{ feuilleton }


• • • Being a journal by artist and designer John Coulthart, cataloguing interests, obsessions and passing enthusiasms.

Archive for February, 2010


Weekend links 4


Will at A Journey Round My Skull turned up this hand-coloured picture from Ronald Balfour’s illustrated Rubáiyát some of whose other drawings were featured here recently. That distant volcano is a curious detail. Related: Golden Age Comic Book Stories posted plates from Willy Pogány’s edition. • Authors on authors: China Miéville on JG Ballard; Rodrigo […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {borges}, {design}, {illustrators}, {miscellaneous}, {music} | 6 comments »


There’s something about Alice

There’s something about Alice | AS Byatt on Lewis Carroll.

Posted in {books}, {fantasy}, {noted} | Comments Off


The art of Hope Kroll


left: Wilhemine (2009); right: Strange Gifts (2009). Collage art by American artist Hope Kroll whose site has galleries of her work dating back to 2000. I forget where the tip came from for these but I suspect it was Monsieur Thom once again… Previously on { feuilleton } • Metamorphosis Victorianus • Max (The Birdman) […]

Posted in {art}, {collage} | 2 comments »




A Royal Family (Goliath Beetle) (2003) by Joianne Bittle. More insect art. Entomologia is a group exhibition of art incorporating and inspired by insects, on view at Observatory, Brooklyn, NY, from February 26th to April 4th, 2010. There are fourteen artists involved but not all of them have websites showing the work one might expect […]

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Ode to the Classics


In which photographer Mikel Marton works variations on Wilhelm von Gloeden’s nude studies of the boys of Taormina, Sicily. “Classic” has a double meaning here since Von Gloeden’s photographs are now considered classic works of early homoerotica (Oscar Wilde was an enthusiast) as well as borrowing their props and poses from Classical antiquity. The very […]

Posted in {eye candy}, {gay}, {photography} | 2 comments »


Les Papillons, métamorphoses terrestres des peuples de l’air


Illustrations by Pierre Amédée Varin (1818–1883) of the butterfly people from Les Papillons, métamorphoses terrestres des peuples de l’air (1862), a book by Eugène Nus and Antony Méray. These are from an Amédée Varin set at Flickr which also features some of Varin’s vegetable beings. Butterfly people have been turning up in my own work […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {illustrators} | 3 comments »


Jugend Magazine revisited


It was just over a year ago that I was wishing there was some way to see whole issues of Jugend magazine, the German periodical launched in 1896 whose Art Nouveau style gave its name to the movement in Germany, Jugendstil. Yesterday’s search for Heinrich Vogeler artwork turned up that very thing, scanned editions of […]

Posted in {art nouveau}, {art}, {black and white}, {design}, {illustrators}, {magazines}, {symbolists} | 9 comments »


Heinrich Vogeler’s illustrated Wilde


The Fisherman and his Soul. It’s always satisfying when a search intended to satisfy curiosity turns up more than you expect. The subject in this case was German artist Heinrich Vogeler (1872–1942) and the surprise was finding these illustrations for a German collection of Oscar Wilde stories lurking in the archives of the Visual Telling […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {illustrators} | 3 comments »


Weekend links 3


It’s a curious feeling when a drawing which is nearly 26 years old makes it out into the world. The image above is the cover of a new 7″ single release, Dominion of Avyaktam by metal band Orator, the picture being something I drew in 1984 entitled Mahakala after the Tibetan deity which it depicts. […]

Posted in {animation}, {black and white}, {books}, {electronica}, {fantasy}, {film}, {music}, {religion}, {science fiction}, {television}, {work} | 2 comments »


The recurrent pose 31


Two more variations on the Flandrin pose. The photo above is by Chris Knight who has a selection of luscious homoerotica if you look in his “Human Form” gallery. Thanks again to Thom! The picture below of French rugby player Maxime Médard is from a recent feature in Vanity Fair Italia with photography by Claudio […]

Posted in {gay}, {photography} | 1 comment »


Jorge Luis Borges’s lost translations

Jorge Luis Borges’s lost translations | A dispute with Borges’s estate has left works he produced with the translator Norman Thomas di Giovanni in publishing limbo.

