Art

Hacker Musician Turns E-Waste Into an Awesome Instrument

Read the full story in Wired.

We tend to think of musical instruments in fixed terms: that’s a guitar, this is a saxophone, that’s a synthesizer. Colten Jackson, however, plays an instrument that’s hard to classify. The Illinois musician hacked together what he calls the Hard Rock Guitar out of e-waste: six obsolete hard drives, and an old keyboard number pad, powered by an Arduino board. At Jackson’s command, it emits a range of synthy, ambient tones. If he wants to change the notes or scales, he need only tinker with the software. “Instruments are this free-form art; they just have to make sound,” he says. “Whatever you start with, whether it’s garbage or e-waste, it lends itself to something.”

Old Farm Equipment And Scrap Metal Turned Into Stunning Sculptures

See all of the images (they’re incredibly beautiful) at Bored Panda.

South Dakotan sculptor John Lopez creates life-sized scrap metal sculptures with a uniquely Western American twist. In his hands, old discarded farm equipment is recycled into sculptures of iconic creatures from the American West like a bison, a horse plowing a field, or a Texas Longhorn.

Lopez already had a career as a bronze sculptor, but after creating a family grave for his deceased aunt using scrap metal, he began creating recycled metal sculptures out of found or donated pieces of metal as well.

My favorite part about these pieces is the texture,” explains Lopez. “I just start grabbin’ stuff from the pile and welding it, in and if you weld enough of the same thing on over and over it creates this really cool texture that I’ve never seen in these kinds of pieces before. And I think that’s what draws people in.

Welded scrap metal sculpture of a horse by John Lopez

Welded scrap metal sculpture by John Lopez

Call for Papers: Ecomusicologies 2014: Dialogues

Call for Papers
 
 
4-5 October 2014
University of North Carolina at Asheville (USA)
 
Deadline for proposals: 14 May 2014
Ecomusicologies 2014: Dialogues will bring together artists and scholars to stimulate discussion on music, culture, and the environment. The conference is part of the multi-day event series, “Ecomusics” (3-7 October 2014), which will include concerts, soundwalks, workshops, and outings (e.g., field trips to the Moog Factory, Black Mountain College, and Great Smoky Mountains National Park). Not only do the fall colors of October in the Appalachian Mountains make Asheville, North Carolina, an ideal place to be, but its history also makes it an ideal gathering spot for a conference on ecomusicology: it is where Bartok composed his Piano Concerto No. 3, where John Cage conducted happenings, and where Buckminster Fuller created his geodesic dome. If you would like to participate in the conference but would prefer not to travel for environmental or other reasons, you will have the option to participate as presenter or audience member via the Internet.
The conference theme, “Dialogues”, aims to foster common ground, where participants representing diverse backgrounds (academic, artistic, industry, non-profit, et al.) can learn about and exchange ideas on ecomusics. In addition to general ecomusicology topics, the conference committee encourages submissions that respond, but are not limited, to the following topic fields:
  • Musical collaboration (in, for, or with the environment)
  • Improvisation (human and non-human)
  • The music industry
  • The sound of “green”
  • Acoustic ecology
  • Ecopoetics and sound
  • Race, class, gender
  • Sustainability
  • Musician/academic-as-activist
Scholars from any academic field are invited to submit proposals to present in a variety of formats, including:
  • Panels (3 to 5 participants, 30-90 minutes),
  • Papers (20 or 30 minutes),
  • Posters (electronic or paper format), and
  • Alternative formats (performance, film, installation, lecture demonstration, etc.).
An author may submit up to two proposals (on related or separate topics).

More info is available at: http://www.ecomusicologies.org/

 

Corporate sustainability messaging isn’t working – it’s time to look to the arts

Read the full story in The Guardian.

Interest in art as a tool for environmental engagement is growing at pace, as groups such as Tipping Point, Cape Farewell and the Case for Optimism testify. But are the arts really the best way to connect everyday people with the big environmental challenges of the day?

10 Awesome Instagram Accounts That Science Geeks Should Follow

Read the full story at ReadWrite.com.

Instagram is many things to many people—but if cat pics and selfie-fests are clogging up your feed, it might be time to refresh your following list. Instagram is an amazing way to stay connected to friends and family, but it’s also a great way to learn something entirely unexpected while you’re killing time at the bus stop. Happily, plenty of awesome scientific research teams, agencies and organizations have mastered the art of Instagram to do just that.

Sprinkle a few of these awesome Instagram accounts into your feed and you’ll probably even learn something while you’re at it.