Can You Guess What’s Wrong In This Picture?

The photograph series “For What It’s Worth” by photographer and artist Dillon Marsh is at the very least surreal. By combining photographic precision and computer-generated imagery Marsh produces illogical images as an attempt to provide a graphic visualization of the quantity of copper extracted from the Blue Mine in Springbok, situated 550 km north of Cape Town.

Blue Mine, Springbok (1852 to 1912) 3,535 tonnes of copper extracted

The blue in ‘Blue Mine’ is in reference to the color of rocks in the mine as a result of copper coming into contact with oxygen in the air. Back to the mid-19th century copper was the primarily driving force behind the establishment of relatively remote area of the country such as Springbok, Okiep and Nababeep as formal towns. Following operations that began in 1852, the Blue Mine is recorded as the first commercial mining endeavour in South Africa. South Africa hasn’t been so commercial before, and with the discovery of copper deposits the town became a centre for mining prospectors with movement of people coming to Springbok also attracted by its near and steady supply of drinkable water.

Nababeep South Mine, Nababeep (1882 to 2000) 302,791.65 tonnes of copper extracted

By 2007, however, most of these mines had run their course and production had stopped almost completely. As an attempted to represent the uncertain future for the towns and people of the region, Marsh placed impressive copper spheres in the arid scene of what once served as copper mine. “Whether they are active or long dormant, mines speak of a combination of sacrifice and gain”, describes Marsh. He also adds “their features are crude, unsightly scars on the landscape – unlikely feats of hard labor and specialized engineering, constructed to extract value from the earth but also exacting a price”.

Jubilee Mine, Concordia (1971 to 1973) 6,500 tonnes of copper extracted

Mash’s intention is “to create a kind of visualization of the merits and shortfalls of mining in South Africa, an industry that has shaped the history and economy of the country so radically”.  On the one hand, the development of the mines around Okiep contributed significantly to the demise of copper mining in south-west of England. On the other hand technology and skill were still transferred from these mines to other parts of the world. Unesco classifies the principle value of the copper mine site of Springbok an extension of the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape in the UK, for instance, also sharing a close association with other mining landscape in Australia, Brazil, India and Mexico.

Tweefontein Mine, Concordia (1887 to 1904) 38,747.7 tonnes of copper extracted

Shanghai Metal Corporation offers a wide range of metals such as copper, widely used in varying artifacts. To find out more, please visit our Website, WordPress, LinkedIn , Twitter , Facebook  and Instagram. Or you could try our new mobile app by scanning our QR code. Moreover, we sell directly from Alibaba , EC21 ,Tradekey or directly at sales@shanghaimetal.com.

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Source and picture credit: springbokinfo.co.za, designboom.com, visualnews.com, ignant.de, whc.unesco.org, dillonmarsh.com

Camilla G.//SMC Editor

The Eden Project: Bringing The Ancient Copper Back To Life

Copper is known to be a major metal and an essential element used all around the globe. It is the oldest metal known to man and was first discovered and used about 10,000 years ago, however it was only alloyed in bronze circa 3000 BC, making it the first engineering material known to man. image

The first facts about copper relates to the pyramids of Cheops, located in Egypt. Archeologists have found water pipes partly made from copper. Piping network has been used in Egypt for more than 5000 years. Therefore, copper was believed as the symbol of the eternal life. In the hieroglyph system, the ancient Egyptian people utilized the ankh symbol to represent copper.

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Nowadays, copper is not only restricted to piping work, but it has expanded to include heating, cooling and refrigeration, electrical wiring, electronics, power generation and transmission, automotive applications, antimicrobial uses and many more. Moreover, copper can still be considered a symbol of eternal life for the Egyptians; however it can also be considered a sustainable material; when taking in consideration the processes of extraction, production and retail.

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Therefore, The Eden Project based in Cornwall, England is one of the most innovative and high profile of the Millennium Projects. It is the largest plant enclosure in the world built in the lightest and most ecological way possible. Eden’s aim was to build the Core (education center) with the highest sustainable specifications, challenging the conventions for sustainable design and construction, with targets above the national benchmarks and using carefully selected materials. The team considered the complex interaction between a range of criteria of sustainable issues, specifically waste neutrality, positive futures, recycled content, certification of materials and local sourcing implications.

Eden Project

The key criteria affecting the choice of roofing material were:

• to make a bold architectural statement to complement Eden’s ground-breaking architecture and landscapes;

• to be durable, strong and relatively lightweight;

• to be malleable enough to cope with the complex structure of the roof;

• to have excellent sustainability credentials, and

• most importantly for a building dedicated to education at Eden, the roof should highlight a progressive message relating to sustainable development issues.

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Panoramic view of the geodesic dome structures of Eden Project eden3 eden1

While copper can be relatively expensive for a roof and is in strong competition with other roofing materials, it is robust, even when turned into sheets, malleable, completely waterproof and very long lasting: physical properties that made it ideal for the roof’s complex design. Aesthetically too, copper is the only common metal; other than gold,  that isn’t grey or silver, making it one of the most easily recognized metals, thus aiding engagement with visitors as a first step to relating the sustainability message.

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As an international manufacturer and supplier for copper sheet and bronze sheet, Shanghai Metal Corporation produces slitting, edging, and oscillates winding to fit your specific copper requirements. For more information on our copper products please visit our website here. Be sure to join the conversation in our Linkedln group, Facebook and Instagram.

You can also read more articles by our team at SMC:

Who To Blame (Or Thank) For Your Braces

Most Creative Statues

How To Do A Better Job Than Jack

Sources: The Eden project

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William P.//SMC Editor