Friday, January 30, 2009

Floating Pool Photos on UrbanOmnibus

Moon and sky through roof
Moon and sky view through the roof of the Floating Pool 

I had the pleasure of shooting for an HD documentary a couple years ago, produced by Doug Cabot, about a unique project, the Floating Pool.

The documentary follows the conversion of an old barge in Louisiana into a floating pool to serve the residents of the New York City area during the summer months.  

Imagine being able to swim "in" the East River with the skyline of Manhattan as a backdrop.  Well now you can!  Find out where the Floating Pool Lady will be docked next summer and plan a visit. (PS-it's free!)

Aerial view
The Floating Pool under construction in Louisiana

In the course of spending time with the project, in Louisiana and New York, I also took some still photos.  Some of these and others are being featured as part of a slideshow and article on the Floating Pool on the just-launched website, UrbanOmnibus.  

UrbanOmnibus is a project of the Architectural League of New York and hopes to highlight interesting projects and create conversation about design and the future of sustainable architecture in New York City.

The Urban Omnibus interview with Pool architect Jonathan Kirschenfeld features a slideshow with images of the pool at various stages of planning and construction.  I've also added more of my photos to a set on my Flickr, if you're interested.

Believe it or not, the floating pool is not really a new idea.  New York city once had 15 of them a hundred or so years ago.  The Omnibus interview with Ann Buttenwieser, the person most responsible for the floating pool project, explains some of the history of the floating "baths" (as they were then called) as well as the torturous path the project took from when Ann first proposed it in 1980.

You can also listen to a WNYC produced conversation between Ann and Leonard Lopate below:

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Look Around You!

The highly amusing British send up of 1970's classroom instructional videos, Look Around You, has been my own personal best argument for the usefulness of YouTube, being that Yanks like me couldn't have basked in its gentle genius without it.

Now, the BBC produced parody series has been picked up by the Cartoon Network to air beginning January 18th as part of its Adult Swim block.

The series is Moog synthesizer-note perfect--as anyone who went to school in the 70's or 80's can attest, with little scientific absurdities building upon themselves throughout the instructional "modules" while the spirit of Monty Python hangs over the proceedings like a benevolent ectoplasmic fog.