Weekend links 78

carr.jpg

Struggle (2009) by Lindsey Carr.

• “Twilight Science is an imprint for sound, music and DVD editions initiated by artist Paul Schütze. We will progressively publish all back catalogue, new projects and collaborations. These will include works by Phantom City, NAPE, Schütze-Hopkins and others.” Related (because Paul Schütze remixed Main): Main Feed The Collapse, Neil Kulkarni talks to Robert Hampson.

• “You can’t really narrate or display this situation, you can only, endlessly, contemplate it. When the writer or director gets tired of the iterations, he tells us who the mole is.” Michael Wood on the novel, (superb) television series and recent film of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.

• “Havin’ a dick is pretty fuckin’ awesome” says Horst, a new gay magazine limited to 1000 copies. Related (well, there’s a guy in and out of his underwear): Naked Lunch, a fashion shoot very tenuously based on David Cronenberg’s film.

“At first, I tried fighting bullies one-on-one, but they don’t fight fair; they fight two and three on one,” Bennett said. So the youths got together and “started carrying mace, knives, brass knuckles and stun guns, and if somebody messed with one of us then all of us would gang up on them.”

 “Gay black youths go from attacked to attackers” says the headline. A group of genuine Wild Boys; William Burroughs would have approved.

• Tor.com reminded me of Sally Cruikshank‘s amazing animated film Face Like a Frog (1987) which features a score and Cab Calloway-style song by Danny Elfman.

• It’s 1969, OK? Pádraig Ó Méalóid talks with Kevin O’Neill about the Swinging League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

• In the Tumblr labyrinth this week: Fuck Yeah St Sebastian and Gender is Irrelevant.

• For when you need some motherfucking placeholder text: Samuel L Ipsum.

• “Study finds ‘magic mushrooms’ may improve personality long-term.”

Solar Megalomania: paintings by Leonora Carrington.

• It’s all fun and games until Charles Manson turns up.

Firmament II (1993) by Main | Firmament IV (1993) by Main | Reformation (1994) by Main.

Weekend links 47

beksinski1.jpg

DG-2499 (1975) by the fantastic (in every sense of the word) Zdzislaw Beksinski (1929–2005). See the Dmochowski Gallery for a comprehensive collection of the artist’s work. Thanks to BibliOdyssey for the tip.

• More ICA events: From Animism to Zos: Strange Attractor Salon will be “a series of weekly events, consisting of a talk and a film, exploring some lesser-known intersections of culture, history, mind and nature” running from 10 March–12 May, 2011.

• And on May 10, the London Word Festival presents a Dodgem Logic evening with entertainment provided by contributors to that magazine:

Alan Moore’s reinvigoration of the underground fanzine, Dodgem Logic, comes alive in the non-conformist surroundings of Hackney’s Round Chapel. A night of art, comedy, comment and put-something-back localism. (…) With Robin Ince heading up a colossal stand-up bill, artists Steve Aylett, Savage Pencil, Melinda Gebbie and Kevin O’Neill panel-up to talk about their comic work, while music comes from hyperactive racketeers The Retro Spankees. With an exhibition of artwork from the magazine, and conducted by editor-in-chief Alan Moore.

• Taschen publishes a collection of Dennis Hopper’s photographs this week. The Independent has a small selection here. Also new from Tachen, Alex Steinweiss, The Inventor of the Modern Album Cover.

Bass Notes: The Film Posters of Saul Bass at the Kemistry Gallery, London.

beksinski2.jpg

DG-2507 by Zdzislaw Beksinski.

While riding through the bustling streets of London from 1603 to 1621, one was liable to hear the shout “Long live Queen James!” King James I of England and VI of Scotland was so open about his homosexual love affairs that an epigram had been circulated which roused much mirth and nodding of the heads: Rex fuit Elizabeth: nunc est regina Jacobus—”Elizabeth was King: now James is Queen.”

There’s more about the private life of the man who gave his name to the King James Bible here.

Addams and Evil, a Tumblr devoted to the great Charles Addams.

Hannes Bok again at Golden Age Comic Book Stories.

Caravaggio’s crimes exposed in Rome’s police files.

Deserted City, photographs by Kim Høltermand.

• The blue sand dunes of the planet Mars.

• A map of the ghost signs of Chicago.

The movie title stills collection.

The pitfalls of e-book buying.

Life On Mars? (1971) by David Bowie | Uncle Sam’s On Mars (1979) by Hawkwind | Eyes On Mars (1980) by Chrome | Cache Coeur Naif (1997) by Mouse on Mars.

