{ feuilleton }

Avatar

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

Archive for February, 2012

 

The Piper at the Gates of Dawn

witw1.jpg

Illustration by W. Graham Robertson (19o8). (No, this doesn’t concern Pink Floyd.) The chapter – The Piper at the Gates of Dawn – is normally dropped because it jars, seems so strange compared to all the others and, to some, is vaguely homoerotic. [Kenneth] Grahame thought it essential. Thus Mark Brown discussing the curious seventh […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {fantasy}, {gay}, {illustrators}, {occult} | 5 comments »

 


Amy Sacker, book designer

sacker1.jpg

Manders: A Tale of Paris (1899) by Elwyn Barron. Amy Sacker (1872–1965) was an American book designer, illustrator and bookplate artist, one of a number of female designers and illustrators whose careers began in the last years of the 19th century. I’ve mentioned before how women struggled at this time for acceptance in the male-dominated […]

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

 


Maps of Midtown Manhattan

manhattan1.jpg

Midtown Manhattan by Constantine A. Anderson. Yesterday’s link to a Domus article, The importance of being axonometric, features an interview with map and chart collector Michael Stoll whose Flickr account has some wonderful samples from his archives. Among the many city charts there are several maps of New York in various axonometric projections including this […]

Posted in {architecture}, {cities}, {comics}, {design} | 1 comment »

 


Weekend links 97

conformist.jpg

Illustration by Ermanno Iaia. Hard to believe that Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Conformist (1970) is only now appearing on DVD in the UK. Arrow Films release a dual-format edition at the end of this month. • The week in perfume: Perfumes: The Guide by Luca Turin & Tania Sanchez is reviewed by Emily Gould (“this is a […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {cormac}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {magazines}, {music}, {politics}, {psychedelia} | 4 comments »

 


Aether Cola

aethercola.jpg

Another piece of work from the end of last year has now been unveiled. The brief this time was from UK company Cybercandy who asked for a steampunk-themed cola can. If this sounds like the mechanical shark has been well-and-truly vaulted then it’s necessary to note that Cybercandy specialise in novelty food products with science […]

Posted in {design}, {science fiction}, {work} | 4 comments »

 


The art of Elmgreen and Dragset

eandd1.jpg

Ganymede (Jockstrap) (2009). Artist partners Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset—Danish and Norwegian respectively—became better known to the British public this week (well, Londoners anyway…) when their Powerless Structures, Fig 101 was unveiled by Joanna Lumley in Trafalgar Square. The pair’s bronze boy on a rocking horse is their contribution to the series of works that […]

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

 


Astrolabes

astrolabe1.jpg

Planispheric Astrolabe (and also below) from Persia, 1675/6 (A.H. 1086). Made by Muhammad Amin. One of the many astrolabes from the Museum of the History of Science, Oxford, who describe their collection as “the world’s largest and most important”. There are pages and pages of these beautiful instruments with large photographs of each in a disassembled […]

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

 


Reworking Kraftwerk

randf.jpg

Ralf and Florian, 1973. It’s a common problem when you like a musical artist so much that you own their entire catalogue: where to go next? In the case of Kraftwerk the problem has been exacerbated by the group’s famously sluggish rate of production: the last studio album was in 2003, the one before that […]

Posted in {electronica}, {music} | 9 comments »

 


Mérigot’s Ruins of Rome

merigot1.jpg

It may have been a thankless task for an artist of the 18th century attempting to compete with Piranesi’s matchless Views of Rome but that didn’t stop people trying. These aquatints by James Mérigot date from 1798, and can be found in a British book dating from 1815, A Select Collection of Views and Ruins […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {cities} | Comments Off

 


Pleasure of Ruins

beny01.jpg

The ideas ruins evoke in me are grand. Everything comes to nothing, everything perishes, everything passes, only the world remains, only time endures. How old is this world! I walk between two eternities. Denis Diderot, 1767 Ruins, as Diderot observed, are the memento mori of civilisations, a reminder that the apparent permanence of architecture is […]

Posted in {architecture}, {books}, {design}, {film}, {photography} | 7 comments »

 


