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    Our Cities Could Get a Whole Lot Smarter

    Pieces of SolaRoad, concrete blocks topped with solar cells, were recently installed in a bike path in Holland.SolaRoad Remember having to stay at home and wait for phone calls? (If you’re below a certain age, you can consult old movies, books, or TV shows—or just trust me on this.) It wasn’t so long ago that […]

  • El Anatsui Denver

    Where Even Concrete Is Expensive, Artists Must Get Creative

    The atmosphere in El Anatsui’s studio is somewhere between a Renaissance artist’s workshop and a recycling plant. The roof is made of thin, uninsulated metal sheets that offer little protection against the hot Nigerian weather. Bags overflowing with bottle tops, bought from local distilleries, are piled all over the floor. Around a dozen young men […]

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    Each Piece of Trashed Plastic Can Find a New Life as Art

    In one important way, grocery stores were very different during my childhood. Catsup was only packaged in glass bottles. Soda came in either aluminum cans or glass bottles, and there was no bottled water—no Fuji, Poland Spring, or Evian. Crackers were wrapped in waxed paper. Everything was bagged in paper. Now, some 30 years later, […]