1. 2 examples
a. Body as a material for art
1. The subjects of the portraits, on the other hand, looked at her with expressions she recognized immediately.“ I am always me, I am always new,I am always me” (page 22).
2. The central plaza was full of Venusians, presumably on their way home: tall broad-shouldered young Chinese, for the most part, with intent eyes and big smiles" (page 40).
b. Landscape as a material for art
1. “Always the entire landscape will be curving up around you, rising on both sides and meeting overhead, so that the look of the land will envelop you like a work of art—a Goldsworthy inscribed on the inside of a rock, like a geode or a Faberge egg” (page 36).
2. "Take an asteroid at least thirty kilometers on its long axis. Any type will do—solid rock, rock and ice, metallic, even ice balls, although each presents different problems" (page 33).
c. Life as a project as a material for world building
1. “The sight of blood was its usual red shock. The cubs arrived late, and Wahram wondered if their lesson had taught the many thing but the need to grow up, the need to run fast” (page 41).
2. " This was a surprise; he had heard she had once been a designer, but she had shown no interest in the Wegenerwhen they arrived" (page 40).
d. Community/ Collective/ Society as a material for utopian world building
1. “Wang will explain more to you, as will Wahram from Titan. Goodbye, my Swan. I love you” (page 30).
2. " Wahram was very aware of this, having lived the process many times;so he paid attention to what hedid when he traveled, on the lookout forthose first repetitions that would create the pattern of that particular momentin his life. So often the first time one did things they were contingent,accidental, and not necessarily good things on which to base a set of habits.There was some searching to be done, in other words, some testing ofdifferent possibilities. That was the interregnum, in fact, the naked momentbefore the next exfoliation of habits, the time when one wandered doingthings randomly. The time without skin, the raw data, the being-in-the-world" (page 46).
2. Raw material?
To be totally honest I do not completely understand the question or what you are looking for as an answer but ill try my best. I think that that global warming and changes in environment can be the raw material of this text. They talk about different biomes and the different statuses of them and how they are changing. This could be connected. Swan is impressed with the state of earth and then we realize that this place as actually in poor condition, it is ruined.