4 thoughts on “New York Biotopes by Lena Steinkühler (HUM415/HUM425)

  1. Ana Doria-Quesada

    Not sure of what this means. How does it relate to what we are studying? What It looks like to me is a computer animation film showing inorganic things acting organic like in an urban environment like NY. What is the message? Biotope is a biological community. Is NY an inorganic biological community? It is a contradiction in terms and maybe that is the point of the movie? Visually it is very pleasing. The music adds to the pleasure in viewing. One does not think of NY as a calm, soothing place and the movie gives that impression. If the point of the movie is to shift one’s perception of an urban environment from hostile, sterile and dirty to a colorful, inviting, biologically thriving community, it fails to do that a some parts when those inorganic/organic things almost look like they will overtake and eat the human environment. The street lights multiplying and turning green in all directions would reek havoc with traffic. It is interesting that the filmmaker did not use actual organic things but used the man made things to give the impression of organic overtake of an urban environment. Is she saying that what we make will eventually take on a life of itself and multiply uncontrollably like a rain forest?

    1. apciv Post author

      It’s Steinkuhler’s senior project. She says “it deals with abstract plants and creatures, which change their forms because of insufficient living space and adapt themselves to the surroundings of the metropolis New York City. A type of metamorphosis, where the newly developed vegetation assimilates elements of the city and makes them useful for their own purposes. These creatures and plants, partly mechanical, partly organically in appearance, spread more and more over the city and fill it up with life.”

  2. Bob

    For some reason this reminded me of the films Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance and Powaqqatsi: Life in Transformation, which I think are better films thematically without having to include the cartoonish CGI. I guess the warning from my art school days is that form, in this case imagery, may not have any underlying function or even any reason behind it other than to look good. Sad, but true.

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