Mayor Bertrand Delanoë has made the environment a priority since his election in 2001, with popular bike- and car-sharing programs, an expanded network of designated lanes for bicycles and buses, and an enormous project to pedestrianize the banks along much of the Seine.
The sheep, which are to mow (and, not inconsequentially, fertilize) an airy half-acre patch in the 19th Arrondissement are intended in the same spirit. City Hall refers to the project as “eco-grazing,” and it notes that the four ewes will prevent the use of noisy, gas-guzzling mowers and cut down on the use of herbicides.
Philippe Baudelocque is a street artist in France. His work in chalk on dark walls around Paris, Marseille and other cities will stop you in the street to regard the intricate cosmic patterns that make up his animals. This hedgehog is another lovely example:
Filmed against the sunset skies of Marseille, France, A Bird Ballet is a moment with a flock of (what we assume are) quickly-shifting starlings, caught by filmmakers Neels Castillon and Mathias Touzeris as they were waiting to film something else completely. Music: Hand-Made by Alt-J.
The New York Times’ video profile of Max Mulhern’s “Aqua Dice” shows how the artist’s love for the sea and his interest in unknown outcomes came together into one project.
Fate adrift, these two giant sea dice were constructed out of plywood, pine, PVC and epoxy. Technically illegal — “you’re not allowed to put an object on the water that’s unattended, and you’re not allowed to go to sea if there’s not a constant watch on-board,” explains Mulhern, — they are designed to collapse on impact so as not to be a danger to any other vessels, and are brightly painted. They also have GPS in both of them, customized by technology students, to track where ocean currents are taking the dice and how far apart they are from each other.
“I’ve spoken to a lot of ocean scientists and they’re thinking that the dice will separate quickly,” he said. “What I like about that is the dual possibilities: there’s one throw and two outcomes, two possible destinations — and destinies.”
Whether you love art, love sailing or love the unknown, you can track the dice (and even bet as to where they’ll eventually land) on Mulhern’s site, on this map, or follow the journey on Facebook.