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‘TOTAL CHAOS’: An exclusive look at must-have Iggy Pop book that goes way in-depth on the Stooges
09:29 am


Iggy Pop

Total Chaos
It’s a great time to be alive for fans of the immortal proto-punk wizards, the Stooges. Jim Jarmusch’s documentary on the band, Gimme Danger, hits theaters this week, and TOTAL CHAOS: The Story of the Stooges comes out in mid-November on Third Man Books. I can tell you, based on my preview, TOTAL CHAOS is phenomenal—a must-have for all fans of the group. The book is constructed around in-depth interviews with frontman Iggy Pop, and a slew of of rarely seen memorabilia, which together tell the story of the Stooges. Those praising the band via their own contributing essays include Johnny Marr, Joan Jett, and Jack White, as well as noted scribes Johan Kugelberg and Jon Savage.

We have exclusive excerpts for you from TOTAL CHAOS. The text and images revolve around the seminal Stooges LP Fun House, one of the greatest albums of the entire rock era. In the first interview excerpt, Iggy talks about the stage name he has used since the time of Fun House. The moniker appeared for first time within the album’s credits, the inspiration coming from a friend of Stooges bandmates Ron Asheton and Dave Alexander.

Jim P-o-p-p was one of the delinquent friends of Ron and Dave and one of the people that hung out with that group. He had sniffed too much glue and lost a lot of his hair early. And he just had such a great last name that one day I was in the Student Union [at the University of Michigan] sneaking some coffee and I thought about what a great name he had. He was laying there sleeping in one of the booths. Townies would go over there to get cheap food. Sneak into the Student Union and just hang. And later I thought, “Well, I don’t know. I wanna be…” It was really even before the first album came out I started calling myself Iggy Pop, and then they [the record company] just said Iggy Stooge. So yeah, I nicked it from Jim Popp.

Fun House poster
‘Fun House’ promo poster (Johan Kugelberg collection)
Writing the material for Fun House:

The groups we liked were starting to do really sophisticated things. At the same time, whether it was my personality or the fact that he was now getting laid regularly, or a little bit of the fact that everybody has their own rate of production and their own event horizon and Ron’s was slow; somehow from my point of view, Ron went into a tunnel at that point and I could not break him out. He came up with a few ideas that I thought sounded like our first album but not quite as good, and the one of them that was the best was “TV Eye.” So I got him to try an arrangement. He just had it as sort of a chord thing. I said, “How about if we get to that point, but start it out single string like a Booker T thing.” He knew that reference and he tried it, but to do that, I had to camp outside his door day and night. Hassle him.

So most of the rest of the record, I wrote on a Mosrite guitar with a fifty watt Marshall amp up in my room and only Ron could have played it so wonderfully, but most of that, I wrote. Now Ron tells me later, he said that Dave did the riffs to “Dirt” and “Fun House.” I would say I hope so, but I don’t remember it that way. But without that one “T.V. Eye” riff and without hearing how great it sounded when he played it, the single string with the resonance and then build up, I would have had nothing to build on, so he was the bedrock of that album.

Gay Power
Iggy on the cover of ‘Gay Power: New York’s First Homosexual Newspaper,’ 1970 (Jeff Gold collection)

When asked if it was his idea to record Fun House live in the studio:

I believe so. We came out and we were gonna do this our way and Don [Gallucci, the producer,] went along with it but we compromised in that they, for my vocal I believe they ran a double feed. To the board and to the other and mixed it. The engineer was a charming, cultured British individual. I’d never met anybody like this and I was instantly charmed and reassured and I trusted him and I believed in him. His name was Brian Ross-Myring and I didn’t know he did Barbra Streisand apparently, but he had an unflappable quality.

