Weekend links 497

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Poster by Zdenek Ziegler for Roma (1972), a film by Federico Fellini.

• At Dennis Cooper’s: a short history of Straight to Hell, a long-running fanzine launched by Boyd McDonald in 1971 dedicated to true stories of men having sex with other men. The post gives an idea of the contents but for a deep dive I’d suggest Meat (1994) at the Internet Archive, a collection of the best of the early editions of STH. Related: “Straight to Hell was an immensely popular underground publication. John Waters, William S. Burroughs, and Robert Mapplethorpe were fans; Gore Vidal called it ‘one of the best radical papers in the country.'” Erin Sheehy on Boyd McDonald’s determination to kick against the pricks.

• RIP psychedelic voyager and spiritual guide Richard Alpert/(Baba) Ram Dass. The Alpert/Ram Dass bibliography includes The Psychedelic Experience: A Manual Based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead (1964), an acid-trip manual written in collaboration with Timothy Leary and Ralph Metzner from which John Lennon borrowed lines for the lyrics of Tomorrow Never Knows. But the most celebrated Ram Dass volume is Be Here Now (1971), a fixture of countless hippy bookshelves whose first editions were all handmade.

• “An Einstein among Neanderthals”: the tragic prince of LA counterculture. Gabriel Szatan talks to David Lynch, Devo and others about the eccentric songwriter, performer and voice of Lynch’s Lady in the Radiator, Peter Ivers.

• For the forthcoming centenary of Federico Fellini’s birth Stephen Puddicombe offers suggestions for where to begin with the director’s “exuberant extravaganzas”. Related: Samuel Wigley on 8½ films inspired by .

• “I met resident Tony Notarberardino for the first time in 2015 and entering his apartment was like crossing into another dimension.” Collin Miller explores the Chelsea Hotel.

• “More green tea, professor?” The haunted academic, a reading list by Peter Meinertzhagen. Related: Our Haunted Year: 2019 by Swan River Press.

• “30 July, Yorkshire. Thunder, which is somehow old-fashioned.” Alan Bennett’s 2019 diary.

• More acid trips: Joan Harvey on the resurgence of interest in psychedelic drugs.

• At Lithub: Werner Herzog’s prose script for Nosferatu the Vampyre.

Tief gesunken, a new recording by Bohren & Der Club Of Gore.

In Heaven (1979) by Tuxedomoon | Die Nacht Der Himmel (1979) by Popol Vuh | Roma (1981) by Steve Lacy

Weekend links 447

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Physical Training for Business Men (1917).

• At Expanding Mind: Erik Davis concludes his discussion with religious scholar Diana Pasulka about anomalous cognition, 2001 monoliths, disclosure, future truths, absurd Christianity, and her book American Cosmic.

• This year the LRB wouldn’t let non-subscribers read Alan Bennett’s 2018 diary but they have a recording of Bennett reading entries here.

• “Glen thought it was very good PR for us to be heavily involved in the druids.” Tom Pinnock talks to the Third Ear Band.

• Rebecca Fasman on the forgotten legacy of gay photographer George Platt Lynes.

• Laura Leavitt on John Cleves Symmes Jr.‘s obsession with a hollow Earth.

• David Parkinson recommends 12 essential Laurel and Hardy films.

• Paul Grimstad on the beautiful mind-bending of Stanislaw Lem.

• Mix of the week: Secret Thirteen Mix 277 by Sigillum S.

• The endlessly photogenic Chrysler Building.

Energy Flow by Ryuichi Sakamoto.

195 Gigapixel Shanghai

Solaris: Ocean (1972) by Edward Artemyev | The Sea Named Solaris (1977) by Isao Tomita | Simulacra II (2011) by Ben Frost & Daníel Bjarnason

Weekend links 392

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Art by Twins of Evil for the forthcoming blu-ray from Arrow Academy.

Images (1972), the film that Robert Altman made between McCabe and Mrs Miller and The Long Goodbye, is the closest the director came to outright horror. A disturbing portrait of mental breakdown, with Susannah York in the lead role, and photography by Vilmos Zsigmond, the film has for years been so difficult to see as to be almost invisible. Arrow Academy will remedy this situation in March next year with a new blu-ray restoration. Related: Geoff Andrew on where to begin with Robert Altman.

• “[Johnson] is a paltry, utterly conventional, upwardly mobile, morally squalid parvenu who yearns to be taken for what he isn’t.” Jonathan Meades‘ vitriol is in a class of its own, here being deployed in a review of Nincompoopolis: The Follies of Boris Johnson by Douglas Murphy.

• “These films, all preserved in the BFI National Archive, are known as Orphan Works. When the rights-holder for a film cannot be found, that film is classified as an Orphan Work.” 170 orphaned films have been added to the BFI’s YouTube channel.

Don’t romanticize science fiction. One of the questions I have been asked so many times I’ve forgotten what my stock answer to it is, ‘Since science fiction is a marginal form of writing, do you think it makes it easier to deal with marginal people?’ Which—no! Why should it be any easier? Dealing with the marginal is always a matter of dealing with the marginal. If anything, science fiction as a marginal genre is more rigid, far more rigid than literature. There are more examples of gay writing in literature than there are in science fiction.

