Archive for the ‘design charettes’ Category

actually playing the beach

Cheryl E. Leonard and Ann Dentel were out at Middle Harbor conducting sound experiments for the new site-specific work Shallow Tide (in collaboration with Rebecca Haseltine).

listeningtodriftwoodYet the Park staff is beginning not to call it a beach anymore, lest the public seek it out for conventional use. Many stories about sinking up to the knees while walking at low tide. It will take another couple years for the surface (created from dredging of Inner Harbor) to settle.

This may be the physical reason behind the phenomenon Cheryl described: sound is carrying great distances in the sand of Middle Harbor coves, something she just didn’t expect to find.

west oakland to the world


hugh livingston and his parabolic mic

Eight artists out at Middle Harbor today, a shimmering greyscale wind racing in our faces, steering the conversation to wind-based / wind-resistant art. With the Exploratorium launching its outdoor installations this week, we talked of interactive art that could deepen park visitors’ understanding of the natural and built worlds at Middle Harbor. And on the dancing about architecture tip: iLAND.

Tara Reinertson, the park’s naturalist, gave a free talk on the workings and history of the container shipping operation that surrounds the park, complete with a crash course in trade economics. We studied the Panamax cranes as they unloaded a ship from the Wan Hai lines, drawing the attention of a dock boss who glided over in a pick-up to confirm our good intentions through the chain-link fence.

Some more ideas for The Big Book of Creative Things To Do In Middle Harbor Shoreline Park:

  • Cinema Shuttle from West Oakland BART to Middle Harbor for the free, outdoor Bruce Lee Film Festival (piece of cake for Oaklandish!)
  • Giant game of Four Square in Teletubby Valley
  • Security Camera Inversion with dozens of mounted projectors shining imagery that makes us feel very much at ease. Pretty flowers. A bear hug. And for me: a big box of Cap’n Crunch.

charette | music[more than] in middle harbor

photo by michael zelnerTen folks out at Middle Harbor this morning, including Dyemark and his singing / seeing kite, filmmaker Alfonso Alvarez doing timelapse documentation of the west bay view, and a collection of artist and thinkers walking around the Port Arnold and Western Pacific Mole. Although I asked some leading questions about how sound art could integrate into MH’s landscape the discussion ranged over rich territory: aeolian structures, environmental justice, habitat restoration, shorebird sightings, UC geographer Dick Walker’s The Country in the City, and how crazy it feels to be up on one of those big cranes.

photo by michael zelnerSome ideas for The Big Book of Creative Things To Do In Middle Harbor Shoreline Park:

  • Have sfSound hold their Tape Music Festival in Teletubby Valley (an affectionate name for the oval green centered on the footprint of the former naval supply depot)
  • Podcasted sonic tours composed by local artists and oral history projects featuring MH’s dedicated park personnel, a wellspring of stories, expertise and love of the natural world.
  • Pedal power installations to deliver electricity to ad hoc performances

What else?

Photodocumentation pending on flickr. Try the tag “middle harbor


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