Witchball Honey

by angeliska on August 18, 2010

(Photo by Nancy Chow.)

★ I love Arthur Magazinethey always turn me on to the best stuff, and write about a lot
of my favorite people, places and things that no one else seems to know about. Right now
I’m really loving this work from Mexico City artist Inés Estrada. How to find a witch in a ball
of yarn! I’ve always wondered how to do that. A very useful manual indeed! She is also
also co-editor of the bilingual comic anthology Gang Bang Bong, which looks super.
I’ve decided to commit (finally!) and stop flirting with the handful of languages that
I know enough of to be cute in. Spanish needs to get in my brain, and come out my
mouth, because I’m tired of feeling embarrassed that I can’t have a simple conversation
about dogs or the weather with my neighbors. Well, honestly, I can – but I sound like
a demented child. Not so good! What better way to learn a language than by reading
comics, or poetry? Nice to read Pablo Neruda aloud at night, and dance in front of the
mirror – or so I hear from a certain bruja who lives down the street! Cha-cha-cha!
Oh yes, and – check this great page out: Beyond Rosetta Stone – 20 free online
resources for learning a foreign language
– can’t wait to delve in! ¡Estoy listo!

★ I am so taken with the work of Trine Søndergaard. What an inspiration.
They are severe, yet elfin – archaic and very modern all at once. Love!
On and Off the Walls: Trine Søndergaard’s Fano Portraits
(Thanks to Mlle. Odette O. for this, and for the following!)
For a period of the three years Trine Søndergaard visited the Danish island of Fano
to take portraits of local women dressed up in their traditional costumes. On this northern
island, the costumes are somber, with only a dash of color. Søndergaard’s portraits are
luminous and of a simple beauty. Her subjects pose in their regalia, the background is
neutral, the light is pure, and the composition is classical.

Elisabeth Biondi

I once spent the 4th of July in a small village in Denmark called Skørping,
in the Rebild National Forest. Why? Well, my grandfather thought it was
interesting that they have celebrated America’s Independence Day since
1912. It’s the largest 4th of July celebration outside the U.S. and people
come from all over to sit on bleachers in the Danish summer drizzle and
listen to the Queen of Denmark. I instead went hiking in the forest, chased
some sheep, slid down a hill in the rain, and listened to the surreal sound
of the Maritime Band playing “In the Mood” and other swing hits reverberating
off of the pines. There is also a full-size reproduction of Abraham Lincoln’s
log cabin and a totem pole in the park. What? So bizarre. Anyhow, the very
best part for me was seeing the most adorable little old people in traditional
Danish folk-costumes. They look like elves! I want to dress like that when I
am old. Pointy hats with embroidered flowers and big red bows, please!

Ryan McGinley takes lots of pictures of androgynously beautiful young people,
cavorting naked in nature. Sounds kind of daft and done, but I really like what
he does. It’s spontaneous and mystic and makes you want to be there.
I especially like his series moonmilk, which is naked people in lovely caves.
10 Awesome Caves Of the World
★ I’ve been on a cave trip lately. There are so many I want to explore one day,
particularly this one in Croatia: “The Velebit Mountain is the home of a number
of caves named Lukina jama, Slovacka jama, Velebita and Meduza. These caves
have some of the world’s greatest subterranean spectacular vertical drops, sure to
bring a shudder in the spine. At the foot of Lukina jama there are ponds and streams
having the largest colonies of subterranean leeches.”

★ The Brooklyn based street art collective Faile has made this incredible temple
in Lisbon, that I want very badly to see in person. How wonderful it is! I love the
mish-mash of typefaces and cultural references, and it tickles me to imagine
the bewilderment of future archaeologists when they find this peculiar monument!

“Known for adapting its signature mass culture-driven iconography
to a wide array of media, from wooden boxes and window pallets
to more traditional canvas, prints, sculptures, stencils, multimedia
installation, and prayer wheels, Faile blurs the lines between commodity
and art, and ‘high’ and ‘low’ culture, demonstrating a emphasis on audience
participation, a sharpened critique of consumerism, and attempts to develop
new forms of religious artifact. Situated smack right in the middle of one of
the busiest streets of Lisbon and surrounded by classical buildings with
history of its own, the temple is a giant sculptural installation that has been
2 years in the making. Shaped somewhat like a dilapidated mausoleum,
the temple has everything you can imagine from a armed warrior horse,
to Indian themed graffitis, to columns and totems inspired by pop culture.”

