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

Archive for September, 2013

 

Adelaide Hanscom’s Rubáiyát

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(Apologies again for the downtime, the fourth outage this month.) Thanks are due to Beautiful Century for drawing my attention to this 1905 edition of the Rubáiyát illustrated by Adelaide Hanscom (later Adelaide Hanscom Leeson). Hanscom (1875–1931) was an American artist and photographer whose work here is notable for the early use of photographs to […]

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Weekend links 179

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Summer Swell (2007) by Fred Tomaselli. The artist is interviewed at AnOther. • Mixes of the week for the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness: Forever Autumn Mixtape by The Outer Church, and celebrating what would have been Trish Keenan’s 45th birthday: Trish’s Toys & Techniques Birthday Tape (with cover art by Julian House). • […]

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Tenniel’s Fables

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Everyone knows John Tenniel’s illustrations for Lewis Carroll’s Alice books, two volumes which have overshadowed the rest of his career. In addition to being a popular artist at Punch magazine Tenniel illustrated a number of other books including a collection of Aesop’s Fables in 1848. The copy from which these pictures are taken is a […]

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Andrey Avinoff revisited

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(My apologies for the recent downtime. The hosting for this site has been a bit more unstable than usual.) At a time when various Russians are trying to rewrite their nation’s gay history, there’s hardly been a better moment to remind ourselves of some of the people who contributed to that history. When I discovered […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {gay}, {illustrators}, {occult} | 2 comments »

 


More Art Nouveau

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The Poetry of József Kiss (1897), design by Nándor Gottermayer. There’s always more Art Nouveau. Searching for term at the Google Art Project turns up a surprising number of paintings, drawings and other objects which are nothing of the sort, as well as many things which are, of course. These are a selection of the […]

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Ikarie XB 1

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A science fiction novel by Stanislaw Lem (The Magellanic Cloud, 1955). Illustration by Teodor Rotrekl. A film by Jindrich Polák, adapted from Lem’s novel by Polák and Pavel Jurácek. (1963). A Second Run DVD (2013). With the exceptions of Tarkovsky’s Solaris and Stalker (both in a league of their own), I’ve never been very enthused […]

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Ear to the Ground

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The name of percussionist David Van Tieghem won’t be familiar to most people, but if you’ve ever heard Eno & Byrne’s My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts, Speaking In Tongues by Talking Heads, any of Laurie Anderson’s early albums or Steve Reich’s Music For 18 Musicians then you’ve heard some of Van Tieghem’s session […]

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Stone Tapes and Quatermasses

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Quatermass paperbacks from Jovike’s Flickr pages. This may be another occasional series in the making since there’s already been a post about Roadside Picnic/Stalker music, and one about music inspired by the cosmic horror of William Hope Hodgson. I was going to write something earlier this year about music derived from the works of Nigel […]

Posted in {electronica}, {film}, {horror}, {music}, {science fiction}, {television} | 5 comments »

 


Weekend links 178

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Pretty Pictures, a new book by designer Marian Bantjes, is out on October 1st. • A writer admired by Angela Carter, Michael Moorcock, Harlan Ellison, Anthony Burgess, Jonathan Meades and Iain Sinclair; a “writer’s writer…[whose] best stories bear comparison with the Ficciones of Jorge Luis Borges”; a writer with an “unsettling quality to his writing, a […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {collage}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {music}, {occult}, {technology} | 2 comments »

 


My Surfing Lucifer by Kenneth Anger

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One for completists only, My Surfing Lucifer (2009) is one of those recent Kenneth Anger shorts that would receive little attention if we didn’t know the director. Anger’s surfing friend, Bunker Spreckels, is memorialised in a sequence of home movie shots set to the Psychic TV version of Good Vibrations. For me the main point […]

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Balanchine, Lynes and Orpheus

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The photo above has appeared here before—it’s one of a number of dance photos taken by the great George Platt Lynes—but its subject has (for me at least) always been the source of some confusion. Since I dislike being nagged by petty conundrums I make a cursory search every so often to see if more […]

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

 


Old New Orleans

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If you know the names Lafcadio Hearn and Joseph Pennell it’s surprising to see them brought together for this 1885 guide to the city of New Orleans. Hearn is better known for his many books about the folklore of Japan and China, while Pennell was a highly regarded artist and illustrator with a predilection for […]

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Digital Grotesque

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These organic forms are details of an architectural environment produced in sandstone using a 3D printer. The project is a collaboration between Michael Hansmeyer and Benjamin Dillenburger who use a series of algorithms to create the shapes the printer produces: In the Digital Grotesque project, we use these algorithms to create a form that appears […]

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Magicians

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The stage variety rather than occult practitioners. The levitating Mephistopheles above is the one I borrowed earlier this year for the Alas Vegas Tarot designs. “Kellar” was Harry Kellar (1849–1922), a popular American magician blessed with some talented poster designers who stripped away the superfluous text to concentrate on his name and the recurrent motif […]

Posted in {design}, {theatre}, {work} | 10 comments »

 


Salomé cigarettes

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Many food and drink brands are still marketed today as exotic pleasures; some long-running products—Fry’s Turkish Delight, for example—even continue to sell themselves via an Orientalist mystique that now seems quite outmoded. This will never happen again with cigarettes, of course, although I wouldn’t be surprised to see it tried with cannabis if it’s ever […]

