I promised you bells! 


For “In the Background ambience” please link here to Timeless productions –then scroll down slightly, to click on 1.“Harmony by Design.” Like aural magic The Bells of Arcosonti will sound. Then minimize that window, take a few deep breaths, and come back and let your self go – enjoy this memorial  and the life work of a visionary man . . . Paolo Soleri.


“In the Background. . . lets turn the tables. Take a picture of yourself or someone else as a shadow, a reflection, or a lesser part of a scene . . .”


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I cast my reflection . . .

Paolo, is written across the mirror. Soleri wind chimes are in the fore.





    Dr. Paolo Soleri, architect, ecologist, builder, theorist, died recently on April 9, 2013, at an age of 93 years.



His ideas generated a lean and frugal methodology for approaching life on earth, similar to 20th century visionaries Buckminster Fuller and E.F. Schumacher.






Cosanti was the the residence and sculpture studio of Soleri and his staff, in Scottsdale, Arizona.



An Arcosonti artist forges a brass wind bells to help create income for the Cosanti foundation.




The merging of architecture with ecology

was a concept Paolo named Arcology.



Paola Soleri was one of the last surviving apprentices of the legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright, but in the late 1940’s Soleri broke fellowship with him over Wrights concept of The Broadacre City.



Soleri favoured a compact and more densely populated self sustaining city.

“Paolo Soleri’s sustainable theories were decades ahead of their time and yet largely overlooked during an era when urban sprawl defined the American Dream,” wrote Snowden Bishop of the Arizona Green Magazine.


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Phoenix, Arizona – USA

In 2011 Soleri commented that “the gigantism of the car landscape and the consequent urban sprawl are the main obstacles to sustainability. The Choice is between the hermitages of urban sprawl and the leanness of the city self containment – a reformulation of the American Dream that is a reformation of culture away from materialism.”









Arcosonti is an experimental eco-town located 60 miles north of Phoenix.







Paolo contended that “we have become hyper consumers possessed by materialism,” and the automobile culture “has segregated our communities, wasted our resources and moved us away from the glory of culture, which should be appreciated as a great miracle.”




Todays city planners scramble to revitalize urban cores using green building practices similar to Soleri’s evaporative cooling and solar techniques.




Soleri was strongly influenced by the philosophy of Jesuit Palaeontologist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, who once wrote that “our duty, as men and women, is to proceed as if limits to our ability did not exist. We are collaborators in creation”.



Here is an excerpt from the UK’s The Guardian, by Oliver Wainwright –

Paolo Soleri Obituary



“If you are truly concerned about the problems of pollution, waste, energy depletion, land, water, air and biological conservation, poverty, segregation, intolerance, population containment, fear and disillusionment,” reads the sign at the entrance to Arcosanti, “join us.”
















Beyond the placard lies the proposed solution to this list of ills:










                       Google image


An otherworldly landscape of concrete domes and soaring vaults rising out of the Arizona desert, like a cross between an ancient Mayan ruin complex and the Star Wars cities of Tatooine.


















This is the experimental eco-town of Arcosanti;



The lifetime’s work of the visionary Italian-born architect Paolo Soleri . . .



                                                                                                                                                                          Google image

who has died aged 93.

Rest in peace . . .


and let us

ring those bells!


“Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.” Teilhard de Chardin

Note – the Woww wind series will return next week – sorry for the delay . . .  Bruce.


13 thoughts on “In the Background – PAOL0 SOLERI: LETS RING THOSE BELLS

    • Your welcome – I enjoyed learning about Paola myself. I also enjoy looking at the diverse posts on your site like one with photos from Peru and the the thoughtful psot you wrote on Jesus’ parable of the workers in the vineyard. Well said.

    • The buildings at Arcosonti are built from reinforced concrete for sure, and as I’m a carpenter, I’m quite certain that the columns at Cosonti, must also be reinforced concrete. It may be possible that some adobe construction has been used. In the South West of the U.S.A. adobe is a common ‘vernacular’ (traditonal)building material. Both adobe and concrete act as thermal mass (storing either heat or coolness), and in desert climates this allows buildings to stay a more constant livable temperature – i.e – in summertime, this eliminates or reduces the need for day time electic air conditonering, and in wintertime little extra heat is required, other than solar energy.

      As for your question “Are there any large cities who have incorporated Soleris’ ideas?” – In the most general sense no, but nothing is competely black or white, in my opinion. To elaborate, most modern metropolis’ have built out to the suburbs or the slums (depending if the nation is rich or poor), then relying far to much on the automobile, which of course now, is a major problem for cities and the earth as a whole! As I say in the blogpost, many progressive municapilites in the past few decades have begun ‘green revitilizion’ to downtown cores (very much like Soleri envisioned), and also they’ve begun to provide massive funding to mass transit. Some have even gone so far as to de-construct existing freeways and bridges (Seoul,Korea is a fantasic example of such deconstruction!) So change is beginning to happen. We need to encourage more of these paradigm shifts, for certain.

      I aprreciate your interest and your questions! You are doing great work over on your own blog, “Luminate”, around de-contructing the myths surrounding “the beauty industry”, and so much more about ‘modern society’. It is encouraging that a young person like your self, is so aware and active. Keep up the good work, Tanya. It gives me hope!

      Best regards – Bruce

    • Beautiful bells, aren’t they? Your Tuscon breakfast looked delicious, Pierr. Thanks for dropping in the other day and liking the post about Paulo. Peace and best wishes . . . Bruce

  1. wonderful serendipity as I just found the bell i bought at arcosanti in ’88 hidden in a box. glad to know the bell master is still ringing. be well.

    • That is wonderful Dave. It makes me think this big world out there somewhere, is really here (I don’t mean this literally), and the connections we make mean something. I’m not sure what? 🙂 Although it does give me meaning! Thanks.

    • To read Davids comment from the Smile Calm bolg, this is serendipity times 2. It is really amazing you were actually in Scottsdale, when I posted this a few days ago, and I’m glad you enjoyed. it. hope your time there has gone well. Bruce

      • I was there for work and had a very nice visit but am glad to be home in the PNW this weekend. You’re right, this was a great example of serendipity times 2.

  2. Thanks for this tribute to a true original. We have visited Cosanti several times and have a collection of bells.

    Arcosanti is definitely on our Bucket List.

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