99 Giant Red Balloons Collect the Sun’s Energy

Inspired by the 1984 German pop track “99 Luftballoons” by Nena, Winnipeg-based urban design firm Nadi Design Studio has developed an installation of 99 giant red balloons floating 100 feet off the ground, atop landfills. The conceptual project, aptly titled 99 Red Balloons, proposes to not only draw attention to the beauty that arises from accumulated waste piles but also to promote clean energy.

While each of the eye-catching balloons function as waste site markers, they are also photovoltaic solar generators. They are said to collect enough cumulative energy to power 4,500 homes, annually. The massive 50-foot tall by 40-foot wide balloons themselves are made of an organic resin membrane and lined with transparent organic solar cells developed by MIT. The structures are supported by resin poles that allow the installation pieces to sway, like real balloons, but are securely affixed to the ground with a steel base.

Through liquid crystal technology, the balloons also have the engaging ability to switch from an opaque red color to transparent, exposing the inner solar harvesting systems. This visual alteration is triggered through human interaction with sensors lacing specific pathways on the ground. The innovative design concept was just named one of four winners at this year’s Land Art Generator Initiative Competition. The team behind the project led by Emeka Nnadi includes Scott Rosin, Meaghan Hunter, Danielle Loeb, Kara McDowell, Indrajit Mitra, Narges Ayat and Denis Fleury.

Nadi Design Studio website
via [ArchDaily, LAGI]

December 3, 2016

Artist Completes Gigantic Pen & Ink Drawing After 3.5 Years

From great pain often comes great artwork. Such is the case with Manabu Ikeda‘s monumental Rebirth, a 13′ x 10′ masterpiece that the artist toiled over for 3.5 years, working 10 hours a day. It’s Ikeda’s largest work to date and is the Japanese artist’s response to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami that set off the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

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December 2, 2016

Sexy French Farmers Pose for Shirtless 2017 Calendar

Last year, the holiday season was set ablaze by France’s Pompiers Sans Frontières (Firefighters Without Borders) and their sizzling, stripped-down calendar. Shot for a good cause by renowned Paris-based fashion photographer Fred Goudon, the risqué calendar proved to be a popular Christmas gift—both in France and abroad. In keeping with tradition, Goudon has photographed a new crop of au naturel pin-up models for his 2017 edition: French farmers.

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