Monday, February 25, 2008
Saturday, April 7, 2007
Wednesday, March 7, 2007
The concept of sustainability implies circularity. It posits that transformations are simply a matter of shifting from one form to another. Rod Northcutt's green is a nod to this principle. As the trees are taken for construction, he employs the waste from this process to reconstruct bird houses, a consolation to be sure, but an acknowledgment that one's gain is another's sacrifice.
Northcutt salvaged the debris for his green from a Pilsen rehab. While building it, he took into consideration the third life of the objects. In the "green" you will see tubes, boxes, and funnels (used now to convey the ball from point to point) that will be re-assembled and cut apart after the putt-putt course has...run its course. They will then be distributed in public and private (birds don't have a preference here) parks, yards, and rooftops in the same neighborhood from which the objects came.
Thanks goes to Podmajersky Inc., Turner Construction, Diaz Heating
and Cooling, Terry's Plumbing, and the Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago.
Posted by John Preus at 7:29 PM
This piece is a model of a suburban neighborhood on the edge of an encroaching desert. Additionally, a tornado looms above and threatens this domestic scene. My intention in this piece is to highlight rampant, ill-conceived and perhaps unsustainable development and the potential consequences of desertification and global warming. In making this hole whimsical yet menacing, I want the player to note this man-made scenario and remember its message.
I am a Chicago artist and a recent MFA graduate from the University of Chicago. My art practice concentrates on the intersection between art and technology and this project is an ideal opportunity to engage those issues in a playful way.
Tornado. The large “tornado” would be primarily constructed out of a leftover deck umbrella I have. It would be sheathed in black plastic and would slowly turn in a slightly menacing way. The golfer would putt through the disintegrating neighbor hood into the hole whereupon the ball would be shot upwards and through the top of the tornado and dropped to the ground for the next hole. I would like to make this very dark and dramatic looking but still engaging and fun.
Posted by John Preus at 3:20 PM
Chicago Public Schools Golf Green: Learn the Hard Way
School is in session! In this green, two participants must compete simultaneously on different tracks to be the first to hit their ball through ‘school’ and into the hole. Scoring is as arbitrary as the grading on any standardized test: 2 points to the winner, 4 points for the loser. There are many ways to make it through the obstacle; but don’t be surprised if they don’t all take you where you want to go.
Concept: Our design is a critique of public education. You might ask why putters on this green must compete with one another at the same time, almost certainly getting in each other’s way: —we ask why students are obliged to compete with one another daily both in the hallways and classrooms when cooperation and collaboration would be more beneficial for everyone. If you get unnerved, you can just change the rules and play however you’d like. Why can’t school reform be so easy?
Construction: This design was conceived and constructed by students at Hyde Park Academy, facilitated by the PUPPET POSSE Collective (P2). P2’s purpose is to create an artistic community that consists of University students and youth from the Kenwood, Hyde Park, and Woodlawn neighborhoods, and seeks to empower students to build an artistic voice in their community. The obstacles are constructed out of recycled materials recovered at Hyde Park Academy. The structure of the ‘school’ is composed of recycled PC towers, borrowed temporarily from a service project run by John Kugler, the Industrial Design Teacher. Kugler trains student apprentices how to renovate used computers to send to Mexico through a technology exchange program. In addition to these materials with ‘future lives’, we have been considering how the golf course itself can have a ‘future life’ as an entrepreneurial business. In an epoch in which large, faceless corporations own most miniature golf courses, we would like to see miniature golf reinvented as an entrepreneurial business grounded in the designs, themes, and issues pertaining to local communities.
Posted by John Preus at 3:10 PM
We are essentially toy-makers with an interest in human interaction and public space, constantly conceptualizing what meaning we can give to an object or material and what fun thing we can make. With strong, innovative building skills, we both use our intuition to create tools of play including human size instruments, climbable drinking fountains, pinball-like tracks through museums, and tricycle trains.
