Please contact AMANDA if you are interested in the position!
The long saga of the bottles has gotten exciting again!
And this is an ATEN success story.
I posted a request on the network for help building a bottle wall, including one “expert” in some form of construction to consult with me before the build day. A member forwarded the post to his nephew, concrete builder Paul Adam, who was interested in the project and in the idea of ATEN and contacted me. He ended up coming over and answering all my questions and more, as well as moving a bunch of heavy rocks into the shape of a foundation. In return, I am telling everyone I know to call him if they need fine concrete work done (hardscape, hearth, shower, etc.)!
Two other ATEN members volunteered to help with the build, and one brought along an extra helper, so we were set! Throughout the day, I was reminded of one important reason why I like to collaborate — because it is more likely that the right questions will be asked. For example, I would have totally forgotten to document the process if Diane hadn’t reminded me! I emphasized at the beginning that this was an experiment, so as a result, everyone’s full brain was engaged, thinking of how to make this structure a success.
We worked from 11 to 4 with a lunch break in the middle.
Slopping the mortar on the wall (with gloves!) was surprisingly fun. The texture reminded Charlotte of cookie dough.
The wall/bench is currently half-way done. We decided to stop for it to dry before adding more weight. I also decided to add some wire mesh into the next mortar layer and in the sides, to reinforce the strength. Finish day will be Feb. 4th.
I’m not sure when my neighbors started saving bottles for me, but it back was in 2010.
A few large parties plus the regular flow of consumption yielded a handsome collection before too long, and Then…
We had enough where it became time to figure out how to clean those labels off.
The internet do-it-yourself-ers said, “for sure, use Oxiclean”!
So we soaked them in warm buckets, peeled and scrubbed with rubber gloves, rinsed in the kiddee pool. It’s so fun being outside! Weston observed, and emptied more bottles; Fernando took pictures:
The start of 2011 brought unemployment to Chad. For 3 1/2 months, he had extra time on his hands, so he clocked in to work at the recycling center. The repetitive chore was transforming our pile into a sorted, clean collection, and probably helping with his sanity, too.
When Chad went back to work, the bottle-cleaning factory pretty much shut down, but we already had quite a stockpile of usable bottles. They sat and waited…
** THANKS **
I would like to thank Bunny White for encouraging me to do something with the bottles “Now!” Also of course to all the helpers who worked on this project: Chad, Paul, Charlotte, Mike, Diane, and Katarina. Thanks to my neighbors, Josh, Johnny, Weston, Christina, and all their friends, for donating bottles! For inspiration, I would like to thank Scott Webel from the Museum of Ephemerata, Susan Maynard of Spunky Monkey Ranch (now Further Farm), The Orange Show and Beer can House in Houston, Vince Hanneman of the Cathedral of Junk, the Buddhist temple-builders in Thailand, Earthship-makers, and all the folks who posted information on the internet for me to find out how easy this is. This project is also completed in the honor of someone who designs and builds with light in mind: my brother-in-law, architect Brett Rhode.
I think I wrote an updated “Artist’s Statement“. Oh yeah, I did. And I rewrote my bio for the Austin Time Exchange Network + a longish post about what I’d like to do as far as a free school kinda thingy.
I am an aspiring artist via amateur community arts activator…
I have lived in Austin since Jan. ’05 and have been performing, living creatively, and collecting skills from my many part-time jobs. (nanny/babysitter… cook… personal assistant… shopkeeper/art center co-organizer… pedicab driver… carpenters’ apprentice, clothing mender..) What I love most about Austin= family, friends and the adventurous music and art scenes.
I joined aten (finally) in the Summer of ’09 and became a (volunteer) board member in January 2010. My interests as a member of aten are: enjoying productive interactions within a community; sharing in the wealth of knowledge available from the people around me; encouraging friends and neighbors to join; and manifesting my visions via managing helpers. My activities/interests as a board member include: helping new and potential members to follow through in the joining process by attending an orientation; doing what I can to keep the blog changing and the e-news flowing (…with Karen); and facilitating communication among members and volunteers, always with the goal of increasing aten’s overall functionality and effectiveness.
I have a blog (https://amandahbjones.wordpress.com) and a goal – to establish a back-yard Recycling Center (/vocational arts school / tourist attraction)! I will be trying to keep it updated so that you can find out what services I need and what’s going on at the site.
Teachers and Learners Forum post
I have a lot of thoughts/ideas for the Teachers & Learners of ATEN, and anyone else in Austin who wants to be involved in cooperatively increasing opportunities for free learning exchanges, as a model of an equitable framework for education.
My goals are three-fold:
1= short-term, with the aim of getting people together at one time + place to share thoughts, feelings and ideas
2= middle- to long-term, ongoing
3= potentially far-reaching
#1 A fundraiser for ATEN (“Timeraiser”?) / A day of free workshops and classes
Here’s how it could work:
We secure a space for a day-long event, such as Space12, Carver Library, or somewhere else, depending on needs of classes offered.
Participants take workshops offered by Teachers and pay ATEN for the experience (Total Hrs Attended). ATEN pays Teachers for teaching time + prep. (This could be expanded to service-providers as well, if they are able to offer something to more than one person per hour. For example: chair massages for ~10 minutes, etc.)
#2 a. Teaching:
My background is in site-specific installation art and improvisational performance. Some of the subjects I would enjoy teaching include: recycling arts (a student-inquiry based course), paper mache (puppets, masks, sculpture), earth arts, drawing from life, costuming for performance, creative brainstorming techniques, and dance and creative movement (for health, expression and amusement).
I am interested in learning more about so many things, so whatever others have to offer is probably of interest to me. At the top of my list: earth sciences (chemistry, environmental science, etc), green building techniques, html basics, drums, conversational Spanish, Alexander Technique.
c. Fostering a nurturing, educational, and creative environment:
I have a large yard, a good landlord, some friendly neighbors, and the starts of a functional workshop space. I would love to host workshops and demonstrations on a regular basis!
#3 Research Institute
Some auxiliary educational activities could take place, such as small groups of people taking on specific topics to investigate and documenting their findings. For example, two+ people may choose to interview someone else about that person’s area of knowledge, and to create a video from the exchange. Others may be studying a subject such as chemistry and decide to create an educational demo about soil-testing. What distinguishes this “Research Institute” idea from classes and lessons is the added dimension of creating some sort of record of the knowledge so that it can be shared and built upon.
Ta da! That’s all I have to say about that, for now.
Some tags I’ve liked
Some All of the accompanying artworks are still available!
Pretty decent pricing, wouldn’t you say?
<> <> Work Party <> <>
Location: 2608 Rogers Ave. 78722. Park either on the street or in back lot (accessible from alley on Walnut Ave.).
7:30 -til- 10:30 -or- whenever you need to go!
(This is the announcement I wrote for broadcast on the Austin Time Exchange Network:
Like a barn-raising, only it’s a Studio + Puppet Theater (outdoors). I am an artist who is currently “thinking-in-terms-of-the-collective”, as I move in the direction of creating a new “place”. Much effort is required at this stage; creative collaboration is invited! (Think: public art [etc]. in a yard.)
The organization follows a steady diet of Improvisational Planning, …
and will provide:
music, bug-spray, herbal iced tea, a bunch of wood pallets to arrange, tools and supplies,
(+ If you want to: Bring something that you think would make a good “materials organizer” or puppet.
comraderie, good ideas, and exchanges!
I think that 8 o’clock is really the ideal time (lately) to get started on outside work.
That leaves little time to work on stuff!
Thus the need for a barn-raising!
“Hey, you need help too? Maybe we’ll all go to your garden next week!”