Design

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Art Design

The Happiness Machine: Exquisitely Detailed Architectural Drawings by Mark Lascelles Thornton

December 11, 2012

Christopher Jobson

Using a rotring pen on white paper, Cornwall-based artist Mark Lascelles Thornton has embarked on a massive architectural drawing project called the The Happiness Machine. Each panel represents a stylized red and grayscale representation of architectural highlights from eight locations, so far including Chicago, New York, London and what appears to be a mix of Asian skyscrapers (Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, etc.). In addition to the meticulous detail of the buildings and clouds, the piece is all the more incredible considering its scale: the final piece will include eight panels spanning 8 ft. by 5 ft. (2.4 m. x 1.5 m.). The images here are great but you can see everything in much more detail over on his Tumblr.

 

 



Design

Chandelier Made from 3,000 Gummy Bears by Kevin Champeny

December 7, 2012

Christopher Jobson

Artist Kevin Champeny (previously) recently designed this crazy chandelier made of 3,000 hand-cast acrylic gummy bears called the Candelier for home furnishings company Jellio. The light comes in two sizes, the largest of which actually uses 5,000 bears, is 31″ in diameter, and weighs in at about 50 lbs. (via laughing squid)

 

 



Art Design

A 120-Year-Old Mechanical Device that Perfectly Mimics the Song of a Bird

December 6, 2012

Christopher Jobson

Get out the headphones or turn up your speakers and prepare to be impressed by archaic 19th century engineering. Relying on dozens of moving parts including gears, springs, and a bellows, this small contraption built in 1890 was designed to do one thing: perfectly mimic the random chatter of a song bird. At first I expected to hear a simple repeating pattern of tweets, but the sounds produced by the mechanism are actually quite complex and vary in pitch, tone, and even volume to create a completely realistic song. I think if you closed your eyes you might not be able to tell the difference between this and actual birdsong. It’s believed the machine was built 120 years ago in Paris by Blaise Bontems, a well-known maker of bird automata and was recently refurbished by Michael Start over at The House of Automata. Can any of you ornithologists identify the bird? If so, get in touch. (via the automata blog)

Update: And if you liked that, check out this pair of matching signing bird pistols that sold at auction last year for $5.8 million.

 

 



Design

The Present: An Annual Clock that Tells Time in Seasons

December 4, 2012

Christopher Jobson

Making the rounds this year on a couple of design-y gift guides is The Present, a clock designed by Booklyn-based creative firm m ss ng p eces. The clock automatically sets itself to the current calendar date when you insert two AA batteries and then takes a year to make an entire revolution as the single hand highlights colors associated with the passing season. An original run of the clock was successfully funded on Kickstarter last year, but the clock is now available to the general public through their website.

 

 



Art Design

Birds on Twitter

November 29, 2012

Christopher Jobson

Latvian conceptual artist and creative director Voldemars Dudums created this insanely clever bird feeder using an old computer keyboard and some cubes of bacon fat. When the birds would fly down to snack their inadvertent key presses were fed to an api that parsed each little tap into a bonafide tweet on the @hungry_birds Twitter account (fyi, these particular feathered friends became political during the U.S. elections, so there’s that). The birds, mostly tomtits, would tweet roughly 100 times each day and could even be watched live over on Birds on Twitter. It even landed Dudums a people’s choice award for Guerrilla Innovation in Advertising. Unfortunately the project went offline in March of this year, as that’s when the cryptic avian tweets cease. I feel like a schmuck for being so late to the party on this, but reading through the archive of tweets is still pretty entertaining for random literary gems like “OOOMMMGGGGG” and “AIAIAIA”. (via izmia)

 

 

 



Design

A 170-Foot Trampoline Installed in a Russian Forest

November 27, 2012

Christopher Jobson

As part of the 2012 Archstoyanie festival in Nikola-Lenivets, Russia (from what I can tell it’s kind of like a small version of Burning Man but… with architecture and forests) design firm Salto created this gargantuan trampoline installation called Fast Track. Measuring nearly 170 ft. (51 meters) the bouncy road is nearly the length of a city block. According to the designers:

“Fast track” is a integral part of park infrastructure, it is a road and an installation at the same time. It challenges the concept of infrastructure that only focuses on technical and functional aspects and tends to be ignorant to its surroundings. “Fast track” is an attempt to create intelligent infrastructure that is emotional and corresponds to the local context. It gives the user a different experience of moving and percieving the environment.

Personally I sense the seeds of a new olympic sport, or a solid replacement for the slow people movers in airports. Here’s some more photos from Archstoyanie 2012. (via knstrct)

Update: Now with video. (thnx, paul)