Sunday, February 28, 2010

Link Latte 128

#128 - Week of February 27, 2010

The Scariest Mountain Trail - and Daredevil Riders - [wow video]
Four Dead in Five Seconds Gun Fight - [real Wild West]
Gorgeous Photography of Carnivorous Plants - [fascinating]
Great 3-D Graffiti Artist /Sculptor, his site - [art]
Outlandish Tramontana R Supercar - [auto pics]
One of the Biggest Diamonds Found, and Sold - [nature]
Best Astronomy Pics Gallery - [wow space]
Lost films: sad and fascinating list - [cinema history]
Space Visionary Artist: Robert McCall - [sci-fi art]
The "Ideal" German Soldier in WW2... was half Jewish - [interesting]
The Biggest Tsunami: 524 meters - [info and photos]
Entirely Original Idea for a Printer - [wow tech]
Intense Winter Rally Race (not a game!) - [on-board cam]
Vinyl Record Grooves Seen in Electron Microscope - [cool pics]
Ten Inspiring Moon Base Designs - [space architecture]
Don't just shorten your URL, make it suspicious and frightening! - [cool site]
Far Out: the Story of an Arctic Refuge - [cool video series]
Aircraft cemetery on Google Earth, high-res - [wow pic]
This site makes modern-day New York look old - [photography]
Stunning, surreal car show: Bonneville Salt Flats 2009 - [gallery]
Japan 1886 by Adolfo Farsari, in color - [Livejournal gallery]
All sorts of incredible aquariums - [design]
"Love Marriage", Indian Style - [music video]
Flood vs. train: equals a big splash - [wow video]
Fetching Traffic Girls in North Korea, more - [video and pics]
Truly Epic Shark /Yellow Pages Ad - [fun video]
Can this be real? Incredible snowmobiling stunts, more - [wow video]
"Stairway to Heaven", by the Beatles! (sort of) - [cool video]
Where Dreams And Day Collide - [very well-made steampunk-ish video]
Psychedelic Colors in Water Photography - [compilation]


Friday, February 26, 2010

Hallucinatory Architecture of the Future

Link - article by M. Christian and A. Abrams

Love, Peace, and... Metropolis

We can't stop fantasizing about living in an urban utopia: some try to give their fantasies a realistic foundation, to ground them in the brick and mortar of today... while others have the architectural visions of the World Of Tomorrow that are more ... well, visionary.

If not totally hallucinatory.

(Hydro-Net futuristic urban project for San Francisco - more info)

(futuristic medical center - more info; and MAD architects concepts, like this one)

Some examples of the early pulp illustration (still unmatched in their retro-futuristic grandeur) - New York in 2032:

(fragment of the cover of the "Science & Mechanics" magazine, 1931)

Sliding pavements - and the Depth-scraper! (concept from 1931):

(images via)

The future city by Francisco Mujica: an utilitarian "nightmare":

(image via)

Even worse, a soul-deadening "Cube City" (1930) -

Burj Dubai (or Burj Khalifa) inspiration: the Mile High Illinois

Frank Lloyd Wright was -- without hyperbole -- brilliant. Looking at his designs, it's easy to view them as simple in their loveliness: elegant mixtures of natural and artificial, Asian and Western, minimal and dramatic. But it's easy to forget that Wright completely rewrote architecture when the cars parked in front of his houses were Model T Fords. It's one thing to dream about the future when you're in a world -- like today -- that's always looking forward, always thinking of grandly dramatic tomorrows, but quite another when you're in a time when men are wearing spats, and women hoop skirts -- and the future was relegated to cheap pulps, at best.

And Wright certainly had his eyes to the future. One of his most visionary designs was of a decentralized city, called Broadacre. Although not as striking as some of his other designs, it was radical for its time. But even more radical was what was to be Wright's masterpiece, a single soaring accomplishment: The Illinois.

Soaring is right, as the Illinois was to be a skyscraper -- a rare thing for Wright. But not just any twenty or thirty or forty floor pinnacle of his skill. Nope, The Illinois was to be a Chicago landmark to end all landmarks: a mile-high skyscraper.

(images via 1, 2)

Alas, Wright never came close to seeing his creation as anything but sketches and blueprints.

