Archive for February 2013

The view from the top of the Shard: London panorama of sights and sounds – interactive | Art and design |   Leave a comment

“The view from the top of the Shard: London panorama of sights and sounds – interactive

To mark the opening of the Shard, we’ve produced a 360-degree, augmented-reality panorama of London’s newest view, from the building’s public observation deck.

Read Antony Gormley, Tony Benn, Diana Athill and other famous Londoners on their favourite places, find the capital’s landmarks, listen in to the sounds of the city and gain a new perspective from the viewing platform of the EU’s tallest building.”

AN: Superb sights from the heights of the Shard !

via The view from the top of the Shard: London panorama of sights and sounds – interactive | Art and design |

Posted February 28, 2013 by arnoneumann in London, Panorama, Shard

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Street Artist MEGX creates LEGO Bridge on Abandoned Railway | Urban Ghosts |   Leave a comment

“The Wuppertal Northern Railway in Germany retired from its original function in the late 1990s and the ‘Nordtrasse’ was officially reopened as a cycle and pedestrian path in June 2010. The ten mile route is maintained by the Wuppertal Bewegung Association e.V., an Eingetrangener Verein or registered charity, that continues to look for exciting ways to use the space (which is sensible considering the success of New York’s High Line). Enter street artist MEGX.

As part of the redevelopment, Martin Heowold (MEGX) transformed 250 square meters of grey concrete into several giant toy bricks. MEGX is a street artist with a real interest in projects that can help people to perceive their surroundings more positively. In this case, paint has proved to be a relatively cheap way to transform a dull bridge into a talking point…..”

AN : do look up the reference article and see the before and after pictures. Public Art can be constructive and transformational !

via Street Artist MEGX creates LEGO Bridge on Abandoned Railway | Urban Ghosts |.

Posted February 14, 2013 by arnoneumann in art, Arts & Culture, Public Art

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Mathemusician Vi Hart Explains Space-Time with a Music Box and a Möbius Strip | Brain Pickings   Leave a comment

Mathemusician Vi Hart Explains Space-Time with a Music Box and a Möbius Strip

by Maria Popova

“The fabric of the universe via backwards Bach.

If mathemusician Vi Hart — who for the past three years has been bringing whimsy to math with her mind-bending, playful, and illuminating stop-motion musical doodles — isn’t already your hero, she should be, and likely will be. (Cue in the GRAMMYs newly announced search for great music teachers.) In her latest gem, Hart uses music notation, a Möbius strip, and backwards Bach to explain space-time:

Music has two recognizable dimensions — one is time, and the other is pitch-space. … There [are] a few things to notice about written music: Firstly, that it is not music — you can’t listen to this. … It’s not music — it’s music notation, and you can only interpret it into the beautiful music it represents.

Also see Hart on the science of sound, frequency and pitch, and her blend of Victorian literature and higher mathematics to explain multiple dimensions.

For a decidedly less whimsical but enormously illuminating deeper dive, see these 7 essential books on time and watch Michio Kaku’s BBC documentary on the subject, then learn how to listen to music.”

via Mathemusician Vi Hart Explains Space-Time with a Music Box and a Möbius Strip | Brain Pickings.

AN : Just as the author , Maria Popova , writes of mathemusician Vi Hart  : “If mathemusician Vi Hart — ….- isn’t already your hero, she should be, and likely will . “….so you would be enamoured with the effervesent writings and curations of Maria through her site “ ” . Absolutely a gem  of ideas, innovation and thought leadership !

Posted February 11, 2013 by arnoneumann in Mathamatics, music

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New technology is changing classical music performance   1 comment

“It sometimes seems as though the world of classical music doesn’t change. Most of the music is from a canon that may be hundreds of years old; most of the time the musicians are still formally clad, the men in the evening dress of a century ago.

In one important area, however, new ways of doing things are starting to appear. Technology is changing the ways in which musicians rehearse and perform.

Pianist Kirill Gerstein sparked intermission discussions late last year when he performed Thomas Adès concerto “Seven Days” with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra using an iPad with a wireless foot pedal in lieu of a conventional score.

In an interview, Gerstein said he’s been using his iPad for 2½ years, the first, he thinks, among classical pianists. He uses it with contemporary music, where memorization is not expected, and in chamber music.

