July 2006 Archives

July 29, 2006

TGI Freitag


Been a while since I've posted shipping container architecture news, but it's become so hot everywhere else, I'm sure no one minds. This is worth mentioning, though.

Regine interviewed one of the Freitag brothers about the bag company's new concept store in Zurich, which is made of a tower of shipping containers. It showed up on flickr a couple of weeks ago, too.

But this just reminds me how, every time I drive between NYC and DC, I fantasize about living in a tricked out stack of shipping containers like the ones stacked along the Turnpike. sigh.

17 containers for a concept store [wmmna, with lots of pix]
tons of photos, including official construction/fabrication images at freitag+zurich on flickr [flickr]

Dateline: The 'Bu -- Holy Moses. Oh wait, no, not Moses. Seems he was a Jew. Holy Frank Rich. D'oh. Holy--

Never mind. Just sayin', Mel Gibson. WOW.

Gibson's Anti-Semitic Tirade -- Alleged Cover Up [tmz]

Previously: Mel Gibson and his Passion[ate hatred of Jews, apparently]

Somewhere else, I saw someone licking the feet of the real estate developers who licensed Jade Jagger's name for their galley kitchens.

But it wasn't on Tropolism. No, that's where I saw the suh-weet Taiwanese pod living architecture, inexplicably abandoned. Get me a white spandex jumpsuit and some meal-in-a-pills, people, because it looks like the future.

Here's the schedule for this Friday's 24-hour interviewathon at the Serpentine Gallery pavilion. Mega-interviewer Hans Ulrich Obrist and perennial interviewee Rem Koolhaas will be tag-teaming on a whole slate of "culture industry" types.

If you can't imagine ending your night--or starting your morning--at 4AM with a Damien Hirst interview, then your best bet is probably the opening session--Friday at 6pm: Ken Adam / David Adjaye / Brian Eno / Zaha Hadid / Charles Jenks / Hanif Kureishi / Ken Loach / Tim O’Toole / Yinka Shonibare--and a nice supper.

Serpentine Gallery 24-hour Marathon Interviews [timeout.com via kultureflash]
Previously: HUO interviews, vol. 1

I interviewed Ed Burns the other day about his new movie, The Groomsmen, which follows a group of childhood friends through the emotionally fraught run-up to one posse member's wedding.

And while you're poking around on The Groomsmen, check out Apple's own making of promo. Apple definitely recommends setting up a Final Cut Pro post studio in your guesthouse in the Hamptons.

Ed Burns Gives Some Good Phone About The Groomsmen [daddytypes.com]
Ed Burns: Risky Business [apple.com]
The Groomsmen website has release dates; the movie's playing in NYC, NYC Metro, and LA right now and going national Aug. 5th [thegroomsmen.com]

July 21, 2006

RiffTrax Road House

So you can play Dark Side Of The Moon while watching The Wizard Of Oz, or you can play an mp3 commentary by Mystery Science Theater 3000 star/writer Mike Nelson while watching--Roadhouse, starring Patrick Swayze's well-oiled rack.

Check out RiffTrax, Nelson's new funny commentary site. Then check it out again when he's got more than one movie on there. [via robotwisdom]

Here's a radio interview with critic Joel Siegel, who's apparently trying to pad his reactionary conservative resume by loudly walking out of a press screening of Kevin Smith's Clerks 2. The interview is with Smith, although Siegel doesn't seem aware of that fact for quite a while.

Smith v Siegel [tmz.com]

Looks like it's Michele McNally, deputy photo editor for the New York Times' turn to pooh-pooh reader questions this week:

Q. As the Times has reported on one occasion, the Bush administration has been singularly aggressive in shaping and staging angles of photographs possible to take of the president and other members of the administration. Herding the press into an enclosure from which only dynamic upward-angled shots of the president are possible, for example. or setting the president against the background of the brightly lit cathedral in New Orleans results in shots worthy of Leni Riefenstahl. Wouldn't it be proper to either refuse to publish such manipulated shots, or run a note in the caption explaining the limits imposed on taking it? Since the manipulation is otherwise invisible to the reader, doesn't the Times have a duty to inform readers about the behind the scenes shaping of such shots?

