Category Archives: Art

NOTEBOOK 98-3 « LEBBEUS WOODS

Lebbeus Woods, the architect, has started a series of posts on his notebooks. It sounds like this was a practice he went through and “finished” at some point, before moving on to other ways of working. That’s a little disappointing and goes against what I see as a lifetime practice. Still, I guess that depends on what activity replaced this form of sketching. Probably another form of sketching.

I loved this quote:

“Notebooks are portable. They can be kept secret, or published. Technically, they are simple to make. Pen and paper. The hand, eye, and thought. Freed from any sort of burdensome apparatus, thought becomes more agile in confronting itself.”

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NOTEBOOK 98-3 « LEBBEUS WOODS

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Lebbeus Woods’ fantasy world

Lebbeus Woods has started a series of fantasy entries on his blog, tied to his beautiful sketches. The first is about a city built into rocky crags, the City of Earth. His prose style reminds me of H.P. Lovecraft, for some reason, creating a slight atmosphere of foreboding, that I’m not sure was intended. Maybe this is because I imagine the city he’s describing as vacant, abandoned for some reason (the sketches seem to support this). Anyone who’s played Bioshock knows this feeling.

“The particularly mountainous region I first encountered was certainly inhospitable to building. Jagged, rocky ridges were separated by steep chasms rather than welcoming valleys. Yet many large structures had been built. Clinging to the cliff faces, or cut into them, or set into almost inaccessible promontories, the structures were built largely of concrete with much the same color as the rocks. Adorning them were more delicate armatures of iron that were rusty, in much the same manner as industrial buildings I knew well from my own country. From these aspects I reasoned that this was a mining community, one in which the people were primarily engaged in cutting and digging into the earth to extract its hidden mineral riches. As I was to learn, this reasoning was only partially correct.”

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City of Earth is followed by City of Fire.

“Here, in strata upon strata of volcanic rock, were spaces inhabited by a community of people engaged in some sort of industry. There were dwelling spaces, hollowed out from the dark earth masses. There were machines that captured an eerie form of light different from that far above. There were vast caverns in which I saw entangled, monumental forms that were like fragments of the lucid geometric volumes I had seen in the city above, but here broken into disparate parts and linked together by tendril-like passageways and conduits, creating a vast, indeterminate network, rather than a geometrically coherent form. All of this was revealed by an inner-earth glow, amid a constant, throbbing heat. It soon became clear that the harnessing of heat energy, as a source of motive power, I imagined, was the industry of this underground community.”

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New work by Maya Lin

Some really beautiful looking new work by Maya Lin. Hope this exhibition comes to the UK.

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“The Systematic Landscape exhibit, Lin’s second nationally traveling exhibit within 10 years, ranges from a 50-ton sculpture created by 65,000 pieces of 2×4 set on their ends (2×4 Landscape) to Rand McNally into which Lin has cut through page by page to create new fictional landscapes that feature canyons through France and a valley in southeast Brazil that bottoms out as a lake (Atlas Landscape series).”

Systematic Landscapes exhibit at the de Young Museum – Dwell Blog

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Robert Walden – Ontological Roadmaps

Really love these images. I’ve started playing with slightly more abstract pen-and-ink images as the basis for a new set of woodblocks which I should get around to at some point. I feel weird about the abstract, for some reason. Woodblocks tend to be more literal. So I love seeing this kind of semi-abstract work as encouragement, even if they aren’t woodblocks. The use of ink on acrylic definitely gives it a print feel.

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“Using ink, pencil and acrylic on paper his city structures move from linearity and order and gradually transform organically into urban sprawls. The cellular nature of these drawings, not surprisingly, also implies biological entities with tendrils, lichen colonies or even tree bark – nature’s little cities. Yet again these kinds of procedural drawings hint at universal pattern formulae generated by loop-based self-organising principles.”

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