Weekend links 56

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Ad Astra (1907) by Akseli Gallen-Kallela.

• Andres Serrano’s works are photo prints so you can’t damage an exhibition item the way you can with a painting. That didn’t stop Catholic protestors in France attacking a copy of Piss Christ on Monday. By coincidence, Dave Maier had posted an essay about Serrano’s work a few hours earlier, and with a reminder that the notorious photograph was part of a series, a detail which is often forgotten or conveniently ignored.

• The Avant Garde Project which made available deleted experimental audio works (see this earlier post) ceased activity a while ago so it’s good to see that its archives will now be hosted at Ubuweb.

…African Head Charge again was a studio name I had to start with, and it evolved into a band about eight years later. That started out again I read an interview in a newspaper where Brian Eno talked about he’d made an album called My Life in the Bush of Ghosts with another musician—that Talking Heads fellow [David Byrne]—and he said “I had a vision of a psychedelic Africa”. And I thought, “Oh, that’s pretentious”. But then I thought about it, and thought “No, what a good idea! Make really trippy African dub”.

Adrian Sherwood on thirty years of On-U Sound.

• Related: Brian Eno has a new album out in July, Drums Between The Bells, a collaboration with Rick Holland.

“Do you think Lord Leighton could by any chance have been a homosexual?” enquired Richard. “It says here,” I replied, consulting a laminated information card, “that there is no evidence one way or the other.”

“Rent boys leave no evidence,” said Richard.

A private view of Lord Leighton’s home in Holland Park, London, which opened to the public again last year.

Passengers, an exhibition of urban transit photos by Chris Marker at Peter Blum, NYC. For a different kind of rail transport there’s this exploration of London’s disused underground Post Office Railway.

• Reappraising the recent past: Jon Savage on Taxi zum Klo, Christiane F, David Bowie and the seedy attraction of Berlin in the 70s and 80s; Iain Sinclair on the Festival of Britain sixty years on.

Stella Steyn’s illustrations for Finnegans Wake as seen in transition magazine, 1929. And speaking of literary magazines, the return of New Worlds has been announced.

Clive Hicks-Jenkins is an art monograph published next month by Lund Humphries. Clive enthused about the book’s arrival.

• 50 Watts announces the Polish Book Cover Contest.

• 4th June, 2011 is Radiophonic Creation Day.

• Americans: has your state banned sodomy?

Stardust (1931) by Louis Armstrong | Stardust (1940) by Artie Shaw | Stardust (1957) by Nat King Cole.

The art of Kozma Lajos, 1884–1948

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Will at 50 Watts points the way to a set of line drawings by Kozma Lajos, a Hungarian artist better known for his later work as an architect and designer. What strikes me about these illustrations is their similiarity to the graphics being produced by German and Austrian artists a few years earlier, some of whom have been turning up in the recent samples from Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration. There’s the same Klimt-like decorative detail and a lack of perspective. See the series here and further illustration work at the end of this page.

Elsewhere on { feuilleton }
The illustrators archive

Weekend links 51

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James Bidgood’s luscious and erotic micro-budget masterpiece Pink Narcissus (1971) receives a screening at the IFC Center Queer/Art/Film festival, NYC, on Monday. The film is presented by Jonathan Katz, curator of the Hide/Seek gay art show whose controversial history was recounted here in December. The NYT ran a short piece about Bidgood, now 77 and not the first artist to be disappointed by his past work; they also have a Bidgood slideshow. Hide/Seek, meanwhile, is now a touring exhibition.

• Related: the delightful Drew Daniel of Matmos (and Soft Pink Truth) posing in a jockstrap at the Club Uranus, San Francisco circa 1990; he also used to go-go dance wearing a fish.

• The Isle of Man may have one of the oldest parliaments in the world but its laws have often been out of step with its neighbour across the Irish Sea. This week the island joined the rest of the UK in granting civil partnerships to its citizens. Now the name whose punning appeal so delighted James Joyce doesn’t seem as inappropriate.

