The Consequences of Modernity

This is the first post in a new series called ‘The Consequences of Modernity’. In this series we will try to shed light on several large-scale, comprehensive social engineering practices and the related key figures which lay at the foundation of modernist urban planning. We will further try to use this practices as windows for…

HOWTOPEDIA

Zürich based howtopedia provides an excellent collaborative Internet platform for practical knowledge and simple technologies which can be of use in all areas of daily life. Read articles about stuff like how to build a no-dig garden, about basic beakeeping principles, about how to set up a publication or how to build a biomass roof….

Urban Fruit and Vegetables

I just came across two great initiatives which could be very useful on the way towards a more integrated urban farming strategy for Amsterdam Noord. In terms of mapping potential (semi-)public green spaces in the city the idea behind the Urbana-Champaign Fruit Map, initiated by the people from La Casa Urbana, is interesting. This Google…

all over the kiez

all over the kiez is a photographic exibition taking place in St. Pauli, Hamburg, that in fact is not a photographic exibition. It is a project that focuses on the concept of giving and taking. All photos on the website can be geolocated through Google maps. The coordinates of the city grid become the titles…

Urban Action: what can you do with the city?

Up until april this year the Canadian Centre for Architecture hosted the exibition Actions: what can we do with the city?, where seemingly common activities such as walking, playing, recycling, and gardening where pushed beyond their usual definition by architects, artists, and collectives to show the potential influence personal involvement can have in shaping the…

The return of the Block Party

The guys from Streetfilms have made a very inspiring ten minute short telling us about the history, the disappearance and the recent revival of Block Parties. When I watched the video I really got inspired by the idea that people in one neighbourhood, residents, just closed down their block for one day and turned it…

Power through asset mapping

In a recent article in commarts, John Emerson is describing how asset mapping and visual media can help in building stronger communities and establishing a solid foundation for challenging the status quo. What is power? It’s an abstract dynamic, an engine behind the visible world. Power can be found in relationships, in the flow of…

The Internet Mapping Project

Here is another episode in our series on alternative forms of mapping: Kevin Kelly, co-founder of Wired, asks people to participate in visualizing the internet. Here is how: The internet is vast. Bigger than a city, bigger than a country, maybe as big as the universe. It’s expanding by the second. No one has seen…

Online Publication: Escape the Overcode

Escape the Overcode: Activist art in the Control Society is part of the open-ended research project conducted by Brian Holmes. The book comprises four major sections, with articles ranging from the underlying technoscientific principles of cybernetics, to cognitive psychology and complexity theory. Holmes asks: How does art become subversive of the social order? How does…

The Farmacy: floating urban fram

The discussion around nature in relation to our artifical, urban environment already brought us along vertical forests, wild animals,  floating gardens and markets. The trick to balance modern technology and materials with our natural surroundings is very much sought after. Samantha Lee’s design for a floating urban farm that grows medicinal plants and herbs in…

New York City Street Design Approach

The New York City Department of Transportation has recently published a street design manual, which in essence is a collection of patterns intended to be implemented throughout the city state in similar ways. Under the lead of transportation commissioner and traffic anti-planner Janette Sadik-Khan, who the NY Magazine describes as a mixture in equal parts…

Favela Art

Here are just some visuals to remind you how encouragement and proper communication can lead to really impressive results. On BLDGBLOG i just came across the installation from JR as part of the 28mm/women project in Rio de Janeiro. The installation immediately reminded me of the favelapainting project by Haas and Hahn. Favelapainting was set…