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weblog archives
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Monday, June 09, 2003
A ghastly-sounding book: Chicken soup for the soul of Nascar. Sample jacket quote: '"Life is a team sport" and, indeed, auto racing is a metaphor for life. Everyone needs the support and love of their own pit crew to keep them on track and in winning form as they go through their own race every day.' Compare and contrast with Social Science at 190mph (via robotwisdom): 'Stock-car racing, at its highest levels, reflects an important, desirable American trait: how to compete by doing a good job at cooperating.' So is Nascar a great big circular love-in, with co-operation flowing freely between teams and drivers? The second link's extensive insight into the physics and sociology of stock car racing - slipstreaming, drafting, nudging, slingshotting, tail-fanning - highlights the drivers' dependence on each other in order to make it around the track, and then throwing all this co-operation out of the window on the final lap. But then 'bump and run' doesn't sound like a very 'chicken soup' concept...

Last weekend saw Zaha Hadids Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center open to the public. Hadid's architecture is brutally compelling on paper (and on screen as well), yet perhaps suffers from the weight of expectations in real life. This may just be the yawning gap between architectural renders and architectural photography, with the latter struggling to keep up. On the page, the CAC looks strangely static (why should this be strange? After all, aren't buildings supposed to be static?), in marked contrast to Hadid's extensive presentation work (the latter links to another arts centre, this time in Rome).

Elsewhere. For the benefit of Mr Kite, a poster we were trying to find the other day, via this collection of Beatles links (thanks Aaron) / time-wasting but educational blackjack trainer (via kottke) / Schwarz, a minimalist weblog, gives us two links to architects called Osc(k)ar: Oskar Leo Kaufmann and the construction of Oscar Niemeyer's Serpentine Pavilion in Hyde Park (a wonderful series of panoramas).

Pleasingly blurry pictures from Andrea Saunders / a selection of commercial and portrait photography portfolios over at Bill Charles (our favourites are Stephen Shore and Joel Sternfeld)/ the photography of Mario Giacomelli (via caterina). Especially this one / a photographic encyclopaedia of objets utiles et inutiles / 'stone maps' at speedy snail / architectural photography by Cristobal Palma, including awesome urban imagery from South America (flash) / a copious illustrated history of photography, including early examples of colour photography: I, II

Hunkabutta takes part in bizarre Japanese brain experiment: He then went on to explain that he and his colleagues have discovered that Japanese people cannot tell the difference between a look of surprise and a look of fear, but that foreign people seem to do it easily. He wants to find out if this is the result of cultural conditioning or if it's caused by brain physiology. / whatever happened to the paperless office? / Martha Stewart's upcoming schedule revealed at the smoking gun. 26th June: 'dust all taxidermy'. Seriously. But then again, taxidermy must get awfully dusty.

Good but achingly hip paintings by Charles Miller (see also Jewish boxers) / fifty years of Fiat advertising posters (via me-fi) / Bizarre car fan art (more) / Staff selections from the from the FSA-OWI photography collection / the multi-denominational sim chapel / here be dragons / toast in a jar.