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A Naked Alphabet: The Human Body as Typography (NSFW)
09.22.2016
10:38 am

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Amusing
Art
Design
Sex

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To paraphrase L. P. Hartley: The 1970s is a foreign country: they do things differently there.

The sexual liberation that favored metropolitan areas in the 1960s spread across country during the seventies. Suddenly—or so it seemed—everybody was enjoying the “zipless fuck.” There were guide books offering useful tips on how to have a better sex life. Married couples were swinging. Nudity was celebrated. Porn was ubiquitous. Orgasms compulsory. Yet, it was still very much the male heterosexual eye that influenced everything.

In 1971, a small group of Dutch artists, photographers and graphic designers—Ed van der Elsken, Anna Beeke, Pieter Brattinga, Anthony Beeke, and Geert Kooiman captured this (newish) sexual freedom with a naked human alphabet—published in Avant Garde Magazine No.14: Belles Lettres. The letters were created using naked women—who lay, curled and bent into the appropriate shapes.

But this wasn’t just mere titillation—this artful display of female nudity was a protest “against the supposedly ‘dehumanising’ and thoroughly ‘indecipherable’ mechanistic alphabets.”

The typeface (in case you’re wondering) for these photographs is said to be Baskerville Old Face.
 
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More barenaked letters, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Those notorious naked Trump statues are starting to be released to the wild
09.22.2016
10:30 am

Topics:
Amusing
Art
Politics
U.S.A.!!!

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As Dangerous Minds—and pretty much every online source of news or cultural info—reported about a month ago, an edition of five utterly monstrous and hilarious statues of a nude Donald Trump, titled “The Emperor Has no Balls,” appeared all at once in five American cities, namely Los Angeles, Seattle, New York, San Francisco, and Cleveland. Most of those statues were seized by police almost immediately upon their discovery, and all of them are meeting very different fates.

Most notably, the City of Cleveland Heights has released its confiscated statue to the sculptor, Joshua “Ginger” Monroe, for a nominal impound fee of $110. Monroe got his start in haunted house design, has done work for Cirque de Soleil, and served as the director of Eli Roth’s now-defunct Goretorium in Las Vegas, his current city of residence. Cleveland boasts the distinction of being the only non-coastal city to host one of the original five, and it wasn’t chosen just because that city served as the venue for the RNC. There’s a more personal connection, as Monroe originally hails from the Cleveland suburb Garfield Heights, and he requested that one be placed in his hometown.

More after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Thread Bare: Examining racial and sexual identity through erotic embroidery
09.22.2016
09:36 am

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Art
Design

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These are quite beautiful—Jessica So Ren Tang’s embroidered pinups of “suggestively posed” women.

Jessica uses embroidery to explore her Asian-American identity—“the dualism of being too Asian to be American, and too American to be Asian.” Her work includes embroidered reproductions of Chinese bowls, takeaway noodle boxes, candy wrappers and decorative plates.

In her portrait series of pinup girls Jessica has replaced their “the facial identity” with exquisite Asian textile patterns.

The patterned skin creates a broader spectrum of Asian identity; it becomes more ambiguous and fluid as identity moves between the two.

The resulting image also captures an erotic charge between the model’s pose and the sensual nature of the embroidered patterns. Each portrait is hand embroidered on a piece of 8” x 10”  fabric. More of Jessica’s work can be seen here.
 
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‘Girl 04’ (2016).
 
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More of Jessica So Ren Tang’s fabulous work, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Classic covers from ‘The Monster Times’
09.21.2016
09:08 am

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Art
Movies
Pop Culture

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I couldn’t begin to tell you why The Monster Times failed in only four years. It seems like a great idea—a sci-fi/horror/comics tabloid newspaper with poster quality cover art? It’s not like horror fans are so small a niche, but the paper launched in New York in 1972 as a bi-weekly, then soon went monthly, then sporadic, until its quiet death in the summer of 1976, when an all-poster issue failed to revive its fortunes.

