HUMAN BY WONDERLAND #21
A newsletter about design and creativity, and how they contribute to a better world.
Hello, Friends. Welcome to Edition #21 of HUMAN.
For you today, we’ve got:
Creative: the structural processes that unleash creativity at Wonderland
The Internet: reviwewd from Dall-E AI to blow-hole powered green energy.
Architecture: Future-focused city design is finally becoming truly futuristic
Aesthetic: Ardhira Putra without constraints leads to 80’s inspired beauty
It feels strange, but structure is a key element in the creative process. To explain this, and the value that structure can bring to creativity, we dived into what it looks like at Wonderland, and how we use it to unleash our creative teams.
Saudi Arabia has unveiled plans for a 170KM long, car-free, vertical city.
Fast Company has shared their top-50 most innovative companies list for 2022
The UniWave 200 has exceeded expectations in the production of clean energy
The toy industry needs to revise itself and plan for an eco-future.
Amazon’s 2022 CO2 output is beyond shocking; we need to use greener options.
The development of Dall-E poses a good question: who owns art in the future?
As a side note, check out the Ancient Coins created by Dall-E.
Investments in climate tech are still growing even as other categories shrink.
Reimagining our approach to Algae by bringing it into our homes.
New York Times: mixing journalism and mixed reality for better storytelling.
Curious about the ethics of AI? So was Robert Long. Check out his podcast.
A Smarter Ambition for Future City Planning
The 2020s seem to be the decade where we are easily bogged down in negative thoughts. From the news to our social feeds, to watching the TV - for those of us who still do - it’s incredibly easy to get stuck in the bad news. As we write this, the world is being struck by forest fires and heat waves, EU countries are implementing restrictions on air conditioning, the Ukranian war is still going, and, to top it off, a recent study had found rainwater everywhere - even Antarctica - to be unsafe to drink.
However, if you dig a little deeper, and look for it, there is also good news. Things that inspire and stimulate, and override the negative articles that have assumed the throne of current affairs. One such example is a series of 10 ambitious and future-focused city plans from around the globe, designed by some of the worlds biggest architecture firms such as BIG, SOM, and OMA.
With projects from the United States and Malaysia to Egypt and India, these future cities are sleek, modern, and designed with sustainability and livability in mind. Our personal favourites - and the ones we want to cover here - are the Smart Forest City in Mexico, and the Line in Saudi Arabia.
Designed by the Italian architect Stefano Boeri, The Smart Forest City in Mexico draws inspiration from the Maya, and pays homage to their culture and heritage, and their unique “relationship with the natural and sacred world”, according to Boeri’s studio. The city (pictured above) will contain 7-and-a-half million carbon-absorbing trees across its 557 hectare footprint and be capable of housing over 130,000 people in affordable, plant-covered homes. The goal, according to Boeri’s studio, is to “pioneer a more sustainable way of cityliving” and create “an urban ecosystem where nature and city are intertwined and act as one organism”. From our own perspective, it’s easy to see the connection between the Smart Forest City design, and the ancient Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan, both in the way the modern designs incorporate water and greenery, and in the way it’s designed for liveability.
Equally amazing is The Line, which we love for its sheer uniqueness and out-of-the-box approach to city planning. Recently unveiled by the government of Saudi Arabia, The Line is a 170-kilometer-long, 500-meter-tall linear city that has been planned as part of the wider Neom mega-development. Once completed, The Line is projected to house a population of nine million people, despite being just 200 metres wide, and promises a transport system that can connect both ends of the 170km long city in just twenty minutes. The Line an alternative city plan to the traditional circular or square designs we’ve used over the past few-thousand years, and Mohammed bin Salman - the crown prince of Saudi Arabia - has said that it is “model for nature and preservation and enhanced human livability.”
While many of these cities will be years or even decades away, and others may remain the concepts they currently are, they still offer a vision of hope. We can see organisations and countries are looking for new ways of living and working, of operating and building, and the more that recognised architects partner with nations to develop a cleaner, greener, more symbiotic future, the more likely it becomes that designs such as these eventually become realities.
Jakarta-based illustratior and motion designer Ardhira Putra’s has created a range of immersive and unique, 80s-inspired Super Nintendo simulations. Titled Full Freedom, the project demonstrates the joys that can be unveiled when creatives are cut loose.
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Thanks for reading,