– From Wicked Halo
More great photos at the great Portugeuse Street Art blog Stick 2 Target also!
★ My favorite theatre company in Austin is mounting a new show in October,
which I can’t wait to see: Rubber Repertory,
in association with Salvage Vanguard Theater,
proudly presents:

“In their first new show since The Casket of Passing Fancy,
Rubber Repertory pushes the limits of audience participation
to even more fateful extremes. Each night, an audience of 40
will be given the chance to experience a human life through
actual tastes, touches, smells, and sounds. This reinvention
of the traditional biography forgoes narrative in favor of pure
physical experience, placing audience members in the center
of over a hundred pivotal moments of perception.
Everyone who attends the show is invited to choose from seats
of three different sizes. The size of your seat dictates the intensity
of sensations you’re willing to receive. Those in the smallest seats
will receive low-intensity sensations–the smell of lavender and stale
cigarettes, for instance–while those in the larger seats expose
themselves to far livelier thrills.
Once the show begins, it’s a fast and feely ride through puberty
and pork chops, gunshots and tetherball, party whistles and old
pianos, tonsillectomies and lemon cake. In other words: life itself.”

Doesn’t that sound great? I love what they do. Oh, and if you
buy tickets now, you’ll get a special prize! It will probably be smelly!
Candied Corpses, And 87 Other Ancient Innovations
I desperately need Vicki Leon’s new book, How to Mellify a Corpse:
And Other Human Stories of Ancient Science & Superstition.
★ I’m also craving Cockney Visionary
lavishly illustrated monograph to accompany
the Austin Osman Spare exhibition in London.
Quite beyond my range at £160, alas!

★ I did treat myself recently, when I decided
that I couldn’t live without The Fantastic Menagerie
published by The Magic Realist Press.
Lively, humorous and utterly engaging,
The Fantastic Menagerie Tarot is based
on the illustrations of 19th century French illustrator,
J.J. Grandville. Known as the “Father of Surrealism”.
Grandville was a huge influence on artists such as
Tenniel, the first illustrator of Alice in Wonderland.
His pictures are cynical, funny, bitter and sweet –
and make for a deck that manages to be both timeless and true.

★ I’m really adoring this very sweet and generous blog
from collectors of Western Swing 78s
– they share
a lot of this really hard-to-find music, which is the
perfect soundtrack to cooking lima beans on a
hot August night. Believe me, because I know.
★ Did anyone catch the Perseid Meteor Shower the
other night? We watched a bit, though we were still
too close to civilization for it to be very dark. Still, it
was divine: we drank scotch and homemade ginger
soda and listened to the Cocteau Twins singles on
a cassette tape made from the box set, which I still
somehow do not have. Perfect celestial soundtrack!
In case you missed it, here’s a great set of images:
Perseid Meteor Shower
★ This flickr collection is just the best: Le Cirque
Advertisements for circus and theatrical acts, primarily French, circa 1885-1925.
★ Oh, and one of my favorite recent reads from this past winter,
The Crimson Petal And The White (which is about Victorian
prostitutes, hooray) is going to be made into a BBC production
and Gillian Anderson is cast as the evil madam Mrs Castaway!
Richard E Grant (a favorite of mine ever since Withnail + I)
will play “the invasive physician” Doctor Curlew, and Romola
Garai, who I know nothing about, will play Sugar. I hope it’s good!


