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Nathalie Miebach 10/08-12/08

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Project Description: “Weather Suits for Cities”

Nathalie Miebach Image “Weather Suits for Cities” is a continuation as well as a new stage in my ongoing project of building low-tech data-collecting devices that gather weather data from specific locations. This data is then translated into sculptures, using basket weaving as my grid through which to translate the information into 3D space.

Weather happens everywhere and all the time, but it is experienced differently in a city than in a rural environment. For the past 2 years, I have lived on the tip of Cape Cod, surrounded by ocean, sand and wind, recording and translating weather data into sculpture. There, weather is constantly in the foreground, shaping daily life in ways that are very different than in a city, where it seems to fall more into the background. Nightly weather forecasts on TV or on the radio are focused almost exclusively on the human species, the car and how snow, rain, or wind will impact the daily commute. The urban infrastructure creates another difficulty in recording actual weather data as buildings can influence the temperature, pressure and wind conditions from one block to the next. A series  of mini-weather phenomena happening in different parts of the city can accumulate and distort the weather pattern over a city significantly – causing precipitation or smog that further affects the way we experience weather in a city.

“Weather Suits for Cities” focuses on exploring this difference of both human perspective and physical variability of weather within an urban environment, for which I will build a portable weather station that is entirely constructed on my body. Almost like a ‘weather suit’, this weather station would record weather on a minute-by-minute basis – while I am walking through a park, riding the T or biking to work, to record the invisible meteorological changes within the urban landscape. At the same time, this weather suit will be my vehicle through which to address larger questions as to how the meaning and function of weather articulates itself and changes in an urban environment, particularly in an age of  human-induced climate change.

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