Dodgem Logic again

dodgem.jpg

Look what the postman delivered. Well, not the peacock feather and candle, obviously… Dodgem Logic #4 is now in print and my cover design looks as splendid as I hoped, gold ink included. The bonus item for this delirious issue is the rather wonderful poster you see in the background, a Joe Brown & Alan Moore collaboration entitled Bohemia which features a burgeoning growth of Bohemians through the ages, from Sappho through to more contemporary cultural icons. Inside there’s Dick Foreman discussing psychedelia, comics from Steve Aylett, Barney Farmer, Lee Healey, Kevin O’Neill and Savage Pencil, Melinda Gebbie’s gorgeous paintings, Debbie Delano on how to be an openly gay school teacher, Steve Moore asking for no more war, and Mister Alan Moore giving us his personal history of science fiction. You can order it online here.

Previously on { feuilleton }
Dodgem Logic #4
Dodgem Logic

Dodgem Logic

dodgem1.jpg

You need this, boys and girls, yes you do. Dodgem Logic is the first worthwhile independent culture mag this country has produced since the sorely-missed Strange Things Are Happening. Perhaps significantly, both those titles featured Mr Alan Moore, being interviewed in Strange Things and presiding over the new title as resident magus and eminence gris-gris.

“…we’ve tried to resurrect a spirit of the 60s underground papers, but without the look or ambience or some of the oversights. There were a lot of very good ideas that emerged from the 60s underground. It was the first place I heard about women’s liberation – as we used to call it then – or gay liberation. They were fanatically anti-war. Many of their most extreme political statements, such as the fact that sometimes the police kill people, or that sometimes we make deals with dictators and criminal governments that we keep quiet about – these things are pretty much standard stuff of conversation these days and not reserved purely for bearded wild-eyed burbling radicals (chuckles).” (More.)

Among other delights, there’s a page of Alan’s where he returns to cartooning (below) with a paean to my favourite drawing pen, the Rotring Rapidograph, Melinda Gebbie writing on feminism, Kevin O’Neill with a WTF of cosmic proportions, and much more, including a smart feature on how to reclaim local land which the council won’t use. All this and a free CD! Who says we can’t have good things?

Update: I should have noted that Americans can order Dodgem Logic through Top Shelf.

dodgem2.jpg

Previously on { feuilleton }
International Times archive
The Realist
Revenant volumes: Bob Haberfield, New Worlds and others
Oz magazine, 1967-73
Alan Moore interview, 1988
Strange Things Are Happening, 1988-1990

Design as virus 8: Keep Calm and Carry On

keepcalm1.jpg

Continuing an occasional series.

The poster at the top left is the unused Ministry of Information design created to maintain Britain’s resolve after war had been declared in September 1939. This simple slogan struck a chord recently among Britons sick of the climate of fear, security theatre and authoritarian coercion which, deliberately or not, appears to benefit politicians and the agents of the State more than the populace who pay their wages. The BBC asked whether this was the greatest motivational poster ever. The Guardian noted the popularity of the slogan and its inevitable commercial exploitation:

…one day in 2000, Stuart Manley, co-owner with his wife Mary of Barter Books in Alnwick, Northumberland, was sifting through a box of hardbacks he had bought at auction when he saw “A big piece of paper folded up at the bottom. I opened it out, and I thought, wow. That’s quite something. I showed it to Mary, and she agreed. So we framed it and put it up on the bookshop wall. And that’s where it all started.”

The reworked version at the top right is one of the opening pages from The Black Dossier (2007) by Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill. The crown is replaced by a portcullis and Gill Sans is dropped in favour of Edward Johnston’s sans serif typeface which has been used throughout the London Underground system since the 1930s.

keepcalm2.jpg

The original poster has been undergoing numerous redesigns, from the jokey to the serious. The green design is one of the better variants by designer Matt Jones.

The blue design is part of an advertising campaign by the British Home Office intended to promote their new “Policing Pledge”, “a set of promises to local residents that not only gives more information about who their local neighbourhood policing team is, but also ensures that communities will have a stronger voice in telling the police what they think is most important and what they are most worried about.”

Laudable as this intention may be, I was very surprised when I saw this poster on a bus shelter earlier in the week. While the Home Office and its advertising people are fully entitled to reclaim a design which originated with the State in the first place, one of the reasons the original poster strikes a chord is because it runs counter to anti-terrorist nonsense like this. It speaks, among other things, to people sick of being lied to by politicians and spied on by police and security services. To see a forgotten design experience a swelling of grassroots popularity then be co-opted by the State itself is as depressing as it would have been had Richard Nixon used psychedelic posters to campaign for his re-election. To see a campaign use slogans which treat the rights of defendants as flippantly as the poster remixers when this present government has spent the past ten years undermining the rights of its citizens is simply a disgrace.

Update: A Flickr pool catalogues the variations.

Previously on { feuilleton }
Design as virus 7: eyes and triangles
Design as virus 6: Cassandre
Design as virus 5: Gideon Glaser
Design as virus 4: Metamorphoses
Design as virus 3: the sincerest form of flattery
Design as virus 2: album covers
Design as virus 1: Victorian borders