Floating Atlantis Hotel, 1928:

(images via)

Another architectural visionary with very long-distance sight was Buckminster Fuller. Bucky created what some consider overly practical geodesic and polished steel future with a staggering array of designs and inventions -- many of which had gone beyond the blueprint stage and could be seen, touched, or even driven. Like Wright's, his designs were often even more incredible in light of when they were created. His Dymaxion House, for example, was created in 1929, and his amazing Dymaxion car actually drove the streets of New York in 1933. Fuller's designs were, to put it mildly, rigorously practical: his Dymaxion Houses were to be created on an assembly line with inflexible specifications, not in their manufacture but for those who were to live in them.

(image via)

The houses might have been absolutely brilliant in their design -- integrating many inspired features such as their ability to recycle water -- and his car literally could have driven rings around the cars of 1944, but in Fuller's future visions humanity would have been less flesh and blood and more like uniform parts in his many intricate mechanisms.

A world of living green: a vision by Luc Schuiten

Other architects and visionaries have taken a much more natural approach to their far-forward speculations and designs. Luc Schuiten, for instance, looked at tomorrow and saw not steel and chrome, metal and heavy industry but instead a world of living green. It's called Archiborescence - his designs are for cities grown and tended like orchards. Living in Luc's world would be like existing in a city of skyscraper trees, hedgerow houses, forest stores, and prairie parks - a magnificent dream for those who long for man to finally live with- and not against - nature ... though maybe a ring of hell if you have an hay fever.

(images by Luc Schuiten, via)

Communist Gothic: Architectural Visions by Yakov Chernyakov, 1920s - 1930s

We already wrote about Yakov's stupendous imperial urban dreams - click here. Here are a couple more glimpses of his baroque-looking mega cities:

(images via)

Wright is art, Fuller is cold logic, Luc is nature, but if you want a vision of the future that's none of the above, in every way, you have to look at the work of Superstudio. Created in 1966 by Adolfo Natalini and Cristiano Toraldo, Superstudio's plans for the future are outrageous, disturbing, and -- most of all -- surreal.

(image credit: Adolfo Natalini, The Museum of Modern Art)

To be fair, Natalini and Toraldo never really thought about actually creating their visions of the future -- unlike Wright and Fuler and Luc -- and, considering some of their designs, that might be a very good thing.

Take, for example, their plan to make all the buildings in Pisa lean -- every building except for the town's famous tower; or their famous "Brain City" where the residents would be just that: brains in jars, with the concept of a perfect city fed into their cortexes via direct stimulation.

A contemporary of Superstudio, Archigram created designs that weren't quite as avant guard -- in fact they were almost realistic, at least in comparison. One of their most famous visions is for a city that perambulates across the countryside ... and before you leap to your dictionary, they meant for their cities of the future to be monstrous walking machines, strolling from one part of the world to the other.

Tomorrow might not be here yet, but thankfully there have been, and still are, some dreamers who have tried to look forward to how we might be living. All we can do is hope that some of their more outrageous visions become a reality, and that others never do.

From more realistic near-future visions (click to enlarge):

(image credit: Meduza Arts, Moon City Productions)

(image credit: Mark Goerner)

(image credit: Philip Williams)

(originals unknown)

... to wild stuff, like this overgrown "Coruscant" for example:

(image credit: Craig Mullins)

'Shroom City, by Frederic St. Arnaud (click to enlarge):

Waterfall Castle, also by Frederic St. Arnaud:

(art by Frederic St. Arnaud)



Also don't miss: "Communist Gothic: Architecture by Yakov Chernikov" ->

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Groundhog Coloring Pages Collections

Groundhog coloring pages

Does anyone of you have Groundhog coloring pages at home? Or .. if anyone has a collection of Groundhog puppets? Hmm .. this one animal is quite unique and funny.

Groundhog adorable behavior always makes us laugh and happiness. Especially on this particular day, everyone seemed to want to celebrate with them.

Oops, if you do not have Groundhog coloring pages, so I've made a collection which I gather from google images. Please download these pictures and immediately printed with your printer, then get work with your pencil Color.

C'mon! We makes this Groundhog coloring pages alive!

Groundhog coloring sheet

funny Groundhog coloring

Groundhog coloring

coloring Groundhog

happy coloring groundhog

happy groundhog

another downloading sources: