Monday, December 21, 2009
Monday, November 2, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Monday, September 14, 2009
First off, the above images were gathered from my journals which are covered in sketches and writings. They also occasionally hold the remnants of leaves and small pebbles picked up along the way. But because my work often excludes figurative imagery I found it interesting and necessary to show. The making of marks upon paper, the gesture and the expression that can be found between the pages of my notebooks are in a very subtle way related to certain aspects of my work.
But moving on, I decided to bring together images that I find inspiring and expressive; images that relay imagined, mythic and fictitious projections of the urban environment while suggesting the future of the urban landscape . I have particularly chosen images that emphasize the growing trend of vegetated urbanism and architecture. I should give due credit to Jason King who authors a great blog, two now, from which I have sourced many of my current images. (see. Landscape+Urbanism or Veg.itecture).
From there I moved into some of the images, topographic in nature, that represent a variety of data and methods being employed by various professional practices to visualize such data. This topography is of interest to me particularly because while much of it is shown in 2d still images, some these topographies model, in real time, information that changes rapidly, much more so than a real landscape under the pressure of erosion and natural process. These topographies flux more frequently and dynamically with rapid changes in the information they reflect. Information like cell phone use depicted in a spatial context, pedestrian density over the course of a day, or wireless data sent from one point to another. My interest here is in the use of a contour map, once relegated to static 2d images on paper, into a virtual as well as three dimensional space, over time and in response to dynamic information.
Finally there I showed a collection of images taken from the studio, which are rapidly becoming outdated as the work progresses.
I am currently working in several directions, experimenting and exploring, so this post in itself is somewhat mono-dimensional, focused upon one aspect of the past few weeks of work. I will begin to cover other projects as they move farther along.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Monday, September 7, 2009
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Power of 8 blurs overlapping space between the public and private sphere and carries my interest for a variety of reasons. In part it is open source and participatory in nature, it makes use a variety of cognitive mapping techniques and explores the development and social expression of urban form in relation to fantasy. Beginning with a series of workshops the crew of eight share their ideas and formulate imaginative visions of the future.
The project is of particular interest because it has manifest as a part of the art world. It is funded by the Arts Council England, presented within the gallery environment, and extends traditional roles for artists, designers, and other professionals; emphasizing transdiciplinary approaches to the development of the urban fabric.
The approach taken is one that begins exclusively and unfolds in the public realm. While typical design-build projects dictate urban morphology from the top down this project is inclusive, moving from the ideas of its eight original participants to the public, facilitating in the process of imagining alternatives to the existing urban fabric. While public participation did not occur from the onset, the shift from private to public practice was planned and implemented at an early stage in the life of the project. Preliminary results of the project workshops were presented to the public during a gallery opening and a large abstracted map of Brentford, the area surrounding the gallery, became a central interactive component to the exhibition. The idea was to "engage with the local people by situating some of our imagined scenarios over the map, and inviting them to do the same."
The incubation period, during which the professional crew initiated the process and developed individual and collective visions, could very well have provided a successful way to show that images of the future need not be limited in scope. Ideas that emerged from the workshops appear to have included a wealth of creative proposals and initiated a creative response from the public.
"Over the course of two days we had a steady stream of participants ranging from the radically activist to the playfully naive populated this map of their local area of Brentford with walking houses, snow stimulators, solar powered airships, public free boxes, trees that could talk to one another, new wireless connectivity, new species of underwater organisms and human spinning tops. The table was transformed into a landscape of fantasy and possibility in what appears to be a distant edge suburb of London."
Following the exhibition ideas generated through the Power of 8 project are intended to move freely through the public realm. "After October, the work will discursively enter the public domain, and each collaborator will be able to have equal ownership over the material and disseminate it in a way that suits him/her best." In this way the project will have seeded the landscape with ideas of the future, opening the local community to the creative potential of collectively imagined landscapes and inspiring new visions for the future.
