Solar Panels

Solar panels at Toynbee Studios

Artsadmin logoArtsadmin has taken a major step in reducing its environmental impact with the installation of 40 solar panels on the roof of Toynbee Studios.

Toynbee Studios is Artsadmin’s hub for artistic innovation and development. The studios are home to the organisation’s own staff of 25 and to Artsadmin’s artistic programme, as well as providing office space for over 20 other artists and arts organisations. Fully refurbished in 2007, the theatre and five rehearsal spaces are used by over 13,000 artists every year.

Gill Lloyd, Director of Artsadmin said;

“Our solar panels are a symbol of our commitment to sustainability and the environment. Artsadmin is a leader in the arts and environment field, encouraging artists to address climate change in their work with commissions and special projects and hosting our own Two Degrees festival of art and climate change at Toynbee Studios. We’re determined to practice what we preach, so we’re really delighted to have been able to install this solar panel system.”

The rooftop system of 40 photovoltaic panels will save around 4.6 tonnes of CO2 per year – generating over 10% of the electricity used in the Studios. The panels are installed in an East West formation (rather than the traditional South facing), which maximises the use of the space and means they’ll be active for a longer period each day. A digital display in the foyer shows how much electricity is being generated at any time, as well as the total energy generated and CO2 saved since installation.

The system was installed by Joju Solar. James Page Head of Engineering, said;

“Last year I attended an inspiring climate change event ‘Two Degrees’ at Toynbee Studios and was delighted when Artsadmin agreed to ‘walk the talk’ and find room for some solar panels. Roof space was constrained, as it often is in central London, so we went for an innovative system with panels facing East and West to gather energy in mornings and evenings, which is actually the peak time for electricity use in the UK.”

Artsadmin were motivated to make the investment by Julie’s Bicycle’s Energy Efficiency project. Julie’s Bicycle makes sustainability intrinsic to the business, art and ethics of the creative industries. Alison Tickell, Chief Executive said;

“Artsadmin is a pioneering and deeply ethical organisation in so many ways, and their new solar panels are another great example of leadership. Cultural landmarks powered by renewable energy sources – Glyndebourne, the Tobacco Factory, Artsadmin – are powerful advocates for sustainability, and reach thousands of people every year as well as reducing carbon.”

Here Comes the Sun… | Artsadmin

From Artsadmin.

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As a leader in the arts and environment field, Artsadmin is always looking for ways to make Toynbee Studios more sustainable (and are proud to have Green Tourism Silver award).

Since the studios were renovated in 2006 Artsadmin has been investigating the potential of putting solar panels on the roof. Then, back in September last year (when the sun was still shining) the group came upon Joju Solar, who thought they might be able to help.

Joju turned out to be exactly what was needed – they were able to manage the whole project – from the many conversations with surveyors about the weight of the panels, how they would be fixed and designed, and how much electricity the system might generate, to the purchase and installation of the panels. Finally last week Joju’s engineers installed 40 solar panels – which will generate up to 10 kilowatts of green energy.

The installation will also (hopefully) help make significant savings. With an estimated return of around 12% the panels will hopefully pay for themselves in around eight years – and over the next 25 years (the length of the lease we have on the whole building) Artsadmin is likely to make a significant return through its feed-in tariff.

For those who haven’t made it up to the roof to have a look, Artsadmin has also installed a digital display in the foyer which will show how much electricity it’s generating at any time, so here’s hoping for a hot summer in E1.

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Display in the foyer the day Artsadmin overstepped the 100 kWh mark.

New articles about energy alternatives

This post comes to you from Cultura21

The Museum of Fetishes, by Nicholas Hildyard and Larry Lohmann

Too often, discussions about energy alternatives resemble a visit to a 1950s world’s fair exhibition displaying exhibits of the wonderful technology of the future. Against one wall stand shiny replicas of new green machines – wind turbines, solar panels, fuel cells, hypercars, supergrids – alongside diagrams showing how environmentally benign they are. Against another are arrayed labeled bottles of new “substitutes” for oil, coal and gas – corn-based ethanol, rapeseed-based biodiesel, hydrogen cracked out of water, hydrocarbons extruded by algae.