New Old Fillmore
The Stooges perform in San Francisco for the first time, 1970 (Jeff Gold Collection)

I just remember that in San Francisco some of the Cockettes
were in the front row and I was psychedelicized that night. More than several of the Cockettes were dressed up like Carmen Miranda gone wild and I was like, “what the hell is this”—and I loved it—“this is so cool and bananas and oranges and you know calico scarves and the whole thing.” The other big thing I remember about it was, when we were—it was either during sound check or maybe somewhere during the gig when weren’t playing—this strange kind of cocky hippie with granny glasses approaches me and he said, “Hi, I’m Owsley Stanley,” and he was real pleased, he was already pleased with himself, and he made some sort of comments, I can’t remember what, but I did meet [LSD kingpin] Owsley and talked with him a little bit. I mean that’s what you do if you go to San Francisco in 1970, you meet the Cockettes and at least one member of the Psychedelic Set.

Fun House master tape box
The ‘Fun House’ master tape box, with the track sequence the band wanted, which was altered slightly by Elektra (Jeff Gold Collection)

On audiences:

It was always better when you had some activity in front, always. It’s really hard without that, and sometimes we’d get, it ranged from violent activity to people thinking like “hey we get the joke” and come in with peanut butter or sometimes we’d have a lot of just female rock action—it just would depend really where we were. The one thing that always gave me heart was I was very aware that we were the only group I knew of, or entity, that had absolute—I never saw any audience movement while we played for the first, I’d say ’68, ’69 and ’70, nobody said, “Oh I’m gonna go check out the t-shirt stand,” or “I’m gonna walk around and see if I can pick up some chicks or go get a whatever.” No, uh-uh, everybody stayed in one place. So I knew we were onto something, you know?

Iggy in the audience during a gig at Uganos, New York City, August 1970
(Photo: Dustin Pittman; Jeff Gold Collection)

TOTAL CHAOS author Jeff Gold first saw the Stooges in the ‘70s, and has been a fan ever since. He provided much of the memorabilia pictured in the book, and conducted the Iggy interviews that appear in it, along with Johan Kugelberg. He’s worked at various record labels, including A&M when Iggy was signed with the company in the mid-to-late ‘80’s. I asked Jeff a few questions via email.

I’ve only met a few people who can say they saw the Stooges back in the day. You saw them in 1973. What was that like?

Jeff Gold: It was the strangest “show” I’d ever seen. I’d heard of them, but didn’t really know who they were. I was a huge David Bowie fan and the fact that he’d gotten his management to sign them, and mixed the album was enough to get me to spend $2.50 to see them at the Whisky in Los Angeles. The whole show lasted maybe half an hour. I’d heard Iggy was a wild man who cut himself with glass, so I was prepared for something unusual. He was wearing only blue metallic bikini underwear—nothing else—which at some point he threaded through the microphone stand, humping it. He was definitely under the influence of something, and spent part of the show wailing about butt-fuckers in Hollywood, and after about 30 minutes, he started falling down and Ron Asheton, I think, had to help him off stage. It was total chaos, which is the title of the book, but completely compelling chaos, and unforgettable.

Being such a fan, I imagine it was a strange experience when you found yourself working with Iggy at A&M.

Jeff Gold: By that time I’d worked with many famous musicians, but Iggy was someone I was a big fan of personally, which wasn’t always the case. I’d seen him on the 1977 tour for The Idiot, with Bowie on keyboards, which was a much more “professional” affair. But still you never know what someone will be like offstage, so I was both excited and a bit wary. But Iggy was and is the greatest. He was friendly, had lots of good ideas about album covers, videos, and marketing, and was a real pleasure to deal with. I remember taking him out to lunch early on, and being sort of blown away—I’m having lunch with Iggy Pop!
Iggy, 1970
Iggy, 1970 (Photo: Robert Matheu)

How long have you been collecting Stooges memorabilia? What do you consider to be some of the more interesting items in your collection?

