Monday, 26 April 2010

Queen & David Bowie: Under Pressure

Mm ba ba de
Um bum ba de
Um bu bu bum da de
Pressure pushing down on me
Pressing down on you no man ask for
Under pressure - that burns a building down
Splits a family in two
Puts people on streets
Um ba ba be
Um ba ba be
De day da
Ee day da - that's o.k.
It's the terror of knowing
What this world is about
Watching some good friends
Screaming 'Let me out'
Pray tomorrow - gets me higher
Pressure on people - people on streets
Day day de mm hm
Da da da ba ba
Chippin' around - kick my brains around the floor
These are the days it never rains but it pours
Ee do ba be
Ee da ba ba ba
Um bo bo
Be lap
People on streets - ee da de da de
People on streets - ee da de da de da de da
It's the terror of knowing
What this world is about
Watching some good friends
Screaming 'Let me out'
Pray tomorrow - gets me higher high high
Pressure on people - people on streets
Turned away from it all like a blind man
Sat on a fence but it don't work
Keep coming up with love
but it's so slashed and torn
Why - why - why ?
Love love love love love
Insanity laughs under pressure we're cracking
Can't we give ourselves one more chance
Why can't we give love that one more chance
Why can't we give love give love give love give love
give love give love give love give love give love
'Cause love's such an old fashioned word
And love dares you to care for
The people on the edge of the night
And love dares you to change our way of
Caring about ourselves
This is our last dance
This is our last dance
This is ourselves
Under pressure
Under pressure

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Berlin Wall

The photographer Anthony Suau was sent by TIME Magazine to cover the opening of the border between East and West Berlin, he knew it would be the story of a lifetime

The Iconic Photo of the Haiti Earthquake

Mind Map series 2

Will it Blend?

More a series than any one video, the Will It Blend? YouTube phenomenon appeals to that most basic of human needs: the desire for destruction. The campy, faux-scientific videos from BlendTec feature a man in a lab coat throwing a wide array of random items (hockey pucks! iPhones!) into his company's line of blenders and turning on the power. Will it blend? Yes — and it's awesome.

Food is not the only thing fit in blender! Here I select a few videos which base on the modern topic. However this machine is incredible! Buy it! Buy it! It's almost double price as an IPad.


Guitar Hero

Air Soft Gun


Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Gorden Matta-Clark — Conical Intersect 1975

It is a very valuable video from Gordon Matta-Calrk

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Smash-Hit Design

Interesting topic what I discover during the food shopping :p

The Disappearance of Architecture as an Artistic Theme–Part 2

Nature in Architecture

The disappearance of built structures does, however, not simply result from profit seeking and desires for fame that become manifest in continually new structures, which pay little regard to the existing substance, but also springs from the effects of natural forces. As Georg Simmel established, architecture's constitutive paradox, defending something existent against transitoriness with the forces of nature against nature, has no permanence and finds its fate in the built structure's decay as "nature's revenge." The clash of nature and civilization becomes visible in architecture through ruins. This precarious relationship of architecture and nature stands vis-à-vis the desire to not only master natural powers with architecture, but also to design nature itself as a paradisiacal site of desire (horticulture) and integrate it into the dwelling.

In their photo-text montage Private 'Public' Space: The Corporate Atrium Garden (1987), Dan Graham and Robin Hurst see the need to create a little garden of paradise on earth as the outcome of the nature enthusiasm of the waning eighteenth century, influenced by the writings of Jean-Jacques Rousseau. They follow and comment on how nature is incorporated in the city through six selected examples. They view the winter garden, as developed at world's fairs for the exhibition of exotic plants, as the forerunner of the publicly accessible atria in office towers arising since the 1960s--which they analyze as closed,"ecologically purified" spaces within a company building and whose function is to form a "hyperspace," to become "the sky" in a transferred sense. Here, nature appears within an architectural and institutional context, which presents it as controllable and part of a worldwide, highly technical civilization. Their artistic analysis--revealing the artificiality of this construction--counters this form of ideological manipulation.