Most of the politics and material realities associated with the various contraptions and conveniences on show, or with the energy they use and transform, are simply missing, as are the strategies of popular movements that might be considering and agitating for different futures.

How should these new visions of technological or economic salvation be read? What role do they play in the real-world politics of energy? How and what can we learn from them? And, if necessary, how can we change the subject? What is glossed over in such displays of “alternatives”is usually more important than what is in them, and there is work to be done in finding out what that is.There is little question that an “energy alternatives” discussion is at least as essential as any other regarding human futures, especially for the industrialised societies whose use of fossil fuels is threatening human survival. But if it is not to degenerate into an irrelevant show of magic tricks, an overdue debt of attention must be paid to voices which up to now have too seldom been heard.

Energy Alternatives – Surveying the Territory, by Larry Lohmann with Nicholas Hildyard and Sarah Sexton

What with a growing climate crisis and increasing uncertainty over the future of fossil fuels, it can be no surprise that the question “what’s the alternative to current energy systems?” is in the air. And there has been no shortage of answers competing for space and attention. In energy policy today, the main conflict is not between business as usual and “The Alternative”, but among the different proposed alternatives themselves. How are these alternatives to be evaluated against each other? The suggested solutions are diverse. The questions being asked are also different, as are the criteria for answering them, the vocabularies in which they are expressed, and the politics with which they are associated. The point of this introduction to the energy transitions issue is not to simplify this debate but to clarify how complex it is. What is on the table in the discussion? Is there a place for everyone there? If so, how will the discussion proceed?

To read more about :http://www.thecornerhouse.org.uk/sites/thecornerhouse.org.uk/files/The%20Museum%20of%20Fetishes.pdf

http://www.thecornerhouse.org.uk/sites/thecornerhouse.org.uk/file/ENERGY%20ALTERNATIVES%20–%20SURVEYING%20THE%20TERRITORY.pdf

Cultura21 is a transversal, translocal network, constituted of an international level grounded in several Cultura21 organizations around the world.

Cultura21′s international network, launched in April 2007, offers the online and offline platform for exchanges and mutual learning among its members.

The activities of Cultura21 at the international level are coordinated by a team representing the different Cultura21 organizations worldwide, and currently constituted of:

– Sacha Kagan (based in Lüneburg, Germany) and Rana Öztürk (based in Berlin, Germany)
– Oleg Koefoed and Kajsa Paludan (both based in Copenhagen, Denmark)
– Hans Dieleman (based in Mexico-City, Mexico)
– Francesca Cozzolino and David Knaute (both based in Paris, France)

Cultura21 is not only an informal network. Its strength and vitality relies upon the activities of several organizations around the world which are sharing the vision and mission of Cultura21

Go to Cultura21

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TRANSported and Digging Deeper 2 new exhibitions from ecoartspace NY

This post comes to you from EcoArtSpace

200x104xcbcff747f1caeb2e8d22a022c43a305b.jpg.pagespeed.ic.KUQuFfjopGecoartspace NY currently has two new exhibitions on view. TRANSported, commissioned by Arts Brookfield is presented as part of the New Museum’s Ideas City Festival 2013. TRANSported features two site-specific, interactive installations housed within and utilizing the unique features of the 20-foot shipping container. Both projects relate to the Festival’s theme of “Untapped Capital.”

Tender, by Seth Kinmont

Seth Kinmont, whose project Tender begins in Sara D. Roosevelt Park on the Lower East Side as part of Ideas City Streetfest on May 1st, engages the public with a sculptural installation and daily performance. Seth Kinmont will mint and issue his own currency out of his shipping container. The project will present visitors with freshly stamped coins and newly printed bills whose value shifts from fixed to fluid, transforming the items into a kind of lottery ticket that could be considered a souvenir, a token, a piece of art in itself — or a chance to win a work of art that has the potential to generate its own value. Tender will move to Brookfield Place on May 6th.

