Luzinterruptus turns plastic waste into Death by Plastic eco-art for COP25

January 21, 2020 by  
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Frustrated with the “ludicrous charade” of the COP25 World Climate Summit in December, Spanish design collective luzinterruptus turned to visual protest by creating the temporary guerrilla art piece, “Death by Plastic.” Made from plastic waste and transparent fabric, the glowing environmental art installation depicts a crime scene-like visual with a series of people-shaped sculptures lying on the ground. Held in Madrid, Spain in the beginning of December, the 2019 United Nations Climate Change Conference became the target of social unrest by protestors frustrated with the inactions of the negotiators on the climate crisis . Members of luzinterruptus also joined the protest and, disappointed by the adopted resolutions at the end of the event, wrote a statement to express their anger. Related: Archstorming announces winning proposals for a school made of recycled plastic in Mexico “The people from the Climate Summit are already leaving with bowed heads (by taxi or by plane) without having reached any significant agreements, as we all expected,” they said. “Everything was just a mirage. Few effective resolutions and big business opportunities for those who parade the flag of sustainability around. Let’s try again next year, perhaps with lengthier political speeches, but never listening to the scientific community or the citizens. And always under the sponsorship of the most polluting companies, which are always happy to take this opportunity to clean up their image. For now, the ‘climate crisis’ is officially postponed until the most environmentally unfriendly countries find a better time to deal with it. We are ashamed for having provided the scenario for such a ludicrous charade.” To further illustrate their frustrations, the artists installed Death by Plastic, an eco-art piece located near the COP25 gathering at the close of conference. Using plastic waste generated from the Christmas shopping along one of Madrid’s busiest retail areas, the artists created large-scale, people-shaped sculptures illuminated from within. The artists also drew a chalk outline around each of the plastic “bodies” to denote a crime scene. The guerrilla installation was displayed for a few hours, after which the artists removed the artworks. The art pieces have been stored away for future use. + luzinterruptus Photography by Melisa Hernández via luzinterruptus

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Luzinterruptus turns plastic waste into Death by Plastic eco-art for COP25

CRA proposes reconfigurable roads and a floating garden to revitalize Luganos waterfront

January 21, 2020 by  
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Carlo Ratti Associati (CRA) and Mobility in Chain (MiC) have unveiled a technologically savvy plan to better connect the Swiss city of Lugano with the beautiful Lugano Lake. Informed by studies on mobile and traffic data, the proposed regeneration of the waterfront will introduce dynamic public spaces that can take over parts of the roads, which can be reconfigured with zero, one or two lanes at different times of the day. This new, reconfigurable road system would be combined with smart signage, responsible street furniture and even renewable energy-generating infrastructure to facilitate a greener and more pedestrian-friendly environment. Currently, Lugano suffers from a disconnect to its lake due to a busy thoroughfare along the waterfront. To visually and physically provide pedestrians with better connections to the lake, the architects propose overhauling this main traffic artery with the addition of a dynamic road system that can turn sections of the street into pedestrian-only public spaces, such as playgrounds, a basketball court or other social gathering areas. At the same time, the intervention aims to preserve the historical value of the lakefront as designed by Pasquale Lucchini in 1863. Related: CRA grows a sustainable pavilion out of mushrooms in just 6 weeks The architects have also proposed a floating, rotating island for the lake that would be accessible to the public via a series of boardwalks. A garden would be planted on the floating island to highlight and preserve the biodiversity and native flora of Lake Lugano. The dynamic waterfront would also includes smart signage, responsive street furniture, heat-absorbing renewable energy technology and a series of mobility hubs that promote shared transit. “Lugano is committed in redesigning the front lake and the city center for the future citizens, focusing on a growing attention to dynamic public spaces , the coexistence of different mobility vectors, the development of green areas, the role of the water in city life, the impact of the landscape and much more,” said Marco Borradori, mayor of Lugano. “The path began in 2018, when the municipality went public with its vision and objectives, identifying innovation as one of the key points for urban development. The next step will hopefully be an open competition to create a new masterplan for the city of tomorrow. Our wish is that the vision could soon take the form of a realized project.” + Carlo Ratti Associati Images via Carlo Ratti Associati

