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Improbable Monument

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Intro: The environment is extremely important and impossible to survive without. So why is it not a top priority to everyone? Not only that, we are destroying it constantly. With more awareness to people throughout the world, we may be able to stop the things that are destroying our home. One of the leading causes of deforestation and the release of carbon monoxide comes from plantations of palm oil trees. Because of this, I have decided to make a monument that clearly shows people the destruction that is happening around them.

Background: The history of palm oil production, while not long, is very broad. It began in Malaysia in the 20th century. Malaysia depended heavily on the contribution that palm oil production had on the economy; in the 1960’s, this production provided jobs to over half a million people in Malaysia. What seemed at the time to be another plus was the reduction of dependence on fossil fuels. In fact, it was thought to be a cleaner, more sustainable form of energy because it comes from a plant. It was also believed that biodiesel was better for the environment– this remains untrue if it is produced in the way that it is with palm oil.

In preparation for the planting palm trees, the land must be burned. This includes burning parts of the land that store great amounts of water and carbon that are crucial in supplying clean water and lessening the severity of climate change. Not only that, but burning the land also caused carbon monoxide emissions – that’s not good. Of course, forests are also home to vast amount of species and the destruction of these forests to make way for palm oil plantations threatens already endangered animals.

Indonesia is another place where palm oil plantations are taking over forests. It is in fact the number one cause of deforestation for Indonesia. A few years ago, the president of Indonesia ordered a moratorium on the destruction of forests after much of the land was leveled by big companies. Unfortunately, illegal plantations took over and production is out of the president’s control.

Description Originally, I wanted to go with a monument that was structural but I want my monument to bring people together to learn about this terrible thing that is happening, and a structural monument would not have done that in this case. Instead I decided that my monument would not be man-made because humans are the reason deforestation is happening.  Why not give back to the land that we are stealing so much from? This monument will be in the form of a mini plantation that would be started by people of the community. The monument would be several rows of palm trees and it would take up no more than a half-acre of land. This is a way to symbolize the negative impacts that palm oil plantations have. The monument would be placed in the middle of a deforested area. The reason being so that people are forced to see the destruction all around them.

It is improbable because there is no way to sustain life on land that has been burned in preparation for the plantations or after the plantations are destroyed. Unfortunately, a soil is not readily available for this type of activity. The soil would have to have elements that the carbon rich soil had. It must be able to withstand the damage that was done by burning peat lands. The soil would have to replenish the lost nutrients as well as help with absorption of water and prevent massive runoff in this tropical climate.

Benefits This monument is different in that there is not set location for it. It is meant to inspire people to learn more about what is happening to the environment. It also challenges them to take a stance. Once the small trees grow large, they can be seen from high in the air or from the ground. People will be able to see and interact with it from close up or far away. This is another way to symbolize that the effects of deforestation are always present whether we can see them directly or not.

Budget There is no defined budget as this soil is not yet produced which would be an expense as well as the land. Land would have to be bought from the plantation owner (presumably a large company) the acre of land would not be extremely expensive because after being burned it has little use for anything. When researching land prices it was difficult to come up with an average price for land that could be used for cultivation. There would be little maintenance required as these palm trees are able to grow in this environment. As mentioned, I want this monument to bring the community of locals together to learn more about the long term impacts of deforestation caused by palm oil plantations. Therefore, the new harmless “mini plantation” would be grown planted by volunteers.

Sources

http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/solutions/stop-deforestation/palm-oil-and-forests.html#.VS9YBfnF-So

http://www.deforestationeducation.com/history-of-palm-oil.php

http://greenpalm.org/about-palm-oil/what-is-palm-oil/palm-oil-history

http://yearsoflivingdangerously.com/correspondent/harrison-ford/

Changes to Improbable Monument

I have decided to change my idea a little. While there are many causes of deforestation, I decided to narrow it down to palm oil. Essentially, palm trees will serve as a visual of the harmful things that humans are doing to the planet.

Instead of having a permanent monument, I decided to make it a sort of greenhouse monument that will house the type of palm trees that were destroyed to create palm oil. I will keep with the idea of having the greenhouse placed in the middle of deforestation. A new factor is the cost of soil that is able to sustain the palm trees after the previous soil was rendered useless from the burning of the palm trees on that land. Since this patch of land will be relatively small, it will not serve as a home for the animals that lost their home due to the burning of palm trees but instead it will serve as a reminder of effects of and what humans are stealing from our planet for items that are unnecessary.

Improbable Monument Proposal

Intro: The environment is extremely important and impossible to survive without. So why is it not a top priority to everyone? Not only that, we are destroying it constantly. With more awareness to people throughout the world, we may be able to stop the things that are destroying our home. One of the leading causes of deforestation and the release of carbon monoxide comes from plantations of palm oil trees. Because of this, I have decided to make a monument that clearly shows people the destruction that is happening around them.