The Crimson Petal and the White, coming to the telly? Oh, how marvelous! And swoon-y Gillian Anderson makes it doubly so! I cannot wait.
Your Perseid evening sounds perfectly enchanting – what possessed you to mix scotch and ginger soda? A cocktail invented for the occasion? It sounds delicious!
Too delicious, in fact, to be contemplating at 8 in the AM 🙂 Alas, it was cloudy that night, and I did not see a thing.
Austin Osman Spare’s works always freaks me out a little even though the guy himself is of infinite interest; I could never tire, however, of browsing through Granville’s fantastically amusing stuff.
Butterfly photo is “Newly-emerged Blue Morpho butterflies photographed at the Calgary Zoo”from Nancy Chow’s flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/14980862@N03/4606469126/in/photostream/
(I hope I don’t sound like a know-it-all! I just believe that everything out there must have a source somewhere!)
P.P.S Saw this dress and immediately imagined you wearing it! http://tinyurl.com/2cexysy

by mlle ghoul on August 18, 2010 at 6:03 am. Reply #

Angel I stayed in the most wonderful cave in Granada, Spain overlooking the Alhambra. It was painted pale pink on the inside with a picture of The Madonna hanging over the rustic little bed. It was 3 Euro a night back in 2002 – amazing! I wanted to live in that little cave forever.

by misha on August 18, 2010 at 6:05 am. Reply #

eeeee! i just had a visible !*(^&*!^&!!! over the grandville tarot. one of the first antique things i ever spent money on was an old grandville print – something like $50, which for me at 18 was an absolute fortune.

by verhext on August 18, 2010 at 6:56 am. Reply #

I always love visiting here because your posts are rife with amazing links! Thank you for sharing. I am particularly interested in the last three… I also now have no excuse not to brush up on my Spanish…

by Laura on August 18, 2010 at 10:50 am. Reply #

I think you have turned me on to a new deck. So lovely.
Brilliant links- thank you!

by Nix on August 18, 2010 at 11:39 am. Reply #

how to find a witch. oh so sweet. so so.
and that deck is to die for – i am coveting it – xo

by suzanne meow meow on August 18, 2010 at 3:18 pm. Reply #

i cannot believe you skipped out on Margrethe II of Denmark. i’ve recently been indulging fantasies of hanging out with her. she is a chain smoking illustrator, artist, and costume designer. she sometimes wears her own sartorial creations! maybe if bula and i just show up on her doorstep one day…..

by granny mack on August 18, 2010 at 3:26 pm. Reply #

I watched the Perseid over Lake Erie, from a secluded breakwall. It was magical.

by Margaret on August 19, 2010 at 5:21 am. Reply #

If you wish to master a language in a very short amount of time, I advise you read a lot of poetry. I haven’t figured out how exactly it works, but it does some serious magic. 🙂

by Annija on August 21, 2010 at 7:12 am. Reply #

Dear Misha,
That sounds so amazing – I can just picture it. I want to go there! It’s added to my list of dream travel destinations…

by Angeliska on August 22, 2010 at 1:42 pm. Reply #

Dearest Mack,
I tried to get to her, but she was surrounded by bodyguards at all times! She did have on a fabulous hat, I remember…

by Angeliska on August 22, 2010 at 1:44 pm. Reply #

Dear Annija,
Yes, reading poetry is my favorite method too – hence the Neruda. When I was studying German, it was Rilke. French, Rimbaud. Russian – Akhmatova. Now I need more Spanish poets! You always learn the best and most obscure words that way!

by Angeliska on August 22, 2010 at 1:49 pm. Reply #

Dearest Ghoulina,
A-ha! Your comment got stuck in the swamp of pending that I sometimes overlook! Thank you for the wonderful links, and for your sleuthing on the butterfly image – you’re the best! So, the scotch and ginger soda weren’t mixed – the soda was in a tall tumbler, and the scotch in a little one. Smoky and spicy sips! So good.
The art of AOS is disturbing, in a way. The spirit figures in his paintings and drawings are said to move, which I actually believe. Oh, and that dress is gorgeous! I love it – I wish I could wear your polyvore sets every day. Wouldn’t that be grand?

by Angeliska on August 22, 2010 at 2:29 pm. Reply #

Isn’t this Faile Temple something else ?! I was hysterical when I first saw it !!! One couldn’t date it, it’s so Art Deco and modern days at the same time … Perfection !
Also, thank you so much for sharing this pic by Ryan McGinley, I’m not obsessed with it ! What a find !
x x x

by mathyld ▲under the pyramids▲ on August 24, 2010 at 1:21 pm. Reply #

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