Have been enjoying following weather sites on Twitter. Wunderground always quite informative. A great site on aerosols from Huelva, Spain. Most droll is often Britain’s Met Office. Weatherman Dan this evening: “At the risk of repeating myself, fog for many overnight, clearer in the northwest.”
I spent a very enjoyable day and half with NY Daily News reporter Vickie Cavaliere and two photographers. We took air samples with the spore suckers at 6 different NYC sites, from a bosquey Brooklyn Heights neighborhood to hipster Williamsburg, from Chinatown to the Bruckner Expressway. Interesting and somewhat surprising results.
I note that some of the comments ask, What did I expect? I guess the point is that I did not expect to find nothing. Only in the clean room where semiconductors are made is there nothing. What was surprising was how much carbon took over the sample along the Bruckner Expwy. We think we have controlled pollution, but I wonder if we really have. Asthma is now second leading cause of morbidity and mortality in US. Asthma is constriction of the airways, an inflammatory response certainly related to large number aerosols lodging there.
Here are the paintings that are part of the section of AIR entitled “El Greco’s Clouds.”
1. First, an example of early medieval art, with no sky at all. This is a representation of Jesus Meeting the Woman at the Well, from the Ravenna mosaics:
2. In the Tres riches heures of the Duc de Berry, the sky is a clean blue. The action of the heavens is depicted above the sky, in the tympanum that shows the state of the zodiac. This is the painting for June.
3. Pieter Bruegel the Elder is among the first to give the sky — not the zodiac — an active role in the moods and fates of human life. Here are four pictures of different seasons where the clouds play leading roles.
4. In Rubens’s landscapeof Baucis and Philemon, the painter shows an apocalypse in which a storm converts the entire landscape into a toppling, convective whirl.
5. El Greco makes the sky and its clouds the foundation of heaven. Here, the world of the earth is dark and still. The lively world is that of the clouds, into which the soul of the Conde de Orgaz is being drawn.
6. In his later paintings, El Greco makes even his human figures become like sinuous curves of rising air. Here, the whole landscape and its people are en-heavened by becoming convective like the weather.
Loved talking with Larry for an hour about AIR! Here is their very accurate description of the interview: Larry Meiller visits with a naturalist and author who has written a fascinating book about air, and why we should protect and treasure it fiercely.
Paul Mutimear has taken astonishing pictures of moths in flight. He tells me that he did it using a good digital camera and a strobe. The images show the complexity and suppleness of the flight of living beings. You can almost see the bound vortices around the stopped images of the moving wings.
Here are a couple pictures of the launch from Walt’s Point on the eastern scarp of California’s Sierra Nevada, overlooking the Owens Dry Lake and the White Mountains beyond. This is the spot from which Kari Castle set her first distance record. In the second picture, you can just see the top of the spine of the rock towards which you must launch. In the picture in AIR, Kastle is flying abreast of this point.
Credit: Sam Logan
William Bryant Logan is a certified arborist and president of Urban Arborists, Inc., a Brooklyn-based tree company. Logan has won numerous Quill and Trowel Awards from the Garden Writers of America and won a 2012 Senior Scholar Award from the New York State chapter of the International Society of Arborists. He also won an NEH grant to translate Calderon de la Barca. He is on faculty at NYBG and is the author of Oak and Dirt, the latter of which was made into an award-winning documentary. The same filmmakers are currently planning a documentary made from Air. He lives in New York City.