Howard Jacobson: “The novelist Yukio Mishima posed pointing a Samurai sword to his chest and ultimately had himself beheaded in public. This is what’s called taking your art seriously.”

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The Realm of the Queen of the Night (1974) by Wolfgang Hutter from Zauberflote at 50 Watts.

The revelatory operations of the chance encounter lie at the heart of le merveilleux (“the marvelous”)—the Surrealist conception of beauty. You find something marvelous in the world (an object, an image, a person, a place) that corresponds, like a piece clicking into a puzzle, to a deep inner need.

Slicing Open the Eyeball: Rick Poynor on Surrealism and the Visual Unconscious by Mark Dery.

Boy from the Boroughs: Alan Moore interviewed by Pádraig Ó Méalóid; Michael Moorcock interviewed at Suicide Girls.

• Illustrations from Quark, the anthology of speculative fiction edited by Samuel Delany & Marilyn Hacker in 1970.

The Residents, sans masks, filmed at their San Francisco home in the 1970s.

• Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor played on a glass harp.

What art can do for science (and vice versa).

• You can never have too much Virgil Finlay.

• Lydia Kiesling reviews Lolita.

Alain Resnais film posters.

Red Mug, Blue Linen.

No GDM (dub version) (1979) by Gina X | L. Voag’s Kitchen (2004) by Soft Pink Truth.

Weekend links 49

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Star City by Tomislav Ceranic.

• Noted in the blogosphere this week: A Journey Round My Skull underwent a transmutation into 50 Watts; a blog devoted to artist, designer & illustrator Jessie M King; “The arts and musicks of the supranatural” at Secret Lexicon; From the Farm, Railroads, Sewing Machines & Beyond, lengthy reminiscences from a long life in America.

Barney Bubbles in Wonderland, in which the designer and his chums indulge in some Carrollian shenanigans somewhere in the 1960s. The resulting footage is now a promo video for Balloon Race by Bear Driver.

HP Lovecraft’s favourite words, the desert island books of Jorge Luis Borges, a profile of Christopher Isherwood, and Edward Gorey again.

[Arthur] Machen explicitly talks about the strength of London, as opposed to Paris, in that London is more chaotic. Although he doesn’t put it in these words, I think what partly draws him to London is this notion that, in the absence of a kind of unifying vision, like Haussmann’s Boulevards, and in a city that’s become much more syncretic and messy over time, you have more room to insert your own aestheticizing vision.

China Miéville in a great interview at BLDGBLOG.

Matryomin is “the unique, original erectronic [sic] musical instrument invented by Masami Takeuchi in 2000”. Yes, a theremin inside a Russian doll. The Mable ensemble playing Duke Ellington’s Caravan is, well…I’m still speechless. And there’s also this.

Conductor turns the New York subway system into an interactive string instrument.

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Discordia by Tomislav Ceranic.

Amazingly enough, prostitution was legal during the Victorian period. There were tons of brothels all over the major cities of England, and of all different kinds. There were lots of flagellation brothels; these were places where primarily men would go to be whipped by women or by men. There were also gay male brothels. You could go to a park in London at night, pick up what were called the “park whores” and give them a very small amount of money to have sex openly in the park. I also write about gay “cruising,” which was quite common. If you knew the right place to go and knew the right signals, you could pick up a man on the street and have sex in an alley.

Deborah Lutz is interviewed about her book Pleasure Bound: Victorian Sex Rebels and the New Eroticism.

Cult-ure: Ideas can be dangerous, a book by Rian Hughes.

Chernobyl: Europe’s strangest wildlife refuge.

The Eadweard Muybridge Online Archive.

Aubrey Beardsley at Tumblr.

Caravan (1959) by Martin Denny | Caravan (1961) by 80 Drums Around The World | Caravan (1962) by Sir Julian | Caravan (1965) by The Ventures | Caravan (1973) by Enoch Light & The Light Brigade | Caravan (1997) by Jimi Tenor (I could go on and on, yes I could…)