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CRA proposes reconfigurable roads and a floating garden to revitalize Luganos waterfront

SAOTA’s Benguela Cove design takes rooms with a view seriously

July 27, 2018 by  
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When you announce you’ve moved into a home on a cove, the first image that comes to mind is a house with glorious views. And on that front, this house from SAOTA Architecture and Design with interiors by ARRCC does not disappoint. Located within the Benguela Cove Lagoon Wine Estate in South Africa , this modern home affords spectacular vistas from nearly every room on all levels – even from the bathtub. Perched just above the seashore of Benguela Cove Wine Estate in the Overberg region of the Western Cape , the sprawling home looks out over the Botrivier Lagoon and Overberg Mountains. Every material, inside and out, pays homage to natural resources , accented with subdued materials including steel and corrugated aluminum. The cerulean skies and azure water of the cove make the timber exterior and aluminum roof pop against the deep green landscape. The bedroom wing on the first floor sits atop the home’s living areas; each room has a panoramic view of the cove and adjoining greenery. The bathtub in the master bathroom has a window with a clear view of the mountains and cove. The landing below overlooks a courtyard before you step inside the living quarters. Related: One in four of world’s largest cities under water stress Huge blocks of granite flank the kitchen island and contrast with the brilliantly polished countertop, making it the focal point of the room. The light wood cabinets soften the kitchen, which overlooks the flowing design of the lounge and dining areas. The sweeping views go on, as does the theme of wood slats on the ceiling and granite floors. Relaxation is the theme of the living room. A colossal concrete hearth wall surrounds the fireplace and oversized picture window, and finely crafted pre-weathered steel cloaks the flues. Al fresco dining and socializing take place in an outdoor dining and kitchen area with an inviting and spacious sun deck. A staircase with glass railing and a CNC-cut timber screen background adds yet another tactile touch to the décor. + ARRCC + SAOTA Architecture and Design Photography by Adam Letch

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SAOTA’s Benguela Cove design takes rooms with a view seriously

Magical beauty of mushrooms is captured in Jill Bliss stunning arrangements

August 10, 2017 by  
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Flowers aren’t the only kinds of plants deserving of artistic arrangement. Artist and self-proclaimed nature nerd Jill Bliss shows off the magical beauty of mushrooms in her gorgeous temporary fungi arrangements in a series she calls ‘Nature Medleys.’ These stunning compositions show off the diverse texture, types, and colors of fungi in eye-catching detail. Jill Bliss lives, works, and travels the Salish Sea islands of Canada and Washington State where she collects natural objects and inspiration for her art. Bliss forages for the mushrooms in local forests and will often pair the fungi finds with other plants and objects found by the shore including shells and pieces of driftwood. Related: 3 edible mushrooms that are easy to find – and how to avoid the poisonous ones An incredible variety of mushrooms exist in the Pacific Northwest . One of her most popular and eye-catching mushroom choices is the vibrant purple gill mushroom. Bliss photographs her compositions and offers many as prints and stationery in her online shop. You can see more of her work on her website and Instagram . + Jill Bliss Via Colossal

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Magical beauty of mushrooms is captured in Jill Bliss stunning arrangements

