Thursday, June 23, 2005

The Keyboard Art Car

Imagine the look of such a vehicle, mostly beige, a few squares of black and other colors mostly smooth. A closer look reveals what it is covered with and an even closer look reveals that it spells out actual writing. I assume that this will lead to a very detailed study.
The keyboard art car was conceived around 1999-2000 and involves the collection of keyboards, the removal of their keys (letters, numbers, F8 (fate) Enter/ escape, and arrow directional keys) and the attachment of these to a car in quotes about technology.
The keys will be attached to a fiberglas matrix in the form of quotes or lines of dialogue about technology and then attached to the car in sheets. The ENTER keys will go on the driver's door, the ESCape keys on the passenger's side, F8 keys on the front and BACKSPACE on the trunk and the arrow keys will serve as pin striping. I will use the number keys to spell out Pi to as many spaces as will fit on either the trunk or roof.
I will enlist the aid of volunteers for the initial layout and immortalize their names on the car.
As of June 2005 I had collected the keys from 50-60 boards but due to my recent discovery of Freecycle have suddenly hooked up to many more.
I do not own a car and have not lined one up at this time but I think this is the easy part. I am _sure_ there is someone out there who would love to have this done to their car.

UPDATE__ Sept 3 2005:
Thanks to Freecycle (link above, now over 3,000 chapters worldwide) I now have around 11,000 letters. I think I'll eventually need about 25,000-30,000 letters since many (Q, Z, X, J, etc.) will be only rarely used. I am presently sorting them, a long and tedious task.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Where I shop in San Francisco-2

An ongoing listing of where to buy cool stuff in SF-

Let's start with a wonderful San Francisco institution and one of the best places to buy art materials in the city.

SCRAP' Center for Recycled Art Parts) was created by SF Public Schools art teachers as a central place for businesses and individuals to donate materials. It is a huge place filled with an amazing variety of neat stuff (frame stock, tile and stone samples, graphic materials, artificial flowers & plants, kids' books, and much, much more [I once found a 3'X7' EXXON flag!]) at ridiculously low prices: $7.50 for a brown shopping bag full of whatever you can fit.
A bit tricky to find the first time but worth the trip. There is a map on the website which will help. I always caution people against taking their credit cards or too much money the first time lest they go overboard.

Building Resources Another great non-profit, sort of a construction version of SCRAP. Lots of windows, doors, tile, and an eclectic assortment of garden stuff and appliances. About a half-mile from SCRAP so a good one-two

Plumbing supplies:
Two retail establishments, one 1637 Fillmore between Geary & Post, Central Builders Supply is open Mon-Sat, has lots of plumbing and HVAC. Where SF plumbers shop on this side of town.
Map here:,+CA&sa=X&oi=locald&radius=0.0&latlng=37775000,-122418333,3838543089714629565
The other, Standard Plumbing and Hardware, 1019 Clement St near 11th has a very good selection of cast iron (up to 6") and is open on Sunday.
Map here:

Discount Builders, 1695 Mission, open 7 days. Decent prices, will cut wood to order, lots of tools and other hardware. One of the last centrally located lumber yards in SF.
Map here:
Beronio Lumber, 2525 Marin (near SCRAP and Building Resources)- Hardwoods, paneling, flooring. Quality wood products and lots of interesting scraps of wood for carving. Not cheap. Open Mon-Sat.
Web site and map here:

Linen Factory Outlet, 1001 Clement Street, at 11th Ave. a great factory-seconds linen store 400 thread-count sheet sets for $30-$40, 600 thread-count for $45.00. I bought the thickest, most plush towels I've ever owned there last year-leopard print Ralph Lauren bath towels for $7/ea. And because of this store I never sleep on anything less than 400 count sheets.
(same block as Standard Plumbing, above)
Map is slow to load: