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Breaking news: EVERYONE can own Glenn Danzig’s house
08.04.2017
05:34 pm
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Well, since everyone is talking about wishing they could buy Glenn Danzig’s now iconic house since yesterday’s popular Dangerous Minds post—good news! We all can!

Well, sorta. The weird folks at Meth Syndicate, one of the top new companies that does the enamel metal pins that are so popular with the kids (along with their friends at Pizzaships) have come up with a way for all people to buy Glenn’s house! Yup, the “Danzig’s House hard enamel pin”!
 
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It’s posted on their Instagram page along with this text:
 
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As some of you reading this know, I used to be in Danzig and I lived in the guest house there for quite a while and it was bat shit crazy! Not because of Glenn, mind you, but because of YOU! YOU PEOPLE are crazy!

A little after I started living there we had to start chaining the driveway gate to keep the nuts out. I’d wake up many mornings to “the spray can girl” who would walk up and down the driveway slowly shaking a spraypaint can (KA-CHUNK, KA-CHUNK, KA-CHUNK) like some kinda tribal death march. Notes, records, dead things, you name it. When people showed up and were calm and friendly, Glenn was always unfailingly nice. I have known him since 1978 and he’s super cool, he was always fair and generous as a bandleader and I think all the kookoo fans that come up with these weird trips about him are both a blessing and a curse. It’s great to have fans but put yourselves in Glenn’s hooves, imagine being bugged by creepy nuts who all have your address, day and night? Just living with it was pretty unnerving. So remember “Do what thou wilt” unless thou art an idiot! Then do the opposite!

Leave your dark idol the hell alone!!
 

Posted by Howie Pyro
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08.04.2017
05:34 pm
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That time Franz Kafka visited Rudolf Steiner to talk about Theosophy
08.03.2017
09:05 am
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Franz Kafka c. 1911
 
So here is something I learned wallowing in London Review of Books’ digital archive: Franz Kafka had enough of an interest in Theosophy to visit Rudolf Steiner at his hotel and ask whether to devote his life to study of the occult sciences. Kafka wrote about the meeting in his diary. It’s just like one of his short stories.

In March of 1911, Steiner, who had not yet founded the Anthroposophical Society, delivered a series of lectures in Prague, later published as An Occult Physiology. The date of Kafka’s first diary entry on the lectures, March 26, puts him in the audience for the sixth talk, “The Blood as Manifestation and Instrument of the Human Ego.” Two days later, Kafka met Steiner at the Victoria Hotel on Jungmannstrasse:

In his room I try to show my humility, which I cannot feel, by seeking out a ridiculous place for my hat, I lay it down on a small wooden stand for lacing boots. Table in the middle, I sit facing the window, he on the left side of the table. On the table papers with a few drawings which recall those of the lectures dealing with occult physiology. An issue of the Annalen für Naturphilosophie topped a small pile of the books which seemed to be lying about in other places as well. However, you cannot look around because he keeps trying to hold you with his glance. But if for a moment he does not, then you must watch for the return of his glance. He begins with a few disconnected sentences. So you are Dr Kafka? Have you been interested in theosophy long?

But I push on with my prepared address: I feel that a great part of my being is striving toward theosophy, but at the same time I have the greatest fear of it. That is to say, I am afraid it will result in a new confusion which would be very bad for me, because even my present unhappiness consists only of confusion. This confusion is as follows: My happiness, my abilities, and every possibility of being useful in any way have always been in the literary field. And here I have, to be sure, experienced states (not many) which in my opinion correspond very closely to the clairvoyant states described by you, Herr Doktor, in which I completely dwelt in every idea, but also filled every idea, and in which I not only felt myself at my boundary, but at the boundary of the human in general. Only the calm of enthusiasm, which is probably characteristic of the clairvoyant, was still lacking in those states, even if not completely. I conclude this from the fact that I did not write the best of my works in those states. I cannot now devote myself completely to this literary field, as would be necessary and indeed for various reasons. Aside from my family relationships, I could not live by literature if only, to begin with, because of the slow maturing of my work and its special character; besides, I am prevented also by my health and my character from devoting myself to what is, in the most favourable case, an uncertain life. I have therefore become an official in a social insurance agency. Now these two professions can never be reconciled with one another and admit a common fortune. The smallest good fortune in one becomes a great misfortune in the other. If I have written something good one evening, I am afire the next day in the office and can bring nothing to completion. This back and forth continually becomes worse. Outwardly, I fulfil my duties satisfactorily in the office, not my inner duties, however, and every unfulfilled inner duty becomes a misfortune that never leaves. And to these two never-to-be-reconciled endeavours shall I now add theosophy as a third? Will it not disturb both the others and itself be disturbed by both? Will I, at present already so unhappy a person, be able to carry the three to completion? This is what I have come to ask you, Herr Doktor, for I have a presentiment that if you consider me capable of this, than I can really take it upon myself.

