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The Tree of 40 Fruits (Yes This is For Real)

The Tree of 40 Fruits (Yes This is For Real)

Learn
    The tree of 40 fruit is a piece of art, a research project, and a form of conservation by contemporary artist and Syracuse University art professor Sam Van Aken. Aken has spent years taking different forms of stone fruit and grafting them into a single overarching species of tree. Now many exist. For much of the year, the trees look like just any other. Then, in spring, they bloom to reveal a gorgeous, diverse, striking bouquet of flowers. Over the course of the next several months, Van Aken's trees produce an incredible harvest of plums, peaches, apricots, nectarines, and almonds. Many of these fruits look like nothing we've commonly seen in markets, which are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to varying fruit species. I remember when reading The Botany…
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Children Play in a Pile of Autumn Leaves, Rockland County, New York, 1953.

Children Play in a Pile of Autumn Leaves, Rockland County, New York, 1953.

Looking Back
I couldn't help but feel a strong twinge of nostalgia when coming across this photo from the LIFE archives. As we get older our memories from childhood fade and are replaced with new memories from adulthood. There are sensations, however, like a giant pile of leaves for me, that bring me right back to childhood. I, in fact, call October "leaf kicking month" to anyone who'll bother to listen to my maddening ramblings. The author of this LIFE archives passage says it best when he mentions, "for those of us who grew up in places where autumn meant crisp days, cold nights, falling leaves and the slight but unmistakable change in both the feel and the look of sunlight, one activity brings it all back home: playing around in a big pile of leaves." What…
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This is What A Meteor Shower Sounds Like

This is What A Meteor Shower Sounds Like

Looking Back
Sit back, turn out the lights, and get ready to be scared by mother nature. In August of 2011 The U.S. Air Force Space Surveillance Radar in Texas recorded echoes of the Perseid Meteors as they passed over the monitoring facility. Includes imagery of a meteor photographed by astronaut Ron Garan aboard the International Space Station. Give it a listen, it's haunting. (more…)
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BW – EP63: Are You You? with Artist Shantell Martin

BW – EP63: Are You You? with Artist Shantell Martin

Breaking Walls, Featured
On Breaking Walls Episode 63, we head to Mana Contemporary Studios in Jersey City, New Jersey for a chat with groundbreaking artist Shantell Martin. Shantell produces large scale murals and installations designed to invoke high vibrations from the audience, and get them asking more questions about life. If you haven’t seen Shantell’s creations and are now hearing this, I’d suggest you definitely go check to ShantellMartin.net. Seeing her work will absolutely give you larger context for who she is and why she approaches life the way she does. Highlights • Why Shantell was a morbid kid The importance of working on your weaknesses Why artists should treat themselves like business people How to get the confidence to put yourself out there How creating on the fly and trusting in one’s…
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Fourteen August, by Norman Corwin, Performed by Orson Welles

Fourteen August, by Norman Corwin, Performed by Orson Welles

Looking Back
"Congratulations for being alive and listening on this night! ... Millions didn't make it." - Norman Corwin's opening line of Fourteen August: A Message for the Day of Victory, as read by Orson Welles on August, 14, 1945.   Fourteen August is an impassioned message for the 1945 day of victory in Japan written, directed, and produced by Norman Corwin and movingly read by Orson Welles. While hints of racism towards the Japanese in this broadcast can't be ignored, we've got to remember the sentiment of the time. I'd like to think that since 1945 we've become, or are on our way to becoming, a much more open-minded society. As recent events tell us, we're not there yet, but I maintain hope that we're on our way. Remember we are all free…
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