Slideshow: Ai Weiwei and the 2012 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion
The team behind the 2008 Beijing Bird’s Nest Olympic stadium are at it again. Herzog & de Meuron joined forces with Ai Weiwei to create this summer's commissioned installation at the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in London.
The installation invites visitors to explore the inner workings of the exhibit below the surface. The cork interior is protected by a platform that sits five feet above the ground. It gathers rainwater and creates a reflection pool to capture the changing colors of the sky. The designers made it a point to pay tribute to its predecessors. The 12 supporting beams represents each of the previous commissioned designs and the interior's contour is inspired by layering the foundations of the former Pavilions.
The Pavilion is presented as part of the London 2012 Festival, which is a series of events and performances that celebrates the 2012 Summer Olympics.
While Ai had a heavy hand in the design, he will not visit the installation. He is under investigation for pornography and bigamy in China and is prohibited from leaving the country. This won't be the first time Ai missed out on the Olympic festivities. Although he contributed to the Beijing National Stadium's Bird's Nest design, Ai distanced himself from the project, withdrew 2008 Beijing Olympics opening ceremony and criticized the event for its "pretend smile" to the outside world.
Former president of the ACLU Nadine Strossen discusses whether our society should always defend free speech rights, even for groups who would oppose such rights.
- Former ACLU president Nadine Strossen understands that protecting free speech rights isn't always a straightforward proposition.
- In this video, Strossen describes the reasoning behind why the ACLU defended the free speech rights of neo-Nazis in Skokie, Illinois, 1977.
- The opinions expressed in this video do not necessarily reflect the views of the Charles Koch Foundation, which encourages the expression of diverse viewpoints within a culture of civil discourse and mutual respect.
Going back to the moon will give us fresh insights about the creation of our solar system.
- July 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the moon landing — Apollo 11.
- Today, we have a strong scientific case for returning to the moon: the original rock samples that we took from the moon revolutionized our view of how Earth and the solar system formed. We could now glean even more insights with fresh, nonchemically-altered samples.
- NASA plans to send humans to a crater in the South Pole of the moon because it's safer there, and would allow for better communications with people back on Earth.
Pugs and bulldogs are incredibly trendy, but experts have massive animal welfare concerns about these genetically manipulated breeds.
- Pugs, Frenchies, boxers, shih-tzus and other flat-faced dog breeds have been trending for at least the last decade.
- Higher visibility (usually in a celebrity's handbag), an increase in city living (smaller dogs for smaller homes), and possibly even the fine acting of Frank the Pug in 1997's Men in Black may be the cause.
- These small, specialty pure breeds are seen as the pinnacle of cuteness – they have friendly personalities, endearing odd looks, and are perfect for Stranger Things video montages.
Jokesters and serious Area 51 raiders would be met with military force.
- Facebook joke event to "raid Area 51" has already gained 1,000,000 "going" attendees.
- The U.S. Air Force has issued an official warning to potential "raiders."
- If anyone actually tries to storm an American military base, the use of deadly force is authorized.