I am stoked to be back on beautiful North Stradbroke Island to deliver some more school holiday workshops. Tellin’ Country is a digital art program that engages Indigenous kids to create work that reflect their country. Salt Water Murri’s, a local Indigenous art gallery, had already been working on the theme “After the burn” and we decided to concentrate on this topic as well. The island was struck by lightning and fire engulfed the island early this year. Now, three months on, there is new growth and the island is getting its beautiful colour back. I brought along three canvases and the kids painted the island from different angles. With quite a lot of hesitance, we then painted the lightning bolt and the island up in flames until the canvas was blacked out. We recorded this process on an iPad, taking still photographs each 20 seconds, which produced a stop motion animation of the canvas’ transformation. Check out the stop motion animation : Straddie burn Today we will revive the canvas by painting back the original scene and adding extra colour and new growth. During this process we also get the participants to interview each other on the iPads and talk about what the fire meant for the environment and how it made them feel. The canvases will become a part of the Salt Water Murri’s display at Cairns Indigenous Art Fair and the stop motion animation and interviews will be added to the Our Dreaming exhibition in kuril dhagun and included in the State Library’s digital collection.
The 2014 UQ Architecture lecture series is here! This Tuesday 8 April will feature Mathew Aitchison from UQ and Chris Knapp for Bond University. To get your warmed up for Tuesday night, we asked Chris a few questions about what you can expect to hear from their lecture, what inspires him and who his double doppelgänger is… What does a typical day look like for you? Book-ended by spending time with my family, a typical day includes coordinating and teaching my subjects in design, technology, and materials research in the Masters program at the Abedian School of Architecture at Bond University. A typical day would also include a meeting or two related to my role as program Discipline Leader – working on the curriculum development, putting out fires, etc, and on less typical days, I attend to my private architectural practice and my PhD studies through RMIT. What can attendees to your UQ Architecture lecture expect to hear? Guests to the lecture can expect to hear someone who is passionate about stimulating evolution in the discipline of architecture. Where do you go to get design inspiration? I am very interested in both local and global discussion around all things architectural. I spend a great deal of time paying attention to journals and interactive media from both educational and professional platforms. I draw inspiration from other disciplines, or phenomena, that are spatial, visual, and/or organizational – from an interest in natural systems like geomorphology, to free-form jazz composition, or a technological artifact like the LHC. I also love a beautifully made book – the real thing in my hands – no ebook or website can top that. What are your top 5 favourite design books? Massive Change by Bruce Mau/Institute without Boundaries SMLXL by Rem Koolhas Instrumental Form (Boss Architecture: words, buildings, machines) by Wes Jones Envisioning Information by Edward Tufte The Atlas of Novel Tectonics by Reiser + Umemoto If you weren’t a designer, what would you do? Everything is a design opportunity, even teaching – which is what I do when I’m not “designing.” That said, in an alternate life playing ice hockey professionally would be a dream, even if unattainable with my level of skill. What has been your greatest achievement? My greatest achievement has been almost 10 years in the making: it has been a steady transition from arriving in Australia with just a backpack-full of tools to build a Wilkinson-award winning house (the BURST*003 House designed by systemarchitects – itself one of my proudest achievements), to ultimately establishing a richly intense life here with my Australian wife and two daughters that has included forging a new school of architecture, building up a design practice, and become an Australian citizen. Outside of design, what inspires your work? Sleep. Who is your double doppelgänger? In terms of appearance, I’ve been told I look like the Natural Born Killers version of Woody Harrelson (although surely not that fit), and intellectually speaking, I would combine that with one of my favourite architect/thinkers, the former Dean of Princeton, Stan Allen (although I’m certainly nowhere near as intelligent). Bonus! As a bonus both Chris and co-presenter for next week's UQ Architecture lecture Mathew Aitchison gave us their recommended reading for their lecture–'Prefab: a potted history'... Chris Knapp The MoMA book on prefab housing Kieran Timberlake’s “Refabricating Architecture” is also key Greg Lynn’s “Animate Form” And this one, Bob Sheil’s “Manufacturing the Bespoke” Mathew Aitchison Home Deliver:Fabricating the Modern Dwelling by Barry Bergdoll, Peter Christensen, Ron Broadhurst, and Museum of Modern Art Prefab Houses by Arnt Cobbers, Oliver Jahn, and Peter Gössel (eds.) The Prefabricated Home by Colin Davies The Dream of the Factory-Made House: Walter Gropius and Konrad Wachsmann by Gilbert Herbert Refabricating Architecture: How Manufacturing Methodologies Are Poised to Transform Building Construction by Stephen Kieren and James Timberlake Portable Architecture: Design and Technology by Robert Kronenburg Prefab Architecture by Loft Publications, (eds.) Prefab Prototypes: Site-Specific Design for Offsite Construction by Mark Anderson and Peter Anderson The Prefabrication of Houses by Burnham Kelly