bees

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Art Craft

Elaborate Embroidery by Laura Baverstock Forms Insects and Animals from Precious Metals and Colored Threads

August 12, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

London-based embroidery artist Laura Baverstock crafts stunningly intricate animals using colored and metallic thread. From copper bees to gold lions, Baverstock renders the unique textures of each creature. The artist studied at the Royal School of Needlework, where she received a degree in Hand Embroidery, and now works in the film and fashion industries. If you watched last year’s Mary Queen of Scots, you saw Baverstock’s embroidery work on the actors’ outfits, which earned an Oscar nomination for costume designer Alexandra Byrne.

“Embroidery has such a rich history, and I’ve found the specialized nature of the craft and the variety of traditional techniques to be hugely inspiring,” Baverstock shares with Colossal. “Needlework has such versatility and universal appeal; within my own practice I particularly strive to push the boundaries of three-dimensional hand embroidery and precious metal goldwork, with a focus on natural themes and realism.” Explore more of Baverstock’s complex embroidery work on her website and Instagram. (via Colossal Submissions)

 

 



Design Science

New Green Roof Bus Stops in Utrecht Cater to Commuting Bees

July 23, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Photos: Clear Channel

Commuters in Utrecht may notice a new green tinge to their neighborhood bus stop. Local authorities in the Dutch city have added 316 green-roofed, bee-friendly bus stops to public transit routes. More than 50% of the Netherlands’ 358 bee species are endangered; the green roofs provide safe, consistent habitat for the critically important pollinators, and are planted with low-maintenance sedum. For the resident humans, bamboo benches and LED lighting contribute to the eco-conscious construction. (via My Modern Met, Lonely Planet)

 

 



Design

Beekeeping Made Easy With a New Compact Hive Built for Urban Settings

July 10, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Gone are the days of full coverage beekeeping suits and padded gloves with the invention of a radical new hive by Italian company Beeing, which was founded by a third-generation bee keeper. B-box is the very first system designed for homes and urban environments, with a small footprint that can fit on even the tiniest of balconies or backyards. Not only does the simplified hive makes raising bees and harvesting honey easy for novices, it benefits the bees as well. A seven-foot-tall chimney ensures that bees remain out of range when coming in and out of the hive, while uniquely designed chambers present only small sections of the honeycomb so users are not disturbing or impacting the health of the hive by extracting a large sheet.

With 80% of the world’s food supply needing the help of bees, coupled with major threats to a declining bee population, it is more crucial than ever that solutions to this crisis are discovered and put into action. You can learn more about B-box in the video below, and contribute to their campaign by visiting IndieGoGo. (via designboom)

 

 



Illustration

Colorful Studies of an Artist’s Hands Layered With Flowers and Bees

May 22, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Artist Noel Badges Pugh (previously) creates studies of his own hands mixed with drawings of flowers and bees, adding color to the works with both watercolor and India ink. Pugh often photographs these works with the flowers he has drawn layered on top, allowing the viewer to examine how each is drawn to scale. Bees are also a fairly common subject matter in his pieces, and an interest he calls attention to on his site. You can see the field guide of California bees he illustrated on Amazon, and view more of his watercolor and ink drawings on his Tumblr and Instagram.

 

 



Art Science

The Good of the Hive: Artist Matthew Willey Travels the World to Paint 50,000 Bees

August 23, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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In an effort to raise awareness about the plight of the humble honey bee, New York-based artist Matt Willey founded the Good of the Hive Initiative, an ambitious project to personally paint 50,000 bees in murals around the world. The number itself isn’t arbitrary, it takes about that many bees to sustain a healthy beehive. So far Willey has completed 7 murals including a large piece at the Burt’s Bees headquarters, and he keeps meticulous notes about the number of bees in each piece which he shares on his website.

For more info you can read an interview with the artist at the Center for Humans and Nature website, and follow his progress on Instagram. And for more bee-centric murals, also check out London-based artist Louis Masai Michel’s similar Save the Bees project. (thnx, Laura!)

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Art

56-Foot-Tall Aluminum Honeycomb Structure Responds to the Buzzing of Bees Within London’s Kew Gardens

June 16, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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Image by Dacian Groza

Forty-four tons of aluminum was just transported and installed at London’s Kew Gardens, a beehive-inspired structure produced by the artist Wolfgang Buttress in partnership with designer and engineer Tristan Simmonds. “The Hive” was originally built as a centerpiece for the UK Pavilion at the Milan Expo 2015 where it won the gold award for architecture and landscape. The installation both aesthetically and symbolically represents its namesake, aiming to demonstrate to visitors the importance of protecting the honeybee.

Standing nearly 56-feet-tall the work is located just beyond the gardens’ wildflower meadow, drawing visitors into the structure in the same way worker bees might return back to the hive after a long day of pollinating. In addition to being composed of thousands of pieces of metal, “The Hive” is dotted with hundreds of LED lights that coordinate with a soundtrack of buzzing from within the hive. These elements illuminate and hum in response to real bees housed at Kew, giving visitors a peek into the minute-by-minute energy and mood levels of the gardens’ bees.

Berlin-based photographer Dacian Groza was one of the photographers documenting the installation, and took many of the photographs seen here. Educated as an architect, he has a unique eye for the buildings and installations he documents, bringing special attention to timing and composition. You can see more of his architectural images on his website and Instagram.

“The Hive” reopens at the Kew Gardens on June 18, 2016 and will be open to the public through November 2017.

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Design Food

Beehive Fences in East Africa Protect Farms from Elephants

December 7, 2015

Christopher Jobson

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All photos courtesy The Elephants & Bees Project / Lucy King

When trying to protect farms in east Africa from elephants, it would seem that nothing short of a giant reinforced fence or a chasmic ditch could safely keep the largest land animals on Earth away without causing harm. Unfortunately, building such barriers around every field is impractical, and the interactions of people protecting their crops frequently leads to accidents or even death of both farmers and elephants. But zoologist Lucy King had a much smaller idea: bees.

It turns out elephants are terrified of bees because when the insects sting the inside of their trunks the pain is excruciating and there’s little they can do about it. The sound of buzzing alone is enough to make elephants leave an area immediately. King wondered what might happen if a string of suspended beehives at every 10 meters around a field might be enough to keep elephants away. A pilot program in 2009 proved widely successful and soon The Elephant and Bees Project was born.

There are now active beehive fences in Kenya, Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda, and Sri Lanka. Not only do the fences help pollinate crops and safely deter elephants, they also become an additional revenue stream for farmers who harvest honey and sell it locally, a fascinating example of interspecies landscape engineering.

The Elephant and Bees Project is currently trying to raise funds to greatly expand the program. You can make a donation here. (via Neatorama, Nag on the Lake)

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