Stand Up Inspiration: A Lamp with a Mission, Trash Becomes Arresting Art Pieces

Stand Up Inspiration: A Lamp with a Mission, Trash Becomes Arresting Art Pieces

I'm inspired by art and design.

Ever a fan of furniture and appliances that can do double duty (swiss army knives, coffee tables that turns into dining tables), my favorite new idea for a lamp is one that helps you focus, not just by illuminating what you are doing, but by ridding you of your cell phone.

I've been noticing that in the past few years, I check email on my phone way too much. I also go online to answer questions I happen to have at the moment or to do shopping. Even when I'm watching TV, I check my phone during boring parts. The news, twitter, the weather. Not because I need to, just because I can. 

Even while reading a novel, I keep the phone nearby. I check the time, texts and have alarms set to remind me to take vitamins, meditate and pick up my kids from school. It's no wonder I find my attention shredded.

Weng Xinyu,  Balance Lamp

Weng Xinyu, Balance Lamp

This lamp, by Weng Xinyu, forces you to choose, something I wish I could do more often. I discovered it on Fast Co.Exist, one of my favorite blogs.

The photos below caught my eye last year. I wish I could carry pocket size versions just to share them with people and talk about what we throw out. And what our garbage tells us about how we live and to trigger awareness about the sustainability of how much we toss out everyday.

Photo by  Gregg Segal

Photo by Gregg Segal

I saw these first on Slate and then learned more about photographer Gregg Segal, who describes how he came up with the idea to photograph people lying in one week's work of their trash.

I shudder to think what it would be like to lie in my family's trash after a week. All the food we eat comes double and triple wrapped, definitely in plastic, sometimes in boxes and styrofoam. And we eat pretty healthy! I know on Sunday alone, when I prep meals for the week, I generate a bag or two of trash. I'm conscious of how much trash I make, but feel helpless about what to do about it. 

If you are now realizing you know nothing about where your garbage goes, please check out this great little video. At once a book and also a movement, Story of Stuff by Annie Leonard, who is now the Executive Director of Greenpeace.

Now to more art made with the surplus of trash in our world. Philip Ob Rey, a multimedia artist used discarded media like VHS film to create creatures that are the spooky dark cousins of Nick Cave's (the artist) Soundsuits

Lavas Whisper

I happen to have the luck to come upon Nick Cave's fantastical suits / garments / figures? by accident while meandering through NYC Chelsea Galleries and was awed by the work that uses detritus to fill our eyes with such great beauty and celebration.

Your Home Has a Waistline Too, You Know

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