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Pop star portraits made out of junk, food and other stuff
07.21.2011
01:28 pm

Topics:
Art
Pop Culture

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Jason Mecier


 
Jason Mecier is truly a mixed media artist composing portraits using everything from food and yarn to pills and assorted junk. Here are a few of his pieces that turned my head.

Mary Hartman made from beans. Andy Warhol: bananas, film, soup cans. Tura Satana; rice. Michaels Jackson: pills. Patti Smith: yarn. Barbi Benton: rolls of film, cosmetics…

You really must visit Jason’s website to see all of his work in close-up. In many of the portraits, the materials used tell the tale - form truly being an extension of content.
 

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
John Lautner Houses in the Movies: James Bond to Big Lebowski
07.21.2011
12:53 pm

Topics:
Design
Movies

Tags:
John Launter


 
LA Curbed put together this wonderful video of famed modern architect John Launter’s sexy architectural designs as in Hollywood for his 100th birthday.
 

 

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Army teargas endurance test
07.21.2011
12:11 pm

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Tags:
Army
gas masks
Marines
endurance test


 
According to the comments on YouTube, these guys are getting off easy. Commenters who are in the military i.e. Marines, are saying that after removing the gas mask and answering a longer list questions, they then would have to run five miles. I don’t know if this is true, or just a pissing contest between members of different branches of the armed forces.

 
(via IHC)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
World’s fastest rapper 1989


 
Raggamuffin legend Daddy Freddy breaks his own record for rapping the most syllables in one minute on BBC TV’s Record Breakers in 1989.

Eventually Freddy broke the record four times taking it from 346 to 598 syllables a minute. First and second time in UK (in Covent Garden and at BBCs Record Breakers on BBC Record Breakers show where he appeared with the great Roy Castle) and two times in America (New York Empire State Building and in Washington).”

Freddy’s record has been broken over the years, most recently by Spanish rapper El Chojin, but Daddy still ranks number one in the world of raggamuffin.
 

 
A short and sweet documentary on Daddy Freddy:

 

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Extremely creepy photo
07.21.2011
11:43 am

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Tags:
Creepy


 
Who is this? And what exactly is going on here? Does anyone know the provenance of this “nightmare fuel”?

Update: The photograph is by Roger Ballen. It appears the photo was taken in South Africa some time in the 1970s. Thanks, Patrick! 

(via Retrogasm)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Smoke on the Water: The Porsche Hookah
07.21.2011
11:16 am

Topics:
Design
Science/Tech

Tags:
Hookah
Shisha
Porsche


 
According to the Porsche website, the hookah “made out of TecFlex material,” will be available at the end of July. I wonder how much this sucker is going to cost?

The extraordinary Porsche Design Shisha combines high-quality materials such as aluminium, stainless steel and glass with the timeless and unique design approach of the luxury brand. Puristic and stylish at the same time. The Porsche Design Shisha is made in Germany and stands at a height of 55 centimetres. It only shows a discreet branding on the aluminium top of the Shisha and comes with a long flexible tube made out of TecFlex material, which is also used for the classic Porsche Design TecFlex writing tools.

(via Core 77)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
The Rave Years Pt 1: ‘A Trip Round Acid House’ 1988


Spectrum flyer, 1988, designed by Dave Little.
 
Acid house - the sound of a Roland TB 303 getting turned up too far that can send the most loved up dancer wild with convulsions of ecstasy . A unique sound accidentally discovered by DJ Pierre and friends in Chicago 25 years ago and that can still wreck dancefloors to this very day. A type of music which for a period of time in the late 80s infested the upper reaches of the UK’s charts and spawned a youth culture all of its own. Let me hear you say ACIEEED!

I was way too young to have any first hand experience of clubbing during the acid house years, but the music and imagery still had a huge effect on my childhood brain . Who couldn’t resist the acid-washed day-glo colours, the oversized clothes, the nods back to hippie culture and the first summer of love, and chart topping tracks from the likes of D-Mob, S’Express, M/A/R/R/S, Yazz, Farley Jackmaster Funk, 808 State, Bomb The Bass and Stakker Humanoid? When I had a chance to buy my own clothes it would be Joe Bloggs, and I had quite the collection of smiley face badges for a kid not yet a teenager. My own pet theory is that disco never had the impact in the UK that it had in the States, but house music and raving had the same effect of democratising the dancefloor ten years later. A large piece of the puzzle was of course the arrival of a new drug called “ecstasy” (actually only made illegal in the UK in 1985), which when combined with the powerful filter sweeps of a TB303 can give the user incredible head rushes. It was this new drug and its implications that seemed to worry the authorities the most.
 

 
This great documentary from the BBC’s World in Action strand is like a full blown acid house flashback. Broadcast in 1988 at height of acid house fever, it follows the typical weekend rituals of a group of very young fans, tracks the working life of an illegal party promoter, speaks to some of the producers of the music and charts the the then-growing moral panic which surrounded the scene and its copious drug taking. Raving, and acid house, had a huge (if subtle) effect on British culture, bringing people together in new, democratised contexts free of class and social boundaries, opening people’s ears up to a new world of music and opening their minds to new ideas.

A Trip Round Acid House makes for very interesting viewing at a time when Murdoch Inc and News International stand accused of distorting facts to suit their own means. The program gives a fairly detailed description of how The Sun newspaper did an about face on acid house, going from being supporters of this new youth culture (even selling their own acid house branded t-shirts to decrying it as an outrage that needed to be banned (and as such sold more papers). Some of the other footage here is priceless too, and has popped up on the internet in other forms, such as the classic reaction of two old cockney dears to the description of a typical “rave”. Blimey!
 