You can hardly blame it staffers for its demise—it was helmed by people who knew their business, veterans of The East Village Other, Famous Monsters of Filmland, and Screw. The result was a snarky, streetwise variation on Famous Monsters with deep coverage. But clearly the mag’s cult wasn’t enough to sustain it. Fangoria announced plans to revive the publication in 2009, but those plans were cancelled, along with plans to republish the original issues online. There’s a terrific and obsessively detailed rundown of the magazine’s history on Zombo’s Closet of Horror because of course there is. Back issues are findable on Amazon, mostly in the $15-$30 range, but can be had on eBay for under $10.
 

 

 
More Monster Times after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Jack Kirby’s unpublished adaptation of ‘The Prisoner’
09.20.2016
09:57 am

Topics:
Art
Heroes
Television

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Jack Kirby was the man who imagined our world of superheroes. In partnership with Stan Lee and Joe Simon, Kirby created the likes of Captain America, Iron Man, the Fantastic Four, Hulk, Thor, Doctor Doom, the Black Panther and many, many others.

Kirby’s input had a bigger and longer lasting effect than just the words or concept. His drawings helped shape our worldview—for he was the artist who created the look of these superheroes. When we think of Captain America or Iron Man—we’re seeing these characters through the prism of Kirby’s imagination.

Jack Kirby was born in New York to an Austrian-Jewish immigrant family in 1917. Though life was poor and tough, Kirby had an inkling he was going to be an artist. Hardly the sort of work for a working class kid from the Lower East Side—but Kirby had a compulsion that made him draw. He started doodling, then sketching, and then drawing full comic strips. He knew he would never be a Rembrandt or a Gauguin but he did know that he would become an artist. He took to drawing comics because the comic strip was the art of the working man. Kirby later recalled:

I thought comics was a common form of art and strictly American in my estimation because America was the home of the common man, and show me the common man that can’t do a comic. So comics is an American form of art that anyone can do with a pencil and paper.

His talent for drawing led to his early career as a graphic artist. He created single panel health advice cartoons such as Your Health Comes First!!! and various advisory comic strips. When Kirby switched jobs to Fox Feature Syndicate, he teamed up with Joe Simon—together they created Captain America.

After the Second World War Kirby worked for DC Comics and then Marvel—where his legendary partnership with Stan Lee was responsible for creating our world of superheroes—a world comparable to the myths of ancient Greece. However, disagreements with Lee over credit, led Kirby to quit Marvel and rejoin DC in the late 1960s, where he produced his superb Fourth World series.

In 1968, Kirby became obsessed with a new TV series called The Prisoner. The series depicted a spy relocated to a mysterious island where he is interrogated for information. As an anti-authoritarian libertarian, Kirby identified with the central character No. 6 played by Patrick McGoohan. Kirby said the series represented:

...an individual’s stubborn attempts to wrest freedom from subtle but oppressive power.

This was analogous to his view of politics as well as his creative relationships with others—most notably Stan Lee.

In the early 1970s, Marvel decided to produce a comic book version of The Prisoner. Marvel’s then editor Marv Wolfman set Steve Englehart and Gil Kane to work on it. However, Stan Lee—knowing how much Kirby liked the series—intervened and asked him to work on the comic book.

Kirby produced a complete first issue lifted directly from the series’ first episode “Arrival.” Unlike his other work, Kirby’s The Prisoner is an almost faithful retelling of the TV show. The finished drawings were partially inked and lettered by Mike Royer–but the idea was dropped and the comic never saw light of day.
 
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Read the rest of Jack Kirby’s ‘The Prisoner,’ after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Cum Face: Portraits of Women Reaching Orgasm
09.19.2016
08:55 am

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Art
Sex

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Laura.
 
Photographer Albert Pocej set himself an unusual challenge. He wanted “to capture the moment of women reaching the highest point of physical pleasure.”

How did he come (ahem) up with this idea? In his wildest dreams, of course.

I simply woke up and I knew I just had to do it. So I tried to explore the female orgasm through a photography experiment.

