Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
Witold Pruskowski, Falling Star, 1884.
‘Willette’, illustration from Le Pierrot, N° 3, 20 July 1888. Via Livrenblog
Recognising that flying over London was contrary to the Royal Aero Club regulations, and yet wishing to get a view of London from above, Capt. Penfold, the Australian aeronaut, decided to make a trip across the metropolis in a balloon. To give a practical side to the trip he arranged with the Sandow Chocolate Co. to disguise himself as Father Christmas and descend at the first suitable point by parachute and distribute samples of Sandow’s chocolate on landing. Through Messrs. Aeros, Ltd., he secured the use of one of Messrs. Spencer Brothers’ balloons of 45,000 cubic feet capacity, which, piloted by Mr. Henry Spencer, and carrying a cinematograph operator, left the gasworks at Battersea at 12.45 p.m. on 23rd ult. Capt. Penfold was seated on the edge of the basket holding the cords of the parachute, which was fastened to the net of the balloon. A 25-mile wind was blowing, necessitating a good deal of manoeuvring before the word to “let go” was given, and after just clearing the gasometer they crossed the Thames at a height of 1,000 ft. At about 1,200 ft. up the only recognisable object was the spire of Westminster Cathedral. The balloon travelled at a height of some 4,000 ft. above the clouds for a long way, and then dropping down through the clouds, the aeronauts found clear country near Chelmsford. At 3,000 ft. Capt. Penfold slid off the basket. He dropped about 500 feet before the parachute opened and the wind swayed him about terrifically. While descending he travelled safely for a distance of about three miles across country and landed safely at Little Baddow, where he distributed the chocolate.
An unseasonal story from Flight magazine, January 4, 1913. The entire archive of this magazine, the first weekly magazine in the world devoted to aviation, starting in 1909, is now online.
Airship hangar at King’s Bay, Spitsbergen, 1926.
As used by the ill-fated Italia.
Set of sixty miniature heads used in phrenology, Manchester, England, 1831.
Science Museum, London.
Before this boiler is thrown into focus its black cylinder is but an inconspicuous feature of the novel mechanism which stands face to face with the sun. But when, with a few turns of the crank, it swings into the concentrated rays reflected from hundreds of mirrors, it suddenly assumes the appearance of shining silver, or perhaps of a great, gleaming icicle, and becomes the irresistible cynosure of all eyes…
Ivory model of a human skull with moving parts, Europe, undated.
Science Museum, London.
In a remote suburb, a solitary house,
Where it is cold in winter, hot in summer,
Where there are spiders, and dust on everything,
Where ardent letters are decomposing,
Portraits are stealthily changing.
People walk to this house as if to their grave,
And wash their hands with soap when they return,
And blink away a facile tear
From weary eyes – and breathe out heavy sighs…
But the clock ticks, one springtime is superseded
By another, the sky glows pink,
Names of cities change
And there are no remaining witnesses to the events,
And no one to weep with, no one to remember with.
Ballet du Chasteau de Bicêtre, “Première Entrée des Fantômes”
Daniel Rabel (1578-1637)
Religieuses, Bretagne, 1952
Elaine, the Lily Maid of Astolat
Julia Margaret Cameron (1815-1879), Illustrations to Tennyson’s Idylls of the King, and other poems
(London: Henry S. King, 1875). volume 1, 12 albumen silver prints.
Via Graphic Arts.
ajinayajnopavita : deer skin worn over the left shoulder by Hindu ascetics
bashylk : scythian pointed felt cap
kalabaku : many stringed cummerbund
karnaphul : flower-shaped earring
Who are you, and why are you suddenly buying books that nobody else in the world seems interested in?
The Caves of a Thousand Buddhas: Russian Expeditions on the Silk Road, at The Hermitage, St. Petersburg, to the 5th April.
If I had a hammer:
photograph by Étienne-Jules Marey, published in
CH. Frémont – Etudes Expérimentales de Technologie Industrielle – 64e mémoire –
Le Marteau, Le Choc, Le Marteau Pneumatique.
Charme”, “objet sacré”,” objet de pouvoir”, “objet de protection”, “talisman”, “grigri”, “objet magique”, “objet personne”, autant de termes utilisés par les explorateurs, missionnaires et ethnographes d’Afrique pour désigner le fétiche, cet objet fait et utilisé pour établir un lien entre les vivants et les puissances invisibles, pour lutter contre le chaos, pour protéger du mal. …choses ligotées, assemblages, croûtes et enchevêtrements de cordes…
What goes around, comes around:
Circular Bridge, Mt. Lowe Railway, 1901
via wood s lot
Pattern of light made by violinist Jascha Heifetz’s bow. From a sequence by Gjon Mili for LIFE magazine, 1952.
Étienne-Jules Marey, Bird Flight, Pigeon Landing, 1894. (which came fluttering down into my consciousness first thing this morning via the very wonderful gaslightgirl).
The page The Pioneers : An Anthology : Étienne-Jules Marey (1830-1904) , home of this delightful creature, is full of similar wonders.
Cy Twombly, Untitled, 1970