Art Pac-Kit, 2 artists studios complete with solar panels, green roof and rainwater collection

Habitat for Artists, an artist collective based in New York’s Hudson Valley, transforms their metal container into a vehicle for dialog and conversation in their piece called Art Pac-Kit. Two hybrid studios and a central hub for shared engagement become evolving spaces for a series of public interactions with groups such as Solar One and the Hudson Valley Seed Library as well as individuals that explore aspects of self-reliance. Solar power and rainwater will be collected from the rooftop, which will also be home to a square-foot garden, while exterior walls will be covered with a vertical garden and a public message board where visitors can leave written suggestions and ideas. Discussions on conservation and sustainability will be held in a central hub connecting the studios. Both projects will remain on view at Brookfield Place (formerly World Financial Center Plaza) and open to the public daily from 10am – 6pm through May 27th.

“My title TRANSported refers to the history of this site as a shipping port where New York Harbor meets the Atlantic Ocean. TRANSported also suggests ways in which Seth Kinmont and Habitat for Artists are both using materials to visually transport viewers into different realities and presenting possibilities for the imagination to soar. As a curator whose work has long focused on environmental issues, I am thrilled to be working with the Ideas City Festival’s theme of Untapped Capital which states as their goal: an examination of surplus resources that may be under-recognized or underutilized, ranging from people and raw materials, to ideas, networks, varied resources, and modes of communication and provides a meeting place for developing alternative thinking as regards new methodologies, new solutions, and new goals.” Amy Lipton

Digging Deeper at Franklin Street Works in Stamford CT is a component of Strange Invitation which brings together 3 collaborative teams. The exhibition asks “What happens when you invite an artist who defines him/herself as both social activist and organizer to do a project at a gallery space?” Each component of Strange Invitation reflects a mix of art and activism, addressing themes informed by the participants in-depth work with local communities. Digging Deeper focuses on sustainable agriculture, entrepreneurship, and artists who create projects informed by our relationships to natural environments. The exhibition includes an outdoor artist studio and greenhouse created by Simon Draper and Michael Asbill, as part of Habitat for Artists (HFA) in partnership with the Hudson Valley Seed Library; The Franklin Street Works Heritage Garden and Farmstand by Andrea Reynosa, a civic ecology investigation into local youth, regional watershed/foodshed awareness, heirloom crop production and entrepreneurship; and a gallery exhibition featuring works by Joan Bankemper, Andrea Reynosa, Jenna Spevack, Elaine TinNyo, Linda Weintraub and HFA. Digging Deeper is on view at Franklin Street Works through June 16, 2013. The art space and café are open to the public on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday: 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. with extended hours on Thursdays, 12:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Linda Weintraub, Let Us Eat the Colors of Nature’s Spectrumconsists of twenty-sixfoods harvested from Weintraub’s gardens, preserved through canning, and arrayed according to the color continuum they suggest.

ecoartapace ecoartspace is a nonprofit platform providing opportunities for artists who address the human/nature relationship in the visual arts. Since 1999 they have collaborated with over 150 organizations to produce more than 40 exhibitions, 100 programs, working with 400 + artists in 15 states nationally and 8 countries internationally. Currently they are developing a media archive of video interviews with artists and collection of exhibitions ephemera for research purposes. Patricia Watts is founder and west coast curator. Amy Lipton is east coast curator and director of the ecoartspace NYC project room.

A project of the Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs since 1999

Go to EcoArtSpace

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9 DAYS|3 LOCATIONS|20 SUN BOXES

Sound artist, Craig Colorusso, returns to Western Massachusetts with his latest piece, a solar powered sound installation; SUN BOXES.

For the first three weekends of November Turners Falls River Culture will present Craig Colorusso’s latest piece Sun Boxes.  At three locations, allowing the participants to observe the piece evolve as it moves through the town.

Nov. 5-7      Lawn of the Great Falls Discovery Center, 2 Ave.