The tablet has practical advantages: It is lit, making reading it easier and eliminating concerns about lighting. It also eliminates the need for page turners. “They may turn the page too soon or too late, or make noise,” Gerstein said. “In cases like this, it is helpful to play with the iPad. I know exactly when I want to turn, and I turn it for myself.” His system has never crashed.

To do the turning, Gerstein uses a Bluetooth-enabled foot pedal called an AirTurn. He gets new scores from their publishers, or makes PDFs of older music by scanning scores from his own library.

In the case of out-of-copyright works, he recommends The International Music Score Library Project is community-sourced, like Wikipedia, and Gerstein calls it “an amazing resource.”

The site is copyright compliant, so there’s nothing from after 1923, and it’s free. “There are the most imaginable and unimaginable things,” Gerstein said. “Maybe you won’t find the edition of the Franck sonata from 1980, but you will find the original (edition) and four others. Things that used to be difficult to find are up there.”

Otherwise, Gerstein works from paper versions. “I do think it’s very important to keep buying paper versions of sheet music. We do want publishers of accurate versions around.”

With the iPad, he can tweak his scores by combining the piano part and a full orchestra score to give himself important cues. Sometimes he plays from the full score. By eliminating the white space of the margins, the notes become almost as large as in the printed score.

“Then, of course, there is the fact that I can carry a music library,” added Gerstein. “I can look at (scores) while traveling. It’s not possible with paper, just from the luggage side. Today, I decided to read the Franck sonata; it took a minute to download the score, and then I was happily playing it.”

St. Louis Symphony Orchestra section cello Bjorn Ranheim admires Gerstein’s score-on-tablet setup and wishes the SLSO could have the same.

via New technology is changing classical music performance : Entertainment.

AN : classical music meets new classic technology…and is all the better for it. Nice examples of how that works in the lives of several musicians and groups.

Posted February 10, 2013 by arnoneumann in music, Technology

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Andre Cassagnes and the Etch A Sketch: Unshakable memories | The Economist   Leave a comment

……. “And it turns out it is indeed possible to make something resembling art on an Etch A Sketch. Mr Cassagnes’s death has thrown a light on those foolhardy few who didn’t throw away their toys in frustration. George Vlosich, an Ohio-based artist, has been creating professional work on the toy for years. His highly detailed pieces are astounding works of craftsmanship and patience, not least because even small errors in simple drawings cannot be fixed on an Etch A Sketch, and a simple shake of the toy wipes the whole slate clean.

Mr Vlosich is quick to list the challenges of his chosen medium. “You can’t exactly pick up your stylus and start somewhere else on the screen,” he says. And works on an Etch A Sketch are missing lighter tones; darker tones are achieved by retracing the same line over and over again, but “there’s only so dark you can go”.

When one of Mr Vlosich’s works is completed, it is often after 150 hours or more of hard graft—and some careful planning about how he will twist the two white knobs to wind his path over the easel. Still, he likes the restrictions of the medium. “It’s a challenge,” he says, “and it’s kind of cool to overcome the restrictions.”

Though some may see the easel as nothing more than a toy, serious collectors pay upwards of $10,000 for intricate drawings that push the strict limits of this strangely memorable toy. (To prevent the rough handling of the postal system from shaking away their hard work, professional Etch A Sketch artists will unhinge the back of the toy and remove any excess aluminium powder before dispatching their work.) Despite the limitations of the medium, Etch A Sketch art has an emotional resonance, expressing the struggle of taming a toy that touched 100m childhoods.”

AN : indeed, few will not have at least some familiarity with the Etch A Sketch toy…..but very, very few would have toiled with the toy as  described in the link with such wonderful results !

via Andre Cassagnes and the Etch A Sketch: Unshakable memories | The Economist.

Posted February 10, 2013 by arnoneumann in art

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BBC News – In pictures: Building sites reveal unseen London   Leave a comment


AN : the Old mixes with the Eemrging and the New….a series of photos of various development projects that, for a time, expose sights that are not normally seen because of the height and proximity of buildings in London… do browse through the series of photos in the site….BBC News – In pictures: Building sites reveal unseen London.

Posted February 9, 2013 by arnoneumann in architecture, Buildings, London

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