Artisan Moss ‘plant paintings’ are maintenance-free alternatives to living walls

November 17, 2016 by  
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Any nature lover likely regards living green walls as the pinnacle of indoor landscaping, but the required maintenance, excessive watering and complex lighting can be daunting. Thanks to Artisan Moss , now nearly anyone can achieve the same level of lush greenery, minus the hefty upkeep and resource consumption. The northern Californian designers preserve moss and other botanicals within uniquely handcrafted and easy-to-care-for works of art that can last decades – take a closer look after the jump. Artisan Moss founder Erin Kinsey developed a stunning technique for preserving botanicals into timeless “plant paintings” with 100 percent real moss, green plants and branches. Using entirely non-toxic food-grade preserving methods and pigments, Erin adheres to ecologically mindful “no-waste” methods, even reusing preservation materials on various projects. The end result is an extraordinary piece of art, made in the USA, with no two works being exactly the same. As long as you keep these moss paintings away from the sun, they will last decades. As a native of northern California, Erin was always inspired by the majestic nature of the Sierras and Coastal Range. After working as a landscape designer, muralist and fine art restorer, she was driven by the notion that maintaining one’s connection with the natural world is critical to survival in the Digital Age. Aware of the on-going maintenance required for living walls , Erin sought to develop a way to preserve real plants into maintenance-free art. While living green walls are a costly investment, Artisan Moss’ plant paintings are surprisingly accessible. Their Etsy shop offers affordably-priced, made-to-order pieces that range from 12×12 hangings to larger works that cover entire walls. No matter the size, each carefully crafted work of art effortlessly brings nature indoors — something we could all use more of. + Artisan Moss + Artisan Moss Etsy Shop

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Artisan Moss ‘plant paintings’ are maintenance-free alternatives to living walls

Gigantic blood-red web takes over Gucci in Tokyo

October 31, 2016 by  
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Born in Osaka and currently based in Berlin, Chiharu Shiota is well-known for her passion of wrapping objects and spaces with red or black thread. In the case of Gucci, her artistic gesture intends to reinterpret an emblematic pattern designed by Gucci’s creative director, Alessandro Michele . The room is fully immersed in a bicolored motif of branches, leaves and flowers. The red yarn spreads in every direction, transforming the brand’s flat print into a three-dimensional universe. Related: Thousands of keys strung from blood-red yarn evoke Japan’s Great Tohoku Earthquake Symbolically, Shiota’s red tangle expands over tapestries embracing everything from fashion accessories to furnishing and décor. In a way, this room is a statement of Gucci’s global image applied in an entire all-embracing scale. Chiharu Shiota ’s Herbarium installation is a part of the Gucci 4 Rooms exhibition on the 7th floor of Gucci’s Ginza building. The program includes four visionary rooms curated by four different artists called to express the inventive spirit of the house. It will run through November 27, 2016. + Chiharu Shiota Images via Maria Novozhilova for Inhabitat

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Mediterranean to become desert unless global warming limited to 1.5C, study warns

October 31, 2016 by  
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Southern Spain could look like the Sahara unless global warming is held to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels, the global average temperature target governments agreed to in Paris. That is the conclusion of a new study published in the journal Science titled “Climate change: The 2015 Paris Agreement thresholds and Mediterranean basin ecosystems.” According to the analysis, if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated and global warming reaches 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit), desertification could overtake many areas around the Mediterranean by the end of the century, altering ecosystems in ways not seen in 10,000 years. The researchers examined pollen cores from sediments during the Holocene, the geological epoch that began more than 10,000 years ago. They than compared the information from past conditions to predictions of future climate and vegetation under different climate change scenarios. Warming beyond 2 degrees Celsius could cause an expansion of deserts in Southern Europe, North Africa and the Middle East with decidious forests replaced by shrubs and bushes. Related: 6 Brilliant designs to fight desertification The Mediterranean region is already warming at a more rapid pace than the rest of the world. Since 1880 when modern record-keeping began, average land and ocean surface temperature has increased by .85 degrees Celsius (1.5 degrees Fahrenheit). However, the Mediterranean basin has seen 1.3 degrees Celsius (2.4 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming. “The main message is really to maintain at less than 1.5C,” Joel Guiot, palaeoclimatologist at the European Centre for Geoscience Research and Education in Aix-en-Provence, France, and the study’s lead author, told The Guardian. “For that, we need to decrease the emissions of greenhouse gases very quickly, and start the decreasing now, and not by 2020, and to arrive at zero emissions by 2050 and not by the end of the century.” + Climate change: The 2015 Paris Agreement thresholds and Mediterranean basin ecosystems Via Inside Climate News Images via Good Free Photos  and Wikimedia

