Category Archives: history

Gaming the system

The Dizzying Grandeur of 21st-Century Agriculture, epic and depressing / a full(ish) review of Issue #1 of The Beano, 1938, at The Slipper. Sent us back to these surveys of the more problematic bits of Just William, including the infamous … Continue reading

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Crosstown traffic

Swinging Hatchetts, the story of a pioneering London Night Club from 1968-1978 / Thurston Moore on Madonna’s no-wave past / found photo mystery, up for grabs. We have one of our own as well / Dale Kelley collects pulp art … Continue reading

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Many lane blacktop

Brutal Destruction, for masochistic concrete lovers / impressive animated VR illustration by Matt Schaefer, via the Lawnmower Metaverse tumblr / fantastic auction of classic cars, prosaic and spectacular (including some great camper vans) / Conserve the Sound, remembering the sounds … Continue reading

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Merciful release

‘The boat’s been found and he’s not on it’: tragic sailor Donald Crowhurst’s final voyage, by his son. The Crowhurst story is endlessly fascinating. We especially love Tacita Dean’s book, Teignmouth Electron, and its associated imagery (e.g. Aerial View of … Continue reading

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Number of the beast

La Bestia, a project by Swen Renault on the Beast of Gévaudan, responsible for a series of deaths between 1764 and 1767 that ‘were said to have been committed by a beast or beasts that had formidable teeth and immense … Continue reading

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Lights that never go out

How I came to be banned from the world’s most remote island, Tristan da Cunha, by Simon Winchester. ‘We have an unceasing capacity to make ourselves nuisances, basically.’ / sort of related, the amazing Ship Map / also related, the … Continue reading

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Atoms for space

Every Building in Baghdad: The Rifat Chadirji Archives / film and more at Slightly Intrepid / Dreams of Space, regularly visited / related, the Mohs Scale of Science Fiction Hardness. More marvellous space things at Atomic Rockets and at False … Continue reading

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Bottles and apples

A random collection that encompasses almost everything. Scans from ‘the earliest Chinese book printed by the technique of polychrome xylography‘ / Thomas Kiefer, the El Sueno Americano Project / Alcor once more / Lawrence Lee Magnuson continues to curate one … Continue reading

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‘… the heaviest of all extant musical instruments’

According to Wikipedia, the Carillon is ‘the heaviest of all extant musical instruments’, comprising of ‘at least 23 cast bronze, cup-shaped bells, which are played serially to produce a melody, or sounded together to play a chord’. Most remarkable of … Continue reading

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Seals, secrecy and abandoned pots

The Antarctic territories were originally consider so barren and desolate that explorers rarely ventured far enough south to even encounter land. But the first natural resources – seals and whales – transformed the discovery and exploitation of the region. From … Continue reading

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“It only takes 25 years for flotsam to go around the world”

Triton is an SDK for developing realistic 3D ocean models / sort of related, a modern mystery: the story of the Tjipetir blocks, released from the sea after a sinking in 1917. An excuse to dive into the history of … Continue reading

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Walls and wails

Catching up with the mp3 bloggers, tmn’s third return to the music blogging scene, taking in the changes wrought by the advent of streaming, the end of personal discovery and the general changes in the musical landscape in the past … Continue reading

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Runways and hideaways

Total mish-mash today. Some moody, scale-deficient views of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko / a list of people who disappeared mysteriously / decide on the future of the Elephant and Castle / behind the scenes building a Pink Floyd Album Cover / open … Continue reading

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Ooooh. Eeeep.

The Art of Smallfilms from Four Corners Books looks at the of Oliver Postgate (who died in 2008) and Peter Firmin (still producing beautiful prints). There’s a preview of the book at Creative Review or you can visit The Smallfilms … Continue reading

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Future Planning Committees

How far ahead are things planned? While it’s shocking to discover that the Marvel Cinematic Universe is primed to fill multiplexes until 2028, it’s not surprising to find that most major companies have long-term planning departments looking into what the … Continue reading

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Thinking small

Tim Dunn is the UK’s foremost expert on model villages. His weblog, The Model Villager, is a bit sparse at the moment but he has an excellent piece on Bekonscot Model Village and Railway in Buckinghamshire in the latest issue … Continue reading

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Industrial landscapes

Fire Face’s Small Radios Big Television is ‘a game about exploring digital places stored in analog media’. It has a beautiful aesthetic and sound design, although don’t expect swift and simple answers (via RPS) / A sale could end man’s … Continue reading

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To keep heat flash out

‘One in Five‘ was an information leaflet issued by the Women’s Voluntary Service for Civil Defence in February 1957. A starkly terrifying document, it attempted to reduce the impact of the hydrogen bomb by suggesting that a bit of intensive … Continue reading

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‘… a missing diagram explaining the escape from the roof of the Marks and Spencer’

Centre Pompidou is closed for holiday, a work by Thomas Mailaender, currently showing his Cyanotypes series. His earlier installation ‘Night Climbers of Cambridge‘ builds on the legendary book of the same name by proto urban explorer and fascist sympathiser Noël … Continue reading

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Blocks and drills

The recent partnership between Lego and Shell is causing ructions. However, Lego has had a partnership with Shell that goes back over 30 years before being replaced by the fictional Octan brand for sets like the Gas’n’Wash Express. The very … Continue reading

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