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

Archive for the ‘John Lennon’ tag

 

A Portrait of the Author

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Portrait of James Joyce (1929) by Constantin Brancusi. A post for Bloomsday. Joyce’s writing was always concerned more with words and phonics than with the appearance of things—understandable given his failing eyesight—but throughout his life he was a persistently attractive subject for portraits and caricatures. This was partly a consequence of being surrounded by artists […]

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The South Bank Show: The Making of Sgt Pepper

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Here come the anniversaries again, driven by nostalgia and the imperatives of corporations to flog you another version of that thing you already own. Anniversaryism grew out of the CD reissue boom, with one of the first significant incidents being the debut release on CD of The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper album in 1987. This week […]

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Saga de Xam by Nicolas Devil

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Saga de Xam, a large-format comic book published by Éric Losfeld in 1967, is another example of French erotic psychedelia that remained off my radar until I got my hands on the exhibition catalogue for the Musée d’Orsay’s Art Nouveau Revival show in 2010. The glorious drawing below was used as the background for the […]

Posted in {art}, {black and white}, {books}, {comics}, {gay}, {psychedelia}, {science fiction}, {surrealism} | 4 comments »

 


Acid albums

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LSD (1966). A handful of album covers, all for the vinyl equivalents of the books and magazines in the Acid covers post. The album-as-documentary/essay is one of those curiosities that no one would ever produce today but in the 1960s there were still many of them around. All of these albums have been plundered for […]

Posted in {design}, {drugs}, {psychedelia} | 1 comment »

 


Lyrical Substance Deliberated

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Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds from Yellow Submarine (1968). The advent of spring invariably gets me listening to favourite psychedelic songs, and this year has been no exception. Earlier this week I was idly wondering how many songs there are that follow the Beatles’ lead in telegraphing their drug metaphors by using the initials […]

Posted in {drugs}, {film}, {music}, {psychedelia}, {work} | 6 comments »

 


Newspaper record covers

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Gazette Vol. 2 (1961) by Pete Seeger. More elaborate record sleeve design. Was Pete Seeger the first artist to have a fake newspaper as a cover design? Gazette Vol. 2 is the earliest example I can find. Some of these examples were suggested by this earlier overview. If anyone knows of any omissions then please leave […]

Posted in {design}, {music} | 11 comments »

 


Weekend links 130

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Sarah and Writhing Octopus (New Wave Series, 1992) by Masami Teraoka. Strange Flowers continues to push all my buttons. For a while now I’d been intent on writing something about the strange (unbuilt) temples designed by German artist/obsessive naturist Fidus (Hugo Höppener) but I reckon James has done a better job than I would have […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {comics}, {cormac}, {electronica}, {film}, {horror}, {illustrators}, {magazines}, {music}, {painting}, {science fiction}, {theatre}, {work} | 3 comments »

 


Tomorrow Never Knows

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Episode 38 of The Beatles (1967). The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine was released on Blu-ray earlier this month. The quality is as good as you’d expect, it looks and sounds fantastic with the songs really benefitting from their remixes and high-definition audio. The film atoned for Al Brodax and George Dunning’s earlier role as producers of […]

Posted in {animation}, {drugs}, {film}, {music}, {psychedelia}, {television} | 5 comments »

 


The art of Ronald Searle, 1920–2012

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Undertakers. From Punch magazine (undated). I started trying to draw like Ronald Searle when I was about eight. So there was Jabberwocky and Ronald Searle I was turning into by the time I was thirteen. You know, I was determined to be Lewis Carroll (giggles) with a hint of Ronald Searle. John Lennon, 1968 Does […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {film}, {illustrators}, {magazines}, {work} | 4 comments »

 


After Beardsley by Chris James

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I have Greg Jarvis of Flowers of Hell to thank for prompting this discovery. Greg left a comment on an earlier post about Aubrey Beardsley’s influence in the musical world in which he drew my attention to some Flowers of Hell cover art and a video inspired by Beardsley’s Morte Darthur drawings. The video reminded […]

Posted in {animation}, {art}, {beardsley}, {film} | 7 comments »

 


Alice in Wonderland by Jonathan Miller

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I said, “Girl, you drank a lot of Drink Me, But you ain’t in a Wonderland You know I might-a be there to greet you, child, When your trippin’ ship touches sand.” Donovan, The Trip (1966). Most of the key texts of the psychedelic period tend to be either non-fiction—Huxley’s Doors of Perception, Leary’s Psychedelic […]

Posted in {books}, {fantasy}, {film}, {music}, {psychedelia}, {television} | 10 comments »

 


Yellow Submarine comic books

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By the time Yellow Submarine appeared on TV in the early Seventies I was already a keen viewer of anything showing the groovier side of the late Sixties. What I recall of that decade is resolutely unspectacular—I was only 7 in 1969, after all—but Swinging London as seen in the lighter films of the period, […]

Posted in {comics}, {film}, {music}, {psychedelia} | 2 comments »

 


Psychedelic vehicles

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Further: the second version of Ken Kesey’s Merry Prankster bus. The word psychedelic, like surreal before it, slipped from its original meaning through appropriation. Humphrey Osmond’s neologism was first coined in drug-related correspondence with Aldous Huxley in 1957 and was specifically intended to describe the “mind-manifesting” quality of the hallucinogenic drug experience. The drug-inspired art […]

Posted in {books}, {design}, {film}, {gay}, {music}, {psychedelia} | 11 comments »

 


Aleister Crowley on vinyl

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The appearance of occultist Aleister Crowley on the sleeve of Sgt Pepper is well-documented—here he is looking rather grainy on my CD insert—although I always forget which of the Beatles it was who put him in the list of “people that we like”. I’d guess John Lennon who would have appreciated Crowley’s obscene poetry, copious […]

Posted in {music}, {occult} | 42 comments »

 


William Blake in Manchester

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Europe: A Prophecy by William Blake (1794). Two exhibitions based around the work of William Blake open today at Manchester’s Whitworth Art Gallery, Mind-Forg’d Manacles, “organised to coincide with the 250th anniversary of Blake’s birth as well as the 200th anniversary of the Parliamentary abolition of the transatlantic slave trade” and Blake’s Shadow: William Blake […]

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Another Green World: The Codex Seraphinianus

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listen: there’s a hell of a good universe next door; let’s go e.e.cummings WHEN CONSIDERING THE CANON of inventive, intelligent works of fantasy it’s probably fair to say that if Luigi Serafini’s Codex Seraphinianus didn’t exist it would be necessary to invent it. Imaginary worlds are as old as the human imagination itself and will […]

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