In essence this project exemplifies an optimistic and inclusive approach to the development of our shared habitat. It combines the creative potential of forward thinking professionals with that of everyday citizens, those who share in the lived experience of the city and its infrastructure, to produce a collective expression of the future.
to see more visit: The Power of 8
Thursday, August 6, 2009
This post is the short version of an extensive network of thoughts oriented around the development of surface technologies emerging in the urban fabric. I am thinking of surfaces that have been transformed from rigid physical boundaries into large scale widows through advancements in digital LED screens. But what is above is not one of these surfaces. This is a view of a very real environment. The aquatic life seen here is not artificial and aside from the fact that we currently experience it from a computer screen, these are not merely images. My concern here is with the very real environment captured in this video and artificial images presented on emerging multimedia surfaces (like the one below).
My intention here is not to relegate technology to some benign status. It is to applaud the experience of being human, and the ability to explore the world around us. It is also to realize that technology, paired with the wonder of very real environments, real experiences and the imagination of creative men and women, can give depth to everyday surfaces, making them extraordinary.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
With such a small amount of information related to the work I hope that I will retain some sense of curiosity in the viewer. While I enjoy revealing work in progress I often question the effect of releasing such information. But at this stage in the process, such an early point, I think it is safe to share a slice of my studio practice.
Future posts will be tagged as studio updates and cognitive landscapes lest the work takes a major turn.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Climbing brothers Tiago and Gabriel Primo have been living on display since May of this year. Their vision for the exterior wall of a local gallery in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil has literally taken on the life of these two artists/climbers.
Apparently images of big wall climbing and the bivy ledges that climbers use to camp out on these, often multi-day vertical expeditions have creeped into the art scene of Brazil. But this time there is no big wall, just an urban niche now filled with the amenities that you would usually find in the comfort of your own home.
This is not the first time the art scene has taken a page from the journals of the climbing community. Artist Matthew Barney, in one of his 'Creamaster' films put his rigging and construction man T.J. Davey to work as a stand in, climbing the proscenium of an opera house in Budapest. There is also the moving structural mass of 2000 bamboo supports "Big Bamboo" by the Starn brothers making its way through the old Tallix foundry in Beacon, NY.
Perhaps these two have brought a new edge to the use of climbing equipment and techniques in art, by publicising their life 14 hours a day for nearly four months. Apparently Taigo and Gabriel spend the majority of their time interacting with the public. Which renders some questions related to my current interests. Through the publicity of their lifestyle, that which is typically private, are these brothers blurring the distinction between the private and public spheres? And could this be called public art? Perhaps not, but I am inclined to wonder, if they began dialogues related to housing issues, which they have been asked "How much is the rent?" by a passerby, and if they then opened a public dialogue related to such a topic in the streets of Rio, would it then become public art? While this may not be the purpose of their work, and it seems as though activism is the last thing on the minds of these two, their actions do generate questions and blur the divisions of public/private domains. What can be seen, and is probably more important than the questions I am posing, is simply how much fun it would be if there were more vertical access and exposure in the Urban landscape. Sure it presents liability issues and would probably incur serious legal ramifications if not authorized by the art world, but perhaps that is one of the best things about the art world. It's diverse, experimental, and has enough authority to provide spaces and legitimacy for the otherwise irrational but all to human forms of expression and acts of freedom.
Brothers Taigo and Gabrial plan to continue this exhibition and lifestyle through mid August. After which the home on a rope will come down and another, perhaps more grounded exhibition will take place.
Brothers Taigo and Gabriel Primo as their installation.
image via: associated press
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
On Monday of last week Balmori Associates, Inc. held a design forum called Making Public Places. I had hoped to attend personally but instead was able to take part in the discussion thanks to their efforts to expand the audience, interactively, using twitter, video feeds and a chat service.
I had two reasons for participating in this forum. The first is centered around interests in design, planning and public space as these items relate to current research elucidating changes in public space and the role of artists working in the public realm. The second of my reasons was based upon a need for direct experience with what presents itself as a new means of discursive practice charged with the task of generating feedback on the making of public spaces. Through this practice the publicness of real time dialogue is extended through technology and social networking, augmenting the real space assumed by participants with a complementary virtual space. By and large this post is focused, roughly, around my experience from a relative distance through technology, the benefits of such technology and the current drawbacks encountered during this experience.
