of street posters, mad scribblings, political screeds, religious rants, and paranoid raves was collected on the streets of New York City from 1985 to the present. Some time ago, it occurred to me that the streets are as full of art as, say, thrift shops are full of great paintings. . ." (via cmonkey via undule) (this is my 7th post please be gentle)
A look at the massive storm drains under Tokyo, that took twelve years to build. [this is cg]
The Urban Archipelago. "It's time to state something that we've felt for a long time but have been too polite to say out loud: Liberals, progressives, and Democrats do not live in a country that stretches from the Atlantic to the Pacific, from Canada to Mexico. We live on a chain of islands. We are citizens of the Urban Archipelago, the United Cities of America. We live on islands of sanity, liberalism, and compassion--New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Seattle, St. Louis, Minneapolis, San Francisco, and on and on. And we live on islands in red states too--a fact obscured by that state-by-state map."