For nine decades Fulton Market Cold Storage Company operated in Chicago’s meatpacking district with a full ten stories of freezing storage situated close to major railways. Last summer the company decided it was time to start fresh in a state-of-the-art facility outside of Chicago, so the building was sold to SRAM, a bike component manufacturer who will use the space for its global headquarters. Architects Perkins + Will were hired to help convert the ice-encrusted space into a new, modernized office building and were also tasked with the most epic refrigerator defrost in history. Luckily photographer Gary Jensen was asked to snap some incredible photos prior to the thawing which was actually caught on video (sorry no embed). See more photos on his website. (via gapers block)
Update: I’ve been asked to clarify that the building owner is technically Sterling Bay and the architect of the conversion is Hartshorne and Plunkard. SRAM is a potential tenant in the building and Perkins & Will is their architect.
In this series of carefully photoshopped images, photographer Shawn Clover created composite photographs that blend historical scenes from the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and his own present-day captures of the same locations. A number of other artists have created similar images, most notably Sergey Larenkov’s Ghosts of WWII, but Clover really seems to have put in extreme amounts of effort in trying to determine how each photograph precisely overlaps the other, resulting in some fascinating interactions between past and present. Clover’s work is broken into two parts, Part 1 was created in 2010 and Part 2 was completed just last month. (via Laughing Squid)
Artist Maisie Broadhead graduated the Royal College of Art in 2009 with a degree in jewelry but has since become known for her fine art photographic parodies where she creates modern interpretations of historical photos. She also has fun ideas about what to do with your extra feet of extension cords, so you know. As part of an exhibition at the National Gallery, Broadhead and filmmaker Jack Cole were commissioned to create this video depicting one of her interpretations of a 19th century photograph shown here:
At the gallery the video will play in close proximity to the actual photograph taken in 1844 titled Lady Elizabeth Eastlake (which bears an uncanny reseblance to actress Kristen Schaal, right?) by Scottish photography duo Hill & Adamson. (via it’s nice that)
Just spotted this wonderfully crafty stop motion piece from director Kevin Parry that follows the history of the world from the big bang through, well, I don’t want to ruin it. Lovely work. (via the awesomer)
The Willard Asylum for the Insane was an institution in Willard, New York designed help people with chronic mental illness, and was in operation from 1910 through the 1960s before being closed by the state. In 1995 New York State Museum staff were given access to the secrets left behind decades before when the doors were shuttered. After an initial investigation they became aware of an entire attic full of suitcases in the pathology lab building, the personal belongings of patients admitted to the asylum who supposedly never left. In an effort to archive and document the history of the institution photographer Jon Crispin has been given the rare opportunity to photograph the contents of each suitcase and has launched an extremely successful Kickstarter project to help fund the endeavor.
While I fully recognize the fascinating and historical nature of these very personal items, and applaud the museum staff and Crispin for their preservation work, I can’t help but feel a tinge of sadness and unease for the circumstances under which these belongings became separated from their owners. To me they seem like the time capsules of lives arrested, their contents suggesting the hope of a continued life elsewhere: everyday objects for grooming, hobbies, fashion never to be used again. Eerie.
For the past five months sculptor Heath Satow has been welding together nearly 3,000 stainless steel figures to form a set of hands meant to hold a segment of I-beam from one of the World Trade Center Towers. The somewhat ambiguous figures (perhaps doves, or people, or angels) represent the people killed on September 11. His extraordinary memorial is being unveiled today in Rosemead, and you can read more over on the Los Angeles Times.