He listened very attentively without apparently looking at me at all, entirely devoted to my words. He nodded from time to time, which he seems to consider an aid to strict concentration. At first a quiet head cold disturbed him, his nose ran, he kept working his handkerchief deep into his nose, one finger at each nostril.

More after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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08.03.2017
09:05 am
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Tricky dicks and flying vaginas: The satanic erotica of ‘Les Diables de Lithographies’
07.31.2017
10:06 am
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An image of a restored illustration from Eugène Modeste Edmond Le Poitevin ‘Les Diables de Lithographies.’
 
You might think that I’ve finally gone crazy after reading the title of this post, but you’d be wrong. I’ve been slightly crazy for quite a while—mostly due to the occupational hazards of my “job” here at Dangerous Minds which occasionally expose my eyes to such things as illustrations depicting disembodied flying vaginas. But I’m okay with that, especially since we can all write off this experience as “educational” due to the historical relevance of the vintage illustrations in this post.

In 1832, French painter and Lithographer Eugène Modeste Edmond Le Poitevin published Les Diables de Lithographies—a collection of 80 illustrations on twelve different lithograph plates. A short time later that same year Le Poitevin would put out fourteen more lithograph plates containing 115 additional illustrations for Les Diables de Lithographies. The images are as diabolical as they come and would bring Le Poitevin his greatest success as an artist. His illustrations of Satan showing off his huge penis, or perhaps carting it around in a wheel barrel was quite the departure for the artist who was known for his paintings comprised primarily of landscapes, marine life, sailors, and fishermen.

At the time of Les Diableries de Lithographies’ publication, the city of Paris was in upheaval. In June of 1832, an event referred to as the “June Rebellion” (aka the “Paris Uprising” which writer Victor Hugo in part based his 1862 novel Les Misérables on) was initiated by rebels opposing the liberal-minded monarchy of Louis Philippe I. Philippe I came to power in 1830 after Charles X was forced to abdicate his position as King. French Republicans were pissed. But that was nothing compared to other dire issues in Paris such as the horrific eruption of cholera that killed over eighteen thousand residents of the city (primarily poor people, of course) and another hundred thousand who resided outside the city. Word on the street was that the government was poisoning the water wells.

Despite the all the dead bodies and rumors of poison water, Le Poitevin’s Les Diables de Lithographies was incredibly popular which led to a demand for more from his adoring fans. The artist would respond with several other fiendish publications such as Les diableries érotiques, Petits sujets des diableries, Bizarreries diaboliques, and Encore des Diableries. I’ve included images from both Les Diables de Lithographies and Les diableries érotiques by Le Poitevin below which are without question, very NSFW.
 

 

 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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07.31.2017
10:06 am
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Horror Scope: Manly P. Hall’s occult murder mystery, ‘When Were You Born?’
07.28.2017
11:12 am
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One of Elvis’ favorite books, The Secret Teachings of All Ages, was the work of Manly Palmer Hall, a Los Angeles-based esotericist who tried to break into the moving picture business long before Elvis did. In 1938, Hall appeared in an astrological murder mystery based on a story he sold Warner Bros., When Were You Born?