At first I thought it would be impossible. Finding the models was the most difficult part. I started to write to everybody I know without any boundaries since all the women are so different. The answers I got were mostly two kinds: “I don’t have enough courage”, and just the silence, which is also pretty obvious as an answer. When I finally found 20 women that were ready to take part in this project, some of them refused to continue when I told them that it will not be acting, and some of them weren’t able to relax already while shooting. So at the end there were only 15 left.

According to Albert—all of the participating models “experienced real orgasms” during their photographic session. To achieve the “best results” Albert used time lapse to help the models relax. Some of them didn’t need it and were happy to enjoy themselves in front of the photographer.

I didn’t want this project to be a cliché, I didn’t want any acting – just the real feeling as it is. Every human being is different, so are their orgasms. I wasn’t trying to make it any better as it is in life. I wanted to make those looking at these pictures to think.

And clichés don’t make people think.

Born in Lithuania in 1974, Pocej studied at the University of Educational Sciences. After graduation, he worked in IT before dedicating himself to a full-time career as a photographer when he was thirty. Now based in Monaco with a mighty impressive portfolio, Pocej has established him as a highly respected photographer and teacher across Europe.

More of Albert’s work can be seen here and you can follow him on Facebook.
 
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Monika.
 
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Agne.
 
More portraits of women captured in the heat of the moment, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Grisly vintage North Korean anti-American propaganda art
09.16.2016
02:12 pm

Topics:
Art
Belief
History
Politics

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North Korea is the ultimate “safe space” where only one opinion matters and no dissent is allowed. Safe spaces stop the dialectic in its tracks—just like North Korea does not permit any serious critique of its Supreme Leader the “Shining Sun” Kim Jong-un. We may not dig what happens in our own western countries, but we are free to question, to protest and to instigate change.

We have the opportunity “[t]o see ourselves as others see us,” as the poet Robert Burns once wrote, which—one hopes—“would from many a blunder free us.”

These propaganda paintings show exactly how North Korea views America and by association the West. Fair dinkum.

The North Koreans and South Koreans suffered terrible atrocities at the hands of the American GIs during the Korean War. At one point during the conflagration the US had a “take no civilians policy” which led to hundreds, if not thousands, of deaths.

Atrocities were committed by all sides—but while those of North Korea and South Korea have been documented—those committed by the American Army only came to light after an investigation by the Associated Press in 1999. Here’s one example of the US Army handiwork:

Just weeks after the conflict had begun, up to two million refugees were streaming across the battlefield; they clogged the roads and the UN lines.

Under pressure and fearing North Korean infiltration, the US leadership panicked. Soon command saw all civilians as the enemy regardless. On 26 July the US 8th Army, the highest level of command in Korea, issued orders to stop all Korean civilians. ‘No, repeat, no refugees will be permitted to cross battle lines at any time. Movement of all Koreans in group will cease immediately.’ On the very same day the first major disaster involving civilians struck.

The stone bridge near the village of No Gun Ri spans a small stream. It is similar to a great many others that cross the landscape of South Korea, except that the walls of this bridge were, until very recently, pockmarked by hundreds of bullet holes. On the very day that the US 8th Army delivered its stop refugee order in July 1950, up to 400 South Korean civilians gathered by the bridge were killed by US forces from the 7th Cavalry Regiment. Some were shot above the bridge, on the railroad tracks. Others were strafed by US planes. More were killed under the arches in an ordeal that local survivors say lasted for three days.

‘The floor under the bridge was a mixture of gravel and sand. People clawed with their bare hands to make holes to hide in,’ recalls survivor Yang Hae Chan. ‘Other people piled up the dead like a barricade, and hid behind the bodies as a shield against the bullets.’

Corroborating the Korean survivors’ testimony are the accounts of 35 veterans of the 7th Cavalry Regiment who recall events at No Gun Ri. Perspectives differ, but the detailed memories of veterans recalling events burnt into their souls by their first days in combat are as painful as they are shocking.

