UC Berkeley (Nick)



Aug '08 - Jun '10

  • The Wonders of White Sands

    Nick Sowers
    Jun 14, '09 9:30 PM EST

    image source Two days ago I drove through the country's largest military installation, the White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) in New Mexico. The site of the Trinity detonation--the world's first atomic explosion--is there, but can only be visited twice a year. Unfortunately I had not timed my visit... View full entry

  • The Reclamation of Governors Island

    Nick Sowers
    Jun 9, '09 9:52 PM EST

    I never joined the army because at ease was never that easy to me. Seemed rather uptight still. I don't relax by parting my legs slightly and putting my hands behind my back. That does not equal ease. At ease was not being in the military. I am at ease, bro, because I am not in the military. Mitch... View full entry

  • Memorial Day: DC

    Nick Sowers
    May 26, '09 10:23 PM EST

    For me, Memorial Day has never been much more than an excuse to have a barbeque, an extra day to enjoy some sunshine. It marks the coming of summer. Flipping burgers and throwing back a beer: it's the American thing to do. I put myself in Washington D.C. this year for the express purpose of... View full entry

  • the Cyclorama

    Nick Sowers
    May 21, '09 4:08 PM EST

    I spent Monday at Gettysburg National Military Park. It's monument mania out there. It's funny--you do this driving tour along the front lines, cannons lined up everywhere, and then it doesn't take more than one turn and you are spit out at a strip with McDonalds, Wendy's, the whole nine yards... View full entry

  • Zombies!!

    Nick Sowers
    May 14, '09 6:17 PM EST

    I arrived at the Storefront for Art & Architecture this morning, just after it opened its portals. It was about 11am. I was inside, studying the exhibit that opened a month ago on WorkAC's 49 cities. Little did I know, I had just stepped into the Twilight Zone. A group of people who looked... View full entry

  • thesis reviews pt. 3: my humble opinion

    Nick Sowers
    May 7, '09 10:47 PM EST

    Another professor who wasn't at the wrap up discussion told me later on: "When else do you just get to do whatever the hell you want?" While you can do whatever the hell you want, that's such an incredible task to tell yourself what you're not going to do because you don't have all the time in the... View full entry

  • thesis reviews pt. 2: the discussion

    Nick Sowers
    May 7, '09 10:31 PM EST

    At the end of reviews we gather in a big circle. Thesis students, "rising" thesis students, and even a good number of 1st years were in attendance. The jury and our esteemed thesis faculty form a thin ring on the opposite side. Somehow I ended up behind them, isolated in a corner next to John... View full entry

  • thesis reviews pt. 1: the work

    Nick Sowers
    May 5, '09 9:08 PM EST

    The storm that had been brewing on the 9th floor of Wurster Hall, such a heavy, latent cloud above the rest of the building, unleashed its load down the elevators this past Friday night. Miraculously, the precipitation (in drops of cyan, magenta, yellow, and black, and an occasional charcoal... View full entry

  • Annals of armchair traveling: to Cuba via headphones

    Nick Sowers
    Apr 30, '09 12:28 AM EST

    Rolling Rock loosens language to tumble without warning. Beware: blogging after alcohol. I am missing the road a bit. I leave for New York in 12 days. (anyone wanna meet up? I'm there until May 18 or so) So one great thing about being on the road is simply the constant movement. You're always... View full entry

  • thesis thoughts on the threshold

    Nick Sowers
    Apr 22, '09 8:36 PM EST

    From Okinawa, Japan to the Environmental Design Library, 2nd floor of Wurster Hall. One third the way through the trip. One helluva long way to go. It's good to see familiar faces around. The design studios are hives of activity that I am staying away from. The library is humming, clicks of... View full entry

  • LIVE from the inside of a carry-on xray machine

    Nick Sowers
    Apr 14, '09 4:19 AM EST

    title says it all. I'm here at Narita Airport, on my way back to San Francisco from Okinawa. I'm alive, didn't get bitten by a Habu snake or run over by a Marine. More on Okinawa later... Following my interest in how to represent exclusive, forbidden spaces, I got this idea as I was going through... View full entry

  • Okinawa Days 1-5

    Nick Sowers
    Apr 6, '09 11:39 AM EST

    Damn it feels good to be sitting down with a LAN cable and an hour to kill before I collapse into sleep. I just finished another long day of walking on Okinawa, my longest yet. Today I visited about 12 military installations on a 25+ mile trek. The first five days have been great. I've seen and... View full entry

  • bento

    Nick Sowers
    Apr 1, '09 1:40 PM EST

    Moving south...View Soundscrapers Location in a larger map Arrival at the Kagoshima train station, the threshold to the city. Within the station you are welcomed by shop keepers offering samples of the local specialties. In no rush, I happily sample fish cake with cheese in the middle and then a... View full entry

  • Drawing the void

    Nick Sowers
    Mar 24, '09 1:33 AM EST

    It's been 10 days since my last post--so much happens so fast, I feel like I have five unwritten posts and they keep stacking up. Tokyo continues to impress me with its soft contours, but I should add that there exists a shrill, sonic violence inside of it. For one, there are these ultra high... View full entry

  • soft Tokyo

    Nick Sowers
    Mar 13, '09 12:02 PM EST

    It's been a week now since I got into Tokyo, city of a million vending machines. Ever find yourself wandering on alleyway with a hankering for cream of corn soup? For about 80 cents, some chosen vending machines will dispense a yellow corn-soup like liquid into a paper cup. And it's pretty good... View full entry