Samuel Delany in a lengthy two-part interview with Adam Fitzgerald

• One of the books I was illustrating this year was The Demons of King Solomon, a horror anthology edited by Aaron French. The collection is out now; I’ll post the illustrations here in the next month or so.

• Mixes of the week: Routledge Dexter Satellite Systems by Moon Wiring Club, No Way Through The Woods: A Conjurer’s Hexmas by SeraphicManta, and FACT mix 632 by Priests.

• Also at the BFI: Adam Scovell on a film adaptation of MR James that predates Jonathan Miller’s Whistle and I’ll Come To You (1968) by 12 years.

• At Weird Fiction Review: Jon Padgett on absurd degenerations and totalitarian decrepitude in The Town Manager by Thomas Ligotti.

• At Larkfall: Electricity & Imagination: Karl von Eckartshausen and Romantic Synaesthesia.

• It’s the end of December so the London Review of Books has Alan Bennett’s diary for the past year.

Aquarium Drunkard‘s review of the year’s best music.

• At Dennis Cooper’s: Lotte Reiniger Day.

Robin Rimbaud is In Wild Air.

• Dream Sequence (Images II) (1976) by George Crumb | Images (1977) by Sun Ra | Mirror Images (1978) by Van Der Graaf

Weekend links 342

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La femme et le pantin (1909) by Ángel Zárraga.

• RIP John Berger. Berger’s essential TV series on art, Ways of Seeing (1972), is at YouTube and Ubuweb; “Such freedom is unthinkable today,” says series director Mike Dibb; the book of the series was designed by Berger and Richard Hollis; ways of seeing Ways of Seeing; Geoff Dyer, Olivia Laing & Ali Smith on Berger; M. John Harrison on Berger.

• The beginning of January means the LRB posting Alan Bennett‘s diary for the previous year. In related news, Network DVD will be releasing Six Plays by Alan Bennett next month, a collection that includes a favourite of mine, Me! I’m Afraid of Virginia Woolf (1978).

• At Dennis Cooper’s: Acid Westerns Day (Restated). Related: Jodorowsky’s El Topo and The Holy Mountain are being released on Blu-ray (Region B) by Gryphon Entertainment.

The acre of suburban lawn surrounding our house became like the Paramount lot for my feverish theatrics. I graduated to building “spook houses” in the family garage out back. Inspired by the ride-through Trimper’s Haunted House in Ocean City, Maryland, designed by Bill Tracy (and it’s still there in operation), I remembered excitedly wheeling through this attraction in these rickety little coffin-shaped cars and dreaming of befriending the crudely built, motorized corpses, cannibals, and skeletons who lived inside. I fantasized the cars breaking down, the panicked, chickenshit children screaming, bolting from their seats, tripping over live wires, and electrocuting themselves. I wanted to take this imagined fear, this frightened happiness, back to my own house where I knew I could preserve, protect, and stylize it on my own adolescent terms.

John Waters on his childhood home

Strange Flowers‘ latest reading recommendations include books on lesbian decadence, occult Paris, flâneurie and the queerness of the Benson family.

Where Evil Dwells (1985), a 28-minute preview of a longer piece of weird cinema (now destroyed) by Tommy Turner and David Wojnarowicz.

Francis Ford Coppola and Brian De Palma having a conversation about Coppola’s The Conversation.

The Edge Question for 2017: “What scientific term or concept ought to be more widely known?”

• Mixes of the week: Drone Theory with Roly Porter, and Secret Thirteen Mix 205 by Stavaris.

Simran Hans suggests where to begin with the films of Todd Haynes.

• More decadence, this time among the Mexican Modernists.

Moon Wiring Club at Bandcamp.

No Name, No Slogan (1989) by Acid Horse | Those Tapes Are Dangerous (1997) by The Bug | Spooky Action At A Distance (2014) by Sqürl

Weekend links 331

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Ekeko (2016) by Jon Jacobsen.

Outer Space (1999), a short film by Peter Tscherkassky using reprocessed footage taken from The Entity (1982).

Pye Corner Audio playing live for 77 minutes at New Forms Festival, Vancouver 2016.

Salvador Dalí‘s rare Surrealist cookbook republished for the first time in over 40 years.

Keeping On Keeping On by Alan Bennett; extracts from the writer’s most recent diaries.

The Hagströmer Medico-Historical Library is a new source for free antique images.

• The shopfronts of independent Paris photographed by Sebastian Erras.

The Edge of the Ceiling (1980) is a short film about writer Alan Garner.

• Mix of the week: Secret Thirteen Mix 198 by Bestial Mouths.

Brenda S G Walter on eviscerating the body of Black Metal.

• “When did new age music become cool?” asks Geeta Dayal.

Barok Main, a new piece from Mica Levi & Oliver Coates.

• American gay magazine XY has been relaunched.

• Confessions of a vinyl junkie by David Bowie.

Touch Radio archive at the British Library.

Harvard’s collection of glass flowers.

Michelle Stuart‘s Magical Land Art.

Dali’s Car (1969) by Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band | Save Me From Dali (1980) by Snakefinger | Salvador Dali’s Garden Party (1989) by Television Personalities