Background: The history of palm oil production, while not long, is very broad. It began in Malaysia in the 20th century. Malaysia depended heavily on the contribution that palm oil production had on the economy; in the 1960’s, this production provided jobs to over half a million people in Malaysia. What seemed at the time to be another plus was the reduction of dependence on fossil fuels. In fact, it was thought to be a cleaner, more sustainable form of energy because it comes from a plant. It was also believed that biodiesel was better for the environment– this remains untrue if it is produced in the way that it is with palm oil.

In preparation for the planting palm trees, the land must be burned. This includes burning parts of the land that store great amounts of water and carbon that are crucial in supplying clean water and lessening the severity of climate change. Not only that, burning the land also caused areas of production to some of the leading producers of carbon monoxide emissions – that’s not good. Of course, plantations are also home to vast amount of species and the production of palm oil threatens already endangered animals.

Description of project: For my project, I want to make a monument that basically shows the effects of palm oil production in a very simple and clear way.  The monument will be placed on a plantation that has been burned after production. Because biodiesel is one of the biggest products of palm oil, my monument is going to be in the form of an over-sized beaker used for measuring. The beaker will be placed amongst the deforestation. Because palm oil is still being produced and products still made from it, ultimately leading in deforestation, the beaker will include an element that allows it to fill with liquid each time a plantation is burned, a line of products made from, or a new field planted in order to continue production. This monument will be placed in a plantation in Malaysia because Malaysia relies so heavily on palm oil and in turn faces the harsh effects. People will be able to see it at a distance, as from a plane, or be able to walk up to it, although that might be impossible with the deforestation. Ultimately, it is intended to be viewed at a far distance.

Benefits: the intended audience is all humans. We all can have a voice in ending the production of palm oil by finding other healthier resources, and/or refusing to buy items that have palm oil as an ingredient (it’s clearly labeled on many products). This monument will serve as a clear representation of how production of palm oil effects the environment. After burning of fields occurs, the oil is no longer fit for vegetation, rendering it useless and inhabitable for wildlife. Because it will be placed in a destroyed field, it will serve as a constant reminder of the effects.

Budget: As of now, I am considering using Plexiglas or a form of glass to make up the beaker. There will also have to be a system to fill the beaker with liquid. Ultimately the entire structure will be environment-friendly. The monument will be approximately the size of the Washington Monument which is 555 feet. The cost of individual items will come after I receive feedback during the second stage of my timeline for this project.

Project Timeline:  Research and test ideasàGet feedbackàPrototype (functionality in its environment)àFeedback on prototypeàImplementation

Please refer to my PDF for images

FINAL PROPOSAL

Research:

http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/solutions/stop-deforestation/palm-oil-and-forests.html#.VS9YBfnF-So

http://www.deforestationeducation.com/history-of-palm-oil.php

http://greenpalm.org/about-palm-oil/what-is-palm-oil/palm-oil-history

Improbable Monument Brainstorming

Climate change caused by human activity-adding monuments in places that have clearly already received massive damage because of climate change. What are we doing wrong? How can we make it better?

Animal testing- Testing of makeup and other products on animals. Looking into different labs around the world. This proposal would be carried out by placing a monument right outside of those labs. The Monument would be huge and serve as a message to the public

Gay rights-Exploring different areas of the U.S. as well as other parts of the world to see how rights are the same and how the differ from place to place. Explore further the cultural differences and what effects gay rights.

Health care rights- Exploring U.S. and the effect that health care or lack-there-of has had.  Will choose to focus on a specific, controversial health care topic.

Palm oil and its effect on the environment- Exploring deforestation and other elements that tie into palm oil productions. What are the Effects? What is deforestation? Who is affected and why? How often is this happening and how will my monument show this?

Exercise 5: Virtual Placemaking in Google Earth

For this exercise, I chose to place markers in three different places that I felt that I felt best described my topic. I believe that climate change and global warming are very serious issues today that are overlooked by many people. Many people don’t care about the effects of global warming because it will not effect them directly but it will effect their relatives to come.

I focused on three main ways that global warming is in effect today and how it is changing environments. The three pressing issues I chose were Malaria in Kenya, caused by climate change (goes into further detail on Google Earth marker), melting glaciers atop and along the sides of Mt. Kilimanjaro, and permafrost melting in Greenland. I chose these things because they are not issues that we necessarily have to deal with in our location of Manhattan Kansas, but it is important to recognize them.

Seeing the Past in the Present Tense

This article challenged me to think about monuments are commemoratives in a way that I have never viewed them before. I have always just thought of them as ways to show people who weren’t present for the event to gain more knowledge about history but they do much more, or less, depending on the monument.

