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September 25, 2006

Social Design Issue...Nature Collides w/ Technology

The social design issue that came to my mind was nature, and it's relationship with people and the built environment. It often seems that people ignore the beauty and importance of nature. Nature is important to meople in many ways. It affects society greatly, in terms of health, attitude, overall happiness, and many other aspects of our well-being.

Nature is often over-looked. In city planning, it seems like nature is often left out. Either that, or it is misunderstood. If people do incorporate aspects of nature, such as plant life, in design, it is often neglected. Plants are greatly inferior to massived skyscrapers and city lights.

I wish designers could celebrate nature more. It would greatly benefit society. Rather than a massive curtain wall on the buildings like those that Bill Chilton showed us, why can't buildings respect nature. Bill's buildings are very impressive and grand, I admit it. But they overshadow the beauty of nature. They block the sunrise/sunset. They overpower any plant life, etc. Why can't buildings complement nature.

I think the perfect example of a building that complements nature is Frank Lloyd Wright's Falling Water. The building seems to grow out of the water. The patio doors upon up to frame the wilderness around the building. Why can't this be done in urban areas as well? People need to be more aware of nature, even in metro areas where they live fast-paced lives.

Even a bussinessperson that is in a rush to a board meeting should be able to walk past a beautiful row of quaking aspen. And when this business person gets into the conference meeting, they should be able to look the window at something living and real, rather than concrete and steel.

Buildings are wonderful. Steel is very impressive, but I wish it could fine harmony with plant material. Some architects are able to do it, but most ignore the necessity that all human beings share to be in touch with our roots in nature. Why can't these massive skysacrapers frame nature, rather than block it?

September 19, 2006

Energy at the Midtown Exchange

Energy. Energy is more than just a power plant. Energy may be displayed physically, but is nearly always sparked emotionally. It is a total release of something that has built up inside, whether positve or negative. The release of negative energy is probably one of the greatest feelings on earth!

The Midtown Exchange is full of energy. It is a curious energy. It is the energ of the unknown, and is driven by the desire for people to grow and learn about another culture. This is a positive energy. The Midyown Exchange is really an exchange of energy, which is usually positve. There will always be a negative energy from outsiders who simply don't understand. But good energy can overcome this barrier.