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February 13, 2014

Works in Progress / YMCA Community Garden

This one’s been a long time coming …..which is why current momentum on the ground is particularly gratifying.  At the beginning of 2012 we won a commission from Art in Public Places to design…

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This one’s been a long time coming …..which is why current momentum on the ground is particularly gratifying.  At the beginning of 2012 we won a commission from Art in Public Places to design the first “artist-led community garden” in Austin.  The site is at the North Austin YMCA on Rundberg Lane, an impressive new facility designed by Studio 8 Architects.  

The project is an experiment on many levels – in defining a garden as public art, in making publicly-owned land available for community gardening, in growing food at a YMCA facility – and is an example of expanding citywide efforts to support local, sustainable food production at the institutional level. Friends, beware the ‘institutional experiment’!  We’ve encountered energetic support and bureaucratic hurdles in equal measure. No less than eight City departments had jurisdiction over the project.  We’ve been through a change of site, endless design revisions, permitting delays and a billion meetings. 

But here we are! The radial site plan is beginning to take shape, in the form of gravel paths and pie-shaped mulched areas.  Over the next few weeks we’ll be installing a sculptural fence and toolshed, raised and handicapped accessible garden beds, fruit trees and wildflowers.  The intention is for the garden to work for both individual gardeners and YMCA programming.  The sculptural fence will form a secure boundary around the members’ garden plots while a ‘public spine’, open to everyone, will contain YMCA-managed demonstration beds and a shady gathering space beneath an existing Arizona Ash.  Future phases will hopefully include a teaching pavilion, greenhouse and additional teaching and member plots.

The project has enjoyed tremendous support from many different sources.  Both the City and the YMCA have been incredibly committed to the project.  Sari Albornoz of the Sustainable Food Center and John Hart Asher of the Ecosystem Design Group at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center have been invaluable sounding boards. The Garden Leadership Group, made up of energetic local residents, has done the hard work of creating by-laws, site rules and a membership sign-up system. Local film-makers, Flow Non-Fiction, have been documenting the process to make into a short film.  And from our office, Kyle Norman, Andrei Klypin and Kate Nichols have each been instrumental in getting the project to this point.

Now we’re so close!  And there are opportunities for everyone to help us finish! We’re holding a series of Community Workdays on Saturday February 22, March 1st and March 8th, from 10am – 2pm.  Activities will include weaving the sculptural fence, building the garden beds, planting trees and painting the toolshed.  If you would like to volunteer for any of these days, please sign up through this link.  You can also email lucy@thoughtbarn.com with any questions.  All ages are welcome.

The garden will be open for membership in mid-March.  The final details of the sign-up system are being ironed out and will be released before the end of this month on the garden website.  In the meantime more updates to come as the fun, photogenic stuff gets underway….LB  


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November 28, 2013

TBARN + THANK YOU

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August 08, 2013

Dave Mead Photographer shoots some images on Santa Anna

We love Dave Mead. Friend, teammate, swell gentlemen. Dave was gracious enough to shoot the Santa Anna House right before it was occupied. We love the raw spaces Dave captured. They are up on…

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We love Dave Mead. Friend, teammate, swell gentlemen. Dave was gracious enough to shoot the Santa Anna House right before it was occupied. We love the raw spaces Dave captured. They are up on the site, check them out, check him out.

 

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August 08, 2013

Works In Progress / YMCA Community Garden

Shadow study artifacts from the tool shed we are building as part of the overall garden.

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Shadow study artifacts from the tool shed we are building as part of the overall garden.

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August 08, 2013

GUERILLA SUIT_Phase Two Under Construction

We are half way through the Guerilla Suit World HQ. Here are some developement images of the screen wall we are currently working on. 

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We are half way through the Guerilla Suit World HQ. Here are some developement images of the screen wall we are currently working on. 

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June 21, 2013

Escaped Infrastructure included in the PAN Year in Review 2013 Awards !

Our temporary installation, Escaped Infrastructure, we completed last year was included in this year's 2013 PAN year in Review 2013 Awards ! We are excited to have been included in this list of…

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Our temporary installation, Escaped Infrastructure, we completed last year was included in this year's 2013 PAN year in Review 2013 Awards ! We are excited to have been included in this list of the 50 best public art projects in the States for 2012. 

http://www.artsusa.org/pdf/networks/pan/YIR13_ProjectList_Final.pdf

Our project was included in the Honoring Materials Category: 

Honoring the Material:

These projects share a desire to explore and exploit the potential of their chosen material. While
playing off their locations, to varying degrees, the primary driver in all cases seems to be what could
be achieved aesthetically through the enjoyment of materials and form - sculpturally, structurally,
technically, kinetically, dramatically, metaphorically, and adventurously in terms of scale and
expressiveness. Strong aesthetic statements are made exploring the qualities of softness and
hardness, malleability and resistance, repetition and rhythm, light and movement.

This is our second inclusion the PAN Year in Review awards. Our other project, CO2 LED, a collaboration with Design Build Adventure, Museum of Wonder, was included in the 2008 list. 

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April 26, 2013

Santa Anna Progress

Thoughtbarn is well in the thick of it at present.  Our construction team has been hard at work completing the build for Santa Anna. Here are some photos from the progress. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thoughtbarn is well in the thick of it at present.  Our construction team has been hard at work completing the build for Santa Anna. Here are some photos from the progress. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

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April 26, 2013

THOUGHTBARN ON INSTAGRAM

Photography speaks louder than words sometimes. Keep up with our projects and progress on Instagram. http://instagram.com/thoughtbarn.

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Photography speaks louder than words sometimes. Keep up with our projects and progress on Instagram. http://instagram.com/thoughtbarn.

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April 14, 2013

NORTH AUSTIN COMMUNITY GARDEN / YMCA CONCEPT STUDIES

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April 11, 2013

THOUGHTBARN + Microsoft SXSW

We had a whirlwind two weeks when Microsoft commisioned us to build out their temporary space for SXSW. Working with our project partners, Guerilla Suit, Heston Studio and Giant Noise we designed…

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We had a whirlwind two weeks when Microsoft commisioned us to build out their temporary space for SXSW. Working with our project partners, Guerilla Suit, Heston Studio and Giant Noise we designed out a raw space into work/playspace that held presentations, served drinks and hosted bands / digital platform showcases.

With the extremely tight deadline (10 days) , we employed the used a kit of parts of steel saw horse leg, prefabricated work table legs, and plywood to add a bit of warmth to the space. 

With a bit of determination, and the skilled hands of Jon Davidson of DoeFabCo, Connor Finn, and Damon Faulkner, the space was ready to be filled with Microsoft gadgets and techies. 

Our crew arrived to set up the commissioned furniture against the backdrop of an in-progress mural. 

Not before long, the space had been transformed into a bustling meet up spot for festival goers. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our furniture allowed the tech set to check out the Microsoft programs and products that were being showcased.

 The bright, primary colors we used for the furniture were complimented by a vibrant mural and lighting installation.

 

A charging station fabricated by BBIITT gave visitors a chance to recharge. 

Here's to a successful SXSW 2013. See you there next year! 

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