Thursday, September 20, 2007

ArtLand USA

I'm back in Nebraska, visiting family and friends, before hopping in the big ol' RV with dad and Todd and heading back to Napa. And while this might be reason enough to blog about ArtLand USA, I was further inspired by another RV series called Road Trip Nation.

Dad, Uncle Jim, Todd and I were headed downtown to meet my brother and his wife for lunch at Yia-Yias pizza, when we passed a neon green RV with the address pasted all over it. They waved at me, I waved back, and was told to, "Check out the website!" So, I did. While it's definitely an interesting and exciting concept, I'm sure I'd be more interested if I were still in college (The age group of participants who can apply.)

Also, seeing as how I'm an artist and appreciate the arts, I find ArtLand USA more interesting. The second season is just getting ready to air on the GalleryHD channel, which is a Voom network channel. (I don't have TV at home, so coming to visit is a treat when I happen upon an interesting channel like this!) This season's trip begins in Key West, Florida and ends in Anchorage, Alaska. Along the way, the hosts explore art and American kitsch.

Last season's episodes provided us inspiration, as we were about to embark upon a road trip from Lincoln, Nebraska to Napa, California.

After our own tour of the Old West, seeing Dodge City, KS and Tombstone, AZ, we headed north through Arizona.

The ArtLand USA series had introduced us to Italian architect Paolo Soleri's Arcosanti, Arizona, as well as Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin West in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Cosanti in Paradise Valley, Arizona is where Soleri settled to begin his arcology (architecture + ecology) project as an alternative solution to urban sprawl.

"Arcology advocates cities designed to maximize the interaction and accessibility associated with an urban environment; minimize the use of energy, raw materials and land, reducing waste and environmental pollution; and allow interaction with the surrounding natural environment." (Full article here.)

While perusing the grounds of Cosanti, we browsed among the windbells, ringing our favorites in our quest to find the bell with the perfect sound. We ended up purchasing 6 or 7 bells, and so supporting the construction of Arcosanti.

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