Weekend links 118

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The Garden of Urban Delights (2010) by Marcin Owczarek.

His protagonists are misfits: alienated, implicitly gay, longing for love, frequently hard to be around, always fixated on small pleasures that compensate for an essential feeling of not belonging. […] His patroness Edith Sitwell termed him “that rare being, a born writer.” William Burroughs dedicated The Place of Dead Roads to him, declaring Welch “certainly the writer who most directly influenced my work.” John Waters has called In Youth is Pleasure “so precious, so beyond gay, so deliciously subversive, [it] is enough to make illiteracy a worse social crime than hunger.”

Sadie Stein on Denton Welch, a writer I’m embarrassed about still not having read. Edith Sitwell and William Burroughs had a famously disputatious correspondence in the pages of the TLS over The Naked Lunch. An appreciation of Welch’s work was one of the few things they had in common.

• Don’t mention guitars: Robert Hampson on acousmatic music, the curse of Loop and the rebirth of Main.

• No Straight Lines: A Collection Of Queer Comics part one, part two, part three. A history by Justin Hall.

Pieces Of Gold by The Aikiu: shots from gay porn videos repurposed via some smart editing.

• RIP Ilhan Mimaroglu, electroacoustic composer. Ubuweb has a selection of his recordings.

“A good ground rule for writing in any genre is: start with a form, then undermine its confidence in itself,” he says. “Ask what it’s afraid of, what it’s trying to hide – then write that.” For Harrison, the most satisfying writers are “at odds with their cultural context. They’re trying to fit in and failing, or they’re trying to remove themselves and failing. The attempt to resolve the conflict is an angle – a frame or a context – in itself.”

The Guardian’s A Life in Writing profiles M. John Harrison. His new novel, Empty Space, was published on Thursday. There’s also this recent video interview with Arc magazine.

• Stephen Usery interviews editor Russ Kick about The Graphic Canon: Volume One.

At home with Prince Zaleski, the “most decadent and imperial detective in fiction”.

• A Visit with Magritte: photographs by Duane Michals.

Loitering airships could dispense drones on demand.

• Creating a Forever Object: Ian Schon’s Pen Project.

• A Tumblr for the late, lamented Arthur Magazine.

• “Few cities can boast a railway line for the dead.”

The Lost Tapes by Can: An Oral History.

Space Reflex (1963) by Dick Hyman & Mary Mayo | Space Is Deep (1972) by Hawkwind | Space Is The Place (1973) by Sun Ra | Space Moment (1995) by Stereolab | Space Pong (2006) by T++

Weekend links 112

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“Venus moves across the Sun in this image captured by Japan’s satellite Hinode, on June 6, 2012.” Via.

The imagery in Ah Pook covered a wide range of ideas. A train full of Mayan Gods for instance travelled through various time zones to end up alongside a carnival in a red brick town outside St Louis. Then they got out…out of the books Mr. Hart was reading on the train. Fact also alternated with fiction. We could be chugging along with Lizard boys in a Mayan City one moment then switch to a history of Immigration Laws in the US or the development of tape recorders and Speech Scramblers. Then switch to a bright red Shrew boy with a hard-on on a bicycle in Palm Beach at the end of the world. Time was what the book was about: defining it, controlling it and moving back and forth within it.

Malcolm McNeill

Malcolm McNeill talks to The White Review about working with William Burroughs on Ah Pook Is Here. Related: Jan Herman as Publisher of Nova Broadcast Press. Reality Studio has all the Nova Broadcast publications as downloadable PDFs.

• More Graphic Canon news: design historian Steven Heller reports on the project while at Nashville Scene editor Russ Kick talks to Joe Nolan about the books.

• There’s still a couple of days left to hear Martyn Wade’s Blue Veils and Golden Sands, a BBC radio drama about electronic composer Delia Derbyshire.

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“Venus in silhouette, seen between the Earth and Sun, from NASA’s orbiting Solar Dynamics Observatory, on June 5, 2012.” Via.

• From 2010: Video of an hour-long lecture by Alberto Manguel at Yale University on “Borges and the Impossibility of Writing”.

• Bauhaus reflections: Frank Whitford on the design school and the exhibition currently running at the Barbican, London.

• “It’s easier to be gay in the US army than it is to be gay in hip-hop.” Zebra Katz, Mykki Blanco and the rise of queer rap.

• Back at the event site: Another extract from M. John Harrison’s forthcoming novel Empty Space.

• Rare 1959 audio: Flannery O’Connor reads A Good Man is Hard to Find.

Venus Transit 2012 – Ultra-high Definition View (NASA/ESA).

• The kitties just don’t care: Indifferent cats in amateur porn.

What happened to Dorothy Parker’s ashes?

Space Teriyaki 5 at 50 Watts.

Venus/Upper Egypt (1991) by Sonny Sharrock | Venus (1996) by Funki Porcini | Venus (2003) by Air

Weekend links 108

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Bob Staake’s cover illustration acknowledges President Obama’s statement last week in favour of gay marriages.

• Related to the above: Gay rights in the US, state by state, an infographic and a useful riposte to people like Orson Scott Card (yes, him again) who claim that gay Americans are equal in everything but the right to marry. On the same theme, “Now Obama’s come out on same-sex marriage, maybe so will I,” says Edmund White (yes, him again), and Eric Berkowitz, author of Sex & Punishment: 4,000 Years of Judging Desire, who writes that “In the period up to roughly the thirteenth century, male bonding ceremonies were performed in churches all over the Mediterranean.”

