Monthly Archives: April 2008

OTR Street Art

I don’t see a lot of street art around OTR, but recently I came across a few pasted pieces.

This one is of 12th Street between Vine and Race Streets

This one is tucked in an alley off 13th. The best part about that is that walking along 13th you see it and want to check it out, but have to go down the alley a little to get up close. Well worth it, IMO.

They are cool, kinda whimsical and not charged with the negative connotations that typically comes with tagging or political resistance.

I can’t really make out the bottom one. At first and still from a distance it looks like a profile of a guy in a top hat, but up close it is this weird combination of what looks like an old computer monitor with wings.

After looking at the photos they are kind of different, but when I first saw them I thought that they were from the same person. There was another one off Main Street that I didn’t get a picture of in time, but it also seemed similar.

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Streetcar Party

No, its not what you are thinking. An article in the NY Times talks about how in Prague there are actually parties on the streetcars. Mobile disco’s, or Tramix is a party literally on the streetcar, DJ’s, bartenders and all.

I’ll assume that someone in Cincinnati is already planning this. Rock over Cincinnati.

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Solar House

Earlier this week in honor of earth day UC had tours of their Solar Decathlon House. Designed and built for a international competition of 20 universities the house is a prototype of what available technology, if applied to residential design and construction, could yield.

The house is really pretty interesting. I am not crazy about the design, though I heard many say that it seemed totally livable. I know little about the specifics of housing systems and particularly more advanced alternatives, so it was cool to learn about them. From my understanding solar power is typically captured by photovoltaic collectors (PV), which this house uses for electric needs. Perhaps more interestingly it uses solar thermal collectors for the bulk of the energy demand. These are more efficient and less expensive. They produce hot water which can be used for all the thermal needs of the house including heat and hot water and with the additional of an absorption chiller, also air cooling. I believe the thermal collector can also generate electricity through steam, but I’ll leave that to the experts.

On a good day the house produces more than enough energy to power it’s systems and this surplus can be stored in batteries, or if it is tied to the grid it can sell energy during the day when it is expensive and buy it back at night when it is cheaper.

If you are interested, and you should be, I encourage you to check it out at the link above. The tours where all day Monday and Tuesday, but they will likely have more over the next few months. But yo that the house sits on the main campus. I’ll try to post when upcoming tours will be in the future.

Standard PV panel

Thermal Solar Collector

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GRL gets up in Time

I think that I have mentioned the people over at the Graffiti Research Lab before. I came across the Time Magazine article today that talks about how they are part of an exhibit at MoMA. The links in the article have some great images, but their website and youtube clips are also great.

Laser Tag

It is always interesting to see how graffiti artist relate to the established channels of art. Most of those that I have come across are hyper aware of there place somewhere outside of the world of “high” art. In the context of this article they mention,

“Doing it in an art museum was never the intent. Some days we think it’s an art project, but other days it seems like an activism project, bringing together hackers and engineers.”

“We talk about graffiti a lot,” Roth says, “People view graffiti differently, some think of graffiti as an end design, but others think of it as an action, and by graffiti going online, you can see the action in progress.”

This makes sense to me. I know graffiti is not going to get through to many people and that it is often perceived as misplaced anger, aggression or rebellion, but the graffiti research lab has always found a way to escape the preconception of what graffiti is while at the same time uses the form, language and tactics of graffiti to produce surprising experiences in the city. It is easy for me to think that this is the high-tech version of graffiti, but the article responds,

“But I can’t find a moment where [graffiti] wasn’t high-tech. If you look back, you had spray cans — this form of technology that was a little too new to be considered an art form — and this billion-dollar transportation system that taggers used to spread their art. It’s not all that different from laser pointers, a new technology, and this immense infrastructure that you find in urban areas

The article makes it seem like this is brand new, but Krysztof Wodiczko has used projections for projects since the 80’s. They might be a little less clandestine, but no less subversiveWarsaw Projection

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Been on the dl lately

If you haven’t already you should check out VisuaLingual’s blog. It already has some great post and is sure to keep everyone updated on local design-minded happenings.

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P&G Hip-Hop

“We’re confident the partnership will make a positive impact and bring opportunities to undiscovered urban creativity and vision,” Alex Keith, general manager of P&G Deodorants, said in the release.”

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B-boy Baby Doll

The windmill.

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