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    Monday
    May092011

    Video Mapping, Earth From Above, and Urban Parks 

    Searching for an Opium Den, I stumbled across the "Flight:Light NYC" street festival this past Saturday night.  Here's some footage I took of the video mapping projection illuminated against the facade of St. Patrick’s Cathedral:

    Did you like that?  Do you like rhetorical questions?  Regardless, check this out: Video Mapping in Prague:

    In addition to the displays of electromagnetic artwork and the interactive digital pandemonium, a series of presentations were given in an auditorium where $3 pints of beer were being sold.  I drank several beers and watched a handful of the presentations.  The themes I remember range from critical assessments of the development of monstrous "eco-cities" and industrial parks, including the artificial islands in Dubai:


    Apparently, the Arabic scripture constructed around one of the Palm Islands is a line from a poem which reads, “it takes a man of vision to write on water.”  Though a testament to the ingenuity of human engineering and our species ability to thrive in extreme climates, the existence of resource guzzling superstructures and elite mega-resorts in one of hottest places on Earth reminds me of a different quote that I just made up: “there are no absolutes fool, only absolute fools.” 

    Dubai was addressed in a discussion regarding the habit of people to build designs (known as geoglyphs) on land that are only visible from the sky; often built when they could not be viewed in full by the people who built them.  The Nazca lines in Peru and the Marree Man in Australia are two examples. 

    http://www.december2012endofworld.com/wp-content/uploads/nazca-lines.jpg
    Nazca George W. Bush

    On the topic of aerial photography, the man presenting showed the audience this picture:

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/12/Dr_Julius_Neubronner_patented_a_miniature_pigeon_camera_activated_by_a_timing_mechanism,_1903.jpg/449px-Dr_Julius_Neubronner_patented_a_miniature_pigeon_camera_activated_by_a_timing_mechanism,_1903.jpg
    German cyborg pigeon

    The pigeon is among the first to have a miniature camera attached to it.  It, and others like it, flew around pre-WWI Germany taking pictures of the city and landscape.

    This reminds me of when Team Black Sheep recently dared to dream.  They attached a camera to a remote controlled plane and flew it around New York City.  Awesome:

    The documentary Home features a primarily birds-eye view of the natural world and human activities.  Though visually stunning, the narration is melodramatic and the information sometimes contradicts itself (if you can’t watch the whole thing, check out the footage of Dubai starting around the 35 minute point).  I could only embed the trailer:

    Other presentations in the auditorium examined Urban Parks.  I got to see Hass and Hahn present on their work in Brazil, where they’ve been painting the favelas with the locals.  Here’s one picture I took of their work, but they’ve got plenty of crisp examples on their website.  Pretty inspiring stuff:

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