Archive for March, 2005

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Thursday, March 31st, 2005

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the ultimate erotic act

Thursday, March 31st, 2005

Stolen from Jack’s flickr stream:

Stonewall 3 by Monica Bonvicini at DCA.

sleepover

Wednesday, March 30th, 2005

Karim has pointed out in the comments that the British Museum organise sleepovers. I checked the web site and discovered that it’s part of the Young Friends club. They hold about 4 a year and they are themed.

See you there!

the dark arts

Tuesday, March 29th, 2005

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

Tonight the museum possessed an almost oppresive quality. Long shadows encroached everywhere, and the usually soaring vaulted ceilings appeared as a low, black void.

‘This way,’ Fache said, turning sharply right and setting out throught a series of interconnected galleries.

Langdon followed, his vision slowly adjusting to the dark. All around, large-format oils began to materialize like photos developing before him in an enormous darkroom…their eyes following as he moved through the rooms.

Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown

It was very dark in the main hall. A little bit of moonlight came through the windows, and Stanley could just make out the world’s most expensive painting on the opposite wall. He felt as though the bearded man with the violin and the lady on the couch and the half-horse person and the winged children were all waiting, as he was, for something to happen.

Time passed and he got tireder and tireder. Anyone would be tired this late at night, especially if he had to stand in a picture frame balancing on little spikes.

Maybe they won’t come, Stanley thought. Maybe the sneak thieves won’t come at all.

Both the books I’m reading this week – one for myself, the other to my son at bed time – revel in the atmosphere of a museum after darkness. It’s a compelling image that I’m keen to experience. Any curators out there willing to offer an after hours tour?

Probably not. Still, it was worthwhile posting this entry if only to recommend that you all turn off your machines and go straight to the bookshop to buy these books. It’s almost impossible to put down either of them.

radio recycle

Friday, March 25th, 2005

Never let it be said that no, too self is unsustainable. I recycled the Little Nemo post and squeezed another entry out of it this week, and now I’ve reached back into the archives a little further and dusted off one those architectural anecdotes that I keep harping on about.

Radio Bonfi, a project running at the Architectural Association, is into its second week and I’ve submitted a recording I made last year about the Rietveld House.

Go and take a listen to the show and try out the interesting interface they’ve designed (flash required). My entry is the first section listed as a ‘sideshow’.

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Thursday, March 24th, 2005
  • Kiddie Records Weekly

    ‘…For the entire 2005 year, Basic Hip Digital Oddio will be featuring weekly stories and songs from the golden age of children’s records…’

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Tuesday, March 22nd, 2005

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I wake up to Nemo

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2005

A little while ago I posted a plea for help with a cartoon I had found in an old catalogue. Peter, with the help of his boss, kindly did a translation for me with help of flickr notes.

It’s a curious little story and I was relieved to be able to enjoy the text as well as the pictures, however, there seemed to be no explanation for the connection to Maurice Sendak that had originally got me enthused.

Over the last 24 hours there has been a new development…


On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 23:11:39 +0000, eversion wrote:

Hi Mike,

Ralf has passed on your comments about the cartoon I posted. I’m fascinated to learn that you may have copies in English, I assumed it was just an obscure one off!

Whatever info you have would be much appreciated.

Regards,

Rob

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 17:34:02 -0800, Mike Whybark wrote:

Can you pass me back the URL again?

I assumed that the piece was a translation of the little nemo original; the images I noticed looks familiar as part of a long sequence in which Flip, Nemo, and the Imp are wandering through Morpheus’ castle. I have several of the Fanagraphics full-year reprints and may be able to locate the piece.

If it’s not a translation but was originally in Dutch, I may be of little use, although I could probably put you in touch with Eric and Fanta, who could get you and Bill Blackbeard hooked up. I think Blackbeard edited the Nemo books.

I seem to recall something about early seventies bootleg dutch reprints of Nemo preceding US reprints by a couple of years. I may have read that these reprints influenced Joost Swarte, who so clearly has looked at McCay (among other early cartoonists) pretty closely.

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 23:55:34 +0000, eversion wrote:

Mike,

Time for a confession.