Posted in {books}, {borges}, {noted} | 3 comments »


Contemporary bookbindings


Binding by James Brockman for The Special Bindings of Gwasg Gregynog (2004). Two examples from a stunning collection of contemporary bookbindings at the Guild of Book Workers’ website. These are the more traditional leather bindings but some of the others play with the form of the book in a variety of inventive ways. Thanks to […]

Posted in {books}, {design} | 2 comments »




German Military Underground Hospital, Channel Islands (2004). Photographs of undercrofts, catacombs and deserted passageways from Fiona Croft’s Subterrania series comprise a solo touring exhibition currently showing at the Newlyn Art Gallery, Cornwall until April 17, 2010. Meanwhile, if you’re in London and you fancy braving the chills of the St Pancras Church Crypt in the […]

Posted in {architecture}, {books}, {horror}, {photography} | 1 comment »


Michelangelo’s Dream


The Dream of Human Life by Michelangelo (1533). Michelangelo was of course homosexual. That obvious fact still needs restating, simply because generations of art historians have been embarrassed by it. Attempts to deal with the subject have a certain comic interest. E. H. Ramsden, who translated Michelangelo’s letters, refutes the slur of homosexuality with a […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {gay} | 9 comments »


Surrealist echoes


A page from Une semaine de bonté (1934) by Max Ernst. Dream of the Hungry Ghost (2003) by Colette Calascione. Elsewhere on { feuilleton } • The fantastic art archive Previously on { feuilleton } • Metamorphosis Victorianus • Max (The Birdman) Ernst • The Robing of the Birds

Posted in {art}, {books}, {fantasy}, {painting}, {surrealism} | 2 comments »


Sherbet and Sodomy


Cover art by Coker. We had Shock Headed Peters walking through Sodom yesterday so this novel from 1971 seems like a fitting follow-up. The eye-catching title is no doubt an allusion to Byron’s description of Turkish baths as “marble palaces of sherbet and sodomy”, an epithet which one imagines sent generations of sweet-toothed Uranians trekking […]

Posted in {architecture}, {books}, {design}, {gay}, {pulp} | 5 comments »


Weekend links 2


A picture for embittered lovers. Among other things this week I’ve been working on the design for another CD featuring photos by Liz Eve, a photographer whose pictures are always a pleasure to use. (Our earlier encounters can be seen here, here and here.) The latest set have this anti-Valentine for an eye-popping cover image. […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {design}, {gay}, {magazines}, {music}, {painting}, {photography}, {work} | Comments Off


Francis Bacon’s private wrestling sessions

Francis Bacon’s private wrestling sessions | Previously unseen images of wrestlers made in Bacon’s studio demonstrate the artist’s love of the visceral.

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Four today


Good things come in fours: the mighty Kraftwerk performing Numbers on the Minimum-Maximum DVD (2005). Yes, the day between Darwin Day and St. Valentine’s Day is this blog’s birthday. I continue to be surprised that I’ve kept this going for so long since I never managed to keep a diary. Doing work that chains you […]

Posted in {comics}, {electronica}, {gay}, {miscellaneous}, {music}, {psychedelia}, {work} | 9 comments »


Metropolis, mother of science fiction movies, reborn in Berlin

Metropolis, mother of science fiction movies, reborn in Berlin

Posted in {film}, {noted}, {science fiction} | 1 comment »


Alexander McQueen, 1969–2010


“He was a Brothers Grimm of fashion, enchanting and captivating the audience with the most incredibly beautiful clothes, only to make their stomachs lurch with the underlying menace that shot through his work. Because every show contained outfits designed to thrill, shock – and catch the eye of picture editors – many people never realised […]

Posted in {design}, {fashion}, {science} | 2 comments »


Passage 12


Ed Jansen writes again to notify me that the latest number of his web magazine, Passage, is now online, about which he says: In Passage nr. 12 there are articles about a 17th century garden in The Hague, about the mysterious visit to The Hague by the Comte De Saint Germain. Was he really a […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {dance}, {drugs}, {occult}, {painting}, {psychedelia} | 1 comment »


Betty Blythe


Yesterday’s search for Betty Blythe pictures turned up this pair which I couldn’t resist posting, with Ms. Blythe posed against a peacock in the first and wearing a peacock-styled outfit in the second. As I’ve noted before, silent films are very often like Symbolist paintings come to life, and The Queen of Sheba (1921) would […]

Posted in {fashion}, {film}, {magazines}, {photography} | Comments Off


Wolf Man, Dracula and the beasts that gave birth to cinematic horror

Wolf Man, Dracula and the beasts that gave birth to cinematic horror | David Thomson on Universal and its stars.

