Thursday, November 30

Friday Photography | Our Daily Bread & Manufactured Landscapes

Friday Photography enters the realm of moving pictures this Friday with two films meditating on our industrial interventions on the natural environment.

Our Daily Bread is a new film by director Nikolaus Geyrhalter. Described as a "meticulous and high-end film experience", the movie has no spoken prompts and no story line, just 21st century industrial agriculture at work. So far it doesn't look like there is a release planned for the Twin Cities (this makes me sad). Click here for a list of American release dates. [via Pruned]

Manufactured Landscapes is a film by director Jennifer Baichwal about the life and work of photographer Edward Burtynsky. A BLYGAD favorite, Burtynsky's photographs are at once horrific, stunningly beautiful, and completely alien. You won't see your world the same way after spending time with his work. I can't wait to see his photographs on the big screen. Zeitgeist Films is has a US release planned for Summer 2007.

For more reading on industrial agriculture and more generally, the fascinating topics of eating, food, & where food comes from, see:

The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan

Happy Friday!

Tuesday, November 21

Reality Tourism

Continuing our series of tourism themed posts (here and here), Sandra from AFH San Diego drew my attention to a group called Reality Tours. Based out of Mumbai, India, Reality Tours offers 2 hour walking "Slum Tours" of the nearby city of Dharavi.

"In these small alleys, you will see why Dharavi is the heart of small scale industries in Mumbai (annual turnover is approximately US$ 665 million) and on the tour we show you a wide range of these activities- from making clay pots and leather bags to recycling plastic." - Reality Tours

The idea of a reality tour is not a new one. In 1989 a group called Global Exchange began with the idea that travel could be educational, fun, and positively influence international affairs. In their model, "... travelers are linked with activists and organizations from around the globe who are working toward positive change. We also hope to prompt participants to examine related issues in their own communities." Global Exchange sets each 7 to 14 day trip around a specific issue and focuses events around providing a view of the issue beyond what is communicated through mainstream media.

This type of trip offers a social exchange that you just can't get in a 2 hour walking tour, but both programs try to create a socially responsible experience, and both have been fairly well received in the international press.

Related Posts:
The Evolution of Eco-Tourism?
Friday Photography | Chernobyl Tourism

Saturday, November 18 | Love Where You Live

The only thing better then learning about something new is when it turns out to be not only cool, but local. That's why it's with much Twin City pride that I'd like to tell you about a new online community called Curbly.

According to co-founder Bruno Bornsztein, Curbly is a place where "people can share the creative stuff they've done with their homes, find inspiration for home-improvement projects, and get advice from experts."

Even as a fairly new website, they already have a ton of user-generated content: "The $3 Table", "Simple, Sustainable Living - 5 Easy Steps", "Kitsch Me Baby", and a multitude of other DIY tutorials drew me in instantly.

The DIY Photo Wall by Ben Edwards | just one of the many DIY tutorials at Curbly

All this on top of finally satisfying my voyeuristic fantasy of being able to peer into the living-rooms, bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchens of complete strangers... Perfect!

So check it out, and keep your heads up for future Curbly/AFHMN collaborations.

Friday, November 17

Friday Photography | Taiji Matsue & Murmansk Garage Culture

Only furthering my fascination with aerial photography, I discovered Taiji Matsue's work over at Pruned a couple of days ago. Described as "pieces from the surface of the earth", these beautiful compositions and many more can be found at L.A. Gallerie.

More information on Taiji:
artnet | take art collection | a biography

These great shots of garages in Murmansk, Russia were found on the BBC, In Pictures. Apparently there is a whole garage culture consisting of men, cars, and apparently… pickles. But what makes this unique is that these garages are all located in the a kind of garage-city located far away from the apartment blocks the men live in and therefore, one can only assume, the cares of everyday life. Their owners call them their 'sea shells'.

See the whole set, with commentary by the perplexed women of Murmansk, here. (Thanks Chris!)

Happy Friday!

Thursday, November 9

"Nature of Change" an Interdisciplinary Performance Art Benefit for Architecture for Humanity: Minnesota

AFHMN is happy to announce:

“Nature of Change” an Interdisciplinary Performance Art Benefit for Architecture for Humanity: Minnesota

Sunday, November 12, 2006 7:00pm – 8:30pm
$5 suggested donation
at The Center for Happiness
2645 SE 4th Street, Minneapolis, MN, 55414

Presented by The Center for Happiness & Project Educate, Entertain and Empower (Project EEE)… This performance is the culmination of a workshop at the Center for Happiness where participants shared, improvised, collaborated and experimented, interweaving meditation, movement, sound, visual arts, text, theatre and light focusing on the theme “Nature of Change”

The artists will present a series of short abstract vignettes, like visual poetry, to share their discoveries with the audience while inviting them to explore the theme in their own lives, providing a connection between entertainment and socio-political theatre.

With roots in both cabaret and Japanese style butoh (pictured above), the performance promises to be entertaining & provocative. And of course, all proceeds are going to a worthy cause.

Hope to see you there!