I scanned these images from a book found in Keith Fawkes Books in Hampstead, London. It’s the messiest and most chaotic bookshop I’ve ever been into, but those are the kind of places where strange treasures like “Visions of the Future” can be found. The subtitle reads: “An exciting and novel selction of science fiction art of today”. The book was a British publication, featuring at the time young British artists. Judging from a quick round on google, most of them seem to be active still. So there is plenty of inspiration out there! Here are five of my favourite artworks from the book, which stood out among all the weird and funky sci-fi kitsch.
Bodys Isek Kingelez was born in what was then Belgian Congo back in 1948. He originally worked as a restorer of tribal masks at the National Museum of Kinshasa to support himself. But by 1985 he was able to focus on his art full time, and since then he has had big success as an artist. Bodys Isek Kingelez has become world renowned for his fantastic architectural models, made from cardboard and recycled scrap materials. He is regarded as a sculptor and artist, but why not recreate his cityscapes in full size? A city based on Kingelez’s models would be such a funky place to be, compared to the evil corporate urban environment that (literally) overshadows everything nowadays.
The Earthship is a genius concept, which turns the home into an independent ecosystem. It takes no electricity from the power grid, and does not rely on public sewage service. It is built from used car tires, bottles and cans along with natural building materials. The outer walls are made with earth-filled tires, using thermal mass construction to naturally regulate indoor temperature. Electricity is harvested from sun and wind, while rain is collected for drinking water. A greenhouse for growing herbs and vegetables all year is an integrated part of every building. Earthship Biotecture was founded by Mike Reynolds in New Mexico the 1970s, and since then the organization have built their visionary homes across the United States. Since the 2000s, many earthships have also been built in Europe, Australia, Latin America and Africa. Garbage Warrior, a documentary about Mike Reynolds and Earthships, made in 2007, can be viewed in full here.
I like the building style, which seems to be inspired by the fantastic architecture of Antonio Gaudi:
American artist Kevin Cyr plays around with concepts of mobile living, bringing to life great prototypes such as his Bike Camper. Personally I think this could become more than just a concept – it brings to my mind the millions of people sleeping on cardboard sheets on the hard pavement in cities such as Mumbai and Rio de Janeiro, and all the slum dwellers who get their shacks bulldozed with no compensation and no place to go. A micro mobile home like this could dramatically improve the living standards of a homeless person in the mega metropolis of the third world. Via Weburbanist.
Russian pensioner Olga Kostina has a very cool art project going on. She is in the process of covering her houses on the Siberian taiga with plastic bottle caps, nailing them to the wooden walls one by one. The themes range from cute pixel animals to traditional Russian macrame motifs, which is a textile knotting technique. The images are the courtesy of REUTERS / Ilya Naymushin. Via Odditycentral.
British artist and eco-futurist Richard Sowa is working on what he believes one day will become an independent nation drifting on the oceans. His island is located in the Caribbean coast of Mexico, and Consists of thousands of plastic bottles, covered with mangroves and tropical vegetation. He also built a house on the island.