Korean artist, Choe U Ram, creates massive, precision engineered sculptures with an eerie organic feel. He uses cut and polished metals, machinery and electronics to create kinetic sculptures inspired by sea creatures and plant life.
Exploring the boundaries of archeological discovery and developmental morphology, Choe’s explanations and Latin titles for these creations follow the linguistic traditions of scientific nomenclature.
Telling stories using gestural transformation and the tracing of imagined evolutionary stages, these pieces take on the silhouette of actual life forms, as intricate automata express a refined delicacy and weightlessness.
Unexpected and fantastical, Choe’s kinetic simulations cyclically breathe with movement that recalls aquatic propulsion, flight and ritualistic courtship displays.
About once every couple of months one of my students sends me a video of ART+COM‘s mechatronic installation, made up of 714 metal balls for the BMW museum. ART+COM describe it as “a spatial translation of a design process. Seemingly weightless and guided solely by the power of the mind, the sculpture moves through a cycle of free abstractions and typical BMW vehicle forms.”
I just came accross the work of Joe Gilbertsons formally similar kinetic installation and thought I’d place the two side by side. While one is majestic in its use of precision motors and software systems, there is something equally majestic in Gilbertson’s use of simple motors and cranks.
Five Nobel-winning scientists have been paired with five textile designers as part of a two-year project between Central Saint Martins College and the Medical Research Council, and the result is Nobel Textiles: a brilliant week of exhibitions and events at the ICA and in St James’s Park, London. Theres an introduction film to the project here
Five greenhouses in St James’s Park will contain self-folding fabrics, urban food production, garden furniture and more, with further work in the digital studio and bar.
Philippa Brock has collaborated with Sir Aaron Klug (Nobel Prize for Chemistry, 1982), responding with a collection of Jacquard weaves that explore the methods of transforming 2-dimensional weaving approaches into 3-dimensional models.
Carole Collet has collaborated with John Sulston (Nobel Prize for Medicine, 2002 with Sydney Brenner and Robert Horwitz), creating a collection of garden furniture based on the principles of programmed degradation.
Now you see it, Now you don’t
Rachel Kelly has been working with Tim Hunt (Nobel Prize for Medicine, 2001), and has designed a collection of transparent wallpapers and paper lanterns responding to his discovery of cycling proteins which appear and disappear.
The Fat Map Collection
Shelley Fox has collaborated with Peter Mansfield (Nobel Prize for Medicine, 2003), and has created a fashion collection based on the MRI mapping of the body fat of 6 volunteers.
Rachel Wingfield has collaborated with John E. Walker (Nobel Prize for Chemistry, 1997), to create architectural scale textiles that explore urban food production, in response to John’s elucidation of the tiny motor that cycles energy in our cells.
The Poème électronique was a unique experience, originated from the request made by Philips to Le Corbusier for the design of the company’s pavilion at the Brussels World Fair in 1958. The whole project was initiated and directed by Le Corbusier, who also created and/or selected the images for the audiovisual show, with the organized sound composed by Edgar Varèse, and the stunning surfaces of the building designed by Iannis Xenakis. The result was a ground breaking immersive environment, since the space of the Pavilion hosted the audio and the visual materials as integral parts of the architectural design.
Unluckily, such a visionary synthesis of innovative ideas could not stand with its times, and the paradigm was never repeated, or even attempted, again: the Pavilion, notwithstanding the incredible number of spectators (2 millions), was turned down a few months after its inauguration, at the end of the Exposition. The disappearance of the Pavilion makes the Poème électronique a destroyed masterpiece.
What we stl have today are only fragments of the various components (i.e. photos and drafts of the architecture, the projected video in videotape from the Philips archives, a stereo reduction of Varèse’s and Xenakis’ musical pieces).
Virtual Electronic Poem (VEP) is a project realized as a virtual reality (VR) environment that reproduces the experience of the dismantled masterpiece through an accurate philological reconstruction of the original installation. The website looks a bit out of date but the first of two films in this post shows the results of the work. The second shows the Poème électronique as a film rather than in its architectural context. Perhaps someone out there would be good enough to bring the building into a public setting on Second Life?