While I am not an expert in the fields of technology or design, my perspective comes from a place that can and should be valued. Public space, after all, is intended to be accessible and open to anyone. Without unearthing the breadth of positions and history of critical research related to public spaces I though it necessary to emphasis the focal point of this discussion, making public space. I will however leave my research objectives to another post and present what I found relevant to this experience, namely the virtual augmentation of public space.
Giving this forum an online presence generated an opportunity for individuals around the world to listen in on the dialogue as well as respond and ask questions. While most likely not the first of its kind, this was the first time I have experienced a forum over the web, particularly one that connects with a physical setting and real time dialogue. This experience was intriguing, welcomed, and forward thinking. The video that appears in this post is an unedited copy of the feed presented online. For anyone interested in the discussion that took place as well as trying to connect the twitter feeds to the physical dialogue I would suggest taking a look. I have provided links to information available at the bottom of this post.
Among the dialogue topics related to material use, behavior, vegetation, shared space, community involvement, funding and private/public ownership were covered. This made for an engaging discussion and participants hailed from Denmark, Sweden and the United States to mention only a few. I am however going to leave the reader to investigate the dialogue for his or herself and move on to highlight the extent of my experience as an online participant.
It is argued that public space in inherently democratic, concerned with the commons, and political. Balmori, by the very nature of opening this dialogue, a dialogue about public space to a wider audience, created a temporal form of just such a space. Their experimentation with emerging technology and social networking applications as a tool for creating an interactive sphere was a step towards the future of platforms that will extend the physical reality of public spaces and potentially reengage aspects of discursive democracy. I find this movement intriguing and yet problematic. Though I am going to bypass the problematic for a moment to discuss the potential of this methodology.
One highlight of this experience was the potential for interacting with a group of people discussing ideas that are important to me. And because of the use of technology, I, while not being in physical attendance was able to participate. While my participation, due to the dissonancy between the online community and those in physical attendance, was limited, without this two-way interaction I would have been relegated to consumer status, disenfranchised in a way, from the ability to thoughtfully articulate my ideas related to the way public spaces are produced. The opportunity to provide feedback, and have that feedback heard, reestablished my dignity as a producer, citizen and integral part of my environment. This two-way interaction is what stands out from traditional approaches to forums aired after the fact. It is an intriguing step away from consumer-oriented production of space, towards discursive practices that preserve the value of individuals not only as consumers but also as producers, active participants in life and the production of the spaces they inhabit. This reflects the potential to empower citizens through technology and in turn, thought listening and discursive practices related to the production of public spaces, invest in civic coherence and infrastructure that emerges from the bottom up.
To be sure that I not present the reader with a fluffy notion of this experience and an overtly optimistic view of this technology, I must insert into this post some of the drawbacks encountered during my experience. Not being there, physically, has presented several issues the most prevalent of which was the dissonance of the virtual experience with that of the real. To be clear, before I move on, I would first like to thank Balmori Associates for extending this forum and experimenting with new ways to increase the publicity efforts on the part of design professionals. This experience is a lead in to more coordinated, comprehensive coverage of such events that through technological means will increase the quality of future dialogue for those who wish to participate but cannot be in physical attendance. This was a seed in need of cultivation.
With any new technology or application there will be a time of rapid growth, potentially uncoordinated developments and rough edges. In this situation the rapid growth of a social networking application, Twitter, used by millions and made use of by Balmori to extend the dialogue to the public, brought about great opportunity along with the uncoordinated and rough edges.
Choosing Twitter meant that all feedback from the online community had to be limited to less than 140 characters. Which in turn meant questions and short answers. This in theory is good and keeps the dialogue moving, but not everyone can say what he or she wishes in less that 140 characters. Maybe they should be able to, maybe not. What is certain is that those in physical attendance were able to articulate complete thoughts without such limitations and few if any did so in less than 140 characters. This produced one of the first weak points leading to the dissonance between the two communities (online/physical).
The second weak point was the use of Tiny Chat. Tiny Chat was where the original video feed was posted, this was good, but broadcasting video was limited to those paying for the Tiny Chat service which was no one but Balmori. It would have been nice to see broadcasts of anyone who wished to participate and have the ability to see as well as hear online participants rather than limiting the online experience to text. With enough online presence this could of course lead to noise, but so can text and this is a greater problem associated with opening a forum to the world. Social interaction is not always regulated and pretty.