Jeff Gold: I began collecting records and memorabilia in the early ‘70’s and when I saw interesting Stooges stuff, I’d buy it. I left Warner Bros. in 1998, and got back into buying and selling music stuff full time, and that coincided with the dawn of eBay, so there was much more of it on the market, and I took advantage of that. As for the Stooges things I find most interesting, I bought copies of all of their original contracts from Danny Fields, who signed and later managed them. After my years working for record companies, it was wild to see what a late ‘60’s record contract looked like, and that they were signed for only a $5,000 advance. Iggy didn’t have these, and was very appreciative when I gave copies to his lawyer. Hidden amongst them was a letter from Elektra to Danny Fields attempting to pick up their option on Iggy as a solo artist, after they’d dropped the Stooges. Iggy never knew they wanted to sign him as a solo act, and it blew his mind to find out about it all those years later.

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Bart Bealmear | Leave a comment
An interview with the author of the world’s strangest book
03:50 pm


Luigi Serafini

This is a guest post by “undercover banker,” Em, an occasional contributor to Dangerous Minds. Born in NYC, he has lived all over the world. Em returned to the US in 2010 after working in London for 4 years. He’s currently making ready for Canada or France, just in case the lesser of evils does not prevail in November.

If you’ve been Dangerous Minds reader for a few years now, you might remember back in 2013, an article that I wrote—they tell me it’s one of the site’s most popular posts ever—about my decades-long search for what many people regard as the strangest book in the world, Luigi Serafini’s Codex Seraphinianus. That book is both a figurative, as well as literal, encyclopedia of weirdness insofar as it describes in great detail the basic physics, flora and fauna, and even the vaguely human-like society of a world that doesn’t happen to exist. Well “describes” may be too strong a word as the entire volume is written in a language—and even a script—that no one to date has ever decoded.

During my research on the Codex, I discovered that in 1984 Serafini created an even more obscure volume (if you can believe that) titled the Pulcinellopaedia Seraphiniana. Unlike the Codex, the Pulcinellopaedia Seraphiniana has never been republished until Rizzoli put out a new version (with new drawings) last week. There’s apparently both a standard hardcover as well as a signed, slipcased version, the latter limited to just 900 copies worldwide (300 in France, 300 in Italy and 300 in the US) and including a signed print.

So, how does it compare, you might ask, to the infamous Codex Seraphinianus? Well, it’s similar insofar as there isn’t any text directly associated with the images or ideas therein, though there is a recent postscript (dated April 2016) describing in loose terms how the book originally came about (which Serafini discussed in more detail in my interview with him below.) And like the Codex this volume is filled with illustrations that defy category and some of which, when you take a second look, you could swear were not there before. (My explanation for that phenomenon is that some images just don’t map very well to anything in non-chemically-coaxed minds so that you forget some of them within minutes after you’ve turned the page.)

But that’s where the similarity with the Codex ends. Unlike the earlier book, the Pulcinellopaedia Seraphiniana kinda sorta has a narrative arc, as it appears to describe the coming of Pulcinella (aka “Punch” as he’s called in English) into the world, and the thousand-and-one things in the human realm that arise as a result of this classic trickster’s frolicking around in our collective unconscious (you know—it’s a Jungian thing). And Punch’s frolicking isn’t confined to puppets and plays and cute-but-slightly-annoying little tricks, but runs the gamut of human experience up to and including life and death. Who knows? Maybe even Donald Trump himself is a vast cosmic joke which some force beyond our ken is using to tempt us into self-annihilation, just for shits-and-giggles. Who can say from our lowly mortal perspective?

Visually the Pulcinellopaedia Seraphiniana is quite different from the Codex as well. First of all, the graphite images are rendered in a far more limited tonal palette, with black and white and some red making up the bulk of the colors. Second, the book is broken down into about ten sections that resemble movements in a musical piece, with each page usually containing a single image (though there’s a comics-like intro at the beginning that frames the rest of the book). This sets the pace and tone of the “narration” and kind of forces you to dwell on each image’s possible meaning before you turn the page. It’s a very different experience from “reading” the Codex and one where the physical medium of the paper book itself is put to essential use. Me, I love the thing and have been looking at it almost nonstop since they sent me the review copy (Do they expect to get this back? Well, they can’t have it ‘cause it’s, it’s… uh, lost…).

