Upon seeing multimedia artist Jessica Stockholder’s new installation, “Color Jam“, it isn’t difficult to detect the influence of graphic designer Saul Bass, in particular, his brilliant title sequence for Alfred Hitchcock’s “North by Northwest”. The collapse and fade from Bass’s bright green tableaux of criss-crossing lines into the gridded facade of the C.I.T. Building proves the conceptual spark for Stockholder’s “Color Jam”, which covers 76,000 square feet of a downtown Chicago intersection in swaths of color.
The installation, deemed the city’s largest ever piece of public art, applies bold wedges of “three-dimensional painting” at the junction between State and Adams Streets, moving from from the street crosswalks, along the adjacent sidewalks, and up the facades of corner buildings. According to the artist, the site’s diverse material palette–asphalt, concrete, glass, steel–is subsumed in the totalizing “potential of surface”, that is, the homogenizing force of color. All distinguishing formal features, including the different profiles of each of the buildings and the logos of the corporations that inhabit them, are suspended in Stockholder’s swatches of orange, cyan, and lime green, transforming a mundane street corner into a bright landscape “spilling forth [with] imagined richness, full of emotional, subjective resonance, and wandering focus.”
Italian artist massimo bartolini has developed an expansive outdoor public library entitled ‘bookyard’ for belgian art festival, TRACK: a contemporary city conversation in ghent. Bartolini has employed his creative, mixed media talents to develop a set of twelve bookcases installed in st peter’s abbey vineyard, sint-pietersplein 14, the establishment originating in the middle ages. the sweeping shape of green shelves has been constructed upon a small grassy field, then moving up the gradual slope of st peter’s abbey in line with their vines.
The units are filled with books for sale by the public libraries of ghent and antwerp with the profits of these items to benefit the institutions. Visitors to the exhibition may bring home a piece of the artwork, an object housed in the shelves of ‘bookyard’ by leaving a donation of their choosing into a small box supplied by the artist and the libraries.
ghent’s intervention project, TRACK, officially ends on september 16th, 2012.
2005. “Für den Alten Garten” by Veit Stratmanns
This work consists of five wheeled office chairs joined back to back in a circle. The sculpture allows people to sit and move together around the building on the basis that they act collaboratively.
Senseless Drawing Bot – So Kanno & Takahiro Yamaguchi
This is a self-generated drawing machine that using chaotic movement of double pendulum and drawing abstract line dynamically in realtime. The modified electric skateboard with double pendulum detecting the direction of the movement of pendulum by rotary encoder on the fulcrum of it and amplify the wobble by moving right and left. If it passes over the threshold, it draws to a wall in a twinkling. So the principle of operation is quite simple. This work simulates a act of graffiti by extracting the dynamism of the process of drawing by eliminating the human body and assertion from doodle action called “graffiti” that recognized as a expression method. They exploring for “what is the essence of graffiti” by presenting the elements like extemporaneousness, symbol characteristic and vandalism and trying to connect a new interpretation.
The Floating Cinema is an old work boat re-imagined into a cinema for intimate on-board film screenings, larger outdoor film events and other film-related activities curated by artists Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie (known collectively as Somewhere). The structure navigated the waterways of the five Olympic host boroughs during the summer of 2011 and during that time events were held in 26 venues and included screenings of more than 60 filmmakers, 10 bespoke tours, and was visited by over 75,000 people.
AMAGER ARK by Alfio Bonanno, COPENHAGEN, DENMARK, 2004
The Amager Ark is one component of Bonanno’s Himmelhøj (Sky High), a four piece installation commissioned by the Danish Ministry of the Environment.
There is a touch of wildness here. Occasionally, deer can be found grazing in the overgrown grass. Sometimes large puddles collect on the ground’s surface. They act as mirrors reflecting earth and sky until the water is slowly absorbed by the clay strata beneath. We can almost believe that the 60 metre oaken vessel might be floated away with a crew of children at the helm. In reality, civilization is encroaching on this playful enclave. Himmelhøj is just over a 10 minute walk from the West Amager metro station.
Green square. The “Urban Interventions” civic association, in collaboration with the Vallo Sadovský Architects studio, have prepared an instant urban intervention under the bridge. The situation in regard to quality of the environment at the bus terminal under the New Bridge in Bratislava has been bad for a long time. People have to wait for their bus connections in a totally unsuitable area, and we consider it a disgrace that the city of Bratislava leaves its citizens and tax-payers to function in such an inadequate environment. The characteristics of this place directly affect the mood and behaviour of its users, and several disturbances and conflicts have happened here in the past. It is difficult to understand how such an area, only a few metres from a historic square, has remained unnoticed by city officials and for a long time practically unchanged. Although Green Square is an instant “intervention”, the cheapest fix, it is also by its “loudness” both a provocation and a call for a more serious approach to this problematic site. It is not only the cheapest method but also simultaneously the most visible attempt to change the atmosphere under the bridge, and to highlight the dysfunctional environment that everyone accepts out of habit.