Nov. 12-14   Peskeomskut Park, Ave. A + 7th Sts

Nov. 19-21   Lawn at the beginning of the bike path, 1st St

Sun Boxes is a solar powered sound installation.  It’s comprised of twenty speakers operating independently, each powered by the sun via solar panels. Inside each Sun Box is a PC board that has a recorded guitar note loaded and programmed to play continuously in a loop.  These guitar notes collectively make a Bb chord.  Because the loops are different in length, once the piece begins they continually overlap and the piece slowly evolves over time.

Participants are encouraged to walk amongst the speakers, and surround themselves with the piece.  Certain speakers will be closer and, therefore, louder so the piece will sound different to different people in different positions throughout the array.  Allowing the audience to move around the piece will create a unique experience for everyone. in addition, the participants are encouraged to wander through the speakers, which will alter the composition as they move.  Given the option two people will take different paths through the array and hear the composition differently.  Sun Boxes is not just one composition, but, many.

We are all reliant on the sun.  It is refreshing to be reminded of this.  Our lives have filled up with technology.  But we still need the sun and so does Sun Boxes.  Karlheinze Stockhausen once said “using Short-wave radios in pieces was like improvising with the world.”  Similarly, Sun Boxes is collaborating with the planet and its relation to the sun.

Colorusso now lives on the South Shore of Boston with a wife and a cat.

Come be part of the drone.  Craig Colorusso  muudon@yahoo.com 718.809.2349

Lisa Davol, riverculture@montague-ma.gov 413-230-9910

Nomad Alert (Sam’s Post 3)

As part of the Trailer Trash Project,  Sam will be working with the Nomad Lab – children and their parent from the Valle Del Oro Neighborhood Association in Newhall (Santa Clarita) CA.  The Lab offers all kinds of  art workshops in graphic design, print making, music, acting, etc.  It is run under the direction of Evelyn Serrano who also teaches a class on art and activism at CalArts. Sam recently met with the class. Here are his notes: [ed.]

-by Sam Breen, October 17, 2010

I met with Evelyn’s class, and we are starting to make a plan.  Our first date with theNomads and their parents is in Newhall on Nov 6 . There should be about 30-40 students there, ranging in age 6-14. Evelyn wants me to bring the trailer, so I will need to install a work-floor in the Spartan  by then! Nomad workshops in photography and creative writing are already under way. Teachers are exploring the idea of what home means to them. So they’ve begun thinking about this theme (which is great ’cause that’s my theme, too!) I’ll give the kids a small presentation of the project and take them

What makes a house a home?

on a tour of the Spartan. Then the photography kids will take pictures. Some will start writing, some of the Arts and Activism students from CalArts will lead theater games (with the idea of home in mind). Some of the Nomad kids will be commissioned to talk about what they’d want in the trailer if it was their home (they could draw, write etc.) We could have a projector in there, so I might put up some ideas for my wish list – things like solar panels, a grey water system, compost. I’ll also be asking them about ways to use the trailer as a performance space – even before it’s finished.

On Oct 20, well’ll have another meeting of the Arts and Activism Class.  Stay tuned.  [Sam will have got to install a temporary floor in the Spartan in the next three weeks. That also means floor insulation, a belly pan, and tanks for storing clean and water. -ed.]


This post is part of a series documenting Sam Breen’a Spartan Restoration Project. Please see his first post here and check out the archive here. The CSPA is helping Sam by serving in an advisory role, offering modest support and featuring Sam’s Progress by syndicating his feed from http://spartantrailerrestoration.wordpress.com as part of our CSPA Supports Program.

The Crane Also Rises: CalArts Connection to Coachella’s Ascension

Picking up a story about Executive Director Ian Garrett’s Practice outside of the CSPA from the CalArts Blog’s Christine Ziemba….