Did I mention I actually spoke to the mysterious Mr. Serafini over the phone at length a few days ago about the Pulcinellopaedia Seraphiniana? Well, I did. No, really. It was a wide-ranging and fascinating conversation that touched upon the history of Pulcinella and the Pulcinellopaedia and its origin in the Venetian Carnivale, masks, theater, Napoleon Bonaparte, Naples, Jungian psychology, Igor Stravinsky and even trickster modern artist Maurizio Cattelan. And let me state for the record that I truly believe that Serafini is both real (corporeal even) and not merely an incarnation of Pulcinella himself, despite the trickster-ish books he has created over the last several decades.

Here’s the heavily-edited interview, which was conducted in English

So Pulcinella spoke to you?

Luigi Serafini: Some people claim to have seen a ghost and nobody believes them. But then again I can say the same. I can say that I met Pulcinella…well obviously this was a fiction for my text, for my writing… but at the same time Pulcinella was a real part of the history Naples and indeed the first evidence of masks such as Pulcinella goes back to the second century A.D., or even before.

I didn’t know that.

Yes. The ancestor of Pulcinella was Macchus and the Atellan Farce in ancient Rome, and the character evolved over the centuries, finally appearing in its present form in approximately the 16th century in Commedia dell’arte. But an essential element was of course the mask, and only in recent times did actors perform on stage without masks.

It reminds me of the Carnivale in Venice. I guess all those people running around in masks are almost a holdover of something older that survived into modern times.

Well that’s very interesting because there is a connection between my book and the Carnivale of Venice. In 1982 I was invited to Venice because after two centuries the Carnivale started again, but very few people know this strange story. When Napoleon invaded Venice at the end of the 18th century, one of his first acts was to abolish the Venice Carnivale because all the masks were considered dangerous for the French army.

So the recent French prohibition of the niqab for Muslim women had a precedent?

Yes! And so after the Austrians came there was a treaty between Napoleon and Austria and they kept the same tradition of banning the Carnivale. So for two centuries there was no Carnivale… I mean in people’s houses they might celebrate, but in general there was no Carnivale for centuries in Venice in the sense we now know it. But in the late 70s, the director of the Biennale Theater thought that it was the time for a revival of the Carnivale. So after two centuries of no Carnivale at the end of it 1970s the Carnivale reappeared in Venice.

So in 1982 I was invited by in the city of Venice for this new Carnivale. It was a kind of a Carnivale which included a Napoli-type of carnivale and it was fate that I approached the Pulcinella mask. And I was fascinated by it so I built a huge mask of Pulcinella for the Carnivale and in the process I created so many drawings for the project that I had to make a book about Pulcinella and about what was bubbling up inside me. And at the same time it was kind of a challenge because after I did the Codex (the year before)—it was an incredible success for me. I mean I was completely surprised by it and everybody was waiting for some spinoff of the Codex and I said, no I want to do something completely different. While the Codex came more from my own conscious mind, the Pulcinellopaedia is based on what might be described in Jungian terms as coming from the collective unconscious, particularly as the character Pulcinella originates from the culture at large.

My feeling is that the Codex is about a different world than ours but the Pulcinellopaedia is about our world, except maybe showing these things that are happening behind the scenes.

Exactly. It’s the difference between the conscious and the collective unconscious—my unconscious in me is part of the collective unconscious which means it belongs to everybody while my fantasy belongs only to me. So there is something connected with Jung…

It almost looks like it has a story. But I can’t tell what the story is.

More than just a story it is a musical suite and like a suite in Western music it has separate pieces and separate movements that are tonally and semantically linked.

