Golan Levin’s Info-graphic Stencils are for the Graffiti Loving Environmentalist

by , 06/23/11

info graphic art, data visualization, information art, golan levin artwork, infoviz stencils, graffiti toolkit, graffiti data art

Making a bold, politically charged environmental statement just got easier with Golan Levin’s customizable graffiti stencils. Combining the worlds of data visualization and urban art, Levin’s easy to use artistic toolkit provides a cool way to create readily-digestible information in the form of info-graphics.

info graphic art, data visualization, information art, golan levin artwork, infoviz stencils, graffiti toolkit, graffiti data art

Whether used to depict the scale of sea-life depletion, or to advocate for gender equality, the graffiti stencil frames take otherwise dry data and bathes them in a new light.

Levin, an interactive media artist and director of the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University, developed this design during a “Speed Project” challenge by the public art initiative Free Art and Technology Lab. The design and instructions are available to download for free online, dismantling financial barriers so that anyone can make their statements public.

+ Golan Levin At

Images courtesy of Golan Levin

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  1. lazyreader June 24, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Who cares, energy usage among the rest of the world is steadily growing. The United States will require 45 percent more energy by 2030. The rest of the world is going to require 60-70 percent more. China is building 100 gigawatts of coal fired power annually. Our friends at GOOGLE are priding themselves by building solar power arrays on their headquarters worth maybe a few megawatts. Meanwhile they are building 100 megawatt data centers and servers just to move bits and bytes around. The sheer volume of talk about energy, energy prices, and energy policy on both sides of the political aisle. Most of what we think we know about energy are mostly myths. Energy demand will never decline in any respectable level. More efficient cars, engines, and light bulbs will never lower demand. Government intrusion on the energy sector will raise prices more and tamper with the markets worse than the Supply & Demand factor. And energy supply on this little planet of ours is practically infinite. Expanding energy supplies mean higher productivity, more jobs, and a growing GDP. Across the board access to energy will improve our environment and energy isn’t the problem, energy is the solution to nearly all our problems. Most of what we think of as energy waste is irrelevant and trying to improve energy efficiency is almost as pointless. Discarding energy is not the sin the environmentalists would have you believe.

    We keep inventing new ways to waste energy and have good reason to celebrate when we do. Only by throwing most of the energy away that we can put what’s left to productive use. we waste energy to produce a mere 100 watts of light in a filament and why? The sun offers us 100 watts of light for free, through a simple skylight or window yet we pay good money for the bulb and the electrons that power it. A mere laser is even more inefficient than the bulb. That laser beam doesn’t deliver more power than the bulb or the skylight, quite the contrary, it delivers less, and we waste huge amounts of ordinary light producing it. It takes big arrays of flash lamps, mounted around a large gas cavity, to stimulate the emission of the focused laser. The laser burns light to generate light and tosses away most of its fuel in doing so. But we run it anyway, because lasers can cut metal, measure landscapes, operate on tumors, restore our eyesight so we can actually use that natural or artificial light to read, all because we wasted so much energy on that laser. The 2nd law of thermodynamics accounts for entropy, vast sums of energy will always be wasted. Most of the electricity we put into our machines winds up useless heat energy which must be exhausted or our devices will fail. We dump one unit of heat into some distant power plant’s cooling tower so that we can dump four more units of (unwanted) energy out of the window of our living room, that’s called air conditioning, not to mention Refrigerators. It takes perhaps ten units of raw thermal energy to pump one unit of ultrareliable electricity into a microprocessor chip and to then pump the waste heat back out all in the name of Facebook, YouTube and internet porn.

    Almost all of our demand for energy derives from energy’s capacity to refine energy. Cars don’t run on oil, they run on gasoline or diesel which has to be refined from oil. And further energy is required to enhance gasoline with nitrogen and higher octane and catalysts. We shouldn’t fool ourselves into thinking we can persuade others to curtail their consumption. You cannot get or maintain such things without dissipating vast sums of energy.

    Even in nature enormous quantities of energy are wasted to produce sugars, plants are green because they only permit and use certain frequencies of light to commit to photosynthesis; The rest of the spectrum, the omitted colors, the UV light, the gamma rays, the X-rays, the microwaves……………..totally wasted. The leaves of the tropical rainforests are smooth and waxy, designed to reflect the vast majority of that intense equatorial sunshine.

    If the ancient Egyptians had backhoes and diesel fuel back then, they wouldn’t have wasted all that human energy on pyramids. Either way they wouldn’t have been efficient even with the efficient machines, they probably would have built far more pyramids or bigger ones…………….

  2. caeman June 23, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    Encouraging the illegal act of graffiti? For shame, Inhabitat.

  3. kellyball86 June 23, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    I think spreading this message without aerosol spray paint would be more less hypocritical…

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