{ feuilleton }

Avatar

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

Archive for April, 2015

 

The case of the fin de siècle fleuron

artnouveau.jpg

I said yesterday that poppies are a common feature of the fin de siècle magazines for the convenient way they combine long-stemmed flowers—ideal for all those Art Nouveau flourishes—with narcotic connotations that signal Decadence. The spiralling fleuron above is one example that readers of Savoy books may recognise, an occasional company logo which has been […]

Posted in {art nouveau}, {art}, {books}, {design}, {drugs}, {magazines}, {work} | Comments Off

 


Cocorico graphics

graphics01.jpg

A final visit to Cocorico, the French humour magazine of the fin de siècle. Where graphics are concerned I’ve ignored the cartoons to concentrate on the Art Nouveau decoration which is plentiful in the early issues. The star here is Louis Popineau, an artist I only knew from the excessively florid page above which is […]

Posted in {art nouveau}, {art}, {design}, {magazines} | Comments Off

 


Kupka in Cocorico

kupka1.jpg

As noted yesterday, Czech artist František Kupka produced a cover for French magazine Cocorico together with this handful of interior illustrations, all of which date from around 1900. Kupka was living in Paris at the time, and several of these drawings reflect his connections to the Symbolist movement. I’ve posted his Poe illustration before but everything […]

Posted in {art}, {magazines}, {symbolists} | 5 comments »

 


Cocorico covers

cocorico01.jpg

Alphonse Mucha. For a while now I’ve been waiting for several French journals of the fin de siècle to turn up online but humour magazine Cocorico has never been among them. I knew that Alphonse Mucha had contributed a handful of covers and some other graphics to Cocorico, notably the frontispiece (below) which ran in […]

Posted in {art nouveau}, {art}, {design}, {magazines} | Comments Off

 


Weekend links 256

beardsley.jpg

Of a Neophyte, and How the Black Art Was Revealed unto Him by the Fiend Asomuel. Aubrey Beardsley for the Pall Mall Magazine, 1893. • The occult preoccupations of the 1970s appear to be in the ascendant just now. Whether this is mere nostalgia or something in the zeitgeist remains to be seen but BBC […]

Posted in {art}, {electronica}, {fashion}, {film}, {gay}, {music}, {occult}, {photography} | 3 comments »

 


Phantom, a film by Toshio Matsumoto

phantom.jpg

Yet another short film by Matsumoto, Phantom (1975) differs from the previous examples by being less abstract but thoroughly inexplicable. Disconnected sequences—a naked woman on a beach; a man performing yoga asanas outdoors; an eyeball floating over a city; two people walking round a flickering statue—are intercut with close-ups of a woman’s face. As with […]

Posted in {film}, {surrealism} | Comments Off

 


The art of David Haines

haines1.jpg

Meatboy and Alien I (2015). I’ve not added much to the gay artists archive recently even though it continues to be the most popular destination for all the silent visitors. David Haines is a recent discovery who fits the bill, a British artist resident in Amsterdam who specialises in meticulous pencil drawings and watercolours of […]

Posted in {art}, {gay} | Comments Off

 


The art of Edmond van Offel, 1871–1959

offel01.jpg

Edmond van Offel was a Belgian artist who Philippe Jullian features in two of his books about Symbolist art but whose work I’d not seen anywhere else—at least until now. All the pictures here are from a collection published in Paris in 1902 which may be the one Jullian used for his selections. The book […]

Posted in {art}, {black and white}, {books}, {illustrators}, {symbolists} | Comments Off

 


Symbolist Temptations

khnopff.jpg

The Temptation of St Anthony (1883) by Fernand Khnopff. This should really be more Symbolist Temptations since Odilon Redon belongs among these artists. Redon may have devoted more of his time than anyone else to the saint’s travails but other artists also took up the theme. Fernand Khnopff seldom depicted religious subjects but his painting—an […]

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

 


Odilon Redon’s Temptations

redon09.jpg

Saint-Antoine: Au secours, mon Dieu! (Saint Anthony: Help me, O my God!) St. Anthony and his temptations provide another connection between the Surrealists and the Symbolists via Gustave Flaubert and his phantasmagoric drama. Flaubert’s The Temptation of St Anthony (1874) doesn’t quite stand in relation to the art of the time as does Oscar Wilde’s […]

Posted in {art}, {black and white}, {books}, {fantasy}, {religion}, {symbolists} | 2 comments »

 