‘There was a lieutenant screaming like a madman, fire on everything, kill ‘em all,’ recalls 7th Cavalry veteran Joe Jackman. ‘I didn’t know if they were soldiers or what. Kids, there was kids out there, it didn’t matter what it was, eight to 80, blind, crippled or crazy, they shot ‘em all.’

Along with the My Lai atrocity 20 years later in Vietnam, the killings discovered at No Gun Ri mark one of the largest single massacres of civilians by American forces in the 20th century.

The events of the war help turn North Korea into what it is today. Everything flows from the Supreme Leader. Every oppressive dictatorship implements a safe space—which should be a warning to all of us today.

I’m sure the following powerful anti-American paintings were successful in getting their message across, still I can’t help but think there is something very twee (dare I say bourgeoise?) about these paintings—like religious paintings for the already converted faithful or like GI comics or James Bond movies.
 
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More paintings of evil GI Joes, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Color me impressed: Lemmy and David Bowie-themed coloring books are here!
09.16.2016
12:45 pm

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Art
Heroes
Music

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The cover of ‘Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead: Color the Ace of Spades’ coloring book by Feral House.
 
We can now thank the fantastic publisher of fringy Feral House for two more things—a pair of new coloring books based on the dearly departed Lemmy Kilmister and the Thin White Duke himself, David Bowie.
 

The cover of ‘David Bowie: Color the Starman’ coloring book by Feral House.
 
Of the things you get to color in the Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead: Color the Ace of Spades book are images of Lem as a metal version of Jesus’ crucifiction into the famous “Warpig” logo and shooting you the bird (because, Lemmy) as well as works by Joe Petangno, the artist behind the cover of Motörhead’s 1986 album Orgasmatron. Bowie’s book, David Bowie: Color the Starman includes artistic contributinons by filmaker and artist Mica O’Herlihy, illustrator Tony Millionaire, Plastic Crimewave (aka Chicago-based music historian and doer of many cool things, Steve Krakow), and underground comic hero Mike Diana.

I’m sure one or both of these coloring books are somehow going to find their way to a large number of our Dangerous Minds readers immediately. I’m also pretty sure either of these books would make a great gift for your Bowie and Lemmy-loving pals. I’ve posted images from inside the pages of both books below which are available now via Feral House for $15.95.

And as if this news isn’t cool enough Feral House is also running a coloring contest that kindly requests that you send a finished photo of your favorite images from either coloring book to them via submissions@feralhouse.com. Your handiwork will then be featured on Feral’s social media and you’ll be entered to win a copy of two of Feral’s upcoming coloring books for 2017—Muhammad Ali—The Greatest Coloring Book of All Time and one that you’ll only really need a purple crayon for, Prince—The Coloring Book.
 

Lemmy and the ‘Warpig.’
 

 

Hawkwind (Lemmy pre-Motörhead).
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Sleazy characters from vintage pulp novels spring to life from their covers
09.16.2016
10:13 am

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Art
Books
Sex

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A vintage pulp fiction novel comes to life with the help of artist Thomas Allen.
 
The wildly talented Thomas Allen’s ingenious idea to bring characters from pulp fiction novels to life by setting them free from their respective covers and catapulting them into their new 3-D worlds was partially inspired by a couple of items from his youth that most of our readers of a certain age will be familiar with. The good-old View-Master and classic pop-up books.
 

 
According to an interview with Allen in 2007, while he was working on a fellowship he was tasked with re-telling classic mythology using images culled from anatomy books. During this tedious project Allen came across an old pulp fiction paperback and started cutting. The result was one of those “lightbulb” moments whereupon Allen realized that by removing the characters from the cover of the book, they suddenly took on the distinct appearance of a classic “pop-up” book element.

Clearly a perfectionist, Allen prefers to use vintage pulp novels that pre-date the 1970s as the covers were painted giving his cut-out subjects a more “realistic” appearance. When it comes to where he finds his materials Allen is mum on how he tracks the books down and who could blame him as he’s truly tapped into a vein full of nearly endless fuel for his vintage paper ne’er-do-well’s second lives as (almost) living and breathing art. If you pretty much flipped your lid while looking at the images in this post like I did, a large collection of Allen’s photographic catalog is a part of a beautiful book called Thomas Allen: Uncovered. Loads of images follow.