Anna May Wong plays Mei Lei Ming, a Chinese astrologer who uses her total omniscience to help the San Francisco police solve a crime. Each of the movie’s 12 characters has a different sun sign—awfully convenient for the plot, but an ingenious way of teaching the zodiac to an audience nonetheless. Hall defended the movie as “the first picture ever made by a major motion picture studio of the world dealing with the subject of astrology except as a joke or fraud.”
 

 
Master of the Mysteries: New Revelations on the Life of Manly Palmer Hall says the original version of Hall’s story “depicted astrologer Evangeline Adams as a ‘kind, old lady’ who happened to be a powerful influence on the stock exchange,” but the studio had other ideas:

The plot would be more saleable as a murder mystery, [the powers-that-be] said, and more believable with a mysterious and sultry female lead. Hall grudgingly agreed, and came back with a revised version that became the only one of his original stories that was ever actually produced[...]

[The script] called for a pet marmoset, but since the only marmoset available had already been rented out, Hall compromised on a little brown monkey named Venus.

Hall consulted the stars for the best starting date and time: exactly 11:26 a.m. Feb. 9. It was reported that he must have gotten his stars mixed up because leading lady Wong was in bed with a cold that day. Hall insisted that although the studio had lived up to the letter of his starting time, it had not observed it in spirit. Director William McGann had shot the first scene at the prescribed moment, Hall agreed, but he had spent an hour or more rehearsing his cast before that. He complained that only one actor in the film was actually born under the character he played—in his case, Pisces, the fish.

As a final touch, it was decided that the movie should open with Hall making an introductory on-camera speech explaining how astrology can forecast future events and, as he says, solve crime. Hall lamented having to do the scene, calling his cameo appearance a final blow to the project that had been tinkered with so much that he barely recognized it as his own. But the movie’s producers felt it was needed to help the public understand what the movie was all about.

When Were You Born? is not yet available from Warner Archive, but Finders Keepers Classics offers a DVD-R with reasonably sharp picture and sound for $6.99. Manly P. Hall sets it up in the trailer below.
 

Posted by Oliver Hall
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07.28.2017
11:12 am
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Sex, Satan and surrealism: The unsettling erotica of Michael Hutter
07.24.2017
10:41 am
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“The Weight of the Head and Heart.” A painting by German artist Michael Hutter.
 
German artist Michael Hutter‘s fantasy-based paintings are distinctly reminiscent of Hieronymus Bosch. Filled with imagery associated with the occult or perhaps demons doing their time in purgatory, Hutter’s work is utterly mesmerizing.

Sex, death, erotica and science fiction scenarios run amock in Hutter’s work which the artist says is inspired by the “logic of dreams.” He has also been inspired by the fictional city of “Carcosa,” the mystical port dreamed up by Ambrose Bierce in his 1886 short story “An Inhabitant of Carcosa.” In 1895 author Robert W. Chambers published a book full of horror short stories called The King in Yellow which referenced Carcosa and other aspects of Bierce’s work. Later H.P. Lovecraft would incorporate Carcosa into his various Cthulhu mythos tales. Even George R. R. Martin got in on the supernatural fun when he named a city Carcosa (noted on an intricate map) in his book series A Song of Ice and Fire. Now that you have some perspective on all that, and how his art is part of this cool Carcosa continuum, here’s more from Hutter on the basis for his surreal, often sexually charged artwork: 

“I don’t care for reality or the probability that something is true, only for its potential to stimulate my thought. In my opinion, the truth is somehow an illusion anyway. I mix that with my obsession, passions, desires, and fears and choke what happens in the abyss of my personality back on the surface.”

Hutter has also applied his considerable artistic skills to photography using digital manipulation to bring some of his chilling witches and demon-like characters to life. The images that follow are NSFW.
 

“The Cuckold.”
 