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Mediterranean to become desert unless global warming limited to 1.5C, study warns

Mexican designers envision Trumps border wall in "all of its gorgeous perversity"

October 31, 2016 by  
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“Based on Trump’s statements, the economic, ecological and financial aspects have been called into question,” Estudio 3.14 explained in an article by Designboom . “However, he continues with his verbal plan. As architects and designers, we have the capacity to imagine and interpret what trump is saying, and we are convinced that if we can make people see it, they can assess his words and the perversity in his proposal.” In the images, the wall is rendered in hot pink – a reference to Mexican architect Luis Barragán, and a tongue-in-cheek jab at Trump’s insistence that the wall will be “beautiful.” The wall crosses through bodies of water, mountains , and buildings, showing just how insane such a structure would really be. Related: Someone built a tiny wall around Trump’s Hollywood Walk of Fame star Much of the border runs through public lands held by national parks , so the wall as depicted could have a devastating impact on the environment. The seasonal ebb and flow of the Colorado and Rio Grande rivers would also be a challenge to plan around. The studio hopes that by making these logistical barriers more obvious, more people will begin to truly understand the issues with Trump’s campaign promise. + Estudio 3.14 Via Design Indaba

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Mexican designers envision Trumps border wall in "all of its gorgeous perversity"

First dinosaur brain tissue discovered in 130-million-year-old fossil

October 31, 2016 by  
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In 2004, Jamie Hiscocks found a strange fossil in Sussex, England . This wasn’t your typical fossil – researchers from the University of Oxford , University of Cambridge , and other international institutions now say the fossil is the first example of dinosaur brain tissue ever found. This extremely rare find comes from a dinosaur likely related to the herbivorous Iguanodon. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1T5_NlRs-5o Hiscocks discovered the fossil, which is around 130 million years old, in a brown pebble unearthed from a beach rock pool. According to the University of Cambridge, the dinosaur’s meninges, cortical tissues, and capillaries were ” preserved as mineral ‘ghosts’ .” Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) imaging and computed tomography (CT) scanning helped the researchers to see the tissues. The specimen unfortunately doesn’t provide many clues into the size of the dinosaur’s brain, but its tissues do resemble those of modern-day birds and crocodiles. Related: Antarctic fossil hunters hit a 71-million-year-old jackpot According to the researchers, conditions must have been just right for the fossil to be preserved as it was, but they hope for similar discoveries in the future. Paper co-author David Norman of the University of Cambridge said in a statement, “What we think happened is that this particular dinosaur died in or near a body of water, and its head ended up partially buried in the sediment at the bottom. Since the water had little oxygen and was very acidic, the soft issues of the brain were likely preserved and cast before the rest of its body was buried in the sediment.” The Geological Society of London released a special publication detailing the find. + Geological Society of London Via The Guardian and University of Cambridge Images via Jamie Hiscocks and screenshot

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First dinosaur brain tissue discovered in 130-million-year-old fossil

Prefab Glass House lets you bring home the spirit of Philip Johnsons masterpiece

October 31, 2016 by  
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Alan Ritchie’s reinterpretation of the Glass House follows the design principles of Johnson’s original with its entirely glazed facade that blurs the line between indoors and outdoors. “I think doing it in a prefabricated version is a whole different approach,” said Ritchie. “But we can still maintain the spirit of the original Glass House.” Although this prefabricated version similarly immerses owners in nature, Ritchie had to consider new challenges including how the different modules would connect together and weatherproofing the structure for a variety of climates. Related: Ron Arad designs the modular Armadillo Tea Pavilion for indoor and outdoor use The home, which is not a direct replica, is available in different sizes from a one-bedroom 80.5-square-meter home to a four-bedroom 172.1-square-meter home. The structure would be constructed off-site in a factory and then shipped and installed on-site, thus minimizing construction waste . Interested buyers of this limited edition house can submit an inquiry on Revolution’s website. + Modular Glass House Images via Revolution Precrafted

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