Probably the most inefficient hurdle was the use of multiple uncoordinated platforms. Tiny Chat, while allowing for longer messages and bypassing the 140-character issue, is not linked to twitter. So anyone posting on twitter did not see the tiny chat dialogue and vice versa. Lest of course, and this is what inevitably had to happen, the online user opened two separate windows, one for tiny chat and one for twitter.
Compounding the issues related to the cumbersome arrangement of windows, Twitter, in order to see the feeds as they are posted, must be refreshed or, yes another window must be opened and Twitterfall or some other real-time application for displaying twitter feeds must be opened.
The essential experience for the online participant thus involved, three open windows to view the video feed, post on the chat, and drop twitter comments/questions. This made for a disparate experience that certainly calls for the development of an application that can merge the strengths of each into one easy to use graphic interface. This is not the fault of balmori, as a matter of fact I believe they have done an excellent job trying to coordinate all of this and I applaud their effort. Case in point, when the Tiny Chat session was hacked, it took only a few minutes before the video was reestablished and the online community was notified of the new stream located on Ustream.
The dissonance was thus attributed to cumbersome new technologies that have yet to be integrated into easy to use tools that lend themselves to mass forums that combine real and virtual populations. I am sure it will only be a matter of time before fully integrated applications that provide user-friendly interfaces and elegant mashups appear on the peripheral and become absorbed by the masses. This will be an interesting time for public space and public practice.
A final note on the dissonance of this forum, and this one will most likely take a little more time to get over, is the difficulty combining two very different approaches to a forum. The first being a real forum in which participants can feel comfortable acting, listening, asking questions and generally functioning the way human beings do, in realty, physical space and with a group of real people. The second being a virtual forum, potentially muddied through mass communication, distant from all of things that make us human, but none the less here, and now a valuable tool employed all over the world. So how do we blend the two, without having them simply run in parallel or series? How do we integrate the two worlds seamlessly in a way that is comfortable for everyday human citizens so that everyone can participate in discursive practices that help to shape and form public spaces? How do these two worlds exist mutually and in a symbiotic fashion? And, what will be the public space remembered by history, of the twenty first century?
All this being said I think the future of public space is up to active and engaged individuals interested in developing the quality of urban fabrics and the role discursive democratic practices. Public space is an integral part of any democratic society and indeed an integral part of any society. The making of public space, its design, production, and reproduction is the responsibility of every citizen who takes a vested interest in the quality of their environment. I am happy to know that I live in a world where I can play an active role and articulate freely my thoughts related to our shared spaces. I hope that the future of public spaces proceeds towards a more inclusive set of practices exemplified by open forums and that everyday men and women have a place among the urban fabric to share in leisure, democracy and social engagement.
Thanks again to Balmori Associates, Inc. for hosing such a great dialogue. Please visit their site for more information related to the topic of their discussion, Making Public Places.
Balmori Associates, Inc.
Twitter : Balmori : #mpplaces
Sunday, July 19, 2009
ANNOUNCING THE REBURBIA DESIGN COMPETITION!
With the current housing crisis, the sub-prime mortgage meltdown, and rising energy costs, the future of suburbia looks bleak. Suburban communities in central California, Arizona and Florida are desolate and decaying, with for sale and foreclosure signs dotting many lawns. According to the US Census, about 90% of all metropolitan growth occurred in suburban communities in the last ten years. Urbanites who loathe the freeways, big box stores and bland aesthetics stereotypical of suburbia may secretly root for the end of sprawl, but demographic trends indicate that exurban growth is still on the rise.
In a future where limited natural resources will force us to find better solutions for density and efficiency, what will become of the cul-de-sacs, cookie-cutter tract houses and generic strip malls that have long upheld the diffuse infrastructure of suburbia? How can we redirect these existing spaces to promote sustainability, walkability, and community? It’s a problem that demands a visionary design solution and we want you to create the vision!
