This is gonna cost me an arm and a leg!

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I’ve started to experiment in collage the spatial qualities that I can get by using the models that I made earlier. The tests suggests certain spatial elements at play but I am still not satisfied with the spatial quality produced. At the same time I think I would need to work on the programmatic ideas of these spaces as well. I am going to do more models this week and then test with another round of collages to see if they can clearly translate across. The scale in these collages already start to address the different dimensions of the balloons in relation to spaces along the route. I think I can push this further to suggest a more drastic difference in scale. I like the reference on Ana Rewakowicz; she tested various programmatic functions within the installations and also the performative element is really interesting to consider for my project. I stumbled upon this article on graveyard spaces in China ( ) and what interested me the most is the shift of space dimensions for these death spaces. I particularly like the image at the end of the article where a guy is pushing a trolley that has the ashes of the deceased. It gave me an idea on how the spaces of the shrines could change.

I also found this article interesting in promoting death positivity and hope I can achieve the sense of play in my project like this event ( I am finding it a bit difficult to relate the material language of the models and the change of the extended route to the calendar. I am not sure how to detail this out in the calendar just yet but am trying to work out a sample for next Tuesday.

3 thoughts on “This is gonna cost me an arm and a leg!

  1. Love the collages! The last one makes me think of those trompe l’oeil drawings you see made by street artists that produce the illusion of a three dimensional space flattened (or deflated?) onto the two-dimensional plane of the street surface.
    Reading about the clown funeral it has a similar kind of feel to the cartoons of Heath Robinson. What if his absurdist programmes were re-imagined with the kind of technologies you’ve been looking at… The way he draws his people as well (Peter Salter too) have the feel of having been inflated with a bicycle pump, all bulbous and distended and full of air.

  2. I too think the collages are really suggestive, its as if the balloons were buried beneath New York (perhaps rising from the dead). I was reminded of this painting by Stanley Spencer which imagines souls ascending to heaven from a churchyard in his home town. (a terrible reproduction unfortunately and it is cropped, here at least is the whole thing
    Despite the alarming or profound subject there is something about the image that is just so … everyday, suburban.

    Can the potential for the balloons to be occupied be pushed to answer existing programmatic needs in Manhattan? To rapidly respond to need, or perhaps as temporary solutions where new building is awaiting or has been halted? In this way Manhattan might consume the bodies of the parade to nourish its needs. This is suggested by your collages which as you say are a great exercise to understand the balloons at the existing architectural and urban scale and the MMW project that Manijeh posted earlier

    A shortage of spaces to house the dead is a crisis across many countries, as you found in the article about China, giving rise to solutions such as highrise cemeteries (which you can google) and of course Aldo Rossi’s San Cataldo Cemetery
    In the balloon’s potential to occupy no ground space does it offer a solution?

    Altering the way we culturally respond to death has been taken up as a design challenge, in designing a ‘better death’, but the work being done in this area relates largely to the experience of end of life care This longform article considers the taboos around preparing for death and lack of choice in how a person might live the end of their life in the west a I mention these in response to your interest in promoting death positively, how is that achieved? By making it more visible, talked about, offering more choice about how to spend final days? Or is it something suggested by the clown funeral, an altering of the traditions and symbolism, which is perhaps what your project is suggesting?

    To progress, maybe take some dates or occasions from your calendar and start to build a story of a related shrine and spatial condition. For example, where would a shrine for inflation day be and how would this occupy the existing space? Would it puff out constrained by surrounding buildings or command a large ceremonial space in the city, empty throughout the other days of the year? Work through several scenarios, these could be conceptual collages to begin with.

    The material experiments and scale collages have really brought the project on from the analysis and on to the designing, looking forward to seeing how you push these on for Tuesday!

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