Weekend links 96

nunez.jpg

Sin título (monstruas) (2008) by Marina Núñez.    • Salon asks Christopher Bram “Is gay literature over?” Bram’s new book, Eminent Outlaws: The Gay Writers Who Changed America, is reviewed here. • Robert Montgomery is profiled at the Independent as “The artist vandalising advertising with poetry.” In addition to aesthetics, McCarthy noted a deeper link […]

Posted in {art}, {black and white}, {books}, {burroughs}, {comics}, {cormac}, {drugs}, {electronica}, {fashion}, {film}, {gay}, {illustrators}, {music}, {painting}, {politics}, {science} | 2 comments »

 


Vathek illustrated

vathek1.jpg

Frontispiece, 1815. Engraved by Isaac Taylor after a drawing by Isaac Taylor Jr. After some time Vathek and Nouronihar perceived a gleam brightening through the drapery, and entered a vast tabernacle carpeted with the skins of leopards; an infinity of elders with streaming beards, and Afrits in complete armour, had prostrated themselves before the ascent […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {fantasy}, {illustrators} | 5 comments »

 


Fonthill Abbey

fonthill1.jpg

Views such as these are all we’ve ever have of Fonthill Abbey, a monstrous pile that would have been Britain’s most grandiose folly had it not collapsed in 1825. William Beckford (1760–1844) was the man responsible, among other things a very wealthy and bisexual writer whose Vathek (1786) is one of the better Gothic novels. […]

Posted in {architecture}, {books}, {fantasy}, {gay} | 3 comments »

 


Jacques Brissot’s Hay Wain

brissot1.jpg

The Hay Wain (1973) by Jacques Brissot. Another post intended to encourage further investigation. Searching for Jacques Brissot’s art is a problem since the French artist (born 1929) gets confused with the French writer Jacques Pierre Brissot (1754–1793). Details about Brissot the artist are also scant: Jacques Brissot lives and works in Paris. He began […]

Posted in {art}, {collage}, {painting}, {surrealism} | Comments Off

 


Le Grand Macabre

topor1.jpg

Yesterday I mentioned Leslie Megahey’s Ligeti film, All Clouds Are Clocks, an hour-long documentary based around an interview with György Ligeti filmed in 1976. A unique feature of that film was that Megahey returned to film Ligeti in the same room in 1991 where they discussed the composer’s work during the intervening period. Of these, […]

Posted in {design}, {music}, {television}, {theatre} | 1 comment »

 


Leslie Megahey’s Bluebeard

bluebeard01.jpg

Back in the days when the BBC’s television output challenged its audience rather than pandered to it, Leslie Megahey was a name I always looked out for. During the 1970s and 80s, Megahey was one of the corporation’s outstanding producers and directors, and since his tastes often ran very close to mine seeing his name […]

Posted in {design}, {film}, {music}, {television}, {theatre} | 10 comments »

 


Now we are six

prisoner3.jpg

Number Six/The Prisoner (1990?) by Roland Topor. Welcome to post number 2,618, and the sixth anniversary of this here weblog. Roland Topor’s drawing could be interpreted as a cry for help from your narrator—imprisoned by the daily necessity to file copy—but it’s there mainly because I couldn’t think of another picture featuring the requisite numeral. […]

Posted in {gay}, {miscellaneous} | 13 comments »

 


Weekend links 95

skidoo.jpg

Seven Songs (1982) by 23 Skidoo. Sleeve by Neville Brody. The first volume of The Graphic Canon will be published in May by Seven Stories Press, a collection of comic strip adaptations and illustrations edited by Russ Kick. The anthology has already picked up some attention at the Guardian—Western canon to be rewritten as three-volume […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {comics}, {film}, {illustrators}, {music}, {painting}, {photography}, {politics}, {science fiction}, {science}, {sculpture}, {surrealism}, {typography}, {work} | Comments Off

 


Directed by Saul Bass

bass1.jpg

Phase IV (1974). It’s been a thrill recently poring over the Saul Bass monograph, Saul Bass: A Life in Film & Design by Jennifer Bass & Pat Kirkham, a large volume that weighs a ton and is as revelatory about the career of a great designer (and his wife and frequent collaborator, Elaine Bass) as […]

