Monthly Archives: February 2013

Beautiful Little Box: The Clyfford Still Museum

Clyfford Still Entry

Right next door to  the Denver Art Museum (DAM) is the Clyfford Still Museum. Architecturally, it is the exact opposite of the DAM. It is beautifully simple and shines in its use of clean lines and great materials (various woods and concretes).

Clyfford Still Exterior

The exterior of the building seems very plain and unassuming when compared to the neighboring explosion of pointed overhangs and curious angles. I would even say it borders on the ordinary.

Clyfford Still Stairs

Most museums of art feature an architectural detail that allows soft, natural light to indirectly enter the building. This building is no exception. The ceiling of the second floor is a slab of concrete that is cast with holes puncturing its surface that cleverly diffuse light from the skylights above.

Ceiling Detail

Doorway

Clyfford Still interior

As with most art museums, I spent little time enjoying the art and mostly admired the building itself: Staring at ceilings, rubbing-up on walls, and photographing even the most uninteresting corridor. 

Enjoying Clyfford Still Museum

(^^Thanks to my cousin for serving as the Clyfford Still Museum’s unofficial official model^^)

If you live in Colorado, GO SEE THIS BUILDING. It is beautiful.

And if you’re visiting, go to the DAM’s gift shop for free, and spend your money to see the Clyfford Still Museum instead.

colorado photos

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Urgent Colorado Trip

An emergency trip home has kept me from posting anything of interest as I have no access to my favorite computer programs. But, the trip is ending soon and has proven fruitful in terms of things to blog about. I’ll be sure to post pictures and such soon, but until then, please enjoy this doodle of my childhood home:

CO home Sketch

I’m trying to learn how to use my Wacom tablet, so this was just some practice.

Design Work

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On the Nightstand, 008: A Field Guide to Sprawl

A Field Guide to Sprawl

“Sprawl is politically unfair as well as environmentally unsustainable and fiscally shortsighted.”

-Dolores Hayden

A Field Guide to Sprawl

LULU, Valhala, Litter on a Stick, TOAD, and Boomburb are words that describe patterns present in modern suburbia. They are negative connotations associated with present situations in the fields of architecture, landscape, and planning and are, for the most part, unknown to the the average human being. 

We all spend the majority of our lives (and our money) surrounded by environments that we take as ordinary, but are in reality far from it. Things like interstate highways, car dependency, big box retail surrounded by impervious asphalt, and even drive-thrus are all aspects of everyday life that are detrimental to the growth and longevity of society. Perhaps worse than the existence of such things is the ignorance associated with it.

I can’t sit on my high-horse or preach from my soap box because I must admit that I was unaware of the majority of the issues this book covers. It opens with a brief history of American expansion and then shares a collection of vocabulary and aerial photographs that describe social, economic, architectural, and cultural aspects of sprawl. Needless to say, the first step towards recovery is admitting you have a problem. This book provides images and vocabulary that can be used to identify the issues.

Verdict: Get this book.

It may be that, being a product of suburbia, this book happens to resonate with me personally which skews my opinion. I am very sad to admit that about half of the example images used in the publication were captured from the skies over Colorado. Other significant portions were taken from over California and Texas. My point being that I’ve seen and experienced first hand the effects of sprawl and, though they weren’t necessarily harmful places for me to live, are in the long run incredibly wasteful and selfish in terms of preservation for future generations. 

Put plainly: I am passionate about this topic and think that more people should be aware of sprawl related issues.

On the nightstand

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