Eric Brockmeyer – Looking Outward 1

by eric.brockmeyer @ 3:40 am 12 January 2011

“Light Butterflies” is a lighting piece executed by Chiara Lampugnani for the Milan International LED Light Festival. What caught my eye was the abundance of like shapes forming a field effect at the urban scale. Lighting projects are often interiors which need little luminosity to create a big effect. These butterflies create a (seemingly) living canopy over a city street.

Their beauty lies in their simplicity but the inanimate nature of these forms may dull their impact over time. There is a great opportunity to create subtle variations in lighting (changes which are imperceptible to the casual observer) which may allow this piece to take on an element of time.

eCLOUD from Dan Goods on Vimeo.

“eCloud” by Aaron Koblin, Nik Hafermaas and Dan Goods is an interactive sculpture at the San Jose airport which provides real-time weather information to air travellers. The project reminded me of Natalie Jeremijenko’s “Live Wire”, which visualized web traffic on a local router.

The eCloud is fascinating in it’s use of polycarbonate plates that somehow (not clearly explained) move between opaque and transparent states. the field effect here is , again, stunning.

The project seems to fall short in that it is beautiful to look at but the sculpture itself seems to provide little useful data to users. As it is intended to be a sculptural display I view this as shortcoming.

I am fascinated by the development of CNC food production. These types of machines have (subtly) inserted themselves in many facets of our lives and food seems like a critical and final frontier. Food preparation has been traditionally, an intimate act which modern food production has almost succeeded in destroying. I’m curios how new tools like the “3d food printer” could scale down enough to have an impact in homes instead of factories or high end restaurants.

I’m less interested in the effectiveness of this particular instantiation of CNC food, however it does suggest that we will be confronted with questions similar to the CNC fabrication revolution. How does this change hand crafts perceived value? Will mass production dissolve into mass customization? And, who chooses the flavors in the tubes?

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