Posted in {animation}, {art}, {books}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {music}, {painting}, {science fiction}, {science}, {surrealism} | 4 comments »

 


Erotic bookplates by Franz von Bayros

bayros05.jpg

Tuesday’s bookplate post included a rather mild example by Franz von Bayros (1866–1924), the greatest pornographic artist of his generation. Quite by accident I found a substantial collection of his work earlier this week that includes more bookplates. Von Bayros is far better known today than he would have been during his lifetime when his […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {illustrators} | Comments Off

 


Hiatus

crash.jpg

Oh look, it’s the train again… The site was down for a couple of days after my webhost decided to repair the server without giving any advance warning. My apologies. Everything should now be back to normal.

Posted in {miscellaneous}, {technology} | 3 comments »

 


German bookplates

exlibris08.jpg

A selection from Das Moderne Deutsche Gebrauchs-Exlibris (1922) edited by Richard Braungart, an overview of the practioners of the bookplate form in Germany and Austria during the first decades of the 20th century. Some of the German and Austrian art magazines featured here over the past couple of years included bookplate designs, and Braungart’s collection […]

Posted in {art}, {black and white}, {books}, {magazines} | 2 comments »

 


Jarek Piotrowski’s Soft Machine

piotrowski1.jpg

Jarek Piotrowski is a Polish-born Canadian artist whose exhibition of hand-cut PVC mats at Galerie8, London, borrows a title and inspiration from William Burroughs’ The Soft Machine. From the usual slab of gallery-speak: Drawing on the subversive William S. Burroughs novel The Soft Machine (1961), Piotrowski’s work explores themes of the human body under siege, […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {burroughs} | Comments Off

 


Weekend links 94

walpoth.jpg

Mateo (2011), carved wood sculpture by Bruno Walpoth. “Dennis Potter’s [The Singing Detective] is 25 years old but still feels avant garde,” says Stephen Armstrong. No fucking kidding, I watched the DVDs again last weekend. Potter’s drama featured non-linear flashbacks, song-and-dance hallucination sequences, an intertextual sub-plot, and a central character who was vitriolic, misanthropic, misogynist […]

Posted in {abstract cinema}, {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {burroughs}, {dance}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {music}, {occult}, {photography}, {science}, {sculpture}, {technology}, {television} | Comments Off

 


Derek Jarman’s music videos

jarman3.jpg

Duggie Fields in It’s A Sin A hidden Derek Jarman film lies scattered among a handful of music videos from the 1980s, something you can pretend you’re seeing flashes of in the promo shorts the director was making whilst trying to raise money for his last few feature films. A recent re-watch of Caravaggio reminded […]

Posted in {film}, {gay}, {music} | 8 comments »

 


Mars architectures

davidovici1.jpg

Mars Architectures 3 Italian architect Stefan Davidovici was in touch recently asking whether I’d be interested in his speculative views of Mars architectures and an imaginary Jerusalem. I am indeed interested in work such as this, whether the designs resemble Frank Lloyd Wright sketches for David Cronenberg’s unfilmed adaptation of Total Recall or the Piranesian […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {science fiction} | 3 comments »

 


Dorothea Tanning, 1910–2012

tanning.jpg

Birthday (1942) by Dorothea Tanning. In pre-internet days it always used to surprise me to read that Dorothea Tanning was still alive when one seldom heard much about her; Leonora Carrington seemed positively hyperactive by comparison. In the end Dorothea outlasted all her Surrealist contemporaries, and the announcement of her death this week sees the […]

Posted in {art}, {painting}, {surrealism} | 7 comments »

 


Palais Idéal panoramas

cheval1.jpg

The oft-recounted story behind the extraordinary Palais Idéal in Hauterives, France, is that rural postman Ferdinand Cheval (1836–1924) found an unusually-shaped stone on his route which compelled him to spend the next thirty-three years building an elaborate architectural fantasy from cement and more stones collected on his rounds. The structure is aptly named if you […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {photography}, {surrealism} | Comments Off

 


 




 

tracker

 


 

“feed your head”