Author Archives: andrea
SMW is spending two days in Carbondale, Illinois experimenting with ways to brew beer using solar and human power only. Artist and media scholar Sarah Lewison (above) led the effort using her beer-brewing experience from her World Heritage Beer Garden Picnic project in Southern China
After Pittsburgh, I spent a night in Milwaukee with UWM professor and ISEA2012 featured artist Nathaniel Stern and his lovely family. Nathaniel’s project Tweets in Space will premiere at the ISEA2012 gala at the Albuquerque Balloon Museum. As you can see on the link, this project has gotten some great press lately, even featured in National Geographic.
Nathaniel’s colleague at UWM is another ISEA2012 featured artist, Colleen Ludwig, and I got a sneak preview of her piece, Elemental Bodies: Shiver (shown above) as installed at the UWM studio building. I didn’t realize the rigorous research that went into this amazing work including:
Custom fabric walls that are extremely light weight, made for marine use so extremely sturdy in water-based situations, and given a surface treatment used in hospitals to resist bacteria and fungus. I was fascinated to learn that the elegant curving patterns created by the water against the walls was a major part of the aesthetic development. Colleen wanted the water to evoke the way water streams against human skin, and experimented with a variety of different surface treatments to create that effect. Despite the high-tech material used for the walls, they appear to be normal gallery white walls. I have great admiration for the way in which Colleen’s work is a simple and elegant expression while also being an impressive feat of engineering.
On my way out to the Global Sustainable Soundscapes Network’s first meeting in Baraboo Wisconsin, I stopped in Pittsburgh to meet with Eco Artists Ann Rosenthal and Mo Dawley. Ann has an amazing studio building just east of the city center and very generously made dinner and provided a place to stay for the night.
New York City based eco-artist Betsy Damon happened to be in Pittsburgh at the same time developing a project for the Mattress Factory, and fortunately I was able to visit with her for a while and learn more about her fascinating work. Her project involves examining waterways in a struggling Pittsbugh neighborhood that have been paved or otherwise covered, and will create an installation at the Mattress Factory that may involve something like these wonderful water projects:
22 resonators are now hanging in and around the new artist’s studio space at the MBR park (known as the ‘Pony Barn’). Ten are outside on trees, the image above shows one large resonator with the large solar panel array that provides power to the pony barn in the background.
More photos of the artist’s reception after Sunday!