Make meaningful things

Make meaningful things

Adam Greenfield:

[S]ome of the most present features of our daily environments abscond from our perception. Whether useful or inconsequential, organic or artificial, laden with symbolism or bereft of imposed meaning, they’re always there, so they’re never seen — and in this invisibility they acquire an entirely new sort of interest. A few years ago now, Nurri Kim told me about her intention to document a feature of the Tokyo streetscape that met all of these conditions, the ubiquitous blue construction tarp.

This, excerpted  from Adam’s essay in Tokyo Blues a book of photographs by Nurri Kim (with a foreword by Anne Galloway), and the first project from Do projects, a combined effort by Adam, Nurri, and a loose network of friends and collaborators. Committed to “learning by doing,” Do projects is about books, ideas, and an ambition to design and make meaningful things.

The above excerpt serves for the book, but could just as well as serve for what I know of their approach — and why I’m particularly enthusiastic about this experiment. They bring focal attention to an environment, bringing a kind of tangible register and vernacular to systems previously unseen.

Years ago, I spent some time living in Japan surrounded by the system of blue tarps of note here, categorizing them mentally, as I’m wont to do. Before meeting Nurri, I thought I’d been alone in noticing their awkward yet somehow graceful purposings for use. I was not, I was delighted to find.

A congratulations, and to the start of purposeful noticings.

Do projects.

[Image: Selected images from Tokyo Blues, Nurri Kim. Do projects.]