Saturday, 29 May 2010
Monday, 10 May 2010
Why not use the ever present and increasingly affordable technology of cctv for beneficial effects? Live streaming of rural locations as a temporary installation in empty shops, could provide us with a chance to contemplate nature. A less demanding view that could have restorative effects and enable us to enjoy the city centre more.?
Thursday, 18 March 2010
After all this thinking about overstimulation in commercial city centres, I started reading Ezio Manzini who captures the issues of the inherent stress in consumerism:
" Well-being has two dimensions: the material and the non-material. Anyone who buys food and prepares dinner has the material satisfaction of filling his or her stomach and the non-material stisfaction of having cooked a particular dissh or enjoyed good company. Non-material satisfaction, however, requires deliberate attention for use and enjoyment. Having too many things makes time for non-material pleasure shrink; an overabundance of options can easily diminish full satisfaction; whoever wants to optimise his overall satisfaction must limit his quantitive aspirations. " Manzini, E and Jegou, F 'Sustainable Everyday: Scenarios of Urban Life' (2003)
Monday, 25 January 2010
Based on the idea that contemplating natural environments has a restorative effect, I am proposing to create installations that could be used in empty city centre shops using imagery or cctv footage of natural environments. I had a positive response from Matt Easteal of Brighton and Hove Council Environmental Improvement Team, who explained the purpose of the large scale images they have been positioning on disused buildings. They are intended to combat vandalism and graffiti. Passers by agree that they enjoy looking at them: an alternative to the hoardings but not an advertisment.
Sunday, 24 January 2010
One way to have a moments respite, to escape the claustrophobia of the crowded environment is to step up. First trial of a step to nowhere, somewhere to stand still, elevate yourself , a look out post . We realised that the surface area makes you stand up straight, not so relaxing. Also that maybe you need something to lean on.
Thursday, 21 January 2010
I have been asking people in Brighton what they like and dislike about city centre sounds :
Not surprisingly, they find the sound of horns, sirens, shouting, car alarms, traffic, construction work uncomfortable and irritating.
They prefer the sound of the sea, the birds. Basically when they need a break they go to the seafront or the pavilion gardens.
Are there ways to change irritating noises into something less uncomfortable? It turns out that the same principle that makes it sound as though you can hear the sea in a shell applies to cup shaped objects held at a slight distance from the ear. Apparently the lounder the ambient noise levels the louder the swooshing sound. Perhaps physical adaptations to urban environments could create listening posts..
Friday, 15 January 2010
Advice on testing efficacy of baffles to cut out certain frequencies includes a number of methods:
- Play white noise and use sound meter to measure sound levels from a microphone close to the ear, with and without the baffles
- Play white noise and record with and without baffles. Import into Logic Pro to view frequencies that are affected
this head size screen in the sound booth at university of brighton is lined with acoustic foam to further dampen sound for voice recording purposes. Can this be transposed to a portable/wearable accessory to make it easier to speak in noisy cafe environments?
Saturday, 9 January 2010
Jane Fordham pointed out to me the other day that it is the books that make libraries quiet. A complete self fulfilling physical effect. You need quiet in order to read. If you have enough books they create a physical equivalent of an anechoic chamber, i.e. multiple non reflective surfaces that are also insulating. Think of all those remainder books that get pulped that could be used to build quiet places....