  • Denied at the DMZ

    Nick Sowers
    Mar 6, '09 1:36 PM EST

    I should have known it. My tour of the most fortified border on the planet would be cancelled. Well, I showed up at the USO office (right across from Yongsan Garrison) and the bus was there, along with about 20 other people. So far so good. We boarded and shipped out of Seoul, barreling up the... View full entry

  • Architecture Snacks

    Nick Sowers
    Mar 3, '09 2:40 PM EST

    Snacking in Korea rules. If you are the type that enjoys grazing on the street, this is one country you need to visit. Pochang machas (street food stalls) are sometimes so numerous they make it very difficult to move around. They are purveyors of fried things, crunchy things, and squishy things... View full entry

  • Central Park, Far East

    Nick Sowers
    Feb 26, '09 7:28 AM EST

    I'm holed up in my Korean hostel, the room itself like a bunker 3/4 underground with a high slit window for light and air. I caught a cold, so it's ramen soup and peace and quiet until I'm ready to head out again. The hum of the refrigerator and this window to the interweb are all I have for... View full entry

  • Albert Speer in Korea

    Nick Sowers
    Feb 22, '09 7:55 PM EST

    War Memorial of Korea Sanctuary of National Defense I visited this museum/memorial which sits on the Yongsan Garrison property, though it is more like a bite taken out of the base by the city without. It is the only part of the base which is publically accessible. You enter along an axis with a... View full entry

  • Spring lecture series

    Nick Sowers
    Feb 20, '09 7:55 AM EST

    I will have to catch some good lectures while abroad to make up for all of these that I am missing, starting with Eyal Weizman this Friday and finishing with Ito in April. I get back from Japan three days after his lecture... (I shouldn't be complaining. I will get to see a couple Ito buildings... View full entry

  • Soundscrapin'

    Nick Sowers
    Feb 18, '09 9:21 PM EST

    Arrived in Korea last night from Honolulu, with a stop at Narita. All the time in transit afforded me a few lessons in Hangeul script, which I am now able to read but at a very slow pace. I also had a chance to work on my sound, of which I've recorded almost 18 hours but sadly have only had time... View full entry

  • am:journal is online

    Nick Sowers
    Feb 3, '09 12:10 PM EST

    Hey all you graphic content and media-devouring people, there's a new feasting ground to momentarily satiate your appetite. It's a journal put out by Berkeley grad students (and we do put out, let me tell you). Some of you may have already seen the print version which we sent out to various... View full entry

  • The Tanks of Havana

    Nick Sowers
    Jan 29, '09 9:01 PM EST

    So I'm back from Cuba--it was a hellish final day. Food poisoning, lost my passport (got inside the US Interests Building after all). What a way to begin, eh? I say it was worth it. Stemming from my thesis, I was paying close attention to the appearance of tanks around the city. These vestiges of... View full entry

  • more from Cuba

    Nick Sowers
    Jan 19, '09 12:46 AM EST

    El Castillo de Atune A mock-Spanish Colonial fort built in 1941 is the police headquarters for Habana Vieja, the tourist district in Havana. Turrets for riflemen sit next to modern day turrets: CCTV. A wonky antenna tops the castle. The building houses a police force which is trying to keep its... View full entry

  • US Interests in Cuba

    Nick Sowers
    Jan 17, '09 3:40 PM EST

    Hola from Cuba! I flew in to Habana from Panama about a week ago and met up with a colleague from Berkeley, Edwin Aguedelo. We stayed in the Hotel Riviera for one night and have been staying at a casa particular, a family-owned apartment since then. It's been a wild week at times, and awfully... View full entry

  • Panama Frank and friends

    Nick Sowers
    Jan 8, '09 8:46 PM EST

    I'm here in Panama at the beginning of my Branner fellowship, looking at the decommissioned US bases. Our military left in 99, and since then Fort Amador at the mouth of the canal has been growing as a tourist destination. Lots of restaurants have popped up along the causeway which leads out from... View full entry

  • MOUT

    Nick Sowers
    Jan 8, '09 8:30 PM EST

    For those who don't live and breath military acronyms (I don't, that's for sure), MOUT stands for Military Operations on Urban Terrain. I had heard of mock-Arab cities being built in the desert to simulate urban warfare. I never expected to encounter such a thing in person…   On... View full entry

  • the new year begins in TJ

    Nick Sowers
    Dec 31, '08 8:54 PM EST

    So the semester's been up for a couple weeks now. I've been in Orange County visiting in-laws (sounds so grown-up, doesn't it?) and friends, trying to catch up with life and get ready for more of it. I haven't had a chance to put up my final sound art project for you all to check out, and now the... View full entry

  • final reviews recap

    Nick Sowers
    Dec 12, '08 6:45 PM EST

    Monday and Wednesday were final reviews of the 201 studios. Since I wasn't in a studio this semester, working only on thesis prep and a few other classes, I had the luxury of wandering around and absorbing the spectrum of studio activity that took place this fall. I ended up staying with Ron... View full entry

  • tuesday night sound art

    Nick Sowers
    Dec 9, '08 2:23 AM EST

  • ×Search in:

Affiliated with:

Authored by:

Other blogs affiliated with University of California, Berkeley:

Recent Entries