“Alien Sex.”
 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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07.24.2017
10:41 am
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Doctor Faust’s handy guide to conjuring up demons
07.14.2017
10:39 am
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The story of Doctor Johann Georg Faust is better known through literature and legend than by the few existing facts which document his life. Even his birth date is an estimate ranging from 1466 to 1480, which covers two broken mirrors’ worth of supposition. Anyway, what little is known can be roughly put down thus:

Faust was a scholar and a Doctor of Philosophy. He was an itinerant alchemist, astrologer, magician, and occultist. He performed magic tricks in shows and wrote horoscopes on commission. During his life, he was variously described as a trickster, a fraud, and a con man—-mainly due to customers dissatisfied with their horoscopes. He was denounced by the Church as being “in league with the Devil,” a necromancer, a practitioner of Black Magic, and a “sodomite” who corrupted and abused his students. This latter accusation almost led to his arrest and imprisonment.

He wrote several grimoires and chapbooks, including the chapbook featured here Praxis Magia Faustiana (1527) in which he described how to conjure up demons like “Mephistopheles.” This was the very first time the name “Mephistopheles” was ever documented. According to legend, Mephistopheles was the demon to whom Faust sold his soul in return for unlimited knowledge and wealth. We don’t what exactly happened when Faust “conjured” up this demon, we do, however, have Faust’s description of him as one of the Seven Great Princes of Hell who:

...stands under the planet Jupiter, his regent is named Zadikel, an enthroned angel of holy Jehovah…his form is firstly that of a fiery bear, the other and fairer appearance is as of a little man with a black cape and a bald head.

Doesn’t sound so terribly demonic, does it?

Faust did have some fans—including one bishop who considered his astrological work very convincing and some academics who praised his medical knowledge. But generally, he was greatly feared and was banished from Ingolstadt in 1528. Faust died in an explosion during an alchemical experiment circa 1541. His body was hideously scarred. This gave rise to the legend he had died during a conjuring rite and the Devil had sent his emissary Mephistopheles to bring Faust’s soul to Hell.

Faust’s chapbooks provided the source material for Christopher Marlowe‘s play The Tragical History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus (circa 1588), in particular the following volume that first detailed Faust’s dealing with the tricky Mephisopheles.

The text opens with a long list of the names of angels and demons before invoking the “Spirit by the power and virtue of the letters which I have inscribed - do I command thee to give me a sign of thy arrival.”

Then more names:

Larabay + Belion + Sonor + Soraman + Bliar + Sonor + Arotan + Niza + Raphael + Alazaman + Eman + Nazaman + Tedoyl + Teabicabal + Ruos, Acluaar + Iambala + Cochim

Zebaman + Sehemath + Egibut + Philomel + Gazaman + Delet + Azatan + Uriel + Facal + Alazamant + Nisia + By the most sacred and holy mercy of God + Zeyhomann + Acluaas + Niza + Tachal + Neciel + Amatemach + Her somini +

By this I compel thee to appear unto me before this circle and to do what I command thee…

Before finishing:

Now do I conjure and command thee O Evil Spirit by the powers of Heaven and by the words of life…Mephistophilis and by the power off the words +Tetragram + Agla + Adonay + Amin

~Snip!~

Now I conjure thee to come from thy abode even from the farthest parts by these great and mighty names - Tetragrammaton - Adonai - Agla - and to appear before me receiving and executing my demands truly and without falsehood I command thee O Spirit Rumoar -, even by t[h]y great sovereign Lucifer.

A full transcript can be read here.
 
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More of Faust’s conjuring tricks, after the jump…

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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07.14.2017
10:39 am
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Professor Hindu, the corpse-reviving sorcerer who was once Fela Kuti’s ‘spiritual advisor’
06.30.2017
09:08 am
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DJ Jumbo Vanrenen’s flyer from Professor Hindu’s London show, via thisisafrica.me
 
A few years ago, Suzanne Moore devoted a column in the New Statesman to her memories of a special event Fela Kuti once hosted in London. Inside a small club in Belsize Park, Fela’s favorite sorcerer, Professor Hindu, was slicing out his own tongue; out front, men were digging a grave. “Some poor guy had volunteered to be killed and resurrected,” she writes. After doing some card tricks, Professor Hindu slit the volunteer’s throat and buried him in the cold, cold ground.

