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kottke.org posts about Charles and Ray Eames

Powers of Ten flipbook

posted by Jason Kottke   Jul 27, 2015

Using images found on the internet through Google’s visually similar images feature, NASA, U.S. Geological Survey, and various mapping services, Kelli Anderson recreated part of the Eames’ iconic Powers of Ten as a flipbook. Watch a video here:

Or play around with a virtual flipbook at Anderson’s site. This could not possibly be anymore in my wheelhouse. Here’s the nitty gritty on how she made it happen.

The inspiration for making discontinuous-bits-of-culture into something continuous goes back to 2011. Some of my friends camped out on a sidewalk to see Christian Marclay’s The Clock. Like a loser with a deadline, I missed out-only catching it years later at MoMA. In the day-long film, Marclay recreates each minute of the 24-hour day using clips from films featuring the current time-on a clock or watch. It runs in perfect synchronization with the audience’s day (so: while a museum crowd slumps sleepily in their chairs at 6am, starlets hit snooze on the clocks onscreen.)

We Work Remotely

Powers of Ten and Cosmic Zoom…which came first?

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 31, 2012

The Eames’ Powers of Ten and Eva Szasz’s Cosmic Zoom both came out in 1968 and were based on Kees Boeke’s 1957 essay called Cosmic View. This seems like an incredible coincidence. I couldn’t find anything online about which film came first or if there was any influence one way or the other, so I thought I’d ask if anyone knows anything about which came out first. Hit me at jason@kottke.org.

Charles & Ray Eames: The Architect and the Painter on PBS

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 08, 2011

Speaking of the Eames, the recent documentry on the pair is going to be on American Masters on PBS.

American Masters presents the first film made about America’s most important and influential designers, Charles and Ray Eames, since their deaths in 1978 and 1988, respectively — and the only film that explores the link between their artistic collaboration and sometimes tortured marriage. Jason Cohn and Bill Jersey’s definitive documentary delves into the private world the Eameses created in their Renaissance-style, Venice Beach, California studio, where design history was born. Narrated by James Franco, Charles & Ray Eames: The Architect and the Painter premieres nationally Monday, December 19 from 10-11:30 p.m. (ET/PT) on PBS (check local listings) as the 25th anniversary season finale of American Masters.

Ice Cube opines on Charles and Ray Eames

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 08, 2011

Before Ice Cube became a rapper, he studied architectural drafting at the Phoenix Institute of Technology, so he has some interesting things to say in this short appreciation of Charles and Ray Eames.

They was doing mashups before mashups even existed. It’s not about the pieces, it’s how the pieces work together. You know, taking something that already exist and making it something special. You know, kinda like sampling.

(via ★interesting)

Update: The NY Times has an interview with Ice Cube about the video.

Q: How are your drafting skills these days?

A: You don’t want to live in nothing I draw. I got a certificate. For a year. In ‘88. I don’t think I picked up a T-square since.

Charles and Ray Eames documentary

posted by Jason Kottke   Oct 28, 2011

Eames: The Architect and the Painter, a documentary on the husband and wife design duo, will be out in theaters in mid-November.

The husband-and-wife team of Charles and Ray Eames are widely regarded as America’s most important designers. Perhaps best remembered for their mid-century plywood and fiberglass furniture, the Eames Office also created a mind-bending variety of other products, from splints for wounded military during World War II, to photography, interiors, multi-media exhibits, graphics, games, films and toys. But their personal lives and influence on significant events in American life — from the development of modernism, to the rise of the computer age — has been less widely understood. Narrated by James Franco, Eames: The Architect and the Painter is the first film dedicated to these creative geniuses and their work.

The DVD is already available for pre-order on Amazon. (via @aaroncoleman0)

Powers of Ten

posted by Jason Kottke   Oct 12, 2010

There’s finally a stable copy of Charles and Ray Eames’ seminal Powers of Ten video available online, courtesy of the Eames Office YouTube account.

Powers of Ten takes us on an adventure in magnitudes. Starting at a picnic by the lakeside in Chicago, this famous film transports us to the outer edges of the universe. Every ten seconds we view the starting point from ten times farther out until our own galaxy is visible only a s a speck of light among many others. Returning to Earth with breathtaking speed, we move inward — into the hand of the sleeping picnicker — with ten times more magnification every ten seconds. Our journey ends inside a proton of a carbon atom within a DNA molecule in a white blood cell.

Core77 and Eames Office are holding a competition to see who can make the best 2-minute video response to Powers of Ten.

Eames’ A Communications Primer

posted by Jason Kottke   Feb 18, 2009

From 1953, A Communications Primer by Ray and Charles Eames.

The film covers information theory, language, feedback, etc. The audio from a punchcard machine — used to “check its pulse” — is pretty great and starts around 17:00. (via infosthetics)

What’s inside Angelina Jolie?

posted by Jason Kottke   Oct 16, 2008

Angelina Jolie, powers of a ten. By Eamesfiddle.

Eames stamps

posted by Jason Kottke   Jun 17, 2008

The Charles and Ray Eames stamps are available for your USPS mailing pleasure. (thx, doug)

Demo film of the Polaroid SX-70 made

posted by Jason Kottke   Feb 14, 2008

Demo film of the Polaroid SX-70 made by Charles and Ray Eames but set to a soundtrack of The Cramps performing Garbageman. Wot? (via spurgeonblog)

The work of Charles and Ray Eames

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 09, 2008

The work of Charles and Ray Eames will be honored with a set of 16 US stamps later this year. (via chris glass)

Cosmic Zoom is a 1968 animated short film

posted by Jason Kottke   Nov 27, 2007

Cosmic Zoom is a 1968 animated short film directed by Eva Szasz, made under the auspices of the National Film Board of Canada, and was the inspiration of the Eames’ wonderful Powers of Ten. Cosmic Zoom was in turn based on Cosmic View: The Universe in 40 Jumps by Kees Boeke.

Design Within Reach is screening The Eames

posted by Jason Kottke   Aug 04, 2006

Design Within Reach is screening The Eames Film Festival, featuring the short films of Charles and Ray Eames, at cities across the US. Unfortunately for me, a small town called New York City doesn’t seem to be on the schedule. :(

Powers of Ten

posted by Jason Kottke   Jun 09, 2006

Some sweet soul has put Powers of Ten online. If you’ve never seen it, I can’t recommend it enough:

Powers of Ten is a short film by Charles and Ray Eames, whose work you may have previously sat in. The film starts on a picnic blanket in Chicago and zooms out 10x every 10 seconds until the entire universe (more or less) is visible. And then they zoom all the way back down into the nucleus of an atom. A timeless classic. (via youngna)

Update: How in the hell did I miss this Powers of Ten Simpsons couch gag? (thx, ray and jeff)

And, the rest of the (AIGA Conference) story

posted by Jason Kottke   Sep 20, 2005

Here’s a sampling of the rest of the AIGA Design Conference, stuff that I haven’t covered yet and didn’t belong in a post of it’s own:

For more of what people are saying about the conference, check out IceRocket. There’s a bunch of photos on Flickr as well.