Friday, 16 April 2010

The Disappearance of Architecture as an Artistic Theme–Part 1

Buildings emerge and decay. They promise permanence and security, although they are undoubtedly constantly remodeled and then disappear one day. Usually they are destroyed as the result of military conflicts or to make room for new buildings, and when they remain untouched, they are still inevitably subjected to the effects of natural forces and thereby to deterioration. To this extent, in contrast to the other arts, architecture, horticulture, and urban planning have a special relationship with nature: they must confront its forces directly. This precarious relationship to nature, whereby their own disappearance must necessarily be taken into account, can be a theme for art. This applies also to the destruction of what exists through new creation, which likewise contributes to architecture's disappearance.

Foundation as Displacement

Every construction process changes the spatial context and is even capable of ruining the evolved urban fabric and its environment. In the city, this process begins with the evacuation of buildings before demolition to make room for new structures. Gordon Matta-Clark's 1976 artistic intervention Window Blow-Out took up this theme in the context of the exhibition Idea as Model. The exhibition was set up at one of the most progressive forums for discussion of contemporary architecture, the Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies in New York, founded by architect and architecture theorist Peter Eisenman who also ran the Institute at this time. For Matta-Clark, the exhibition site apparently brought back bad memories for his architecture training at Cornell University. On the afternoon before the opening, he appeared with a small-bore rifle and asked curator Andrew McNair for permission to shoot the window panes in order to use them as frames for photos of residential building projects in the Bronx. McNair gave him permission (which he would later regret, as he lost his job) and was forced to watch as Matta-Clark shot out all of the windows without much ado. With this act of violent damage to the building, Matta-Clark alluded, on the one hand, to the "broken windows" theory, according to which the first signs of a neighborhood's decline (which also implies declining property values there) can be read from the broken window panes of unoccupied buildings. One the other hand, he confronted architecture--the actual exhibition building, and metaphorically, the discipline--with its social and spatial consequences: that architectural project (such as the building projects in the Bronx that he referred to) usually begin with the demolition of buildings after the people living in them have been driven out. The gesture hit its mark. The host banned Matta-Clark from the premises and had new windows installed.

The previous year, Matta-Clark ahd realized an artistic work (Conical Intersect) for the Paris Biennial of 1975, which likewise thematized the connection of building and ruining. In Paris' Les Halles neighborhood, a conroversial restructuring was going on at the time, which began with the demolition of the famous slaughterhouses by Victor Baltard and ended in the erection of a new cultural center, Centre Pompidou. Initially, Matta-Clark wanted to carry out his work in the still unfinished Centre Pompidou, but that proved to be impossible. So he switched his sights to a neighboring seventeenth-century residential building that was empty and slated for demolition. He cut out a cone shape in a 45-degree angle from the outer facade and several levels. The telescope-like drilling now allowed thousands of passersby to look from the street through the building to the Centre Pompidou construction site. Also made public the same time was the interior of the building and its history, legible in the traces of use.

THe adjacent Centre Pompidou also turned its inside outward. The design by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers positioned a great deal of the infrastructure--the stairways, elevators, ventilation pipes, etc.--on the outside, so that a maximum of different possible uses could be achieved inside. This resulted from the competition bid, which called for the greatest possible flexibility in dividing up the interior space. In this way, Piano and Rogers were able to create an empty space inside in which every measure in reversible. The cultural center was designed as a permanent "construction site." Accordingly, the facade related to the surrounding urban dynamics. The east facade, with its pipe system, mirrored the mechanical movement of the movement of the pedestrians was drawn into the facade through the transparent escalator tube placed out in front. What Piano and Rogers oust from the facade, Matta-Clark exposes. The slice in the adjacent older building associates the construction utopia composed by the technoid facade image with other side of construction, the destruction of evolved urban structures. The apparently destructive procedure of artistically ruining a building contextualized the Centre Pompidou and set it in a relationship, in term of construction, to the history of its origins. With his reversal strategy, Matta-Clark uncovers the ruptures created by urban redevelopment. The construction site is mirrored in demolition: architecture's promise of new uses in the future is based in the displacement of the existing ones.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

The Belly of an Architect (1987)

The American architect Stourley Kracklite has been commissioned to construct an exhibition in Rome dedicated to the architecture of Etienne-Louis Boullée. Doubts arise among his Italian colleagues to the legitimacy of Boullée among the pantheon of famed architects, perhaps because Boullée was an inspiration for Adolf Hitler's architect Albert Speer.