Anyone who attended the Coachella or Stagecoach festivals in recent weeks in Indio, Calif., couldn’t miss the giant origami crane towering over the festival grounds. The art installation, Ascension, was crafted by the Crimson Collective, an LA-based consortium of artists, architects and designers. Based on Japanese legendAscension stood as a symbol of peace and prosperity.

The Collective’s Nick Vida tapped artist and CalArts alumnus Ian Garrett(Theater MFA 08) to design the lighting for the project in an environmentally sustainable manner. In other words, the lights were programmed and run by solar power: “We had to collect enough light to charge the batteries and power the lights at night,” said Garrett. He used multicolored LED lights to change the crane’s colors continually each evening, providing concertgoers dramatic visuals to go along with the music from the festivals’ stages.

Standing at more than 45 feet and with a wingspan of more than 150 feet, the fabric and truss installation gave concertgoers shelter from the desert sun by day, too. Here’s a description from The Wall Street Journal’s Speakeasy blog:

Defined by the collective as a living art installation, the giant white crane was crafted from white fabric, modular aluminum and tension wire, all of which combine and provide vast expanses of shade. While simultaneously blocking the sun, two solar energy collectors will charge via the sun’s rays to provide colored ambient lighting once the sun goes down. Underneath each of the solar panels is a bench and rest area, offering extra space for respite.

Since the crane is a fully sustainable and reusable project, the Crimson Collective is planning to take the crane around the world. For those interested in learning more about the crane project, the Collective’s Nick Vida and Brent Heyning will be on campus next week (May 7 at noon) to discuss the crane project and installation as part of CalArts Sustainability Speaker Series.

Garrett was at Stagecoach this weekend to help take down Ascension. He provided us a few early renderings of the crane, as well as photos from the festival grounds in the photo gallery posted above.

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Prague’s National Theatre Expands Solar Project

Reprinted from Prague Daily Monitor: “National Theatre to have second solar plant” by Pavel Baroch, October 8, 2009

Prague – The National Theatre will have its second solar power station. After dark panels covered the roof of its operational building last year, technicians are now installing photovoltaic modules on top of the Nová scéna building.

“The power station could start operating already in the middle of November,” Miroslav Ružicka, deputy technical director at the theatre, told Aktuálne.cz.

The National Theatre is therefore conforming its dominant position in electricity production from solar radiation in Prague – it has the biggest solar power station in the capital city.

“The objective is to reduce energy costs in all National Theatre buildings in the long run,” said Ružicka. The solar power stations come as part of an extensive environmental project that the theatre management launched a few years ago.

Dozens of millions of crowns invested in making the theatre and auxiliary facilities “green” bear fruit already. According to the plan, the theatre was to save more than CZK 4 million just last year, but the actual saving was CZK 2 million higher.

Besides the photovoltaic power station, another contributor to the cost cuts was modern equipment hidden on the bottom floors of the historical building. The theatre uses for example waste heat, which brings savings in the order of thousands of crowns every day. The project counts on total savings of nearly CZK 50 million in ten years.

The solar power station on the roof of Nová scéna is bigger and more efficient than the “old” photovoltaic panels on the operational building. What they have in common is that both roofs needed new hydro insulation, so besides installing solar panels, workers will also seal the roof.

“We killed two birds with one stone,” said Ružicka. “The option involving photovoltaic modules is more expensive, but a mere insulation foil does not make any money.”

The theatre uses the savings achieved to repay the investment, and will even make money on it after some time. Moreover, the method chosen makes it possible to improve energy efficiency, and therefore to reduce emissions.

Last year, the more economical operation of the theatre reduced carbon dioxide emissions by more than a thousand tonnes. To give a comparison: every Czech releases about 12 tonnes of CO2 a year.

The second photovoltaic power station at the National Theatre will save a further 25 tonnes, and generate electricity that would suffice for 7-8 households that do not use electricity for heating.

The guaranteed lifespan of the power station, which cost roughly CZK 8 million including the hydro insulation, is thirty years.

“The return on investment is fifteen years,” said Ružicka. The theatre management plan to build another solar power station on the roof of its warehouse and other environmental projects, he added.

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