-- Ellen Gruber Garvey, Brooklyn, N.Y.

A. Our photographers desperately try to get around that problem...


But seriously...about New Orleans. We spoke about the "presidential stagecraft" in this story.

She also insists that it's illegal to photograph subways or bridges.

Does calling BS on this total dodge of the real, larger, ongoing issue by disingenuously focusing on the particulars of a single incident screw my chances of ever writing for the Times again?

July 13, 2006

The Re-Searchers

John Ford would probably be pissed at you if you read this article about him in the UK Independent, but go ahead, it's worth the risk.

John Ford: Ford focus [independent.co.uk via rw]
There's a 2-disc anniversary edition of The Searchers out, btw [amazon.com]

Unbelievable. Aided only a 40-oz., and using only a reference-letter-seeking grad student as a nervous sounding board, Steven Heller turns out 5,000 words of derision for the "lackluster," "atrocious" design of Sforzian Backdrops ["all the subtlety of a PowerPoint presentation for a financial-services company"], all without betraying the slightest clue about the how or why or what for behind them.

Seriously, the entire thing is about typefaces and dropshadows. Does he not recognize the television and cable news origins of the backdrops' "style"? Does he not question for a second how well they might perform the multiple objectives they're designed for? What their purposes might actually be? Who their intended audience is? What their effects or implications are when they're published and broadcast? All of these questions have been widely researched, documented, and commented on--not just here, either, but by the creator of these graphics, Scott Sforza himself.

Someone is in need of a serious education in Google.

POTUS Typographicus: Appealing to the Baseline and George W’s Typographic Legacy [metropolis/aiga.org via designobserver]

Geodesic dome house in Reykjavik
Originally uploaded by gregorg.
So Olafur Eliasson's work includes many references to the work of Buckminster Fuller, especially to geodesic domes. There are some hanging on the wall right next to me, in fact.

Turns out thanks to the work of a former student/collaborator of Fuller, Einarr Thorstein, the Icelandic power company used geodesic domes as their standard architectural form. They now dot the country, situated on geothermal wellpoints and along pipelines.

AND there's a double dome house [pictured] in a Reykjavik housing development. Down the street is a double pyramid house, too; otherwise, the place looks like Fullterton, California circa 1980.

July 8, 2006

KFC in Iceland

KFC in Iceland
Originally uploaded by gregorg.
One thing that most people notice on arrival in Iceland is the uniformly modernist architecture. It looks like the whole country was imported as flatpack and built in about six weeks--sometime in the mid-80's.

There's a little bit of frontier town utilitarianism, a little Scandinavian modernism, and a little eastern bloc uniformity, plus a little Bermudian/Atlantic island nation colored roof fixation.

What stands out? The Kentucky Fried Chickens. They're everywhere, and they all seem to have relatively innovative/eyecatching architecture. Finally, after seeing this sleek, anthacite-panelled example in Keflavik, I had to start snapping pictures.

Inside, there was very nice clerestory lighting over the cash registers and the indoor playground. The bathrooms were high-end euro-trendy, and all the interior concrete uses the woodgrain from the poured-in-place forms to very nice effect.
I went to Iceland a couple of weeks ago, and I just put some photos up on flickr from the trip.

This one is of Afangar, a sculpture/installation by Richard Serra. The tops of these squared off basalt columns are level, but one column is 4m high, while the other is 3m. The distance between them, then, is determined by the slope of the land.

Serra placed nine pairs of colums around the periphery of one half of Videy, this island in the Reykjavik harbor, and some of them are quite close together; others, like these, are far apart.

The main feature as you walk, though, is bird droppings. When I first visited Videy in 1994, it was November, and except for a couple of Icelandic horses, I was alone on the island. This time, though, the place was teeming with sea birds, and the faint trail through the grass was chock full of tern turd. When you'd inadvertently get too close to an invisible nest, the birds would get really agitated. One nest was right next to the trail, and we didn't see it until the mother flew out from underfoot and startled us. A lot of the Serra columns on the leeward side of the island are topped with a crown of guano, but the windward side is pretty clear.