You mentioned Stravinsky’s Pulcinella piece in your book.

Yes. Exactly: It’s a work of mirrors. Now I referenced Stravinsky, Stravinsky referenced Pergolesi, Pergolesi looked at Naples because he worked in Naples. Everybody reflects something from a mirror to somebody else, etcetera etcetera… So it’s a game. It’s a mirror game to me. Stravinsky. Pergolesi. Naples. Masks, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

Can you give us any clues as to how to understand the Pulcinellopaedia? Like what’s with the spaghetti? The Pulcinella character is often interacting with spaghetti.

Okay, to more deeply understand the Pulcinellopaedia, the best way is a seven day trip to Naples. So you go out there and you enjoy the lifestyle and the beauty of this very particular city which is dominated by the volcano Mt. Vesuvius. So you always have this image of life and death because of the volcano, the eruption and Pompeii as if everything is just on the border between life and death. So Pulcinella could only be formed there, you know, and he frames and represents the joy of life and naturally, food is an important part of our life. So at the same time spaghetti illustrates the poverty of Pulcinella and his genius to survive, even if he is poor. So his genius is using all the tricks of fantasy like this to find a kind of inner peace in life.

That makes sense. I think at some point in the book Pulcinella looks like he breaks into two, maybe you know, kind of a life one and a death one and they seem to be fighting, I guess, constantly, kind of a balance between the two that’s never fully resolved.

Pulcinella is strange because it seems that whatever he does he always makes another Pulcinella or some sort of image or reflection of him emerges. So in that he is unique and at the same time he’s lonely and like an actor, in the end it’s the theater actor who is close to the audience. The theater is really a serious place where loneliness and the audience meet. And so the actor assumes the problems of the collective unconscious. And at the same time at the end of the performance they’re alone and afterwards he goes back into normal life.

Even in a movie theater you’ve got hundreds of people there gathered in the dark who don’t know each other. And they are all sitting together watching the same show…

So I noticed at the end of the book it looks like you have newer drawings.

LS: Yeah. Because I drew Batman and Superman. Batman for me is a heritage of the Commedia dell’arte and the superheroes are masked people like in the Commedia dell’arte. And so they’re really specializing in something. And it may be that the heritage of Commedia dell’arte is in comics right now. This is where we can see all the masked people which embody some virtues or vices—both—of ourselves.

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
The expensive new David Hockney coffee table book is so big that you can use it as a coffee table
11:28 am


David Hockney

At the Frankfurt Book Fair this week, David Hockney, who is currently 79 years old, unveiled a new collection of his work published by Taschen called A Bigger Book that definitely lives up to its name. The book is more than two feet tall and weighs a whopping 77 pounds. If you placed it on a little stool, it would definitely be able to support the weight of a tea service, say.

Hockney is one of the most renowned British painters of the 20th century, and A Bigger Book is a limited-edition volume costing $2,500 that covers his career of more than 60 years.

Fans of Hockney’s work will recognize in the book’s title an echo of some of the artist’s earlier works and book releases. One of Hockney’s most famous paintings is of a swimming pool, the title of which is “A Bigger Splash.”
David Hockney, “A Bigger Splash” (1967)
Similarly, the major retrospective of Hockney’s work that landed at the Tate Modern in 2013 bore the title “A Bigger Exhibition,” and there is a volume with his work called A Bigger Picture (the title has also been used for a documentary about Hockney) as well as a book containing interviews with Hockney called A Bigger Message. You can even purchase a lithograph of one of America’s most famous landmarks that is called “A Bigger Grand Canyon.”

Taschen has a tradition of bestowing upon artists of a certain caliber mega-sized volumes in a line called SUMO. Taschen’s first SUMO edition was for Helmut Newton in 1999. In 2003 Taschen released a SUMO volume dedicated to Muhammad Ali under the title GOAT, which presumably stands for “Greatest of All Time,” and the company has also released “SUMO-sized” volumes for H.R. Giger, Sebastião Salgado, and Annie Leibovitz. In 2014 Taschen published a SUMO volume about the Rolling Stones.
More after the jump…....