Temptations

catalogue.jpg

Exhibition catalogue. In one of the many recent features about Leonora Carrington I noticed a mention of her Temptation of St Anthony painting from 1945 (see below). This was one of eleven works on the theme submitted by different artists for a competition staged to promote Albert Lewin’s The Private Affairs of Bel Ami (1947), […]

Posted in {art}, {fantasy}, {film}, {painting}, {religion}, {surrealism} | 3 comments »

 


Weekend links 255

farneti.jpg

The Owls by Carlo Farneti for a 1935 edition of Les Fleurs du Mal. Via Beautiful Century although the scans probably came originally from 50 Watts. • “…a project that seemed under a curse comprising greed, peculiar French copyright laws, jealousies and grudges, bad judgment, complicated ownership disagreements, a messy estate, and a list of […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {electronica}, {film}, {gay}, {illustrators}, {magazines}, {music}, {occult}, {painting}, {surrealism}, {television} | 2 comments »

 


White Hole, a film by Toshio Matsumoto

whitehole.jpg

Another short film by Matsumoto. This one was made in 1979, and seems to employ video effects, but the results are cosmic and psychedelic enough to have appeared ten years earlier. The electronic score is by Joji Yuasa. An entrancing 6-minute trip. Watch it here. Previously on { feuilleton } • Atman, a film by […]

Posted in {abstract cinema}, {film}, {psychedelia} | Comments Off

 


Aubrey Beardsley’s Keynotes

keynotes1.jpg

Promotional poster. Keynotes was a series of 34 novels and short story collections published by John Lane from 1893. Aubrey Beardsley produced cover designs and embellishments for 22 of the titles in 1895 while he was working on The Yellow Book which John Lane was also publishing. Beardsley’s designs comprised a title frame with illustration […]

Posted in {art}, {beardsley}, {black and white}, {books}, {design}, {horror} | 2 comments »

 


Lucian’s True History

lucian01.jpg

Lucian is Lucian of Samosata whose True History (also known as A True Story) is often regarded as one of the earliest works of science fiction. The book is a satirical work, but unlike many earthbound satires this one concerns a journey into outer space, encounters with the inhabitants of various planets, and descriptions of […]

Posted in {art}, {beardsley}, {black and white}, {books}, {illustrators}, {science fiction} | 4 comments »

 


The art of Robin Ironside, 1912–1965

ironside1.jpg

Rossetti’s Willow Wood (1944). In one of those odd coincidences that occur from time to time, a picture by Robin Ironside is featured in a book I’ve been reading this week just as news arrives of a forthcoming talk about Ironside’s strange paintings. The book is Baroque Baroque by Stephen Calloway, while the talk is […]

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

 


Philip K. Dick: A Day in the Afterlife

pkd1.jpg

Blade Runner turns up in Nicola Roberts’ television documentary but not for long. Back in 1994 it was still possible to discuss a popular writer by concentrating on the books alone rather than padding the running time with film and TV derivations. The BBC’s Arena strand excelled at these 50-minute biographies of significant cultural figures. […]

Posted in {books}, {science fiction}, {television} | Comments Off

 


Blade Runner vs. Metropolis

br01.jpg

Given the chronology this should really be “Metropolis vs. Blade Runner” but most people are more familiar with Ridley Scott than Fritz Lang so I’ve let Blade Runner determine the order of the shots. These shot comparisons aren’t exactly news but they’ve become more evident since rewatching the restored print of Metropolis. Among other things, […]

Posted in {architecture}, {film}, {photography}, {science fiction} | 11 comments »

 


Weekend links 254

scdc.jpg

Gatefold sleeve for Love, Death and the Lady (1970) by Shirley & Dolly Collins. Photo by Allan Willmoth. No designer credited. • “When you look at a lot of modern album covers, the art school obsession with the Helvetica kind of undermines it. So instead of looking at an artefact that comes from another place […]

Posted in {animation}, {art}, {books}, {cormac}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {horror}, {music}, {occult}, {psychedelia}, {pulp}, {science fiction}, {technology} | Comments Off

 


More Alberto Solsona

solsona01.jpg

Opus 5 (1968). It’s dismaying to learn that Alberto Solsona, the creator of the wonderful Agar-Agar, was only 41 when he died in 1988. It’s also a little disappointing to discover that his work for comics is the least part of an artistic career begun in the late 1960s; I’d been hoping there might be […]

Posted in {art}, {comics}, {painting}, {politics}, {psychedelia} | Comments Off

 