Our vision for a mini-golf course includes the use of the leftover stock of Kippenberger astroturf, discarded bike inner-tubes, shipping pallets, household plumbing appliances, and salvaged pipes of any shape and size, keeping in mind that this list will probably be added to and can be adapted to what materials are available, what the space is like, and where our intuition takes us. ...Come and see what they came up with.
Posted by John Preus at 2:29 PM
I am a visual artist, bicycling enthusiast and amateur bike mechanic, and I routinely commute to work and do my shopping by bicycle. As a teenager growing up in northeastern Ohio, I was an avid miniature golfer. I am proposing a design... (that) combines several of my interests: creative problem solving, play, green design and recycling.
Bicycle Commuter Mini-Golf and Pannier Kit
This mini-golf green doubles as a set of functional bicycle panniers, or bicycle bags. The shape of the green was determined by the pattern-shape of the pannier set (much the same way that a single flat piece of cardboard is cut into a shape before being folded to form a box). Key to this design is that the mini-golf green/pannier kit can be assembled and disassembled easily. After use as a mini-golf course the green can be assembled into panniers and used to carry clothes, supplies or groceries. The panniers are designed to be held together with straps and fasteners that attach the bags to a bicycle’s rack, and the bags are held rigid by boxes made of corrugated plastic scavenged from a sign-making business. The panniers could then be disassembled for a game of mini-golf at a later time. Since the hole is a bicycle water bottle and all obstacles on the course are either part of the bike or items that fit into the panniers, the entire course is portable by bicycle. I have developed three pannier designs of three different sizes. The smallest design can be assembled into a modest bike rack trunk and, unfolded, provides a humorously small mini-golf green. The two larger designs provide a pair of panniers or a pannier/rack trunk combination, and they also permit more complex possibilities for obstacles on the green. The green as it is assembled here is actually made up of all three designs combined to form the largest possible green for this event. However, each individual bag could also be used separately.
Steven Carrelli 1634 W. Greenleaf Ave., Chicago, IL 60626 (773) 653 9714 firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted by John Preus at 2:19 PM
In elementary school most kids dream of one day being a firefighter, doctor or jet pilot. I wasn't most kids. I dreamed that one day I would design and operate a miniature golf course. On car trips I would create diagrams of hole layouts in my little notebook with arrows to indicate the direction of the slope (I really did!). I knew that I loved mini golf, so how could there be a better long term career path. I'm 23 now, and although I'm not yet a professional mini golf hole designer, I am an Industrial Designer and Mechanical Engineer.
Posted by John Preus at 2:05 PM
The quarter-pipe putting green will be exactly that, and it can be built cost-efficiently out of salvaged plywood and 2x4s. In addition, in a matter of minutes, the Astroturf can be removed, and the quarter-pipe can be used by skateboarders and BMX enthusiasts for countless hours of tricks and fun. Talk about future life! And, the other feature of this design I like is the challenge presented in the putt. This golf green is anti-Golbergian in concept—where the only obstacle presented here is the slope of the ramp. This golf hole demands a hole-in-one—the perfect putt! The straightforwardness of this design maintains the integrity of the real game of golf, while also introducing the participants to a familiarly formed object and aesthetically pleasing sculpture. The quarter-pipe is challenging, sophisticated, elegant, whimsical, and most importantly multifunctional.
Posted by John Preus at 1:06 PM
Saturday, March 3, 2007
This hole consists of a ramp leading up to a thin raised putting surface with 18 holes (the number of holes on a standard golf course) that spell “hole in 1” in Grade 1 Braille. Each of these holes connects to a long (Goldbergesque) central conduit beneath the putting surface that carries the ball the length of the hole and drops it with a resonant “plink” into a tin cup. Special flashing LED lighted balls, popular for sneaking onto fancy golf courses to play at night (not that I would know personally, of course…) are provided to play the hole.
Posted by John Preus at 7:35 AM