Tirelessly dedicated to the project, Kracklite's marriage quickly dissolves along with his health. His physical and social ruin in some way corresponds to the decline of his idol Boullée, who remained relatively forgotten until the twentieth century.

Kracklite becomes obsessed with the historical Caesar Augustus after hearing that Livia, the wife of Augustus, supposedly poisoned him. Kracklite assumes that his own wife Louisa has tried to do the same due to his increasing stomach pains.

plot summary from wiki

I read some comments about the film, it seems people are much full in love with the music rather than film itself. The music is written by Wim Mertens, an Belgian musican. Here is a videoclip from him.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Lucerne Bridge on Fire

The Kapellbrücke ("Chapel Bridge" in German) is a 204 m (670 ft) long bridge crossing the Reuss River in the city of Lucerne in Switzerland. It is the oldest wooden covered bridge in Europe, and one of Switzerland's main tourist attractions.

The covered bridge, constructed in 1333, was designed to help protect the city of Lucerne from attacks. Inside the bridge are a series of paintings from the 17th century, depicting events from Luzerne's history. Much of the bridge, and the majority of these paintings, were destroyed in a 1993 fire, though it was quickly rebuilt.

Adjoining the bridge is the 140 feet (43 m) tall Wasserturm (Water Tower), an octagonal tower made frombrick, which has served as a prison, torture chamber, watchtower and treasury. Today the tower, which is part of the city wall, is used as the guild hall of the artillery association. The tower and the bridge are Lucerne's trademark and form the most photographed monument in the country.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

History of the Blitz

Excerpts from

Blitz Street


An overview of the Blitz.

Strategic bombing during World War II was greater in scale than any attack the world had previously witnessed. The Blitz ('Blitzkrieg', or 'Lightning War') was a sustained bombing campaign intended to break the will of the British people in advance of a German invasion. It targeted Britain with a combination of ever more powerful bombs, incendiaries, doodle bugs and V2 rockets.

The Nazi bombing of London began in the late afternoon of Saturday 7 September 1940. In the next nine hours, 348 German bombers escorted by 617 fighters dropped 600 tonnes of high explosives on the docks and East End. The planes formed a 20-mile wide block of aircraft filling 800 square miles of sky. By the next morning, 448 Londoners were dead.

And that was just the start. There followed 57 consecutive nights of relentless aerial bombardment. The only respite came when the Germans began to turn their attention to other British towns and cities too. On the night of 14-15 November, for example, 449 German bombers dropped a staggering number of high explosive bombs and incendiary bombs on Coventry, destroying 50,000 buildings, killing 568 people and seriously injuring over 1,000 more.

The incendiaries created terrible firestorms, with fierce winds sucking in air and fanning huge sheets of flame. On the night of 29-30 December, a devastating attack on London created a massive firestorm around St Paul's Cathedral. The image of the cathedral surrounded by flames and dark smoke immediately became a potent symbol of London's battle for survival.

The worst individual bombing incident of the Blitz occurred when an air raid shelter in a school in West Ham sustained a direct hit. Four hundred and fifty people were killed. The worst night of the Blitz was on 10-11 May 1941, when the German air force, the Luftwaffe, carried out one of the biggest raids of the war, leaving more than 3,000 people dead. It was, however, the Nazis' parting shot as the Luftwaffe was then transferred to eastern Europe in preparation for Hitler's invasion of the Soviet Union.

In all, more than 20,000 Londoners lost their lives during the Blitz. In the country as a whole, 18,629 men, 16,201 women, and 5,028 children were killed, together with 695 others who bodies could not be identified. Up to the end of 1941, more British civilians had been killed on the home front than British soldiers on the battlefield.