I do love an agricultural show - there are still a few around this weekend. Anyway what's more summery feeling than a hot tent filled with giant veg? I also really like rosettes and prize cups and often sketch them. Here's some of the highlights of my visits this summer. I might pop down to the Lambeth country show this weekend in London for one last fix of flower arrangements under canvas!
The other day my mum showed this story to me - she's a book dealer and in my family we all love everything book related. Last year a series of intricate, mysterious and very beautiful book sculptures were discovered in libraries and institutions in Scotland. As far as I can tell, the creator still remains anonymous. The sculptures are all made of paper and mounted on books. Each one comes with a note that includes the line "in support of libraries, books, words, ideas..." Hooray for that. I particularly like the sculpture celebrating film with an audience watching men & horses leaping from a screen.
The sculptures are on tour around Scotland currently
Also you can read about the whole story here:
I like looking at this website (link below) - they have some great things - also some rather disturbing things sometimes. Looking recently I saw this amazing patchworked silk suit and hat from 1920-40, perhaps from a vaudeville act. Also these little English statuettes of Siamese twins from last quarter of the 19th century. Odd and rather sweet.
I enjoyed this little film exploring the shapes you can make when you flatten various foods. I like it when something very ordinary can take you buy surprise. Like how crushing & filming an egg or marshmallow can become a beautiful kind of a dance.
If anyone ever invents a program called 'Desert Island Bookshops' where you have to choose your top ten bookstores, I would definitely put Persephone in there. It's on one of my favourite London Streets, Lambs Conduit Street which is filled with some great independent shops.
Persephone is not just any bookstore because they actually publish "neglected classics" mostly by women and each of their books is a design lovers delight. Oh and I've loved all the books I've read from there too. Each book has a light silvery grey cover with endpapers printed with a textile design from the era of the book - along with matching bookmark.
When I opened my studio up as a shop I was very inspired by what they've done at Persephone because their shop is somewhere I could happily spend hours in. If you live out of London you can get their 'book a month' offer, where they send you something every month, lovely!
Just a quick little nod to some pieces by Czech artist Miroslav Sasek. He's very well known for his 'This is...' book for children of many cities of the world. I like the typography in the cityscapes and all the cars in these images. I also really like the pattern made by the strikers and their googly eyes though I must say no strikers I ever saw in NY looked like they stepped off the set of Madmen, obviously fashion standards had dropped on the picket line since Saseks time but these ones work in the industry so that's probably why. Love the underground station image too, nice swirling lines.
Here's a link to a site with more info: http://www.miroslavsasek.com/
I recently came across the website of Nick Van Woert, an artist based in my one time home of Brooklyn. His work looks very interesting, I'd like to see it in real life so hopefully he'll have a show in the UK sometime. I like this piece, it's definitely what you'd describe as mixed media. It reminds me a little of some of Mark Quinns work. Here's what's in this piece, can you tell which is which?
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I like graphic novels and I'm a fan of Chris Ware so it was great to see this little group of pictures of his house in Chicago. I love the collections of vintage toys, games, comics and books. You can see the full collection over on Trip City which is a site that often has interesting things to read about.
I love films and really enjoyed reading Michael Scorcese's list of the "85 films you need to see to know anything about film". Sadly it seems I know little about film as there are a great many on the list I haven't seen but I like lists like this as it's introduced me to some that I'll definitely get. My favourite film (if I had to pick one) of all time, "A Matter of Life & Death" is on the list which I'm glad to see. I'm a big fan of the films of Powell & Pressburger. I thought it was interesting to read what Scorsese said about the reaction of the public to Powells admittedly creepy but excellent film Peeping Tom:
Peeping Tom: “Michael Powell himself gambled everything on Peeping Tom and lost in such a way that his career was really ended. The film was so shocking to some British critics and the audience because he had some sympathy, sort of, for the the serial killer. And the killer had the audacity to photograph the killing of the women with a motion picture camera, which of course tied in the motion picture camera as an object of voyeurism, implicating all of us watching horror films. He was reviled. One critic said this should be flushed down the toilet. He only got one or two more movies done. He really disappeared. And now in England there are cameras watching everyone all over the street.” 1960