December 27, 2009

How To Learn Swedish

Get given a Tintin book in Swedish for Christmas. Aside from being probably one of my all time favourite Christmas gifts, I have already mastered how to say "BOOM". PANG!

Do They Know Its Cliffmas Time At All?

Perhaps the worst Christmas song of all time. I believe Cliff Richard is solely to blame for the abundance of terrible christmas songs around. It makes radio around this time unbearable, and Cliff's influence and success in this music genre has turned well respected musical acts into silly season novelties - look at the likes of BobDylan, Alvin and the Chipmunks, The Royal Guardsmen.

This, however, is the greatest Christmas song of all time. Hands down. Good for duets at karaoke and wild gestured swaying on balconies as you steadily get drunker on Christmas Eve (now a tradition). Father on Fairytale of New York: The only interesting thing about that song is that Kirsty McColl died by being run over by a speedboat whilst scuba diving.

I am also distressed by the fact Vince Martin of 'Vince Martin & the Beaurepairs' fame has switched his popular Christmas jingle from Winter Wonderland to Silver Bells. Its just not the same.

December 9, 2009

Dress up, dress down town

Today I wandered down to Queen St and found myself face to face with a strange new shop: Sarpo. I believe it is the store which used to house Dymocks. It now seems to be part imported fashions from Asia, and part creepy 1950's prom dresses for 3 year olds. And perhaps the Tavi look-a-like, modelling here.
I am foreseeing a summer of many kindergarten sock-hops.

November 25, 2009


The various alias's of Thomson and Thompson

Dupond and Dupont
Uys and Buys
Tik and Tak
Johnson and Rohnson
Kadlec and Tkadlec
Jansen and Janssen
Citserono and Tsicerono
Schultze and Schulze
Ντυπόν and Ντιπόν
Dupont and Duvont
Clodius and Claudius
Douponte, Doupont
Hernández and Fernández
Skapti and Skafti
Johns and Johnes
Tomson and Tompson
Zigue and Zague

November 21, 2009

At ease, at seas

I want to make some art about mysteries of the ocean. Like people lost at sea / Navy the colour / submarines and periscopes / icebergs and white horses. Capsized ships.

Long Hair

I am growing my hair. It is now the longest it has been in living memory. I have always wanted long hair, but have never had the mental mettle to last the distance, and I end up going in for the chop out of sheer boredom. This time I am serious though. By the time i get to Sweden I will have long hair.
So it can fly out behind me like a mane as I cycle.

tables turned

DJing with Elton 20.11.2009.

"it was like my coast fm in a bar without the ads fantasy come to life."

show name





November 5, 2009

Charmingly barmy

Today at Rocky's the shower exploded, and an emergency plumber arrived to save the day. He described the plumbing and water works as "She's all a bit Heath Robinson", a phrase I now believe will become part of my everday jargon.

W. Heath Robinson was a cartoonist known for drawings of 'eccentric machines' and his name has since entered British language as a description of any unnecessarily complex and implausible contraption that achieved absurdly simple results.

Used in scenarios such as the BBC's Planet Earth documentary series, in which devices used to create smooth camera movements, such as the effective steadicam made out of bicycle wheels and rope used to sail up a 100 metre high mound of bat droppings, were said by David Attenborough to be "Heath Robinson affairs".

In Pink Floyd's 1971 concert film Live at Pompeii, Nick Mason described the band's early on-stage musical experiments as "Heath Robinson".

Also. W. Heath Robinson was the man behind "The multimovement tabby silencer", which automatically threw water at serenading cats.

See also - Heath Robinson (codebreaking machine).

October 25, 2009

The usual suspects

Perhaps the greatest thing about the dectective stories of Ngaio Marsh is the 'Cast of Characters' at the beginning of each one. Posing like a police line-up or screen credits these names create the doubt & intrigue which festers inside your head as you try to piece together the fragments & clues into a pattern. With her background in theatre, the inclusion of a cast of characters transforms her novels into plays, an apt analogy of the classic whodunnit.

October 20, 2009

The mystery of the two cups of tea

While Florence Broadhurst was celebrated for her brilliant fabric, wallpaper designs and patterns, her 1977 death remains shrouded in mystery. Speculation was rife that she had fallen victim to a serial killer who murdered elderly woman However others believed Florence's killer was known to her, due to the presence of two cups of tea found near her body, suggestive of a rendezvous.

October 17, 2009

Dizzy Like A Fox!

Dr Jacoby experiences paranormal activity in 1963's The Haunting resulting in his prescription 3D glasses. Can I get anyone a drink?

October 13, 2009

Like Len Lye

Library find of the day: a bookmark advertising the latest Len Lye book, adorned with a comment by poet Alistair Reid.
Len Lye - "The least boring person who ever lived."
I feel that being the second least boring person to who ever lived definitely a goal to strive for.

Fiction & Pictures

I have decided to stop reading non fiction books. From now on I intend only to read tales fictitious in nature, as these happen to be the books that influence my art the most. Everyone I have mentioned this to either think I am a genius or a fool.
From now on every art book I browse, I will have to just look at the pictures. Which really, is what I used to do anyway.
Now its off to the library for some high literature and Philip Marlowe novels.