Moore didn’t return for the Lazarus routine two days later, but she heard about it from wonderful Vivien Goldman (who published her own account in NME) long after the fact:

Not only had she been there, but she’d gone back to see the dead man raised. He’d jumped out of the grave in a suit all covered in earth and propositioned her. “Being buried alive makes you horny,” he exclaimed. That makes sense, when you think about it.

Fela’s death and resurrection show made its debut at his Lagos club, the Shrine, in May of ‘81. According to Michael E. Veal’s Fela: The Life and Times of an African Musical Icon, during Professor Hindu’s first engagement at the Shrine, the magician “reportedly hacked open one man’s throat and fatally shot another.” In both instances, the victims were revived after apparently spending days and nights buried in the ground.

Continues after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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06.30.2017
09:08 am
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Occult paintings and mystical visions of female surrealist Ithell Colquhoun
06.21.2017
11:00 am
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Like the Abstract Expressionist movement that followed in its wake, Surrealism’s history has largely been written as a narrative of heroic transgressions committed by bad boys, which did no favors for the women involved in the movement. Even Surrealism’s most celebrated woman artists—Meret Oppenheim, whose “Breakfast in Fur” was the first objet acquired by MoMA, and Lee Miller, who moved on from Surrealism to become a celebrated photojournalist—are arguably as well or even better known as nude models for photos by Man Ray as for their own achievements.

Not only was that at work in ensuring that painter/poet Ithell Colquhoun remained an obscure figure, there’s her strong supernatural bent. Surrealism’s interest in automatism in writing and drawing was held in service of suppressing the discipline of the conscious mind in order to develop the unconscious, triggering creativity-enhancing states. But Colquhoun used Surrealism’s methods in service of Hermeticism. She sought not merely the unconscious, but the mystical and transcendent. This pursuit led to her ouster from the official English Surrealist group in 1940. She continued to paint, eschewing her early representational style in favor of increasing automatism, and she increased her involvement in the occult, participating in the Ordo Templi Orientis, and the Golden Dawn splinter group Stella Matutina.

Colquhoun’s biography and body of work merit far deeper exploration than I can offer here, and I’d strongly encourage anyone interested in Surrealism or esoteric art who don’t already know her to engage in that deep dive. The video at the very end of this post isn’t a terrible place to start. What concerns us today is a suite of her paintings and connected esoteric poetic writings called Decad of Intelligence. Based on an early Kabbalistic treatise known as the Sefer Yetzirah, the ten painting/writing pairs were created in 1978 and 1979, based on ten “Sephiroth,” aspects of infinity revealed in creation. The Decad has been published in full for the first time as an extraordinary set of prints and an accompanying book by Fulgur Limited, a UK publisher concerned with the intersections between the esoteric and visual art (if you’re familiar with Abraxas Journal, you know Fulgur). From Dr Amy Hale’s introduction:

A key to understanding the way in which the Decad was designed to work may be found in Colquhoun’s relationship to colour theory, in which she was interested from early in her formal arts training. In the 1930s she studied at the London atelier of Amédée Ozenfant, who spearheaded scientific colour theory in Britain, particularly concentrated on the effects of colour in architecture. Colquhoun’s own studies of colour theory were underpinned by her interest in the Golden Dawn magical system and reinforced for her the idea that colours hold the power to communicate both concrete and more ineffable spiritual principles. Similarly to the theories put forward by Kandinsky in his 1911 text Concerning the Spiritual in Art, Colquhoun believed that colours were themselves intelligences and gateways to other planes of existence.

The Decad of Intelligence…was designed to be a small book of ten enamel pieces, each depicting a different sephira, accompanied by a description of their properties. The enamel is thickly laid on the paper, and each piece is a colour study, encompassing the colours of each of the four colour scales of the Tree of Life. Her text is extremely regular in construction, and provides a list of of the correspondences of each sephira, including its location, corresponding part of the body, elemental and planetary associations, fragrances and flowers, alchemical associations, and the vision that the sephira is intended to inspire.