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Behold the wonders of ‘The Simply Divine Cut-Out Doll Book’
01:50 pm



Seventy-one years ago today, Harris Glenn Milstead was born at the (appropriately named?) Women’s Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Decades later, after a potent handful of John Waters movies and who knows how many disco singles, we celebrate perhaps the greatest diva the world has ever known—as Divine.

It’s amazing to think that Divine appeared in only thirteen movies in all those years. Thirteen! At least that’s how IMDb has it. I find that absolutely amazing. You could easily argue that on a per-minute basis, Divine had the biggest impact on audiences in movie history. Who would rate higher, Rob Reiner’s mother?

Much like Groucho Marx, Divine’s characters always had the best names, from Francine Fishpaw (Polyester) and Dawn Davenport (Female Trouble) to Babs Johnson (Pink Flamingos) and Edna Turnblad (Hairspray).

In 1983 Van Smith, who did make-up and costume design for most of Waters’ movies, released The Simply Divine Cut-Out Doll Book. Today it’s out of print, and is listed on Amazon for more than $300, although a typical asking price is closer to $125. However, you don’t need the book to soak in the bumptious appeal of Divine, we’ve got several pics from it right on this page.

More pics after the jump…...

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
The vivid erotic psychedelia of Essex House book covers
10:30 am


Essex House

Essex House only existed for a couple of years, namely 1968-1969, but in that time they released over 40 books by the likes of Philip José Farmer, Charles Bukowski, and David Meltzer. They specialized in an odd mix of higbhbrow erotica and dystopian sci-fi, and although a publisher in the ‘60s hardly needed quality art to sell fuckbooks, the imprint’s owner, Milton Luros, was a former illustrator who clearly valued a strong visual identity. (Mr. Luros would also find himself defending his possession of a trove of sexy pictures in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in 1971.)

Sadly, the illustrators who did the imprint’s most distinctive covers were uncredited, so the name of the psychedelic artists responsible for Essex’s visual vibe may remain forever obscure. Their covers weren’t ALL of this type—there were some where the standard stick-a-photo-of-a-naked-woman-on-it approach held sway—but the majority of them were in line with the company’s eye-bleedy visual identity.

If none of the foregoing tipped you off that some of this might be NSFW, I don’t know what else to tell you.


More sexy Essex House covers after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
‘Reagan’s Raiders’: INSANE ‘80s ultra-patriot superhero comics

People who claim that Barack Obama is the most divisive president ever may lack either any sense of historical perspective or any idea that beliefs other than their own have existed before the 21st Century [see also: racism]. Ronald Reagan divided 80s USA into two bitterly opposing camps—a significant minority saw him as a reckless destroyer of the Social Contract between government and populace, who trafficked in simplistic homilies and racist dog-whistles, and who exploited the decoupling of left politics from the labor movement, securing near-fatal hits on both entities in the name of a lite-fascist union of the state with the corporate sector. But a majority of Americans at the time believed him a messianic redeemer of the Goldwater ethos in American conservatism, arisen to rescue us all from the brink of New-Left disaster and to renew American optimism after years of economic turbulence, post-Vietnam malaise, and the troubled Carter era. He remains something like a Christ figure to American Movement Conservatives who’ve moved so far to the right that Reagan himself wouldn’t recognize them as conservative—or even sane.

And in re-reading my old Reagan’s Raiders comic books, I’m finding it pretty funny how extremely difficult it is to tell whether the writer thought Reagan was America’s salvation or whether he thought the man was fucking preposterous. Poe’s Law has some mighty long arms.

