The Angel – About time album dropped this week, It’s a jam packed CD or Double CD if you grab yourself the deluxe edition of hits from Angel and also some of Britain’s finest Urban Chart toppers. The Album is the final piece in the puzzle of designing the look and feel for this up and coming UK artist Angel.
Stand-up comedian Russell Howard has announced a new world tour, Wonderbox, which will include four dates at the Royal Albert Hall and a whole host of national dates. We have been toiling away behind the scenes here at Fluid HQ to create the visual identity of the over all campaign for the Wonderbox tour. Being a comedy tour it was only natural for the approach in the art direction to have a quirky element of fun. We enlisted the Talents of celebrity photographer David Venni to photograph the shoot on the day. With the campaign wanted to keep a quirky fun element but at the same time give the campaign some of the arena tour bright lights and epicness it deserved.
The final printed and digital campaign will be popping up on billboards, newspapers and on websites nationally this week so keep an eye out for Russell Howard funny business.
While a great deal of time on Google Street view seems to be spent, by the vast majority of us, doing little more than visually retracing everywhere we’ve ever been and laughing at ignoble images of people caught unawares by the Street View cars (StreetViewFun.com, we’ve all been there…), the application can, on occasion, be used for something altogether more worthy.
When the tsunami and earthquake hit Namie, Japan in 2011, residents had to abandon the town which was home to a nuclear power plant as it became a radiation exclusion zone. Two years on, and after requests from the displaced residents to see the current state of their hometown, the town’s mayor has invited the Street View cars in to document worldwide the effect of this nuclear incident.
The results, images of abandoned and even disintegrated buildings in what is now a ghost town can be seen on Google Street View or at a dedicated site, Memories for the Future. A moving project indeed…
Fancy a Bioshock Blitzer with your Mario Kart? Or how about an Earthworm Gin with your Portal 2 co-op?
We’ve been made aware of a pretty exciting development: the imminent opening of a second café from the people of Loading. It’s a pop-up bar at the moment, but will be arriving permanently in London as of April this year.
What’s so special about a café you ask? Modeled on the gaming cafés of Tokyo, this bar, like its sister café in Cornwall, lets guests play games with their drinks. Just a glance at the lovingly created menu with its themed, character-based concoctions and it becomes clearly evident that these people really, genuinely love games.
Its always great to see someone’s idea become reality and it’s a worthy one, a project that will hopefully spread the number of people positive about the culture of gaming and for those who already are, a community space to hold events. Thanks to a successful Kickstarter project with loads of big name backing from people like Ubisoft, BioWare and Codemasters, gamers in Soho will soon have their very own space to indulge in a spot of community spirit. Find out more at their website.
Wonder if they have their sights set on the second city?
We love a good documentary here at Fluid, and when it comes to documentaries the more dedicated and absorbed the subject, or the more obscure the hobby or occupation the better.
Its in this vein that we present to you…Sign Painters, a brand new documentary chronicling the resurgence in hand painted signage in the USA. Though we’ve only watched the trailer, it looks a treat. The filmmakers wanted to explore the world of traditional sign painting as, in their words, “like many skilled trades, the sign industry has been overrun by the techno-fueled promise of quicker and cheaper” giving way to a “creeping sameness into our landscape”.
The brushstrokes and stories of over two dozen American sign painters are featured in the documentary, which you can learn more about here.
Those who remember the Arts Labs that sprung up around the country in the late 60s, and those with memories of the Birmingham Arts Lab in particular, will be interested to know that as part of the Flatpack Festival a set of dates will focus on a homage to the period in the form of documentary films, audio interviews and memorabilia.
The Birmingham outfit is an interesting case as it was able to carry on throughout the decade when many other Arts Labs across the country fizzled out, and in a large part this is attributable to its strong film programme, which arguably subsidised the music, visual and theatre output. Its key players in film were Tony Jones and Peter Walsh, who assembled a rudimentary cinema from salvaged bits and pieces and showed films that would not be screened elsewhere in the city. Their stories and those of many others have been unearthed and brought together in a ‘bricolage of memories’ of this creative culture.
Among the events are the chance to see Tony Palmer’s documentary on the city from 1971, a collection of interviews unearthed by Trevor Pitt in an atmospheric audio installation, and a talk headed by many of the Lab’s original participants about what worked, what didn’t, and what we can learn from the Arts Labs today.
The programme of events lined up for Flatpack Festival at the end of the month is looking pretty special; among the ever growing list of shows we’ve got our eye on, one stands out in particular: the live AV sets from un-categorisable electronic acts Demdike Stare and Lee Gamble. In a live show with visuals stitched together from a collection of VHS horror, Demdike Stare’s music which includes ingredients of film scores, obscure jazz and Iranian folk to name a few, will be coming to Birmingham on the 29th March at the Flatpack Palais, so you probably shouldn’t miss out.
As a Birmingham-based agency we like to support initiatives from our fellow residents, and this week saw the launch of online boutique Library from the Birmingham-based design agency Family. Featuring a great offering of prints from designers and illustrators, many of them sharing our impeccable choice of geographic location… these prints aren’t available for sale anywhere else.
Take a look at http://www.wearelibrary.co.uk.
If original vintage Polish and Turkish film posters are your thing, then you’ll want to check out Eye Sea Posters, which sells originals and is a great source of some of the bizarre film artwork produced by established artists in the 60s and 70s. Originating from a time when the Polish film industry was regulated by the Communist state and artists were commissioned to produce unique artwork individual to a film; photographic stills and advertising a film’s main stars weren’t a requirement and this gave way to some really creative interpretations of a film’s imagery.
Plenty of inspiration to be found there…
What do Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos and Brian Eno have in common? They’re both members of The Long Now Foundation, an organisation around the idea of long-term thinking and responsibility, who have begun design and production on the ultimate icon to represent their group’s raison d’etre – a monumental, 10,000-year clock.
The clock has been a project of its principal designer Danny Hillis since an idea had in 1989, and attracting help in the form of dedicated engineers and backing from interested owners of mega corporations, is now becoming a reality.
The clock will be a monumental 200ft construction inside a Texan mountain that can only be reached after a day’s hike. Made of stainless steel, titanium and ceramic and powered by solar energy, the clock will tick for 10,000 years, periodically emitting a never-repeated chime sequence, from a generator composed by Brian Eno.
Why 10,000 years? Because that’s approximately how long our human civilization has existed, making the clock a symbolic measurement of “a future of civilization equal to its past.”
Will humans still exist to outlive the clock in 10,000 years? Will the clock itself survive the 10,000 years it’s built for? Er, we’ll never know…
The clock has no deadline to be completed (it’s the Long Term Foundation, remember, they like to spend time over their projects) but you can follow its progress and learn more at The Long Now Foundation’s site.
Amazon’s Jeff Besos owns the land in Texas under which the clock will be built, and is funding a large part of the project. He has a dedicated site here.