A cryptic club music pumping army of artist use shipping containers as a part of their building code DNA. I know, what? That is what I was thinking as I cruised the blog.platoon.org site. What I can gather from all the cryptic blog post and videos, is that this organization (Platoon), loves Shipping Containers, Military Clothing, Art and yes, having parties. To expand their parting capabilities they hooked up with Graft Lab Architects to design and build a new four story disco / art gallery out of their beloved shipping containers, in Seoul, Korea. The video above shows the building coming together and after the jump, a video of their original 3 container building. I love these guys. I think I may even start my own Platoon of G Container Heads.
When I was in my early twenties, I live in a small village in England called Fairford. Life in the English country side was a magical experience for me. You see, I grew up in the dry boring suburbs of San Antonio Texas. One generic stick box house after the next. My life completely revolving around the maze of hot asphalt roads and shopping malls, which make up the typical American town. England was the ancient place of tiny roads, forest, small village centers and filled with people who actually walked place to place. I think my time in England shaped my love and desire to be a gardener. You see England is a country of gardeners. They have a very strong proud tradition of gardening and nothing screams that more, than the completely amazing Eden Project.
The Eden Project, in Cornwall England, is a celebration of growing things. Here is the official spill: The Eden Project is an unforgettable experience in a breathtaking location; a global garden; a place of beauty and wonder. Our world famous architecture and art draws inspiration from nature, our educational work is about creating a positive future in a world that is going to go through radical change, and we try to ensure everyone who visits Eden leaves knowing something more about their connection to the world. That’s the big stuff…Eden is also about simple pleasures; enjoying tasty food, rediscovering what puts the great into the great outdoors, imaginative play for children, taking time to stop and smell the flowers, having a good time.
The world of green fashion designers is still a pretty small one. It’s almost shockingly small, after 30 years of pushing this green fashion rock up this hill. What went wrong? By now I would have thought there would be millions of little Paris Hiltons demanding closets full of organic fairtrade clothing. But, that fantasy world just hasn’t materialized yet. No, the world is still full of twiggy women with a lust for the old faithfuls. Dead this, dead that and oh yes, lots and lots of chemically grown cotton please.
If we have any chance of turning the beastly giant fashion vessel around, it truly lies in the hands of the designers we are featuring here on G Living. These brave designers, with big hearts, wild imaginations and un-ending courage. Designs such as Meiling Chen, who is our feature designer of the week.
Meiling Chen, calls herself the Fearless Dreamer. And one look at her fashion collection, you can understand why. Meiling caught the fashion bug from watching her father transform traditional suits and shirts into the latest contemporary styles. This re-imagining what already existed, must have had some impact on her own green fashion ideas. Her fashion creativity has gotten her noticed by some of the big names of mainstream fashion, such as Italian Vogue, Bazaar, and others.
We caught up with Meiling via email and she was nice enough to answer a few of our questions.
Julia: How did you choose to become a designer and how did you start your career? Why G/Fashion?
Meiling: I love to draw since I was little and had my heart set in the creative field since then. My schooling has always been in the fine arts, sculpture, visual communication design (graphic design) and fashion design. I walk into the path naturally. Also, my father used to be a tailor, I was growing up immersed in the surrounding. I live in a green lifestyle and I love nature.
Ever wonder what you could do to make a difference in the world? Hopefully we’ve all asked ourselves this question and have taken action in our own way. If your name is Paul Watson, you may have decided to dedicate your life to saving marine life by whatever means necessary –- including flying your own brand of the Jolly Roger at the head of your own “navy”, ramming whaling ships, and chasing illegal fishermen. But you might have also looked into the eye of a dying sperm whale during one of Greenpeace’s first anti-whaling expeditions and had a revelation peculiar to few terrestrial-bound “hominids,” coming to know that humans don’t have a monopoly on understanding and conscience.
So, who is Paul Watson? By his own immodest account, he’s the only true protector of marine life, policing marine sanctuaries across the globe with his rag-tag band of ships known as Neptune’s Navy, occasionally getting into a scuffle or two, and pulling miles of illegal fishing nets out of the water. A recent article in New Yorker magazine profiles the “Captain” of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and his resume reads as an impressive mix of 1960s anti-establishment hippie and full-scale environmental activist.