The prints in the folio are quite vivid, printed with metallic highlights that help to capture the essence of the enamel originals. The versions of the same works in the booklet are still quite nice, but less expensively printed, and the digital images we have to share with you resemble the latter more closely. They give you the idea quite well enough. Elements of the corresponding poems were derived from information found in Aleister Crowley’s Liber 777, and perhaps accordingly, the Decad of Intelligence is limited to 777 copies.
 

 
ABSOLUTE OR PERFECT INTELLIGENCE

Sphere of Mercury
Pillar of Water
Splendour a Hermaphrodite

Opal storax moly
Quicksilver mescal
Left foot navel
The names versicles and apron octagram
Zinc Venus as metal

Jackal of the west healer of plagues
Truthfulness angelic Sons of God
Analysis into Four Elements vision of splendour
 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Ron Kretsch
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06.21.2017
11:00 am
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‘I’m Always Thinking of You’: The Bruce Conner occult greeting card
06.16.2017
08:34 am
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‘I’m Always Thinking of You,’ greeting card by Bruce Conner, c. 1957 (via Dust-to-Digital)
 
Dust-to-Digital, the excellent reissue label behind last year’s Music of Morocco: Recorded by Paul Bowles, 1959, has reprinted this greeting card drawn by Bruce Conner some 60 years ago. It costs $5.

Like Harry Smith, Conner was employed by a bohemian greeting card company called Inkweed Studios (later The Haunted Inkbottle) during the ‘50s. Lionel and Joanne Ziprin—he a poet and Kabbalist, she a dancer, illustrator, and model—were its founders. The notes from Glenn Horowitz Bookseller’s 2011 exhibition of material from the Inkweed archives are full of fascinating details about the Ziprins, the artists they worked with, and the businesses they ran. While they do not seem to have made much of a dent in Hallmark’s monopoly, they gave Bruce Conner and other artists the greatest gift of all: cash.

Inkweed offered itself as a launching pad for a handful of equally ambitious and talented artists, several of whom found their first paying commercial jobs with the company. These include polymath artists Harry Smith and Jordan Belson, painter and filmmaker Bruce Conner, and illustrators Barbara Remington and William Mohr. Smith’s instantly recognizable geometric designs were used for a series of hand screened Christmas cards, which echoed the artist’s famed series of drawings and collotypes inspired by Kabbalistic themes. Their most prodigious collaborator, however, was Conner, who met the Ziprins on a visit to New York in 1951. While studying art at Wichita University and the University of Nebraska, Conner regularly sent The Ziprins card concepts, alongside completed linoleum cuts and meticulous printing instructions. Conner’s work for the Ziprins—inspired by the two-dimensional, alien forms of painter Paul Klee and the absurdum ad infinitum ethos of Dada and Beat—infused Inkweed with a heavy dose of subversive wit and black humor. Conner’s vision inspired the Ziprins to take greater risk in their own designs, expanding the parameters of what the company could and would soon become.

After the jump. Conner’s video for “Mea Culpa” from Brian Eno and David Byrne’s ‘My Life in the Bush of Ghosts’...

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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06.16.2017
08:34 am
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‘Cook What Thou Wilt’ with these Aleister Crowley-themed kitchen utensils
06.02.2017
09:35 am
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Facing boredom in your food-life? Ever wondered what it takes to become “Wickedest Chef In The World”? Then why not try spicing up your culinary time—as well as your kitchen decor—with these Aleister Crowley-themed cooking utensils?

Sprung from the mind and will of Sheffield-based visual artist Stuart Faulkner, these hand-tooled (and strictly limited edition) sets of kitchenware are available to buy from the website of occult gift shop Airy Fairy, or directly from the artist himself at his website stuartfaulkner.com.

The spoons cost just a measly £6.66 (what else?) and the chopping board can be yours for only £23.

I myself am looking forward to getting stuck into Cook Of The Law, a compendium of The Great Beast’s favorite recipes which (rumor has it) was dictated by his spirit to the second most evil Brit of modern times, Gordon Ramsey…

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile
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06.02.2017
09:35 am
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