December 2009

The Sweater You Hope You Get For Christmas

These are from this place in Japan. If you're looking for the real thing and your mom, grandma, wife, girlfriend can't sew. Try the Handknitters Association of Iceland or Dale of Norway.

Categories: Fashion, Sweaters

Rene Daumal

 

La grande beuverie (A Night of Serious Drinking)

“Words are made for a certain exactness of thought, as tears are for a certain degree of pain. What is least distinct cannot be named; what is clearest is unutterable. “

“It is still not enough for language to have clarity and content … it must also have a goal and an imperative. Otherwise from language we descend to chatter, from chatter to babble and from babble to confusion.”

“Common experience is the gold reserve which confers an exchange value on the currency which words are; without this reserve of shared experiences, all our pronouncements are cheques drawn on insufficient funds.”

These are the words of Rene Daumal, spiritualist, poet and inspiration behind Jadorowsky's epic film The Holy Mountain.

 

René Daumal  was a French spiritual surrealist writer and poet.  In his late teens his avant-garde poetry was published in France's leading journals, and in his early twenties, although courted by André Breton co-founded, as a counter to Surrealism and Dada, a literary journal, "Le Grand Jeu" with three friends, collectively known as the Simplists, including poet Roger Gilbert-Lecomte . He is known best in the U.S. for two novels A Night of Serious Drinking and the allegorical novel Mount Analogue: A Novel of Symbolically Authentic Non-Euclidean Adventures in Mountain Climbing both based upon his friendship with Alexander de Salzmann, a pupil of G. I. Gurdjieff.

Daumal was self-taught in the Sanskrit language and translated some of the Tripitaka Buddhist canon into the French language, as well as translating the literature of the Japanese Zen scholar D.T. Suzuki into French.

Daumal's sudden and premature death of tuberculosis on May 21, 1944 in Paris may have been hastened by youthful experiments with drugs and psychoactive chemicals, including carbon tetrachloride. He died leaving his novel Mount Analogue unfinished, having worked on it until the day of his death.

The motion picture The Holy Mountain by Alejandro Jodorowsky is based largely on Daumal's Mount Analogue.

poems

One cannot stay on the summit forever -
One has to come down again.
So why bother in the first place? Just this.
What is above knows what is below -
But what is below does not know what is above

One climb, one sees-
One descends and sees no longer
But one has seen!

There is an art of conducting one’s self in
The lower regions by the memory of
What one saw higher up.

When one can no longer see,
One does at least still know.

XXX---XXXX--X

I am dead because I lack desire,
I lack desire because I think I possess.
I think I possess because I do not try to give.
In trying to give, you see that you have nothing;
Seeing that you have nothing, you try to give of yourself;
Trying to give of yourself, you see that you are nothing:
Seeing that you are nothing, you desire to become;
In desiring to become, you begin to live.

  

Tape Art

This guy makes portraits from casette tape and film reels.

  

Categories: art, Artists, Music

Woodstock Handmade Houses

I'll be in Woodstock next weekend for the New Year. In honor of that, here's a pretty cool book devoted to the handmade houses of Woodstock.

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

About five years ago, I had the pleasure of staying in the house on the left. The photo to the right is my friend Mike who made that happen. There's at least 30 years difference between to the two pictures and the house looks just about the same.

Momus & Shinro Ohtake

I've been a fan of the Momus blog, Imomus pretty much since he started blogging. It's always entertaining, especially when he's in Japan, where he happens to be at the moment.  In this particular post he talks about the artist & photographer, Shinro Ohtake, who spent a lot of time documenting the British punk scene circa 1977 for his book UK 77. I need this book.  Below are some quips from Momus, some photos from the book and some additional artwork.

  

  

"In a series of massive picture books filled with photographs, drawings and scrap memorabilia (but particularly UK 77) Ohtake has documented seventies London better, to my mind, than any British artist or photographer.

It's not that Ohtake -- aged 22 in 1977, he'd just graduated from Musashino Art University -- avoids the punk rock cliches that now pass for cultural history of the late 70s in the UK. His photos show us that Bozz Scaggs. Elkie Brooks, Elton John and The Enid featured on UK posters in 1977 rather more than The Damned and The Sex Pistols did, but he has plenty of shots of punk rockers, and clippings from the snarky music press and listings magazines. It's rather that Ohtake shows the entire context; views out of the window, tickets from gigs, confectionery wrappers, books of matches with adverts on them.

What comes as a shock is how much of the UK in 1977 was stuck in the 1960s; there are silly little Hillman Imp cars, and ridiculous child-molester hairstyles in the barber windows, trickledown domestications from the wilder shores of 1960s subculture. It's all pretty grim and muddy, but it does show you where punk's disgust came from. And it's telling that it takes a Japanese photographer -- a sort of impartial Martian in this weird and depressing landscape -- to document the UK properly. Sitting in gm ten gallery flipping through Ohtake's back pages, I was completely transported back to the era, with exactly the right combination of repulsion and nostalgia, shudder and swoon."