Reagan’s Raiders was a 1986 ultra-patriotic superhero parody comic book that cast Ronnie and his cabinet as a red, white, and blue spandex clad machine-gun totin’ team of superheroic globo-cops—imagine Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos, but all dressed like Captain America. In fact, the origin story is 100% derived from Captain America, with a silly twist. A super-strength process has been developed, and it works perfectly, but only on old dudes. Reagan and several cabinet officials, for the good of the country, of course, submit to the procedure, becoming buffed-out supersoldiers with the strength of 20 men. Each. Also they seem to be bulletproof. Take THAT, John Hinckley, Jr.!


More Reagan’s Raiders after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
The man who painted trolls, monsters, sea serpents, witches and the Black Death
09:57 am


Theodor Kittelsen

‘Skogstroll,’ 1890.
Theodor Kittelsen was the man who painted trolls. He spent his life drawing and painting pictures of these beastly supernatural giants.

According to Scandinavian folklore trolls live in caves, woods or mountains far from the plague of humankind. Trolls eat humans. They especially like young humans whose flesh is juicy, sweet and soft.

Understandably, humans don’t like trolls—that’s why they steer clear of these slow-witted beasts—or if need be hunt them down in packs.

Kittelsen was born in Kragerø, Norway in 1857. He was one of eight children. When his father died, Kittelsen was apprenticed to a watchmaker. He was just eleven years old. He wanted to be an artist but the family’s desperate need for money meant he had to work. In his spare time, he sketched and painted. His drawings brought him to the attention of a patron who paid for Kittelsen, now aged seventeen, to attend art school in Oslo and later one in Germany. When his patron’s money ran out in 1879, Kittelsen eventually returned home to work as a draftsman for newspapers.

But fortune was still on his side and Kittelsen won a scholarship to study painting in Paris in 1882. Five years later, he returned once again to Norway where he started his career as an artist. Originally he was painted landscapes and romantic rustic scenes. But through time and by commission, Kittelsen was hired to illustrate Norwegian folktales. So began his career painting and drawing trolls, monsters, witches and supernatural creatures.

Sadly, Kittelsen never made much money out of his troll artwork during his lifetime. Today, he is a star in Norway. Everywhere else—not so much. There is a museum dedicated to his life and work and his paintings and drawings of trolls and the Black Death have featured on numerous album covers by Death Metal and Heavy Metal bands—all of which can be seen here.
‘Skogtroll’ (‘Forest Troll’) 1906.
‘Trolløye,’ 1891.
‘The Water Troll Who Eats Only Young Girls,’ 1881.
More hellish trolls, beasts and plague, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
At last, Salvador Dali’s insane sex-cookbook is getting republished
11:17 am


Salvador Dali

In 1973, French publisher Felicie published a singular cookbook by Salvador Dalí. The volume was pure Dalí. First off, it was hardly a cookbook, it was closer to a visual mindfuck on the subject of fine dining that had little advice as to how the reader should prepare his or her repasts. It had visual flair, ribald humor, a contempt for “accepted” manners, no shortage of libido, and a heightened feeling for the absurd. The book was called Les Diners de Gala—Dalí‘s wife was named Gala, so the title means “Gala’s dinners” but I think there’s also a pun on the idea of a “gala dinner.” A companion volume, the comparatively little-known Wines of Gala was published in 1977.

Only a few hundred copies of the cookbook were ever printed—exact numbers are difficult to come by—but it’s been bouncing around eBay for years, almost always going for hundreds of dollars. We wrote about the book in 2014. Now, however, thanks to the venerable art publishing house Taschen, you’ll be able to own a copy for yourself, and not break your bank account any. Taschen is publishing Dalí: Les Diner de Gala on November 20, 2016, and pre-orders are available.