More Esteban Maroto

maroto05.jpg

Psychedelic Kali from Vampirella 18. Copies of the Dracula comics may be scarce these days but two of the artists who appeared in the title—Esteban Maroto and José Beá—were also appearing regularly in Vampirella around the same time. The Internet Archive has a large collection of Warren titles including an almost complete run of Vampirella. […]

Posted in {art}, {black and white}, {comics}, {horror}, {psychedelia} | Comments Off

 


The Dracula Annual

wolff1.jpg

A comment by Modzilla in last month’s post about psychedelic comic book Saga de Xam is responsible for this recent book purchase. Dracula was a full-colour large-format comic book from notorious pulp imprint New English Library (later to be distributors for my colleagues at Savoy Books) that repackaged Spanish horror strips for a British audience. […]

Posted in {art nouveau}, {art}, {books}, {comics}, {design}, {horror}, {occult}, {psychedelia} | Comments Off

 


In the Key of Yellow

td1.jpg

My Easter weekend was profitably spent watching True Detective again, a series I enjoyed even more the second time around. For the past year I’ve been pondering off and on the connections the series makes with the suite of weird tales that Robert Chambers published in 1895 as The King in Yellow, and also the […]

Posted in {art}, {beardsley}, {books}, {design}, {horror}, {illustrators}, {pulp}, {television} | 4 comments »

 


Mothlight, a film by Stan Brakhage

mothlight.jpg

One of the common methods of making a no-budget abstract film was to scratch or paint directly onto the film itself, a technique popularised by Len Lye in the 1930s. Mothlight (1963) by Stan Brakhage works a variation on the process by gluing broken moth wings, leaves and other bits of natural detritus to a […]

Posted in {abstract cinema}, {film} | 2 comments »

 


Coca fiends

coca1.jpg

The latest post at Strange Flowers details some of the celebrity endorsements for Vin Mariani, the 19th-century tonic that famously blended wine with an extract of cocaine. Those antique ads reminded me that others may be found in the Leonard de Vries collections of old newspaper ads which is where these examples originate. The Victorians […]

Posted in {books}, {drugs} | 3 comments »

 


Weekend links 253

mackey.jpg

A painting by Stephen Mackey. • “Creativity is visual, not informed thought. Creativity is not polite. It barges in uninvited, unannounced—confusing, chaotic, demanding, deaf to reason or to common sense—and leaves the intellect to clear up the mess. Above all else, creativity is risk; heedful risk, but risk entire. Without risk we have the ability […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {design}, {electronica}, {fantasy}, {film}, {gay}, {music}, {painting}, {photography}, {psychedelia}, {science fiction}, {surrealism}, {television} | 2 comments »

 


Atman, a film by Toshio Matsumoto

atman.jpg

Atman was made four years after Metastasis in 1975, and shares similar features: another static object—a woman sitting outdoors wearing a hannya demon mask from the Noh theatre—is seen from different angles in a succession of crash zooms and encircling jump cuts. Infra-red film gives the scene its lurid colouring this time; as in as […]

Posted in {film} | Comments Off

 


Metastasis, a film by Toshio Matsumoto

metastasis.jpg

Or Toshio’s Psychedelic Toilet. Toshio Matsumoto is known to cineastes for feature films such as Funeral Parade of Roses (which I’ve still not seen—sorry, Thom!), but he’s also responsible for a number of experimental films like this one. In Metastasis (1971) we watch a toilet bowl for 9 minutes while the colours and contrast shift […]

Posted in {abstract cinema}, {film}, {psychedelia} | Comments Off

 


Chumlum, a film by Ron Rice

chumlum.jpg

25 minutes of superimpositions, hammock swinging, fabric waving and costume play with Jack Smith as master of ceremonies. The music by Angus MacLise (under the direction of Tony Conrad, whatever that means) gives the proceedings a suitably dreamy and hallucinatory air, like an attic restaging of Kenneth Anger’s Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome. Yesterday’s Doctor […]

Posted in {film}, {gay}, {psychedelia} | Comments Off

 


Paging Doctor Benway

benway1.jpg

Roy Scheider as Dr A. Benway in Naked Lunch (1991). 1: Naked Lunch (1959) by William Burroughs So I am assigned to engage the services of Doctor Benway for Islam Inc. Dr. Benway had been called in as advisor to the Freeland Republic, a place given over to free love and continual bathing. The citizens […]

Posted in {books}, {burroughs}, {film}, {music} | 9 comments »

 


 


 

tracker

 


 

“feed your head”