Continue @ Imomus

Additional work

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

The Sexy Sexy World of Nightmare Brunette

Nightmare Brunette is quite possibly the sexiest blog on the internet

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

Categories: Sex, Babes, Photography

The Retro World of Radioactive Lingerie

Radioactive Lingerie presents a nifty collection of 70's & 80's images. The photos of disco, TV, fashion, porno flicks, freestyle music and aerobic workouts are campy and sleazy, but believe me when I tell you that the images I left out of this sampler are the ones you really want to see.

 

   

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

Categories: Sex, Babes, Cool Ass Blog

Krautrock Krautrock Krautrock - And you can thank And-A-Half for this

 

First things first. F*ck Krautrock is mix compiled by Black to Comm. Most of these groups you probably never heard and if you have, we should talk. Not all of them are obsucre, some heavyweigts and some are industrial bands, some fall under the NDW banner, but all are pretty out there. I know a guy who knows a guy who has a member's only German music exhange site and if this is child's play to you then I'll introduce you him.

Here's some more info:

Marc Richter is a record collector. He’s the kind of guy you want to know because he unearths stuff that you never even come across in day to day life. It’s one of the traits that makes the Dekorder label so interesting and certainly the backbone of his new album (for Type…) ‘Alphabet 1968’ so curious and astounding. It should make perfect sense then that he is contributing a Typecast revealing his far-reaching collection of tunes, and in ‘F*CK KRAUTROCK’ he has put together something that defies simple classification. As Dizzee Rascal might say – Bonkers.

Andreas Dorau & Holger Hiller – Guten Morgen Hose
Christian Naujoks – Horizon Scene/Maladies
Fanal – Zwischen den Landstrassen
Mense Reents – This is the Way
Egoexpress – Aranda
Cpt. Kirk & – Racist Friend
The Cocoon – While The Recording Engineer Sleeps
Wooden Veil – Moon and Hamburg
Cassiber – Not Me
Wave UFO – Untitled 1
Alec Empire – Walk the Apocalypse
Wave UFO – Untitled 2
Holger Czukay – Witches’ Multiplication Table
Justus Koehnke – Old Man
Max Müller – Frauenkrieg
Workshop – Amnesty

You can stream, listen, download, whatever, here

Trailer to Kraftwerk & The Electronic Revolution

 

Black Meteoric Star Live on Bis Radio Part 1
 

Discovery via and a half

Categories: Music, Krautrock, NDW

Charlie White | Photographer

  

 

Charlie White is a Philadelphia born, Los Angeles based artst, filmmaker, photographer, puppet maker and music video director.  His work is hilarious. Below is his video for Interpol's Evil.

 

Hanuman Book Covers

     

     

When editor/publisher Raymond Foye was visiting his good friend Francesco Clemente, the artist, in Madras, India, once, they decided it would be very cool to publish some sort of arts and literature thing together. They rejected the idea of doing a magazine in favor of starting a small press to publish books (Foye had started working at City Lights bookstore and press at the beginning of his career). Hanuman was the favorite Hindu deity of both men, and they decided to name their press after him. The Hanuman Books series, which includes at least 24 titles by now, has published works by William Burroughs, Allen Ginsburg, Patti Smith, Richard Hell, Jack Kerouac, William de Kooning, Robert Frank and other visionary and countercultural writers and artists. The tiny format of the books -- they measure 3" by 4" in size -- is based on prayer books in India. They are hand-made in India, where each little book is colored with deeply saturated tones to produce a limited edition that resonates with the charm and mystical potency of art miniatures around the world. And the books are easy to slip into your pocket and carry around as a sort of talismanic artifact, if that is your inclination, too.

     

     

Hanuman is a very popular deity among Hindus. There are many stories about this trickster god. In addition to being the god of grammar, Hanuman is the general of the monkey people. In the epic Ramayana Rama was a great human hero, the son of a king, who eventually became mythologized as an avatar of the important deity Vishnu. When Rama's beautiful and exemplary wife Sita was kidnapped by a powerful demon, Ravana, Hanuman and his monkey people were instrumental in freeing her from captivity on the island of Lanka. The visionary lit and counter-culture press Hanuman Books is named in honor of this delightful figure. According to a blurb posted on Hanuman Books' website, Hanuman is "the son of Vayu, the wind god. He is the conqueror of demons and hostile spirits, god of strength and wisdom, faithful to friend and unselfish servant to Rama. Able to fly and change his shape, he is often depicted as a buffoon-hero in the Ramayana epics. Humble and playful, he is revered in Southern India, where temples are erected in his honor."

  

I've been collecting these books for a while now and have about a dozen. They're small. Roughly the size of a pack of smokes and about 1/4 as thick. The content is a bit lucid. They've been selling on ebay from $30 - $200 bucks a pop.

Text via: JX Briton | Images via: Vernacula
Categories: Books, Book Art, Book Covers, art