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Weekend links 177

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A new Wicker Man poster by Dan Mumford appears on the cover of the forthcoming DVD/BR reissues. Prints are available. • The long-awaited release of a restored print of Robin Hardy’s The Wicker Man approaches. Dangerous Minds has a trailer while The Guardian posted a clip of the restored footage. The latter isn’t anything new […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {horror}, {music}, {painting}, {religion}, {surrealism} | 3 comments »

 


Abraxas 4

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My thanks to Livia Filotico at Fulgur Esoterica for sending these previews from the forthcoming issue of Abraxas, the Journal of Esoteric Studies. Abraxas is a beautifully produced large-format book whose artist interviews—as I’ve mentioned before—are especially valuable. Issue 4 will include: Prof. Sarah Victoria Turner’s interview with artist Christine Ödlund on theosophy and synaesthesia, […]

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Foutaises

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Foutaises (1989) is the French title of this 9-minute film by Jean-Pierre Jeunet whose English translation, Things I Like, Things I Don’t Like, is a clumsy, if accurate, summation of the content. It’s mostly a string of sight gags with Jeunet regular Dominique Pinon running through a list of his likes and dislikes, some of […]

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The Bunker of the Last Gunshots

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Jean-Pierre Jeunet is known these days as a director in his own right but he started out working in collaboration with Marc Caro, a writing and directing partnership that lasted up to The City of Lost Children in 1995. Given how much I enjoyed that film, and their earlier Delicatessen (1991), I suspect it’s Caro’s […]

Posted in {film}, {science fiction} | 2 comments »

 


Qualia

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Qualia is a 10-minute film by Vincent Ciciliato subtitled “A remake of Salò“, a reference to Pasolini’s notorious Sadeian indictment of Italian Fascism, Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975). Calling this a remake is something of a stretch, it’s more accurate to describe it as a mash-up of vague gestures in the direction […]

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A Book of Old English Ballads

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More illustration from George Wharton Edwards (1859–1950) with a collection of ballads from 1910. These being for the American market, the emphasis is on the picturesque England of kings and queens, duelling knights, and Robin Hood. A couple of exceptions, such as The Twa Corbies, point to the darker world of the Child Ballads where […]

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

 


Bird Gods

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Why, I asked myself, should certain birds have been allotted to certain gods and goddesses in the Greek and Roman mythology? Why should the eagle go with Zeus, the peacock with Hera, the dove with Venus, the swan with Apollo, the woodpecker with Ares, the owl with Pallas Athene? It could not be mere chance […]

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

 


Weekend links 176

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This week PingMag was looking at Czech film posters. This one by Bedrich Dlouhy is for the belated 1970 release of Kurosawa’s Rashomon. • In October Alison Goldfrapp curates an exhibition for The Lowry, Salford, featuring her favourite art. Examples will include work by Leonora Carrington, Lotte Reiniger and Henry Darger so I’ll definitely be […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {design}, {drugs}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {magazines}, {music}, {painting}, {photography}, {politics}, {psychedelia}, {science}, {theatre} | 6 comments »

 


Fiser and Liska

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Having enthused recently about Czech soundtrack composer Zdenek Liska, and about Juraj Herz’s The Cremator (1969), I can’t avoid mentioning the release this month of Liska’s soundtrack for Herz’s film which comes twinned on CD with Lubos Fiser’s equally distinctive soundtrack for Herz’s Morgiana (1972). Both films are available on DVD from Second Run. Having […]

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Wildeana 10

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Illustration from The House of Pomegranates (1914) by Jessie M. King. Continuing an occasional series. Recent Wildean links. • It’s a measure of a writer’s success if the characters or stories they create resonate sufficiently with future generations to be subject to new interpretations. Among Oscar Wilde’s contemporaries this has happened to Arthur Conan Doyle […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {film}, {illustrators}, {theatre} | 6 comments »

 


Electronic Music Review

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A new addition at the Ubuweb archives that’s catnip for anyone interested in the history of electronic music. Electronic Music Review was Reynold Weidenaar & Robert Moog’s short-lived journal devoted to the world of electronic music at a time when the field was rapidly growing away from the academic, “serious” side of musical composition and […]

Posted in {electronica}, {magazines}, {music} | 4 comments »

 


Prominences

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Work-related searches this week has led me to the gallery pages of NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory. The SDO is an observational satellite in a geostationary orbit that monitors the Sun with a variety of cameras and other imaging equipment. Some of the recent spectacular photos of solar prominences have been captured by the SDO, examples […]

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

 


Skivvies

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Not had anything for a while deserving of the eye candy tag so here’s some gratuitous shots from a short promo video for some underwear company or other (he said disingenuously). The ad is directed by Steven Klein, and the piece as a whole doesn’t appear to have had a straight viewer in mind given […]

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Max and Dorothea

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Photo by Arnold Newman (1942). I love this photo of Max Ernst by Arnold Newman, one of several pictures of the artist together with Dorothea Tanning in Max Ernst: A Retrospective, a catalogue for a 1975 Guggenheim Museum exhibition at the Internet Archive. The catalogue itself isn’t so revelatory (and most of the reproductions are […]

Posted in {art}, {photography}, {surrealism} | 1 comment »

 


Weekend links 175

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Heartbeat of the Death – Queen Elizabeth the First (2013) by Haruko Maeda. • “The casual mixing of people from across the world at The Garden broke down many barriers. Its rich, beautiful, smart, and successful people were confident enough to exercise the kind of sexual freedom that would land you in jail elsewhere in […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {borges}, {cities}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {horror}, {music}, {painting}, {photography}, {politics}, {science fiction}, {television} | Comments Off

 


 




 

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“feed your head”