October 8, 2009

Are you a Mod or a Rocker

Perhaps one of the most perfectly crafted music videos I have seen, with some choice hand gestures from Ray himself thrown in for good measure. The simplicity of '65. According to those who live to tell the tale, they were real menaces in their live performances also.
Happy 40th Wedding Anniversary, Ray Columbus and the Invaders.

She always took her wooden leg off before having a bath

She always took her wooden leg off before having a bath. She would unhook the leg, and slip it off over her knee while sitting on the lip of the bath.
The bathroom was a sparse one, overtaken by a bath/shower combination. Everything else existed as a single entity: one toothbrush, one towel, one facecloth, one razor. In fact, the bathroom was so cramped it took just a little hop to reach basin, so she could rinse the wooden leg under the tap before before draping it over the shower rail to dry.
The only feminine trait of the room were the stockings dangling above the bath, drying.

October 2, 2009

A coffee with two sugars

While at the opening of the exhibition To Have and To Hold: Making Collections at Objectspace, my cousins and I began to amass a collection of words which we were forever finding spelt incorrectly. One cousin provided the greatest rule for remembering the spelling of 'necessary'.

"One Coffee, Two Sugars, please."

Installation shot of To Have and To Hold: Making Collections, 2009
image from Objectspace.

September 30, 2009

Flannel Mess

As seen at Malmo Festival 2009, rocking out to Gang of Four

September 23, 2009

Asteroids under your belt

9617 Grahamchapman 1683 Castafiore 3163 Randi 7835 Myroncope 25399 Vonnegut 1772 Gagarin 14024 Procul Harum 5048 Moriarty

The ultimate reflection of greatness is surely when an asteriod is named in your honour. Admittedly there are some questionable inclusions into this illustrious list - 110393 Rammstein, 8299 Tealeoni, 8353 Megryan and 7707 Yes - so it is important to remember the people with the power to name asteroids are probably huge fans of Yes' music and Tea Leoni's acting abilities, and there is always some chaff amongst the wheat.
However, here are some personalities worthy of rubbing shoulders in space with, featuring Monty Python, Herge, Holmes, Space, Sports, Mysticism and Procol Harum.

September 22, 2009

King of the Jungle

The Jungle Room, The Overlook Hotel Maze and Elvis.

The 5" shag-pile of the Jungle Room is unnatural. Furnishing the Jungle Room with a lavish and undeniable opulence, it is a covering - between the architecture of the house and the body of the inhabitant - that is utterly useless, obsolete, absurd, and fatally anaesthetised. The luxuriant shag-pile is sublimely artificial - even more so than the faux-Hawaiian furnishings of the room - and is splendidly formless (rather than form-giving). In actuality, the essential element of of the carpet of the Jungle Room - rather than defining space - is that it is de-forming rather than forming. Elvis covered not only the floor of the jungle room with shag, but the ceiling as well.

The Jungle Room, despite its opulence, is emptied out - of not only any tangible content, but of space itself. 'Space itself doesn't enter the interior, it is only a boundary.'

The final moment's of Elvis's recording career took place in the Jungle Room. From its inauspicious beginnings in the bleak hardness of the acoustically tiled walls and stained linoleum floors of Suns Studio's cramped recording room, the recording career of the King - who had sold enough records to stretch around the globe twice - disolved into the formlessness of the den's carpet: a dissolute forlessness apparent in the in the album recorded there. In February, 1976, his final studio album was recorded at Graceland, as a result of his refusal to leave the house. 'The musician's equipment had to be lowered in through the windows of the Jungle Room den. But after everyone had assembled, Elvis refused to come downstairs. He said he was sick.'

-Excerpts from Campbell, Mark, Green Carpet Ceilings: The Textile Art of Elvis Presley, The Pander, March 1999, p8-15.

The Overlook Hotel's hedge maze: a jungle labyrinth of leafy shag-pile. Kubrick originally wanted to grow his own maze, this however, proved quite impractical, due to time it would take the hedges to grow, the cost of the endeavour, and that it would be impossible to maneuvour the cameras through the narrow hedge-rows. Instead a portion of the maze was contructed on a soundstage. The Overlook Maze exists in purely fictitious, fabricated states, residing somewhere between the silver screen and in the minds of the Torrance family, and the small portion of it constructed to to convince us of its reality.
"If Jack did indeed freeze to death in the labyrinth, of course his body was found -- and sooner rather than later, since Dick Hallorann alerted the forest rangers to serious trouble at the hotel. If Jack's body was not found, what happened to it? Was it never there? Was it absorbed into the past, and does that explain Jack's presence in that final photograph of a group of hotel party-goers in 1921? Did Jack's violent pursuit of his wife and child exist entirely in Wendy's imagination, or Danny's, or theirs?... " - Roger Ebert

September 20, 2009

Purple Reign

Purple Reign - slideshow. Prince to Queen via Life Magazine archives. Shown at Magazine, Gambia Castle, April 2009.