In the world of Architecture, choosing to build your career and business on the leading fringe edge is a dangerous choice. Leaving the safety of the pack, just like in nature, might just prove to be unwise. So, when an Architect hangs out his shingle and declares, I will build my homes on a factory floor, he or she might just be committing business suicide. A few architecture firms over the last five years have done exactly that. They defined their business around a new way to be smarter, modern luxury custom homes, sustainably and most of all green. Predictably most of these companies have either failed already or are on the ropes. Higher start up cost, and the small pool of buyers is mostly to blame. This is why, when a company emerges successfully out of the start up phase and into full production, they definitely deserve a closer look.
One such company which has emerged out of the woods and seems to be on the road to success is Flatpak House, founded by Charles Lazor. Charles entered into the prefab housing market with a little more knowledge than most, since he is also a co-founder of Blu Dot, a flatpack modern furniture business. His approach to green prefab building is a little different than most of the other Architects as well. Instead of building the entire house in a factory, such as LivingHomes, and Office of Mobile Design, has done, he decided to build only the key components of the building. Using these components, the new home buyer could pick and choose which ones to use, like a giant lego set, to make their home. This flexibility is why Lazor calls his house “manufactured architecture” rather than prefab. (Also, like any good designer, he knows that naming, packaging, and marketing are essential to the success of a product.) “This way of designing is all about finding an answer to a problem,” he says, “rather than expressing the will of an architect. It’s the opposite of the individual genius model.”
G Living’s Brendan Brazier is one the world’s few professional athletes whose diet is 100 percent plant based. He’s a professional Ironman triathlete, bestselling author on performance nutrition, and the creator of an award-winning line of whole food nutritional products called Vega.
The following is our second excerpt from Brendan’s new book “The Thrive Diet”, on sale now in Canada and and in the U.S. in January.
Whole Foods For Complete Nourishment The healthiest way to meet nutritional needs is to simply eat a diet rich in whole foods. Food-sourced vitamins and minerals are superior to their laboratory-created counterparts. As I noted earlier, many calcium supplements are derived from nonfood sources — oyster shells, bovine bone meal, or dolomite — none of which the body is able to use efficiently. Again, the more work the body must do to assimilate nutrients, the less usable energy it will be left with. Salt is another illustration of this. Salt derived from the earth or the sea is often added to food during processing; salt is rarely consumed in its alternative form — plants. Yet, that is a much better way to get sodium in your diet: Let the plant draw and assimilate it and other minerals from the soil or sea, doing most of the work for you. My favorite source of sodium is raw dulse. A sea vegetable, dulse is exceptionally healthy, offering a plethora of minerals that help prolong hydration and therefore endurance.
This is pretty cool basic idea for anyone in need of hot water without all the expense. The product caught my eye because there are so many situations you might need something light enough to use as a temporary solution but the camping hot water bags wont cut it. I am thinking about when we buy our land outside of Portland, something like this would be cool during construction.
Think about how we use hot water everyday to take showers, to do laundry and even to cook our food. Now add up all the cost to make that happen. Over a period of 10 years, you are paying thousands of dollars in energy cost and the up front cost for the system in your house. Now what if you could replace it all for under $150 and carry it in your backpack. Well, that is exactly what this product from SolarStore can do.
Constructed of a heavy duty polymer, the patent pending Solarstore is both robust and flexible, and can be used in a variety of different settings. When deflated, it is small enough to pack into a rucksack, yet can inflate to nearly 2 square meters for maximum solar energy absorption. Used primarily for domestic outdoor applications, solarstore can provide up to 3 full tanks per day attemperatures nearing 80 degrees celcius. This is the equivalent of enough water to wash a car 18 times over, at a temperature hotter than most domestic hot water systems.
