- The Bubble Economy - Is Sustainable Growth Possible?
Why the global economy has become increasingly unstable, and how financial "de-carbonization" could break the pattern of bubble-driven wealth destruction.
The global economy has become increasingly, perhaps chronically, unstable. Since 2008, we have heard about the housing bubble, subprime mortgages, banks "too big to fail," financial regulation (or the lack of it), and the European debt crisis. Wall Street has discovered that it is more profitable to make money from other people's money than by investing in the real economy, which has limited access to capital--resulting in slow growth and rising inequality. What we haven't heard much about is the role of natural resources--energy in particular--as drivers of economic growth, or the connection of "global warming" to the economic crisis. In The Bubble Economy, Robert Ayres--an economist and physicist--connects economic instability to the economics of energy.
Ayres describes, among other things, the roots of our bubble economy (including the divergent influences of Senator Carter Glass--of the Glass-Steagall Law--and Ayn Rand); the role of energy in the economy, from the "oil shocks" of 1971 and 1981 through the Iraq wars; the early history of bubbles and busts; the end of Glass-Steagall; climate change; and the failures of austerity.
Finally, Ayres offers a new approach to trigger economic growth. The rising price of fossil fuels (notwithstanding "fracking") suggests that renewable energy will become increasingly profitable. Ayres argues that government should redirect private savings and global finance away from home ownership and toward "de-carbonization"--investment in renewables and efficiency. Large-scale investment in sustainability will achieve a trifecta: lowering greenhouse gas emissions, stimulating innovation-based economic growth and employment, and offering long-term investment opportunities that do not depend on risky gambling strategies with derivatives.
The "objective" world is one of facts, data, and actuality. The world of the "nonobject" is about perception, experience, and possibility. In this highly original and visually extravant book, Branko Lukic (an award-winning designer) and Barry Katz (an authority on the history and philosophy of design) imagine what would happen if design started not from the object but from the space between people and the objects they use. The "nonobject," they explain, is the designer's personal experiment to explore our relation to the observable world. So they show us an umbrella that puts us in a harmonious relationship with nature by sending falling rain rushing through the handle from an upturned top that resembles a flower; a spoon with a myriad of tiny bowls that allow us to savor our soup; a "superpractical" cell phone with keypad, speaker, and microphone on every surface. They imagine the ideal material, "Thinium," incredibly thin and incredibly strong, environmentally and aesthetically beneficial. They show us clocks and watches that free us from time told by artificial demarcation and consider the possibility of a digital camera that captures the part of the scene we didn't see. In NONOBJECT, product design meets philosophy, poetry, and the theater of the imagination. The nonobject fills us with surprise and delight.
- Faster, Smarter, Greener: The Future of the Car and Urban Mobility
A call to redefine mobility so that it is connected, heterogeneous, intelligent, and personalized, as well as sustainable, adaptable, and city-friendly.
The twentieth century was the century of the automobile; the twenty-first will see mobility dramatically re-envisioned. Automobiles altered cityscapes, boosted economies, and made personal mobility efficient and convenient for many. We had a century-long love affair with the car. But today, people are more attached to their smartphones than their cars. Cars are not always the quickest mode of travel in cities; and emissions from the rapidly growing number of cars threaten the planet. This book, by three experts from industry and academia, envisions a new world of mobility that is connected, heterogeneous, intelligent, and personalized (the CHIP architecture).
The authors describe the changes that are coming. City administrators are shifting from designing cities for cars to designing cities for people. Nations and cities will increasingly employ targeted user fees and offer subsidies to nudge consumers toward more sustainable modes. The sharing economy is coaxing many consumers to shift from being owners of assets to being users of services. The auto industry is responding with connected cars that double as virtual travel assistants and by introducing autonomous driving.
The CHIP architecture embodies an integrated, multimode mobility system that builds on ubiquitous connectivity, electrified and autonomous vehicles, and a marketplace open to innovation and entrepreneurship. Consumers will exercise choice on the basis of user experience and efficiency, aided by "intelligent advisors," accessible through their mobile devices.
An innovative mobility architecture reconfigured for this century is a social and economic necessity; this book charts a course for achieving it.
- Lord of the Rings (en anglais)
A selection of six poster paintings from the definitive illustrated Lord of the Rings. The 50 paintings contained within the centenary edition of The Lord of the Rings in 1992 have themselves become classics and Alan Lee's interpretations are hailed as the most faithful to Tolkien's own vision. This new poster collection reproduces six of the most popular paintings from the book in a format suitable either for hanging as posters or mounting and framing.
- Solar System and Rest Rooms - Writings and Interviews, 1965-2007
Reviews, art criticism, theoretical texts, interviews, catalog statements, notecards, magazine interventions, and other writings on art and art in the form of writing by a leading conceptual artist; many pages reproduced in facsimile.
Artist Mel Bochner became a writer, he says, almost by accident. In 1965, as a young artist in New York, he was out of a job; Arts Magazine paid him $2.50 for every review he turned in, whether they published it or not; a month of review-writing paid his rent--$28.00 a month. His reviews and articles provoked a range of unexpected reactions. "At that time, artists who wrote were looked at suspiciously, as if writing somehow tainted their visual practice," he writes. A painter friend attacked him publicly for "joining the enemy." Bochner soon began testing the boundary between writing-as-criticism and writing-as-visual-art. Solar System & Rest Rooms collects both Bochner's writings on art and his writings as art, offering more than fifty pieces--reviews, art criticism, theoretical texts, interviews, catalog statements, notecards, and his groundbreaking "magazine interventions"--many reproduced in facsimile. Bochner is a leading figure in conceptualism; his 1966 installation at the School of Visual Arts Gallery Working Drawings and Other Visible Things on Paper Not Necessarily Meant to Be Viewed as Art is considered to be the earliest exhibition of conceptual art. Solar System & Rest Rooms chronologically documents the work and ideas of this important artist over a span of forty years, as well as providing a unique perspective on the conceptual and post-minimal art scene in New York. This book offers a rare insight into what it means to be an artist whose visual practice is inseparable from the sustained practice of writing. Mel Bochner has lived and worked in New York City since 1964. His work has been exhibited internationally and is included in major museum collections throughout the world.