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Australian Design Updates

+ Australian architects the Cox Group and engineers Arup, combining with Singapore based Architects 61 has been appointed to design and build the world’s first double helix structure bridge at Marina Bay, Singapore

+ Since I’m out there looking for work at the moment I must add this latest from we make money not art. The competition out there is fierce so get your weapons out – it’s all in self defence and part of ISEA 2006.

+ Dutch connections are being celebrated in Australia with performances at the Opera House. The Dutch are seen as key observers of the new and Brian Parkes, director of Object Gallery comments he was taken aback by the vibrancy of the arts and design scene he saw in Holland, including recent work by graduates of the Design Academy Eindhoven. I hope this kind of talk means we’ll get Hella Jongerius out to Australia for our design festival – but more on that later (I have some inside news on this).

+ CAP-XX Inc, a manufacturer of supercapacitors based in Sydney, Australia, has developed a drive architecture which combines high-power white LEDs with a supercapacitor and associated driver circuitry. What does this mean – you can now take images with your mobile phone in areas with low lighting. Read on to see how it’s done.

+ Perhaps someone can decipher if this is a current issue – I can’t locate a date on this issue however the intentions and objectives of ATOPOS are very interesting and they should gain some attention. Their website is under construction so I’m expecting they will have some projects up soon.

The Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum is about to take its Web site where no museum has gone before.

+ That got me interested. The museum is attempting a Curate-Your-Own-Museum project. It promises to open the museum and its collection to the world by turning its visitors into active participants. The traditional museum autocracy will have to accommodate democracy for this to come about.

Existing museum sites, including the Cooper-Hewitt’s, are mostly glossy brochures.

Perhaps coining it the Wikipedia of design culture is a good way of looking at it rather than the viewing it as a diminishing of the museum’s reputation. It would also be an interesting way of seeing what the audience is interested in rather than imposing taste upon the onlooker. It will be interested too see how curators respond to this project.

+ See also Mode who is posting interesting readers’ photographic views of museums around the world.

+ New York City dealer Cristina Grajales paid $186,000 (est. $100,000/150,000) for Marc Newson’s 1988 prototype Black Hole table, made of black carbon fiber. Via Maine Antique Digest

+ Again on Designer Marc Newson, he has fitted out a shoe store for Azzedine Alaia, set to open in April or May.


+ An Australian company has scored a major coup to manage the construction of a controversial memorial and museum at Ground Zero in New York. There is some protest about the possible damage or destruction to the foundations of the site and there is objection to the placement of the victims’ names below ground. Nevertheless, the sketch is quite amazing and to me expresses absence extremely, and almost too well. Let me say I am also having deja vu having had a dream of something incredibly similar in my childhood – the impact of this image has stayed with me for a long time. You can’t imagine how I felt when I saw this sketch. The only difference between my image and this one is that mine was not on land but in the sea, an almost unachievable version of this.

+ Saint Ouen, France – ALSTOM Transport and United Group Rail have announced a major initiative with Victorian universities, inviting industrial design students to develop futuristic designs for the Citadis tram which could serve the people of Melbourne in the year 2020.

Categories: Australian, Design, Ideas
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