I came across this interesting extension of the “Guerilla Gardening” phenomenon. Any of us who live in NYC know its not always the ‘greenest’ place – at least when it comes to flora and fauna. Thats why I was intrigued by TODO Design’s proposal to take over New York City billboards and greenify them with living “air gardens”.
Billboards (contend Inhabitat) are “designed as monological messages aimed at a target audience zipping past in cars in a defined direction, such as a one way street. As the flip sides of the billboards are not designed to market to a pedestrian or community scaled audience, often appearing as blight on the landscape. Garden Spots proposes to exploit them to provide gardens in the sky, a place for nature to take root and to provide relief to the community”. (Interestingly, New York is also notable for its spectacular billboards aimed equally at a pedestrian audience).
I think it is an excellent idea to use billboards as a way of reducing a City’s carbon footprint and beautifying it at the same time. I have suggested green billboards to clients on several occasions (notably Planet Green) so far without success!
Apparently these air gardens are designed around self-sustaining technologies with photovoltaic panels powering the automated drip irrigation system fed from the base of the billboard towers. As such, the gardens will require limited management once established and can be monitored in clusters from a centralized location via wireless technology.
I just hope they use drought-resistant plants …
Post Scriptum: Actually this reminds me of Leo Burnett’s growing lettuce billboard promoting McDonald’s venture into fresh salad meals. Having just won Gold at New York Festivals’ Innovative Advertising Awards, the billboard was carefully constructed with a horticulturalist/landscape architect, allowing the lettuce buds to bloom over time, gradually filling up the sign with beautiful, edible leaves.
I sense I am somewhat late in the game, but the viral/ trailer for Goodbye To the Normals is excellent. 411,000 views on YouTube so far, and I received it on my Facebook wall (via google video) this morning.
A spot of light googling tells me that “Goodbye to the Normals” is a British short film, approximately 4 mins long, which follows a fictional story about a small boy running away from home. The film was originally broadcast in the UK by Channel 4. It is currently touring the film festival circuit, either on its own or as part of the British Council Festival Submission Scheme.
“Goodbye to the Normals” was commissioned by Robbie Williams and his management company, The In Good Company Ltd, as one of several short films commissioned to accompany the release of his latest album “Rudebox”.
I guess the fact that I came across this so late means I am part of the Long Tail?
Tidal TV, a startup trying to compete with Hulu and Joost launched in beta last week. TidalTV offers both branded entertainment and news from the likes of Vogue, Ford Models, Dow Jones and Sports Illustrated and regular TV shows from channels such as CBS, National Geographic, NBC News, and Food Network. Interestingly, its CEO, Mollie Spilman, stepped down a couple of days after launch, for reasons that are not entirely clear.
Its USP? The NewTeeVee blog has an interview with TidalTV’s CEO Scott Ferber where he opines “that Tidal TV’s edge over the competition is his track record in making money through advertising online, which he believes will help convince media companies to give the company their content”.
I don’t often write about politics on this blog, but a couple of articles in the UK press caught my eye. In an interview with the (London) Times at the outset of his trip to the UK, President Bush admitted “that his gun-slinging rhetoric made the world believe that he was a ‘guy really anxious for war’ in Iraq,” expressing “regret at the bitter divisions over the war.” The Times reported that Bush now aims “to leave his successor a legacy of international diplomacy for tackling Iran.”
Yet Bush’s attempt to heal old wounds seemed to fall on deaf ears.
The (London) Independent also issued a scathing editorial today reflecting on Bush’s visit and his presidency: “[P]erhaps Mr. Bush’s most significant legacy, as far as Britain is concerned, will be the destruction of the instinctive trust of America and its leaders that once prevailed here. It is no exaggeration to say that Mr. Bush has done more damage to relations between our two nations than any president in living memory. This rupture is not an accident of circumstance; there are no impersonal forces of history to blame. This sorry state of affairs is the consequence of the actions of a single leader and his small coterie of advisers. … And whatever the future holds for transatlantic relations, there will be very few in this country who watched President Bush’s plane depart yesterday without a feeling of profound relief that the end of this disastrous presidency is finally in sight.”