Author Archives: andrea

About andrea

Andrea Polli is a digital media artist living in New Mexico. Her work with science, technology and media has been presented widely in over 100 presentations, exhibitions and performances internationally, has been recognized by numerous grants, residencies and awards including a NYFA Artist's Fellowship, the Fullbright Specialist Award and the UNESCO Digital Arts Award. Her work has been reviewed by the Los Angeles Times, Art in America, Art News, NY Arts and others. She has published several book chapters, audio CDs, DVDs and papers in print including MIT Press and Cambridge University Press journals.

New Zealand court says, if a corporation can have legal rights of personhood, why not a river? The Whanganui (pronounced Fang-gah-noo-wee) gets those rights.

Agreement entitles Whanganui River to legal identity
The Whanganui River will become an legal entity and have a legal voice under a preliminary agreement signed between Whanganui River iwi and the Crown tonight.

This is the first time a river has been given a legal identity.

A spokesman for the Minister of Treaty Negotiations said Whanganui River will be recognised as a person when it comes to the law – “in the same way a company is, which will give it rights and interests”.

The agreement was signed on behalf of Whanganui iwi by Brendan Puketapu of the Whanganui River Maori Trust, which represents a group of iwi along the river, and the Crown in Parliament this evening.

Under the agreement the river is given legal status under the name Te Awa Tupua – two guardians, one from the Crown and one from a Whanganui River iwi, will be given the role of protecting the river.

An agreement between the Crown and local iwi on what the values will be in protecting the river are yet to be decided.

A whole river strategy, in collaboration with iwi, local government and commercial and recreational users is still being decided.

An eventual settlement will also include monetary compensation for historical claims.

Minister for Treaty for Waitangi Negotiations Christopher Finlayson said the signing was an historic event.

“Whanganui River iwi have sought to protect the river and have their interests acknowledged by the Crown through the legal system since 1873. They pursued this objective in one of New Zealand’s longest running court cases.

“Today’s agreement which recognises the status of the river as Te Awa Tupua (an integrated, living whole) and the inextricable relationship of iwi with the river is a major step towards the resolution of the historical grievances of Whanganui iwi and is important nationally.

“The agreement does not signify the end of the settlement, but it is a significant step towards settlement. Matters of detail and additional redress will be to be negotiated between the parties,” said Mr Finlayson.

“Whanganui Iwi also recognise the value others place on the river and wanted to ensure that all stakeholders and the river community as a whole are actively engaged in developing the long-term future of the river and ensuring its wellbeing,” said Mr Finlayson.

History of the claims:

* Those parts of the Wai 167 claim relating to the Whanganui River were heard by the Waitangi Tribunal in 1994.

* The Tribunal issued its Whanganui River Report in 1999.

* The Crown vested authority and control of the Whanganui River in local authorities through the Resource Management Act in 1991.

* Negotiations between Whanganui iwi and the Crown in relation to the Whanganui River took place between 2002 and 2004.

* Discussions between Whanganui iwi and the Crown started again in 2009.

* A record of Understanding reached on October 13, 2011 outlined a framework for the next stage of formal negotiations.

* The final settlement including the deed of settlement in relation to the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims of Whanganui iwi in respect of the Whanganui River are yet to be decided.

APNZ by Kate Shuttleworth


Yesterday I presented a 3-minute talk at TEDxABQ, it was a wild ride, from the writing and speaking coaching sessions to dress rehearsals and finally a sold-out show – 750 people at the National Hispanic Cultural Center’s Journal Theater.

Emcee for the day was the super-cool Tim Nisly

Two of the best parts were meeting the other presenters and organizers and learning about their amazing projects and giving away a couple of free passes to ISEA2012. The worst parts (besides the obvious terror of public speaking – statistically more terrifying than death apparently) were:

Being one of the last speakers so waiting in the green room getting nervouser and nervouser

Having to be a poison-face (really nice make-up artists though)

I talked about the ISEA2012 featured artists’ group The Mexican Space Collective and their ‘space opera’ ending with the weird line ‘What’s your space opera?’ People kept repeating that line, so I guess it somehow resonated (thanks to the coaches for that one).

Mexican Space Collective visualization

Tonight one of the Mexican Space Collective artists Ivan Puig is staying with me, so it will be interesting to get more of the inside scoop on their work.

Ivan (right) and his collaborator Andres Padilla

Design toolkits

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So, as promised, some research into design toolkits. There seem to be 2 kinds out there, ones that focus on the theory and process of collaborative design research and ones that give specific technical instructions. In this brief overview I was much more interested in the design research aspect. One that has been influential to me in the past is the Human Centered Design Toolkit by IDEO that was sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and designed specifically for NGOs and social enterprises that work with impoverished communities in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. They have a free download and site for HCD users to connect.