I had to post this Nova show. I love birds and had no idea, they are actually living dinosaurs. In The Four-Winged Dinosaur, NOVA investigates the most bizarre of these feathered dinosaurs, which has rekindled a fierce, decades-long debate over the origin of bird flight.
The origin of birds has been a contentious topic within evolutionary biology for many years, but more recently a scientific consensus has emerged which holds that birds are a group of theropod dinosaurs that evolved during the Mesozoic Era. A close relationship between birds and dinosaurs was first proposed in the nineteenth century after the discovery of the primitive bird Archaeopteryx in Germany and has been all but confirmed since the 1960s by comparative anatomy and the cladistic method of analyzing evolutionary relationships. The ongoing discovery of feathered dinosaur fossils in the Liaoning Province of China has shed new light on the subject for both specialists and the general public. In the phylogenetic sense, birds are dinosaurs. Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
Looking to the past to find the future. Daimler has unveiled the F-CELL Roadster, the latest in their line of “F-Series” concept vehicles (past Mercedes research models can be seen here), and as you’ll see, it draws its inspiration from a diverse variety of automotive eras. From a functional standpoint, it’s a roadster fitted with a 1.2 kW hybrid drive – one that allows the F-CELL to reach a top speed of 15 mph and achieve an operating range of 217 miles. From a design standpoint, however, is where the F-CELL Roadster truly shines, as it manages to blend the overall aura of the original Benz patent motor car with seating and a fiberglass front section both drawn from elements of Formula One racing.
As for who was responsible for creating the unique F-CELL Roadster, that honor goes to the trainees of of Daimler AG at the Sindelfingen plant, with more than 150 trainees and dual education system students working for about a year on the overall concept, development, assembly, and completion of the hybrid model. According to Human Resources Board member and Labor Relations Manager Günther Fleig: “This project impressively demonstrates that the topic of sustainable mobility has become an integral part of our vocational training. I am delighted to see how much initiative and creativity the young people have put into this project.”
In this five part video interview on CNN, Carl Sagan talks with Ted Turner about Global Warming, CO2 gas and the insane idea of nuclear war. He quickly illustrates how just a few hundred nuclear weapons would create a nuclear winter, which would not only destroy the nation on the receiving end of the bombs, but also the nation who launched them. All of this makes me think about how short term greed by the small number of people at the top, effects us all. Instead of using our minds and abilities to build a green future, we waste our time thinking of new ways to destroy the only planet we can call home.
For me, this video makes me reflect on the current focus of the green movement. Yes, organic food and cool modern green homes are important steps to a green future. But if we continue to turn a blind eye to the massive waste of human capital, money and resources in the pursuit of war, we won’t have a planet left, let alone a green one. (4 more videos after the jump)
In my quest for truly luxurious, fabulous & sustainable life, fashion plays an important role. I’ve long been a fan and a customer of Kayce Armstrong’s Art of Shade fashion label. I first came across Kayce and her amazing fashions as I was walking along Lincoln Road in Miami Beach one Sunday afternoon in 2003. Her clothes were gorgeous and like nothing I’d ever seen. You see, Kayce makes her dresses from totally recycled materials.
One dress I fell hopelessly in love with was made out of an antique electric blanket. You could see the tracks running across the fabric from where the cables used to be-and it was stunning. She makes wondrous creations from old tablecloths and stuffy old dresses and almost anything you can imagine.
All the Monkies here at G Living would like to welcome Inaia, one of our newest free roaming, globe trotting, green juice guzzling, “G” Living, Monkie Contributing Authors.
My name is Inaia and I consider myself a raw vegan, jet-setting, fashion-loving, jazz singer & house music DJ. My first full-fledged dive into raw food was while I was in Tokyo doing a 6-month singing contract at a 5-star hotel. I’d been vegetarian or vegan for the previous 20 years. I had experimented with raw food in varying percentages while living in Miami Beach and Paris for a couple years and had been reading about the diet, listening to podcasts, visiting websites, reading books and doing my research on it.
I had finally gotten to the point where the only thing left to do was dive in and see what effect a completely raw vegan diet would actually have on me, my health, my singing and my appearance. So I dove in.