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


 

Weekend links 283

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Behind by Lisa Wassmann.

• “Without space art, nobody would know what Mars would look like.” Artist David A. Hardy talking to Nadja Sayej about a life spent painting the cosmos and—briefly—working for Hawkwind. Visions of Space, an exhibition of astronomical art, is at the Wells & Mendip Museum throughout November.

• Mixes of the week: Something Beautiful Happened by Cafe Kaput; Autumn Vybes: Mist, Mystery and Motion by Abigail Ward; and Secret Thirteen Mix 166 by Ron Morelli.

• More Ghost Box: Two new singles in the Other Voices series will be released next month. And the label is profiled in the latest issue of Electronic Sound magazine.

It breaks my heart when one writer tells another what she can or cannot do. I once knew a woman, a professor of literature, who said that Flaubert had no right to write Madame Bovary because he was a man. Such dangerous foolishness! This is just another form that dogmatic thinking takes. And it seems to me that the imagining mind—which is also a profoundly human mind—must be unfettered, boundless. To write from the perspective of another’s world demands a generous and a rigorous leap of the spirit; it demands empathy and mindfulness. Writing is so much about subverting dogmatisms of all kinds, above all the ones that insist you cannot go there! You must not say that! Writers need to go anywhere, to take anything on. And the only rule is to do it well.

Rikki Ducornet in a retrospective feature at Dennis Cooper’s blog

• “Horror at its best has always existed outside the mainstream,” says Brian Ennis in another celebratory piece about Thomas Ligotti.

• Alan Clarke & David Rudkin’s Penda’s Fen receives another cinema screening next week at the Sallis Benney Theatre, Brighton.

• “[David] Lynch’s films abound with gnomic pronouncements and incantations,” says Dennis Lim.

Stars of the Lid play a tremendous hour-long set at St. Agnes Church in Brooklyn.

Drawn in Stereo: a book of music-related art and illustration by Michael Gillette.

• At Dangerous Minds: Only the coolest people get to sit in the wicker peacock chair.

Everything Is Erotic Therefore Everything Is Exhausting by Johanna Hedva.

Moon Mist (1961) by The Out-Islanders | River Mist (1989) by Brian Eno | Black Mist (Long Version) (2013) by Pye Corner Audio

 


Butcher’s Hook, a film by Simon Pummell

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“Butcher’s hook” is Cockney rhyming slang for “look”, something alluded to in this short and wordless blend of live action and animation. But it also has a more sinister connotation when the fate of the taxidermist becomes apparent. As with Pummell’s earlier Secret Joy of Falling Angels, animal skeletons and silhouettes predominate. The film was co-written by novelist Simon Ings while the sound is by regular Quay Brothers collaborator Larry Sider.

Previously on { feuilleton }
Secret Joy of Falling Angels, a film by Simon Pummell

 


Suspiria details

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Wall decor based on MC Escher’s Study of Regular Division of the Plane with Fish and Birds (1938).

A few screen grabs from the weekend’s viewing of a German Blu-ray disc of Suspiria (1977). My old DVD didn’t look too bad but this is one film where high-definition is required to do justice to the vivid lighting and to Giuseppe Bassan’s marvellous production design. The Art Nouveau splendour of the cursed ballet school contains some notable art references but elsewhere there’s the Escher decoration on the walls of the apartment at the beginning, not the kind of decor you expect to find in a horror film. All these images are details cropped from widescreen frames.

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Suzy (Jessica Harper) and Madame Blanc (Joan Bennett) in the madame’s office. The mural always fascinated me for being a strange confection of Escher motifs, all winding staircases and architecture borrowed from Belvedere (1958).

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The far right of the same shot showing some of the Beardsley figures that fill the panels of Madame Blanc’s screens.

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Papillons by EA Séguy

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I’d seen a couple of these plates before—BibliOdyssey has a post about Séguy’s insect art—but not the book as a whole. In addition to the butterfly portraits there are also a number of suggestions for textile designs based on butterfly wings. Papillons was published in 1925. Five years later Séguy produced a collection of Art Deco designs, Prismes, which was highlighted a while ago, and which is now also available at the Internet Archive. The Prismes plates tend to abstraction but nonetheless feature some stylised natural elements, butterflies included.

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Urbatecture

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Spotted at Neatorama this week, Cédric Dequidt‘s Urbicande lamp, a cubic design which appears to be sinking into the table. The Neatorama people don’t seem aware that the name of the lamp refers to Fever in Urbicande (1985), a comic book by François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters, and the second volume in the masterful Cités Obscures series.

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Fever in Urbicand: Urbatect Eugen Robick ponders the properties of the strange cube which is invulnerable yet able to grow through solid materials.

The mysterious para-dimensional cube and its effects on the divided city of Urbicande have been described here already. Fever in Urbicande is my favourite of the core stories by Schuiten and Peeters, and it seems to be one of the more popular of Schuiten’s creations to judge by the lamp and some of the spin-off works that follow.

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Fever in Urbicand: Several months later, and the cube has burgeoned into a city-spanning “Network”.

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Penda's Fen by David Rudkin