Here’s a look at the table of contents, which I’ll leave untranslated:

1. Les caprices pincés princiers (Exotic Dishes)
2. Les cannibalismes de l’automne (Eggs - Seafood)
3. Les suprêmes de malaises lilliputiens (Entrées)
4. Les entre-plats sodomisés (Meats)
5. Les spoutniks astiqués d’asticots statistiques (Snails - Frogs)
6. Les panaches panachés (Fish - Shellfish)
7. Les chairs monarchiques (Game - Poultry)
8. Les montres molles 1/2 sommeil (Pork)
9. L’atavisme désoxyribonucléique (Vegetables)
10. Les “je mange GALA” (Aphrodisiacs)
11. Les pios nonoches (Sweets - Desserts)
12. Les délices petits martyrs (Hors-d’oeuvres)

My French isn’t up to most of that, but, as an example of Dalí‘s humor, chapter 10, dedicated to “Aphrodisiacs,” means “I eat GALA,” so he’s got a reference to oral sex right in the table of contents.

In 2011, two noted Minnesota dance troupes, Ballet of the Dolls and Zorongo Flamenco, put on a staged piece in Minneapolis called “Dali’s Cookbook: A Gastronomical Inquisition” that was inspired by the cookbook.


More great images from this bizarre book after the jump…...

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
‘1001 Ways to Live Without Working,’ Tuli Kupferberg’s prescient pre-hippie book of mindfuckery
02:40 pm


Tuli Kupferberg

Several years before the Fugs formed, Tuli Kupferberg was running around Greenwich Village as a poet and pamphleteer. His most successful effort was a 1961 book published by “Birth Press” called 1001 Ways to Live Without Working, a scurrilous F-U to establishment culture that showed an uncanny ability to anticipate what young people would be thinking about five years later.

On the front cover, to announce the book’s intentions, was a striking image of a man’s face with the words “A STANDARD OF LAZINESS” written across his forehead. The back cover featured “Visualized Prayer for the American God #6,” a typographical poem by the Cleveland poet d.a. levy, which is a swastika made out of dollar signs.

True to its name, 1001 Ways to Live Without Working really is a list of a thousand items, and as such, draws material from as many rhetorical registers as it can. The book is a mixture of a long numbered list and photos of odd archival material, many of them classified ads or pertinent news reports, to add spice. Scant thought was given to layout, which lends the book a refreshing carefree style.

Here are the first 10 entries:

Someone else die
Find a million dollar in a toilet bowl you the only one dares to fish it out
Beg & quit after $1.00 a day
Go into business
Marry a rich homosexual
Marry a rich sexuall
Marry a rich asexual
Marry rich

What the book reminds me of more than anything is a kind of spindly foretaste of John Hodgman’s 2005 book Areas of My Expertise, the difference being, of course, that whereas Hodgman’s book is a kind of hipster’s celebration of trivia and esoterica, Kupferberg’s work is something akin to a political weapon.

In 1967 Grove Press, sensing the currents in the air, reprinted the book, the same year that Kupferberg published the follow-up 1001 Ways to Beat the Draft.

Here are a few pages from the book.
More after the jump…...

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Evil little F*ckers: Hilarious spoof covers for ‘Bad Little Children’s Books’

This is something every home should have Bad Little Children’s Books—-a hilarious anthology of 120 fake kids’ book covers features such devilish titles as Polly Paints a Penis, Don’t Lick the Stripper Pole, Even Girls Fart, Rockets and Missiles of the Islamic State and Uncle Creepy. Those of a certain age may recognize the original source material for these parodies which come from more innocent times—I certainly owned a few of ‘em when I was a tot.

The covers are credited to the fictional artist Arthur C. Gackley who was supposedly born in 1923 and was “the creator of many children’s books, none of which were ever actually published.”

Mysterious and hermetic by nature, he spent his life living and working in a small New England village, but was likely washed out to sea or fell penniless into an abandoned wishing well shaft in the winter of 1978. No body was ever found, but unfortunately his book parodies were.

You can order your copy of Bad Little Children’s Books here and follow the life of evil genius Arthur C. Gackley on Facebook.
More of Arthur C. Gackley’s hilarious book covers, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
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