Calling all future-forward architects, urban designers, renegade planners and imaginative engineers:
Show us how you would re-invent the suburbs! What would a McMansion become if it weren’t a single-family dwelling? How could a vacant big box store be retrofitted for agriculture? What sort of design solutions can you come up with to facilitate car-free mobility, ‘burb-grown food, and local, renewable energy generation? We want to see how you’d design future-proof spaces and systems using the suburban structures of the present, from small-scale retrofits to large-scale restoration—the wilder the better!
HOW TO ENTER THE REBURBIA COMPETITION
Enter the Inhabitat / Dwell REBURBIA competition, by sending up to 5 images and a statement about your design proposal. You can submit as many entries as you like, but each individual entry should be focused on one singular design problem/solution (i.e. a McMansion farm rehab, a bicycle transportation hub, a piezoelectric, energy-generating freeway paving system). Entries will be judged on clarity of idea, usefulness of design, and visual/aesthetic appeal of renderings.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Friday, July 17, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
For some time now I have been thinking about the relationship between technology and everyday surfaces encountered in cities. I have been particularly interested in how our relationship to these surfaces can change as walls, floors and ceilings, things that were once boundaries, become portals to information and essentially no longer existing as pure boundaries. These surfaces take on a hybrid reality as the phsycial infrastructure of the urban fabric is augmented. While not elaborating further I thought it interesting when I stumbled upon this video exhibiting a crude exploration of this idea. It was worth sharing. Enjoy.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Apparently Governor Schwarzenegger, in an attempt to mitigate budgeting shortfalls, is ramping up his effort to shut down California Park Systems. This push to close state parks has brought about reactions from conservationist as well as the federal government. The Guardian UK, The Huffington Post and The Dirt have all written articles covering this issue.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Real-time updates will be posted on the right under "Recent Activity"
goto: DavidBruceStudios on Twitter:
Friday, July 10, 2009
12 Days, filling the seams, a liner, some sand for a great bottom, water of course and now you have it; a truly fantastic spot to cool down on those hot summer days.
Designers: Jocko Weyland, David Belt, and Alix Feinkind = Macro|Sea.
See more: Inhabitat
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Two things that I will mention.
1. Is physical public space an illusion of the public sphere, perhaps even... not really public at all?
2. If the public sphere exists today, where is it? And what role does twitter, social networking, geospatial data, mashups.... and the extended family of emerging technology play in its existence and proliferation?
Please note.. It is late. I am going to stop now before the great critics open to view these statements can get me, before I have a chance to clearly state what my interests are here.
And now.... the reason for my impromptu post.
Timely... Yes... Timely
see more on: Inhabitat
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
Saturday, June 6, 2009
The work at J Fergeson Gallery came down recently. Opening night went well and I thank everyone involved. Several pieces remain at the gallery and will be present in the space downstairs. Small groupings of this work will now move on to other galleries including Quirk in Richmond Va. and Mayer Fine Art in Norfolk Va.
Tyler School of Art, Temple University:
I am entering graduate school this fall at Tyler in Philadelphia Pa. After a recent visit I have set up my curriculum and found a place to live. I will be moving on July 1st and once there will be certain to post some images and provide links to any projects I take on.
The Work & Seizing the Opportunity:
Up to this date I have been developing bodies of work that explore a sense of being in relation to spaces, materials and ideas. I have been challenged to make work under the restrictions of resource and space. Graduate school will afford a valuable opportunity to experiment on a larger scale, work with adjacent disciplines and make use of facilities designed around the object of making. My work is going to change as I push the limits of my own ability while focusing on projects that I have been interested in but have yet to implement. Over the next two years I am going to construct larger works that explore the role of art and expression in relation to the urban environment. I will continue to work on smaller bodies of work that are more personal in scope, however my challenge will be to expand the boundaries of my work and ability while integrating my interests in urban design, ecology and expression.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Opening night at J Fergeson Gallery is coming up:
Saturday : May 9th : 5:00 - 8:00pm
311 N. Main St. Farmville VA
More on this exhibition can be found at the following sites:
Friday, May 1, 2009
Links are below.
Big thanks to the RVA crew for such a great spotlight.
Be sure to keep tabs on this site as they continue to cover the Richmond scene.
direct link to the article click here.