Archive for the ‘cities’ Category

Keep it in the ground! Guardian animation on solar power

Tuesday, October 6th, 2015

Short animation by the Guardian on solar power, as part of their “Keep it in the ground” campaign against fossil fuels. The price of solar panels has come down by 75% since 2009, and other interesting facts. This is part 2 of the Guardian’s fight against fossil fuels and climate change, focusing on the switch to solar and hope. If you get the Guardian app, you can sign up to …read more

Donald Sutherland to fellow Canadians: “change the government”

Monday, October 5th, 2015

Donald Sutherland, while attending the Toronto International Film Festival, was asked about the Canadian federal election on Oct 19, 2015. Thanks to the Conservative government’s changes to the Elections Act, Sutherland as a resident of the US has been rendered unable to vote and he has been very vocal about it in the media, especially given his feelings about the current Stephen Harper government. Donald is the son-in-law of Tommy …read more

“When Hipsters Dream of the 1890s” – an abridged version of my hipster essay is now in Briarpatch Magazine

Thursday, May 7th, 2015

Briarpatch Magazine, one of Canada’s oldest lefty political mags, has published an abridged version of my earlier essay on heritage hipsters and colonialism redux. If you want to read the original and longer post (with a far drier title) it is here: Settler & pioneer “heritage hipster” styles in the age of Idle No More, Chinatown gentrification, &c. Thanks to Briarpatch for republishing this essay & thanks to its chief …read more

Post-mortem on the old Eaton’s building: an interview with Cesar Pelli

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

The TD Bank building and Eaton’s building by Cesar Pelli, photo © Michael de Courcy, mid-1970s This is not a true post-mortem, since Cesar Pelli‘s 1973 Eaton’s building has not actually been demolished—and how rare it is to be able to say that in Vancouver, now one of North America’s capitals of demolition. However, the building might as well have been demolished because it has effectively disappeared. Pelli, one of the …read more

Turbo Architecture

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

This example of blobitecture is being proposed for Vancouver, apparently to be squeezed between two older buildings on the waterfront in the historic neighbourhood known as Gastown. There has been no public hearing regarding the building, so the public have taken to social media to express what seems to be more displeasure than pleasure. Celebrated former city director of Planning Ray Spaxman has spoken out against it, as have a …read more

Colonial aesthetics and Ralph Lauren

Saturday, December 20th, 2014

In a direct line from my earlier post on the heritage hipster style as a settler colonial aesthetic, here is another exhibit in the colonial museum of fashion: Ralph Lauren using genocide-era vintage photographs of native men in western dress as part of its recent marketing campaign. Not surprisingly this campaign has not gone down well. Sherman Alexie This week in colonial propaganda masquerading as history, we have Ralph Lauren …read more