I’m a little embarrassed to admit that until about 5 minutes ago I didn’t know anything about the history of Nemo or Winsor McCay. If I’d bothered to Google it in the first place (as I just have) I’d have realised that I got the Sendak connection completely the wrong way round!

Here’s the link again, it should make you chuckle…

rob.annable.co.uk/journal.cgi/2005/01/07/books/little_nemo

I found the strip in a furniture catalogue put together in the late 60’s showing the collection of iconic furniture owned by a Dutch university. If it’s not too much trouble, I’d love to see what you have, but it’s clearly not quite what I imagined it might be.

Rob

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 17:34:02 -0800, Mike Whybark wrote:

oh, fantastic. It’s just what I thought it was. I’m certain i have this. I will leap off the couch into action in a minute.

McCay also is widely credited as the inventor of animation, for his “Gertie the Dionsaur” films.

here’s a wikipedia article on Nemo:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Nemo

And then finally, I got this from Mike earlier this evening…

Ok, yes, this is known as the “Befuddle Hall” sequence.

I have it in several republications. This transcription is taken from page 110 of “the Best of Little Nemo in Slumberland,” edited by Richard Marschall.

FRAME ONE
Nemo (on the left, in policeman’s cap):
I wish we had never come into this Befuddle Hall in the first place.

Flip (to right, in cap, appears bearded and with cigar):
That isn’t the question now, it’s how are we going to get out.

FRAME TWO
N: The whole affair seems to be sideways. It makes me dizzy.
F: There’s a hall running up and down and crossways! Don’t fall in, now, hear?

FRAME THREE
N: Let’s give ourselves up when we get out of here, eh, Flip?
F: Let’s get out first! Whoever named this Befuddle Hall knew his business!

FRAME FOUR
N (to the Imp): Come on! You slowpoke! Hurry up! Don’t be so slow!
F: I see daylight! Come on! Hurry up!

FRAME FIVE
N: We’ll hunt up the princess now, eh? And go back to the palace!
F: Yes! There’s the door to this befuddle place yonder!

FRAME SIX
I: Pug ug umble guck!
N (losing cap): I’m so glad we are going to get out of here!
F: I told you I’d find the way out, did I not, eh?

FRAME SEVEN
N: Yes! You did not! We are as bad off as ever!
F: Huh! This beats me! I’m certainly, um, twisted! the only thing we can do is go back again!

FRAME EIGHT
N (having fallen out of bed and awakened): Huh! I was wondering why everything looked so sidewise like!

Every single LNIS ends with Nemo awakening on the floor in a smaller frame. There is a wonderful sequence which starts with him in bed, and the bed grows legs and gallops over the city wildly until he awakens, having fallen out of bed.

Little_nemo_plancha_1.jpg

The strip you found has an original publication date of 1908, and is drawn from a several-weeks sequence known as “Befuddle Hall.”

From the same sequence:

McCay_LittleNemo.jpg

There was a very terrible animated film adaptation of the strip made in the 1990s. In the US in the seventies, a wonderful animated campaign for Levis’ pants made heavy and direct use of imagery and sequences originating in the strips, but wildly psychedelicized in the nineteen-seventies idiom.

Performing a google image search on the quoted term “little nemo” seems to yield a number of scans of the strip in color, as it was originally published. The strip was an anchor of the American sunday comics supplement and original rotgoravured pages are sought-after collectibles (I have never seen one in real life).

LittleNemoADVERTe513_bis.jpg

Anyway, there’s a ton of stuff out there of Nemo and on McCay. If you can find it, “Little Nemo 1905-1914” may contain every strip from the greatest period. This edition was published by the Evergreen Press (a subthing of Taschen), has an introductioun by Bill Blackbeard, and the ISBN is 3-8228-6300-9

www.amazon.com/gp/reader/3822863009

absurdly, the book dealers on Amazon have this listed as $280 and up.

Hope you enjoy getting to know Nemo. It’s truly brilliant drawing.

The moral of the story? Check Google and Wikipedia first. That is, of course, unless you want to enjoy actually being taught by someone who cares enough to give you their time and wisdom.

Thanks Mike, Peter and Ralf.

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Monday, March 21st, 2005

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part 3 added

Monday, March 21st, 2005

Notes from the summary of this lecture can be found in Part 3.