Posted in {film}, {horror}, {noted} | Comments Off


The Mask of Fu Manchu


Myrna Loy, Charles Starrett and Boris Karloff. Los Alamos ranch school where they later made the atom bomb and couldn’t wait to drop it on the yellow peril. The boys are sittin’ on logs and rocks eating some sort of food there’s a stream at the end of a slope. The counsellor was a southerner […]

Posted in {architecture}, {books}, {burroughs}, {film}, {pulp} | 7 comments »


The Dark Ledger


The boundless depths of Chris Mullen’s VTS site continue to yield treasures. The documentation for these pictures is somewhat vague but they seem to be illustrations for Fantômas stories which Mullen has grouped under the title The Dark Ledger, part of a larger selection of pages devoted to the Lord of Evil. The depiction of […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {drugs}, {illustrators}, {pulp} | 2 comments »


Weekend links 1


• Two covers from a new range of Penguin reprints for the AIDS awareness fund (RED), all of which are based around quotes from the books in question. Non-Format‘s stylised extract concerns the blazing red of the Count’s eyes while Coralie Bickford-Smith plays some Tom Phillips games with the text of The Secret Agent. The […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {horror}, {music} | Comments Off


Under the weather


“He is the Napoleon of crime, Watson.” Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes in The Final Problem (1984). As well as chasing a deadline this week I’m now suffering badly from a cold, always a dismal combination if you can’t take time off. So this picture of the wonderful Jeremy Brett is all you get today. […]

Posted in {books}, {miscellaneous}, {television} | 4 comments »


The art of Laurie Hogin


Song of Retail #1 (Pink Skull Monkey) (2004). Retail might be more interesting if it involved pink monkeys beating skulls. There’s more at Laurie Hogin’s website and at Littlejohn Contemporary. Via Chateau Thombeau. Diorama with Palliated Species (2007). Elsewhere on { feuilleton } • The  fantastic art archive

Posted in {art}, {fantasy}, {painting} | 1 comment »


Vickers Airship Catalogue


Just the thing for when you need to build your own… From a page of plans at Forgotten Futures. The photo of the Vickers Parseval craft is from this early aviation archive. Meanwhile, my good friend Ed alerted me to a documentary film which will be released in March this year. Farewell is directed by […]

Posted in {design}, {film}, {technology} | 3 comments »


The Air Ship


More dirigibles. Posters from the Library of Congress Performing Arts Poster Collection for The Air Ship (1898), a musical comedy by JM Gaites. I’ve had some longer posts planned but I’m chasing a deadline this week, hence the resort to brief picture posts. Previously on { feuilleton } • Dirigibles • La route d’Armilia by […]

Posted in {design}, {fantasy}, {technology}, {theatre} | 4 comments »




This week’s picture research involves airships for some Steampunk-related illustration work. Lots of great Zeppelin photos abound, of course, and I’ve always liked seeing the more notable peacetime moments such as this flight of the US Los Angeles over Manhattan in 1930. Wikimedia Commons has another very striking picture of the same craft moored to […]

Posted in {photography}, {technology} | 2 comments »


Margaret Armstrong book designs


Millionaire Households and their Domestic Economy (1903). More Art Nouveau cover designs, this time by celebrated American designer Margaret Armstrong (1867–1944) whose life and work is documented here. The University of Rochester has examples of her work, as does the Atheneum of Philadelphia and the University of Alabama’s Publisher’s Bindings pages, the latter being an […]

Posted in {art nouveau}, {art}, {books}, {design} | 3 comments »







“feed your head”