Wednesday, 2 January 2013

On the ninth day of Christmas Hazel sent to you ... more trivia

Banana Boat: 1906
via Shorpy Historical Photo Archive – Vintage Fine Art Prints by Dave
Banana Boat: 1906
Circa 1906
“Banana docks, New York”
An interesting cast of characters – and the more you look at it the more you will see
8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company
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Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate
Why do hundreds of people attend a conference called “Boring”? Because banality is appealing, especially when it approaches absurdity...more

Kelliegram Bindings
via AbeBooks’ Reading Copy by Beth Carswell

A treat for the fine booklover, or anyone who enjoys the excellent artistry of bookbinding: The Kelliegram Binding.
Kelliegram bindings often involved intricate leather work, such as leather inlays or onlays to create an image, a scene, or a mosaic effect. It was common for the Kelliegram binders to choose an engraving from the body of the book and recreate it in leather for the cover image.
More from the Brynmawr library
More here
To see more fine examples of leather inlays, enjoy our articleMosaic in Morocco: Inlaid Leather Bindings
To explore other legendary bookbinders and their bookbinding techniques, check out Bound to Be Beautiful: Best of the Bookbinders

1914 : Paris in Colour
via Retronaut by Amanda Uren
View 10 superb images here
and your starter?

Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate
Culture begins and ends with food. The act of eating together is a kind of social cement, the foundation of family, commerce, culture...more

Sauropods might have had trunks, but probably didn’t
via Boing Boing by Maggie Koerth-Baker

Imagine an apatosaurus with a long, elephant-like snout. Plenty of people have. That’s because the nostril placement on sauropod dinosaurs is, in some ways, remarkably similar to that of trunked animals that live today. In both cases, the nostrils are large, and they’re located up around what we’d call the forehead, kind of smack between the eyes.
On the one hand, this is one of those things that it’s really hard to ever know for certain. We don’t have preserved soft tissue, so when we make models of what dinosaurs might have looked like we’re really going on clues from the bones and comparisons to living animals with similar bone structure. Because of that, it is somewhat reasonable to suggest that hey, maybe, sauropods really did look like grumpy diplodocus in the image above. It’s fun to speculate.
But not all speculations are created equal. In a fascinating post at the Tetrapod Zoology blog, Darren Naish explains [oops! spent far too long on this] why a superficial similarity to trunked animals isn’t enough to counteract the much-more prevalent evidence against sauropod trunks. One of the more interesting lines of evidence he points out is the fact that dinosaurs apparently lacked the facial which form the trunk in living animals. We know this partly because muscles leave their signature on bone, and Naish says there’s no evidence sauropods had the right facial muscles. It’s further bolstered by the fact that the animals most closely related to sauropods don’t have those facial muscles, either.
Naish’s piece reminds me of the last time we talked about sauropod biology here. That, too, dealt with the fact that superficial similarities aren’t enough to infer that two animals must have identical biology. Only, in that case, we were talking about the differences between the long necks of giraffes and the long necks of sauropods.

Art is a pleasure technology
a Eurozine Review
Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate
Happiness hype. Here’s what we know: Happy people are typically married, healthy, religious. Here’s what we don’t know: Does happiness makes life meaningful?... more

The Strange, Juvenile Drawings of James Dean
via Flavorwire by Emily Temple
We all have a clear image of James Dean in our heads – troubled, sexy, feeling everything with intensity. But what was underneath all that youth and beauty? Eternal James Dean, which opens this week [of 19 November 2012] at the Indiana State Museum and runs though June 3rd, seeks to answer that question, exploring his work as an actor as well as his private passions and interests, including a penchant for drawing. Though his works are relatively amateurish, they allow us a little window into the mind of a legend – and to us, they reveal a strained soul with a slightly off-kilter sense of humour, just trying to get through the day.
Click through to check out a sampling of James Dean’s drawings and paintings, and let us know what you think about them in the comments.

And, it is probably no coincidence, or maybe it is, that the following day this appeared in my RSS feed.

1950s : Art of James Dean
via Retronaut by Clarissa Chapman
Clarissa’s choices are here whilst mine is:

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