It surprised us to see Olafur Eliasson's Blind Pavilion from the 2004 Venice Biennale perched on top of the hill above the ferry dock, though. Apparently, they installed it there in early 2005 as part of his show at the National Museum. It looks like a gun turret up on there, though.
Red Paper Clip Day could become an annual party, with residents encouraged to wear red paper clips as a Town symbol. The Town is in the process of designing a new logo which is to include a red paper clip.
- from The Citizen, Kipling, Saskatchewan, Canada, 06/30/06

Kyle MacDonald trades a role in snowglobe megacollector Corbin Bernsen's next film to the town of Kipling.

One facet of the plan is to conduct auditions in Kipling for the part, perhaps as early as September.

MacDonald said he has discussed the idea with Bernsen, who has indicated great interest in the concept. MacDonald even hinted that the movie star and his family might become involved in the auditions and accompanying celebrations in some capacity.

"This is going to launch a cascading series of media events that will turn (yours and my) lives upside down," MacDonald predicted to Roach.

one red paperclip [via waxy]
In other Kipling news, Kennedy-Langbank School had their Junior Drama Night on June 27. Coincidence?


Edge magazine takes a look back at the torturous, tangled development process that resulted in Grand Theft Auto. At one point, all the artwork was thrown out and redone when programmer Mike Dailly figured out a new way to render the game's pseudo-3D cityscape; it added a year to the project. Though they came up with film-inspired features and innovative workarounds for technology constraints, they didn't really have much inkling about what would become some of GTA's biggest draws:

Elements of the game were added as they were thought of, often as a consequence of some casual tinkering with the behaviour of the living city.

“The Gouranga bonus is a really good example of that,” he points out. “One of the programmers came up with a routine that had pedestrians following each other. This led to the idea of a line of Krishnas following each other down the street and then, once we had all experimented with ploughing through them all in one go, the Gouranga bonus became an obvious addition.”

The Making Of...Grand Theft Auto [edge-online.co.uk via rw]

especially when I read something like this--and to be honest, I haven't even finished it yet:

Design. Architecture. Football.
[cityofsound.com via bldgblog]

Since 2001 here at greg.org, I've been blogging about the creative process—my own and those of people who interest me. That mostly involves filmmaking, art, writing, research, and the making thereof.

Many thanks to the Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Program for supporting greg.org that time.

comments? questions? tips? pitches? email
greg [at] greg [dot ] org

find me on twitter: @gregorg

about this archive

Posts from July 2006, in reverse chronological order

Older: June 2006

Newer August 2006

recent projects, &c.

Social Medium:
artists writing, 2000-2015
Paper Monument, Oct. 2016
ed. by Jennifer Liese
buy, $28

Madoff Provenance Project in
'Tell Me What I Mean' at
To__Bridges__, The Bronx
11 Sept - Oct 23 2016
show | beginnings

Chop Shop
curated by Magda Sawon
1-7 March 2016

eBay Test Listings
Armory – ABMB 2015
about | proposte monocrome, rose

It Narratives, incl.
Shanzhai Gursky & Destroyed Richter
Franklin Street Works, Stamford
Sept 5 - Nov 9, 2014
about | link

TheRealHennessy Tweets Paintings, 2014 -

Standard Operating Procedure
about | buy now, 284pp, $15.99

CZRPYR2: The Illustrated Appendix
Canal Zone Richard Prince
YES RASTA 2:The Appeals Court
Decision, plus the Court's
Complete Illustrated Appendix (2013)
about | buy now, 142pp, $12.99

"Exhibition Space" @ apexart, NYC
Mar 20 - May 8, 2013
about, brochure | installation shots

HELP/LESS Curated by Chris Habib
Printed Matter, NYC
Summer 2012
panel &c.

Destroyed Richter Paintings, 2012-
background | making of
"Richteriana," Postmasters Gallery, NYC

Canal Zone Richard
Selected Court Documents
from Cariou v. Prince (2011)
about | buy now, 376pp, $17.99