Each week, Kickstarter staff round up a selection of recently launched projects that we think are exciting, endearing, adorable, amazing, exhilarating... the list of adjectives could go on and on. This week we've got some really special stuff for you, though. These projects will teach you how you can walk on the moon, or how to turn some would-be compost into a delicious tamale, or how to transform a parking lot into a thriving green space. Curious? Inspired? Read on for more!
There are few that inspire a sense of cult fandom (and intense loyalty) like the eclectic, enigmatic Arthur Russell. I suppose you could say he was a cellist and a composer by trade, but his music spanned genres with a kind of effortless grace, touching on influences as diverse as dance, electronic, folk, and classical. Throughout his life, he accumulated a body of work that seems unparalleled in its diversity — so it's no wonder he's the perfect candidate for a Red Hot tribute album. Red Hot, who have brought us other compilation tribute albums like Dark Was the Night, have selected 20 artists to choose 20 different Arthur Russell songs to interpret. Among them are notables like Twin Shadow, Robyn, Washed Out, Cut Copy, Javelin, Sam Amidon, and (deep breath) ... need I go on?! Check this out.
In Los Angeles, an empty dirt parking lot is being transformed into a public green space. The project will take eight months to complete, and in that time, Josh Gray-Emmer will set up anywhere from four to twelve time-lapse cameras to capture the action. That is going to be pretty incredible, and perhaps inspiring to other cities in need of a little extra green space? Also, Dave Foley makes a hilariously tongue-in-cheek guest appearance in the project video: "... from a once great sheet of tarmac, into what I can only call a lure for children and picnickers ... They sit there and relax under starry nights while cars will look in sadly from the point of view of exile." So you better watch.
If there's one thing Twin Peaks needs more of — it's weird fan projects. I mean that sincerely. David Lynch's notoriously strange and totally wonderful television series is an endless well of material minable for oddities: inside jokes, off-shoots of favorite characters, imagined futures, and more. Damn Fine Coffee is a zine project of miniature proportions (only a $700 goal!), but it's the result of a big, long enduring fandom shared by nearly 30 super talented artists. Check out the project page for a preview of some of their work; it will wet your appetite for what we imagine will be a series of utterly inspired artworks, with the mystery cranked to maximum. Woo!
The Gleanery is a restaurant in Putney, VT that is a little bit different than you might expect. Instead of sourcing ingredients for their farm-to-table freshness, the tiny team behind this culinary enterprise find creative, delicious ways to preserve the excess perishable food that comes from farms in their area. They pickle, preserve, and smoke. They make goats milk ice-cream, tamales, and spicy sambal. They take what would be compost and give it new, highly nutritional life. (Okay, maybe not the ice-cream, but it sounds too good to pass up). If this much good stuff can come from "waste" we didn't even know existed, imagine what other possibilities are out there? Inspired!
Phillip Stearns is a Brooklyn-based artist who spends his time messing with the interior parts of electronics, like discarded digital cameras. Rather than seeing these piles of electronics as cold and emotionless, he sees his work as a way to "unlock strange and hidden worlds in the subconscious of the machine." As a way of "making them dream." Crazy romantic! Each image generated, although technically a "glitch," is unique and colorful, a snapshot that subverts the supposedly, strictly coded world of the commercial machine. Now, with Kickstarter, he's planning to turn the whole she-bang of vibrant, hyper-surreal, glitchy craziness into fully realized, woven textiles. Rugs. Things you can touch, feel, and smell. How next millenium and back again is that?!