The Brains, Behavior and Design Toolkit looks interesting. Rather than a book form, it takes the form of reference cards, a poster, cards, worksheets and guides each focusing on a different aspect of applying findings from the field of behavioral economics to design practice. It’s ntriguing how they focus on designing for situations when people act irrationally (when do we NOT?). All are available for free download.

Engineers at Cambridge have created an Inclusive Design Toolkit, a booklet that focuses on ways industrial product designers can create for specifically an aging population. Their website here:

This idea also applies to design for people with autism, children and other abilities.

Image from

The Design with Intent Toolkit by Dan Lockton looks at the underlying patterns to how we interact with our environment and with each other and unpacks these patterns into a series of design strategies that designers can use to shape and influence how people behave. It takes the form of a series of cards that looks at sustainable design through eight ‘lenses’ and is also available as a free download.

The Community Mapping + Design Toolkit by Places for All was created for communities in Cambodia to engage in collaborative mapping for neighborhood improvement. It was designed also as a series of cards, but laminated and on a metal clip to be ‘motorcycle friendly.’

Places for All also has created a Recipes for Change Toolkit in the form of a box of recipe cards.

Occupy Design has a toolkit available as a free download that focuses on visualizing datasets related to the economy, for example:


Finally, a kind of funny and more ‘manifesto-esque’ toolkit is this #the50 Things Every Creative Should Know, which includes some obvious advice but some pretty good, practical tips, and every tip is tweetable! Nice graphics too:

This one is for ‘make your invoice stand out’ – a technique to increase a freelancer’s chances of getting paid more quickly!

A SMW Manifesto?

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So I’ve been thinking once all this ISEA2012 and Bio-Ethics of Beer stuff winds down (didn’t blog abut the Bio-ethics of Beer yet, huh? Well stay tuned!), that it might be a good time to start designing a manifesto of sorts for our Social Media Workgroup. So, I’ve started to take a look at ‘design manifestos’ that are out there. Most of the ones I could find had silly and obvious slogans like ‘take risks’, ‘be nice’, ‘don’t get bored’ (uh, yeah sorry, I’m bored by that), but others seem to be having some fun, here are some examples:

Some writing tips from


Cell phone sleeping bag called the Sabbath Manifesto


Stencils made of recycled material from

Could software function as a manifesto? Hardware? What would that be like?

Some more:
First Things First originally published in 1964 as a manifesto against corporate design
Lots of the generic stuff in Bruce Mau’s manifesto unfortunately
100+ examples

Or… is what we need more of a toolkit? (more on this in future postings)

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Via the curious brain

The Sonic Antarctica videos are part of an exhibition in Austria put together by Klaus Schafler called Cooling Station. I just got images, turns out the exhibition was in this very cool looking tent:
Picture 1

Here’s part of the 3-channel video piece inside (on left)
Picture 2

Antarctic Ice Pipe Orchestra

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UK-based artist Julian Broke-Evans contacted me to share this video of a project installed at Windless Bight in Antarctica in 2010. It’s a really moving project and his work brought back some nice memories from my time there in 2007/2008:

ARID launched today!

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I am pleased to announce that with the leadership of the amazing Kim Stringfellow, the fantastic Greg Esser and our distinguished editorial board, ARID Journal’s first inaugural issue has launched today. Check out the diverse selection of articles and projects we have posted.

On another note, thanks to Kim we now have a wonderful publishing partnership with KCET Artbound []

Excerpt from the News Release concerning this publishing partnership:

ARID will co-publish an article at Artbound each bi-annual issue we publish. The article will feature an art or design related project reflecting our editorial mission with a focus on those within the Southern California region.
For our first collaboration ARID editor, Kim Stringfellow discusses photographer and educator, Paul Turounet’s extensive border project, Estamos Buscando A or We’re Looking For—where he attempts to document first-hand the undocumented immigrant experience at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Read Stringfellow’s Artbound article, “Under the Green Moon with Paul Turounet” at:

Just got this:

…hacking of the website of the Moscow court where three members of the Pussy Riot band were sentenced to two years in prison Friday. Before the site was restored to its original form, it had been hacked to, among other things, automatically start playing a Pussy Riot song. A video featuring a Bulgarian gay singer was also reportedly uploaded to the site. Its original text had been replaced with slogans calling for Pussy Riot to be freed, as well as anti-Vladimir Putin sentiment. Pussy Riot was convicted of “hooliganism” after protesting the Russian president’s policies and the Russian Orthodox Church’s support of him. As the BBC reports, hacking group Anonymous has claimed responsibility for the hack attack on the court website. (Anonymous has also reportedly started hacking U.K. government sites in support of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, by the way.) Meanwhile, as police search for more band members, Pussy Riot — which has generated support from advocates of free speech worldwide — is expected to keep recording, according to the Christian Science Monitor.


Oliver Stone and Michael Moore have an op ed in the NY Times today about Julian Assange’s current asylum in the Ecuadorean embassy in London.