Thursday, April 29, 2010

Mission Blue, Earth Day, Oceans

Biorock and Global Coral Reef Alliance news
Shore protection in the Marshall Islands
Interview about mineral accretion with Dr. Tom Goreau, President of GCRA

Picture story of Ocean Project progress

Recently I went to California to work with master blacksmith,

Mark Nichols, aka the Bubblemeister (master bubblesmith as well!)

We began 3 steel sculptural apparatus(es) for the Ocean Project.
He has a 60 ton hydraulic press

Mark and Jodi Lomask holding tight to keep the steel from pulling out of line.
Now I know how to bend schedule 40 steel pipe in smooth undulating curves without crushing them.

Because of the strong force, Mike helps to keep the steel aligned.

Go Beam! It was so much fun to play with all the other artists and makers.

our first "coral skirt" of the coral garden. 

While working at this fabulous metal shop, I was following Mission Blue tweets.
I wanted to join Sylvia Earle's TEDboat to the Galapagos, so this is how I attended. One day I had over 56 tweets in a couple hours.  Serious! I took notes. The ability to be in a very calm, relaxing creative environment while simultaneously "being" on a ship with unending mental stimulation, it blows my mind.  Oh to attach an MRI to my brain to see what is happening with all this constant shifting from internet to phone, making to designing, dancing to...I imagine my neurons are branching out into new tendrils.. so curious what parts light up during different activities. 

After working on the steel performance sculptures,

I went to see the Capacitor dancers in San Francisco experiment with the new toy.
Cari and Ian~

Ian and Marvin~~                                            Mayuko

{If you are in Oakland, California this weekend, you can see them perform on Sunday at the Oakland Museum. They'll be doing "Puncture," an excerpt from"The Perfect Flower," -- work commissioned for TED 2009. }

Leaving San Francisco, I headed south to visit family in Monterey.  Timing was on my side.  The snow storms that had delayed my driving through the Siskiyou pass days earlier opened the road for me to accept an invitation to share about coral restoration with the International School of Monterey, a recent recipient of an Ocean Guardian grant from NOAA.

photo by Camilla Mann

K-8th, these kids go on field trips, have guest presenters, make ocean-inspired art, and learn about many facets of the sea.  They were concerned for corals after seeing scenes of dynamite fishing.  Their "aahs" were audible as they were mesmerized by the colorful animations they saw in the documentary, "Reef Reborn." This link is to a short animation produced by Sea Studios of Monterey and LAIKA, Inc. of Portland.  I showed it to the younger kids.  Not to say it is only for kids..

Before driving back to Portland, I met with Mark Shelley of Sea Studios, slipped into Barbara Block's class at Hopkins Marine Station to catch some of Carl Safina's talk.
I was connecting with brilliant ocean explorers, getting my ocean fix before heading back to the forest-scape of Portland.  Found out Barbara was a speaker on Mission Blue and she worked on Oceans, the movie.

Which brings me to Earth Day.  Watching Oceans, (gorgeous and moving), witnessing how each species is wired, conditioned, and built to behave in specific idiosyncratic ways, I left the theatre thinking about the baby turtles vulnerably flippering over sand to sea against the odds, the warring crabs piling too dense for comfort, the walrus cradling her pup,  the camouflaged, low blood sugar rockfish snarfing the lovely damsels flitting by...Nature is so wild, bizarre and beautifully shocking, and here I go empathizing with and humanizing all those mysterious beings.   I can predict some human behavior, but can't deeply fathom much of it any more than the behavior of a shark, penguin, or a puffer fish.  Isn't it possible there are more sub-species, classes, phyla, orders (helps me scientists) of humans? 

maybe just in folk taxonomy

thank you~

Posted via email from Biorock Around the Globe

Monday, April 5, 2010

Algae food, fuel,...

I saw the algae tanks at Green Man 2007.  After 8 years of invitations and urgings, it was my year to finally get to Burning Man.  The theme, Green Man, was tempting.  I am glad I went.  Here is a story about the man behind the glowing green-filled tubes that I kind of fell in love with-- that beautiful color was alive and mesmerizing.

Posted via email from TED Fellows