• The fifth edition of A Humument by Tom Phillips will be published soon by Thames & Hudson. The Tom Phillips website has just been relaunched in a form which now incorporates the notes I made in December about Phillips’ album cover designs.

• The Greenfriars are encouraging people to follow their example and get involved with their local communities (the habits are optional). Kudos for the choice of a Dürer knot.

The action centres on the arrival of a man who may or may not be a prophet, or the devil, or just a violent con-man, in a rotting, rain-drenched Hungarian hamlet. This is the “estate”, apparently some sort of failed collective, where all hope has been lost and all the buildings are falling down. It is inhabited by a cast of semi-crazed inadequates: desperate peasants cack-handedly trying to rip each other off while ogling each other’s wives; a “perpetually drunk” doctor obsessively watching his neighbours; young women trying to sell themselves in a ruined mill; a disabled girl ineptly attempting to kill her cat.

Sátántango by László Krasznahorkai is published in a new translation by George Szirtes

• The Quietus interviewed Kevin Shields following the long-awaited reissue of the My Bloody Valentine catalogue.

• The first volume of Russ Kick’s Graphic Canon (to which I’m a contributor) has been sighted in the wild.

Rise of the Living Type: Stylised 17th century floriated letterforms & grotesque mask sprinkles.

Ed Jansen’s Camera Obscura III, a tour of museums, galleries and venues, 2009–2011.

• io9 reports on the new translation of Roadside Picnic by Arkady & Boris Strugatsky.

Shanghai Expression: Graphic Design in China in the 1920s and 30s.

Liberty Realm, a monograph of drawings by Catharyne Ward.

• 100 mins of Adrian Sherwood‘s best dub productions.

Strange Flowers checked into the Chelsea Hotel.

Chelsea Girls (1967) by Nico | Chelsea Morning (1968) by Fairport Convention | Chelsea Hotel #2, Rufus Wainwright sings Leonard Cohen.

Weekend links 95

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Seven Songs (1982) by 23 Skidoo. Sleeve by Neville Brody.

The first volume of The Graphic Canon will be published in May by Seven Stories Press, a collection of comic strip adaptations and illustrations edited by Russ Kick. The anthology has already picked up some attention at the GuardianWestern canon to be rewritten as three-volume graphic novel—and Publishers’ WeeklyGraphic Canon: Comics Meet the Classics. I know someone who’ll bristle at the lazy use of “graphic novel”. The Graphic Canon isn’t anything of the sort, it’s a three-volume voyage through world literature presented in graphic form with a list of contributors including Robert Crumb, Will Eisner, Molly Crabapple, Rick Geary, and Roberta Gregory. My contribution is a very condensed adaptation of The Picture of Dorian Gray that will appear in volume 2. More about that closer to the publication date.

• LTM Records announces a vinyl reissue for Seven Songs (1982) by 23 Skidoo, an album produced by Ken Thomas, Genesis P Orridge & Peter Christopherson that still sounds like nothing else. Related: an extract from Tranquilizer (1984) by Richard Heslop, cut-up Super-8 film/video with audio collage by 23 Skidoo.

• New exhibitions: Another Air: The Czech–Slovak Surrealist Group, 1991–2011 at the Old Town City Hall, Prague (details in English here), and Ed Sanders – Fuck You / A Magazine of the Arts 1962–1965 at Boo-Hooray, NYC.

• “…we have a situation where the banks seem to be an untouchable monarchy beyond the reach of governmental restraint…” Alan Moore writes for the BBC about V for Vendetta and the rise of Anonymous.

Announcing Arc: “a new magazine about the future from the makers of New Scientist“. Digital-only for the time being, as they explain here. Their Tumblr has tasters of the contents.

• From another world: Acid Mothers Temple interviewed. Also at The Quietus: Jajouka or Joujouka? The conflicted legacy of the Master Musicians.

• More from Susan Cain on introverts versus extroverts. Related: Groupthink: The brainstorming myth by Jonah Lehrer.

Ten Thousand Waves, an installation by Isaac Julien.

Afterlife: mouldscapes photographed by Heikki Leis.

• The book covers of Ralph Steadman. And more.

• “James Joyce children’s book sparks feud

Arkitypo: the final alphabet.

Book Aesthete

Kundalini (1982) by 23 Skidoo | Vegas El Bandito (1982) by 23 Skidoo | IY (1982) by 23 Skidoo

Book talk

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I posted my covers for the Angry Robot editions of Mike Shevdon’s Courts of the Feyre series last month. Last week Mike asked me to answer a few questions about the design process and related matters. The answers are now posted on his blog where I discuss art, book design, favourite reading and a couple of the things I plan to foist on the world in the near future.

Not mentioned there but due on the shelves later this year is The Graphic Canon, a collection of adaptations in comic strip and illustration form of literary works from the Epic of Gilgamesh on. Seven Stories Press is the publisher, Russ Kick is the editor, and my contribution is a condensation of The Picture of Dorian Gray. The first of the three volumes will be out in April. More about that later.

Previously on { feuilleton }
The Courts of the Feyre