They painted an area of about 1,000 m2 with green road paint. The painting was done with standard material that is used for road surface markings, and road safety glass beads were also applied to the surface to provide reflectivity and prevent slipping. The second part of the design concept, this time graphic, was created by graphic designer Ondrej Gavalda using adhesive tape that was painted over and then peeled off.
londoner Steve Wheen brings greenery and miniature scenes to the streets of east london in his ‘the pot hole gardener’ project.
the idea, which was conceptualized based on guerrilla gardening, is simple: ‘my neighbourhood has a distinct lack of green space,’ wheen reflects; ‘[and] I’m a gardener with no garden.’ wheen fills potholes in roads and sidewalks with soil and living plants, decorating the spaces with miniature props to create tiny worlds. The work thus eliminates the danger of potholes as it adds an enchanting bit of art and greenery into the days of passersby, simultaneously drawing attention to the problem.
A temporary installation in osaka, japan, the ‘osaka board game park’ was the result of a collaboration between japanese architects TOFU, yuji tamai and the kansai university urban design lab, focusing on the use of public spaces.
although osaka’s transportation is historically canal-based, the waterfront is currently going through revitalization. As part of the initiative, the art installation was in the osaka 2011 festival located at the east end of nakanoshima park.
Focused on checkers, the project consisted of various scales of the board game integrated into the surrounding greenery. To keep the project low cost, materials such as paper, cardboard, cloth, vinyl sheet flooring, wood tile, stone and stainless steel were used. the sculptural forms of the checker board simultaneously functioned as a small play ground as the visitors climbed and sat on the structures. the urban reimagining of the landscape was a demonstration of economically
sustainable ways to successfully enrich public spaces.
An apartment under the bridge. Berlin-based urban intervention collective Stiftung Freizeit has designed an illusionary ‘Wohnzimmer’ under a bridge in Berlin. Made with tape, this minimal but cosy ‘apartment’ combines the raw esthetics of grey concrete with the warm and intimate feeling of the typical German Wohnzimmer interior. Combining these two ingredients of what could be called Berlin style, the artists Inés Aubert and Rubén Jódar aim to make life a little more comfortable for those who spend their time on the streets.
A Monster Island Finale. On Saturday, Monster Island arts center in Williamsburg celebrated it’s seventh and final annual block party. Members of the building’s collective gathered for a ceremonial ‘Paint Pour’, anointing the exterior of the already colorful building known for its murals with a final wash of color The paint was mopped up with rollers and redistributed along the side of the building – murals from the likes of Other, Deuce Seven, and Roa to name but a few vanished behind blueish-green swatches of paint.
Insert here. Vacant lots littered with trash. Streets that lack bike lanes. We’ve all passed urban spaces that are in need of some sprucing up, and artist Eve Mosher and 350.org have come up with a bold, graphic way to (literally) point out some of the spots around NYC that could use a green makeover. With this art project, Mosher is painting giant yellow arrows around NYC, offering not-so-subtle suggestions (for example: “Insert bike lane Here,” or “Insert community garden here”) for climate change solutions.
Neon Bike to become city-wide art project. Imagine if Toronto’s orphaned bikes were adopted by artists and transformed from rusting metal shells into eye-popping sidewalk sculptures.
That’s what Caroline Macfarlane envisioned last week when she reclaimed an old Raleigh that had been locked up and abandoned outside the OCADU Student Gallery on a grey stretch of Dundas St. W. for years.
“It would be great to make it a city-wide art project,” said Macfarlane, who helps runs the gallery. The City of Toronto doesn’t agree. Two days after Macfarlane, 25, finished sanding, priming and spray painting the bike a glowing shade of neon orange — carefully taping the bike ring first to avoid damaging public property — the city slapped it with a removal notice.
Radical Ruptures is a series of lectures and conversations in Copenhagen (Denmark), exploring the relationship among art, public space and the current political situation. Six events with artists, curators and intellectuals to reflect on the role of art as a mean of civic participation. The first event is with T.J. Demos on 14th September and regards Art in Emergency Times (Art and humanitarianism in Sub-Saharan Africa).
To see the full programme: publik.dk