 
Parts 2 & 3 after the jump…

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile | Leave a comment
Totally groovy video of Debbie Harry on ‘Kids Are People Too’ in 1980
07.21.2011
01:25 am

Topics:
Music
Punk
Television

Tags:
Debbie Harry
Kids Are People Too


 
While musician and rock archivist Jim Laspesa is putting together his own website, which will feature music and pop culture related clips from the past 30+ years, he’s been uploading a few gems to Youtube. Here’s a little something that is new to the Interweb: a 1980 appearance by Debbie Harry on ABC’s Sunday morning children’s show Kids Are People Too. Sassy.
 

 
Thanks Jim.

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Never-before-seen photos of The Beatles
07.20.2011
08:44 pm

Topics:
Art
Music
Pop Culture

Tags:
The Beatles
Michael Smith


 
For a teenager, Mike Mitchell had a great eye and skill with a camera. His secret stash of stunning black and white photos of The Beatles hit the auction floor tonight at Christie’s and sold for $360,000, considerably more than what was expected.

On July 20, Christie’s is pleased to present The Beatles Illuminated: The Discovered Works of Mike Mitchell, a sale comprised of nearly 50 lots of unpublished and never-before-seen photographs of the Beatles’ first hysteria-inducing visits to America in 1964. Shot in black and white by photographer Mike Mitchell when he was just 18 years old, the images have been filed away for nearly fifty years. The complete rediscovered collection is expected to realize in the region of $100,000.’

More photos are on view at Christie’s website.
 

 

 
An inspiring interview with Mike Mitchell who is now 60 years old:

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Before they made SJ Perelman, they broke the mold
07.20.2011
06:01 pm

Topics:
Heroes
History
Literature

Tags:
S. J. Perelman


 
Yesterday, when I posted that great Jonathan Winters interview, I found another episode from the archives of the Day for Night public television series that made me want to jump for joy: A 30-minute interview with the great American humorist S.J. Perelman from 1974. I’ve already watched it twice.

Although he is by now, some thirty-odd years after his death, almost completely forgotten, S.J. Perelman was once considered a very big deal man of letters, up there with greats like George S. Kaufman, James Thurber and E.B. White. Today he is best remembered for something that pained him to be associated with during his lifetime: his screenwriting for the Marx Brothers. (Perelman co-wrote two of their greatest comedies, Monkey Business and Horse Feathers, but famously said of his tenure with the Marx Brothers: “I did two films with them, which in its way is perhaps my greatest distinction in life, because anybody who ever worked on any picture for the Marx Brothers said he would rather be chained to a galley oar and lashed at ten-minute intervals until the blood spurted from his frame than ever work for those sons of bitches again.”)

An admirer of both Ring Lardner and James Joyce, Perelman’s deliriously complicated prose—written mostly for The New Yorker from 1934 until the end of his life—was densely constructed with puns, literary and historical allusions, ridiculous names, foreign phrases and double and triple entendres. For an American, Perelman was a particularly well-traveled and erudite man. He went to the Far East several times in his life and many of his most famous essays are travelogues. Perelman usually wrote in the first person, portraying himself as a snobby ur-sophisticate beset by his own (unobserved) comic ineptitude. He was a master of the English language with a massive vocabulary that would send readers to their dictionaries several times per page. All of the various idiosyncrasies and uniquely Perelman-esque tropes and over-excessive wordsmithery combined to form a literary style no less distinctive than Shakespeare’s.

It’s next to impossible to accurately describe the S. J. Perelman gestalt, so here are a few choice quotes and passages:

“And you were cruel,” I said.

“I’m sorry,” added Quigley.

“Why did you add Quigley?” I begged him. He apologized and subtracted Quigley, then divided Hogan. We hastily dipped the slices of Hogan into Karo, poured sugar over them, and ate them with relish.

—- From “The Love Decoy”

“Have a bit of the wing, darling?” queried Diana solicitously, indicating the roast Long Island airplane with applesauce. I tried to turn our conversation from the personal note, but Diana would have none of it. Soon we were exchanging gay banter over the mellow Vouvray, laughing as we dipped fastidious fingers into the Crisco parfait for which Diana was famous. Our meal finished, we sauntered into the play-room and Diana turned on the radio. With a savage snarl the radio turned on her and we slid over the waxed floor in the intricate maze of the jackdaw strut.

—- From “Strictly from Hunger”

Love is not the dying moan of a distant violin, it’s the triumphant twang of a bedspring.

Woody Allen absolutely revered Perelman and Allen’s early New Yorker pieces often read like he was trying to ape the humorist’s distinctive prose style. Through the rediscovery of the Marx Brothers that occurred in the late1960s on college campuses and Allen’s constant championing of Perelman’s work, his star rose again towards the end of his life. When I was a kid, his books were readily stocked in every library and bookstore. His name and fame were widely known. Today there is but a single book of his in print, the anthology The Most of S.J. Perelman (with an introduction by Steve Martin) although all of his books can be easily found used online.

This interview with S.J. Perelman is a gem. It’s always fascinating to hear a writer’s voice you admire for the first time and I must admit that Perelman’s heavy New York accent is not what I expected (I suppose I always heard his voice as having a British accent in my mind’s ear.)
 

 
Below the famous passport scene from Monkey Business:
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
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