Paula Levine introduces monuments as a way to activate us because they require us to think about something that has already passed, we then associate the past with the present. Depending on the monument,  it can either educate us about a complex history and help people to see the past and move forward, or they can take away the responsibility of our memory. Commemorating a person or an event from history has a way of taking away various details of history by only showing one part of history. She uses the Emancipation monument as an example of the lack of reflection on the complex struggles for freedom.

Monuments serve as a way to trigger our memory by association. One monument that forces us to think of the past in raw form is Maya Lin’s Vietnam war Memorial, which holds the names of American’s that died in the war. With a monument, there is a question of how to articulate burdens of parts of history and give the public a true understanding of the events that took place. A successful way of doing this is a monument that is designed to encourage support or fight against such things as racism or fascism, like the Monument Against War, Fascism, War, and Violence– and for Peace and Human Rights that encourage our participation.

Ultimately, monuments and commemoratives force us to remember based on how the monument was designed and for what purpose. It forces us to remember the past and incorporate it into the present. Some monuments give us a true understanding of history and the burdens or brutalities. while others sugar-coat it. Monuments and commemoratives reintroduce ideological foundations into our life.

Radical Cartography Final

I made my radical cartography project personal to me and my experiences with art. Art has been the most influential thing in my life and I wanted to track where I began my journey with art, starting as far back as I can remember as a child and ending with present day. Even though my project is personal to me, I made my map easy to use for others to read. I also made a key that allows the viewer to better understand what each location means to me and my journey. the white dots are the locations that aren’t the most influential  to my journey but still very important. The red dots are what I consider to be influential to my journey. The purple dots are the most influential. I wanted to put the locations in order from where I started to where I finished so I numbered them from 1 to 14. Also, I deconstructed the maps so that they are closer together, because each of these locations have made my interest in art stronger.

This is the list of locations I have included:

1st- Hutchinson Kansas- my house in Hutchinson (art with dad)

2nd- Hutchinson, Kansas- Candy Lane Preschool (art at school)

3rd- Hutchinson, Kansas- Main Street (artwork displayed at the Art Center)

4th- Hutchinson, Kansas- Kansas State Fairgrounds (art displayed at fairgrounds)

5th- Hutchinson, Kansas- Graber Elementary (art classes)

6th- Hutchinson, Kansas- Hutchinson Middle School (7th and 8th grade center art classes)

7th- Hutchinson, KS- Hutchinson High School (art classes and art shows)

8th- Hutchinson, KS- Fairgrounds

9th- Manhattan, KS- visiting campus for architecture (junior year)

10th- Hutchinson, KS- Hutchinson High School (art scholarship)

11th- Manhattan, KS- enrollment at Kansas State University art program

12th-Lawrence, KS

13th- Nashville Tennessee- (various studios visited)

14th- KC- studios visited

This is the final product:

mapfinalblog

Radical Cartography

A List of places that I will include on my map:

1st- Hutchinson Kansas- my house in Hutchinson (Just the street because I don’t want my address online.)

2nd- Hutchinson, Kansas- Candy Lane Preschool

3rd- Hutchinson, Kansas- Main Street

4th- Hutchinson, Kansas- Kansas State Fairgrounds

5th- Hutchinson, Kansas- Graber Elementary

6th- Hutchinson, Kansas- Hutchinson Middle School (7th and 8th grade center)

7th- Hutchinson, KS- Hutchinson High School

8th- Hutchinson, KS- Fairgrounds

9th- Manhattan, KS- visiting campus for architecture (junior year)

10th- Hutchinson, KS- Hutchinson High School (art scholarship)

11th- Manhattan, KS- enrollment at Kansas State University

12th- Manhattan, KS- Willard Hall

13th-Manhattan, KS- Moore Hall

14th- Manhattan, KS- Kimball Ave Apt

15th- Manhattan, KS- Fremont St.

16th-Lawrence, KS

17th- Nashville Tennessee- (various studios visited)

18th- KC- studios visited

Exercise 4 Low Tech Communication

I worked with Shea and Laura on this project. We came up with an idea that uses no form of verbal communication or noise but instead our sense of touch and sight. We demonstrated this exercise at a much closer distance than 600 yards to show just how it works.

We created two boards that attached 5 colored strings. Each string designated several letters of the alphabet:

Red string: A-E

Yellow string: F-J

Green string: K-O

Blue string: P-T

Purple string: U-Z

The sender plucks the string that corresponds with the message they want to send. The strings are color coordinated to make it easier for both parties to decode the message. For example, if the sender wanted to say “Hi” they would first pluck the yellow string three times and the yellow string again four times. Since these two letters are on the same string the sender would have to take a slight pause in between the “H” and the “I”.

This sort of long distance communication requires a lot of concentration from both parties to obtain complete accuracy. It is important the sender plucks at a speed that the receiver can accurately see. It is also crucial that the receiver pays very close attention to ensure that they receive all the signals. A third person is available on the receiving end to write down messages as they are being received.

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