Greg J. Smith writes an interesting article contributing to a distributed discussion looking at naturally occurring processes and forms—specifically, glaciers, islands, and storms—and to ask how these might be subject to architectural re-design.
During The Place’s biennial Choreodrome research and development project for choreographers there will be three presentations given in the Robin Howard Dance Theatre on different aspects of creativity. The series involves theatre, performance and live artists working on the far edge of choreographic practice, and are designed to inspire new conversations about choreography, movement and performance. The seminars are open and free to all who wish to attend.
Martin John Callanan is an interdisciplinary artist whose work spans numerous mediums and engages both emerging and commonplace technology (http://greyisgood.eu). His work has included translating active communication data into music; freezing in time the earth’s water system; tampering with banknotes; writing thousands of letters; capturing newspapers from around the world as they are published; taming wind onto the internet and broadcasting his precise physical location live for over two years.
Martin’s work is always decidedly deadpan and served with a dash of ennui. Some of his more well-known pieces include the ambient audio installation Sonification of You, the meta-news aggregator I Wanted to See All the News From Today and Text Trends, which abstracts the casual manner in which we receive, scan and process information and language on a daily basis.
Martin is currently Artist in Residence at UCL Environment Institute and Teaching Fellow at the Slade School of Fine Art UCL.
He will discuss the power of narrative and the role of performance and metaphor within his work. You will be asked to question whether the artist or audience is the real performer: where and when the performance really takes place.
Martin John Callanan, artist-in-residence at University College London’s Environment Institute, used satellite data to create a small300mm terrestrial globe depicting cloud coverage from a single second in time. He first showed the work, titled A Planetary Order, last week at an event also celebrating the publication of Extraordinary Clouds, a new book by the UCL Environment Institute’s writer-in-residence, Richard Hamblyn. The cloud-themed projects are profiled in a short video from the university. “UCL writer and artist-in-residence look to the skies”
A writer and artist-in-residence at UCL’s Environment Institute are holding a joint launch for a new book and work of art – linked by the theme of clouds.
Writer-in-residence Richard Hamblyn’s book Extraordinary Clouds is a celebration of unusual cloud formations and atmospheric phenomena.
Artist-in-residence Martin John Callanan has created A Planetary Order, a terrestrial globe showing clouds around the planet from one single moment in time.
Hamblyn has already written several books on the subject, including The Invention of Clouds, which won the LA Times Book Prize, and a pictoral guide to cloud formations called The Cloud Book.
Extraordinary Clouds grew out of his research for the latter as he amassed a collection of images that did not fit into any standard category, such as the uniform streaks of ‘street clouds’ and the bulbous ‘lenticularis’ sometimes mistaken for UFOs.
He said: “I had been commissioned to research and write The Cloud Book (which came out in 2008), using the Met Office’s amazing photo archive, and I kept coming across weird and wonderful clouds that seemed to defy categorisation, but becauseThe Cloud Book was intended to be a fairly serious pictorial guide to all the clouds listed in the international cloud classification, most of these oddities were left out.
“But I carried on collecting more and more of them, finding them in photo libraries, trawling the internet, asking photographer friends and acquaintances, and within a year I had amassed several hundred pictures of bizarre and beautiful cloud formations.Extraordinary Clouds is the result.”
Some of the most spectacular images in Hamblyn’s book came from The Cloud Appreciation Society, a 17,000-strong group of cloudspotters.
Callanan’s A Planetary Order examines the fragility and interdependence of the Earth’s environmental systems.
The artist, a teaching fellow at UCL Slade School of Fine Art, said: “Unlike Richard, who’s got a fascination with clouds, I’ve never really considered them before. I’ve been more interested in systems – systems that define how we live our lives. The idea behind the cloud globe is to show and highlight the fragility of the environmental systems that operate in the world.”
It was printed at the Digital Manufacturing Centre at the UCL Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment.
“The Digital Manufacturing Centre creates architectural models for students, researchers and commercial clients, but this is the largest object they have ever created and it took two days just to manufacture,” said Callanan.
The launch party for Extraordinary Clouds and A Planetary Order will take place on 30 June in the university’s main quadrangle at Gower Street.
Extraordinary Clouds is available from all good bookshops and A Planetary Order will go on display at UCL’s Pearson Building later this summer.
The Environment Institute acts as a focus for interdisciplinary research on the environment at UCL. It exists to improve links between the UCL research community, policymakers and private sector interests. It aims to identify the environmental concerns that will drive future policy agendas, and to contribute the science required to address them.