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In 2002, artist Brian Collier created an interdisciplinary, complex intstallation entitled Some Properties of Water. The work is “a multi-phased project centered on the different ways in which we perceive water.” On his website, Collier describes the work as having three phases:

Phase 1, Collection and Documentation
For this phase 81 separate samples of water were collected and placed into hand-made plexiglass test tubes. The sample sites were documented with photographs, maps, and journal entries. Once all the samples were collected the documentation was turned into 3″ x 3″ booklets and hung on a wood and monofilament line display rack. The collection boxes holding the water samples were also displayed.

Phase 2, Evaporation
In this phase the collected water samples were poured into glass-bottomed trays and left to evaporate into the exhibition space. The installation consisted of eighty-one 3″ x 9″ framed archival digital prints, eighty one 3″ x 3″ glass-bottomed wood trays on a custom-made wood table, three wooden collection boxes containing eighty-one Plexiglas test tubes, and eighty-one water samples.

Phase 3, Residue
The final phase of the project looks at the residue left in the glass bottomed traysfrom the evaporated water samples.

We have used this work by Collier as inspiration for one of the projects in our own interdisciplinary curriculum.

A quick search on YouTube for “Ceramic Water Filters” turns up many hits. Here are a few that might be of interest. The techniques for creating ceramic water filters are similar in that all of these examples use some form of a hydraulic or mechanical press. The press we use with the TAMU Water Project is related to this technology.

• UNICEF: Ceramic filters improve water quality in Myanma

• Ceramic Water Filter. This one is essentially a television commercial for a ceramic water filter.

• Rescue Task Force. Our friend and partner, Manny Hernandez, was part of this delegation and you can see him in one of the still images if you look carefully.

April 2008 – South Africa

Despite clear evidence of a lethal epidemic in the Ukhahlamba District Municipality (UKDM) – which includes the towns of Barkly East, Maclear, Sterkspruit and Elliot – municipal authorities have yet to issue a public warning .

An official health report pointed to a breakdown in a water purification works in October last year and called for urgent action – but no action has been taken.

Tap water from Southampton, Massachusetts, was named Tuesday the best-tasting among samples from the nation’s small-town water departments.

The water was judged on three attributes: clarity, bouquet and taste. Earlier, public works departments took part in statewide competitions.

Also take a look at the National Rural Water Association web site.

Bryan Collegiate High School, 2008As part of a nine-week enrichment course at Bryan Collegiate High School in Bryan, Texas, members of the TAMUwaterproject are working with a group of 9th grade students to explore issues and artworks related to water and social justice. Inspired by the installation, “Some Properties of Water” by artist Brian Collier, the students collected water samples from various locations. They labeled their samples with information to document the date, time, location, and reason for collecting each sample and saved the water in used plastic water bottles. As a temporary installation site, the students installed their samples on a shelf in the back of the science room which is also serving as their art classroom for the course.

Bryan Collegiate High School, 2008

Watch this brief video documentary on You Tube about health issues related to consuming contaminated water. This is a powerful, personal video. It shares the experiences of a woman and her life as a result of poisoned water in Tucson, Arizona.

The LIVE GREEN Teacher Grant program, a Discovery Education program presented by General Motors, challenges middle school teachers to develop innovative ideas for furthering environmental and energy sustainability. Teachers will identify an issue or problem, create a plan to address it, and integrate the topic into classroom teaching.

Earn a $1,000 LIVE GREEN grant – 40 grants will be awarded to teachers for the most forward-thinking ideas. In addition, the 40 recipients will be treated to an exciting online professional development program designed to help them reach their school’s specific green initiatives, including a free digital camera to document and share the experience!

Think about your vision, apply for a LIVE GREEN grant, and pass on a brighter future to your class.

“Another one for the TAMU blog” writes Manny Hernandez.

We are very pleased and proud to announce yet another achievement for one of the TAMU Water Project members, Oscar J. Muñoz. Read the press release below.

Congratulations, Oscar.

Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Oscar J. Muñoz, recently completed the prestigious Emerging Leaders in Public Health program, a nine-month executive education program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Muñoz is the Deputy Director for the Texas A&M, College of Architecture, Center for Housing and Urban Development, Colonias Program. “I am excited about having completed this intensive leadership program. The program provided me with additional skills to address crises in the public health field related to human resources, communication and financial management.”
The Emerging Leaders in Public Health Program is designed to prepare the next generation of public health leaders by identifying and training those individuals with the talent to serve in significant leadership capabilities in the next decade. The program’s topics include leading and managing in a turbulent environment, analyzing crisis scenarios and assessing their potential impact on one’s organization and community, creating sustainable organizations in public health and managing an increasingly diverse workforce. The methods used to facilitate the sessions include personalized coaching, action learning teams, on-site seminars and peer coaching.
Scholars attend three retreats in Chapel Hill, in addition to access to distance learning opportunities. The program features faculty from the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Public Health and the Kenan-Flagler Business School.

Another point of information in reference to the dangers of plastic used for containers in bottled water. Manny

Plastic bottle chemical may be harmful: agency – Yahoo! News

A chemical in some plastic food and drink packaging including baby bottles may be tied to early puberty and prostate and breast cancer, the U.S. government said on Tuesday.

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