Dig it, daddio.
 

 

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
I probably shouldn’t tell you about this online cult movie poster gallery, but I’m going to anyway
09.15.2016
05:41 pm

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Art
Movies

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Candy’ (USA/Italy, 1968) by Averardo Ciriello
 
Collecting movie posters can be a rewarding hobby—and even a lucrative one, too, if you view your collection as an investment that you’d be willing to sell later in life, after it has appreciated in value.

That’s what I try to tell my wife all the time! She’s never amused and resists my “charming rogue”/“Honey, can I spend some money?” puppydog act with a stone-faced sternness that makes me dribble away, chastened every time I run into her office with my laptop asking her to “Hey, look at this!” Because what she knows—and you don’t know—is that I really, really, really like buying movie posters. I have a lot of them. A lot a lot of them. Not hundreds upon hundreds, but certainly several dozens upon dozens of them. And the sad fact is, even with some of the beauties that I’ve amassed over the years, I have framed exactly one of them (a nice Magic Christian one-sheet that hangs in my office) while the rest have remained rolled and folded in my closet, safe, but unseen and under-appreciated.

See that nifty Italian 2-panel poster for Candy painted by artist Averardo Ciriello, above? I stumbled across that looking for something else a few days ago. And now it’s mine. I just didn’t tell my wife that I bought it. She’s probably finding out about it the same way you are. (I knew that if I asked, that she’d only say no. So I didn’t ask her!)

I got it via a Los Angeles-based high end poster gallery known as the Westgate Gallery. You can find their online presence at Westgategallery.com.

After the Candy poster was safely MINE ALL MINE I wrestled with the idea of sharing the Westgate Gallery and its wonderful wares with our readers. This is the kind of thing where you don’t want to tell too many people about it and spoil it for yourself. Yes it’s that good. Westgate Gallery—named after the Westgate Cinema, a porno theater in Bangor, Maine known to the proprietor during his obviously wayward childhood—is probably the single best-curated—and not at all picked over—high end movie poster gallery to open in recent years. Launched a bit over a year ago, the Westgate Gallery specializes in posters of Horror, Italian Giallo films, 70s and 80s “Golden Age of XXX,” classic cult films and basically exploitation films of any genre.

Westgate Gallery‘s poster concierge Christian McLaughlin, a novelist and TV/movie writer and producer based in Los Angeles, is obviously a total maven of mavens when it comes to this sort of thing. You couldn’t even begin to stock a store like this if you didn’t know exactly what you were looking for in the first place, and if you want a quick (not to mention rather visceral) idea of his level of expertise—and what a great eye he’s got—then take a gander at his world-beating selection of Giallo posters. He’s what I call a “sophisticate.”

Right now the Westgate Gallery’s summer flash sale has been extended through Monday, September 19th. Every item in stock is 40% off the (already reasonable) list price with the discount code “40Off” at checkout. And because Christian is such a nice fellow, Dangerous Minds readers can take advantage of an additional 5% discount—that’s almost half off if you are bad at math—by using the exclusive discount flash-code “DD45Off” at checkout (instead of the “40Off” code as indicated at the website.)

The selection below is only a very tiny sliver of what’s for sale at Westgategallery.com. In fact, 99% of these are culled solely from the horror and retro porn posters sections simply because I didn’t want to hip any of you motherfuckers to THE ONES THAT I WANT in the cult classics and Giallo sections.


Jean Rollin’s ‘Shiver of the Vampire’ (France, 1971)
 

Grave of the Vampire’ aka ‘Seed of Terror’  (USA, 1972)
 

The Pit’ aka ‘Teddy’ (Canada, 1981)
 
Many more macabre and sexy exploitation posters from the Westgate Gallery after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
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