Sep 30 2011: How Your Gramophone Records Are Made (from Wonders of the Modern World, 1930s)

A long article illustrating the process of sound recording and record manufacturing from Wonders of the Modern World, a  children’s and schools reference book published sometime between the 1930s and early 1950s. What’s fascinating about this is not only its clear explanation of how the apparently magical process of conjuring sound from flat slabs of … Continue reading

Sep 29 2011: An Ink And Wash Sketch On The Theme Of Percy Bysshe Shelley’s ‘Ozymandias’ (Date Unknown)

The image above happened to be in a frame I bought to re-use a few years ago, but having removed the sketchbook page from its mount, somehow it seemed worth hanging onto: the dense cross-hatchings, sepia-toned wash and slightly awkward drawing of the central broken colossus (its pediment inscribed as in the poem’s text) all … Continue reading

Sep 28 2011: A Signed Photograph of Uma Thurman as Emma Peel in The Avengers (1998)

Rummaging around the Cattle Market turns up some unexpected things: if it’s not an Ethiopian vellum painting of a Madonna & Child of unknown provenance, or a heap of rain-battered home medical reference guides, then it might instead turn out to be a signed photograph of Uma Thurman, in costume as Emma Peel in the … Continue reading

Sep 27 2011: Twelve BBC Sound Effect Library Archive Discs (BBC Aberdeen, 1940s/50s)

Earlier this year, in the Jack Goldstein exhibition at Nottingham Contemporary, a series of coloured vinyl records containing the sounds of forest fires, barking dogs and ships lost in fog were featured, and in some ways these BBC archive 78s are the source material – indirectly – for those works. Made in the 1940s or … Continue reading

Sep 26 2011: Pakistan Modernism from The Pakistan Yearbook, 1969 (National Publishing House, 1969)

After two posts of advertising reflecting the aspirations towards modernity of Pakistan’s rulers during the 1960s, here are a whole bunch of photographs showing how that aspiration manifested itself in a variety of industrial, educational and residential buildings and installations. Perhaps the fact that so little of it differs significantly from equivalent projects in, say, … Continue reading

Sep 25 2011: More Advertising from Pakistan Year Book 1969 (National Publishing House, 1969)

As promised, a follow up to yesterday’s gallery of advertising from The Pakistan Year Book (1969) featuring a further 26 images from the pages of this publication. As before, these seem revealing in relation to the push for modernity and industrialization in Pakistan – as in many other states – during the decade between the later … Continue reading

Sep 24 2011: Advertising from Pakistan Year Book 1969 (National Publishing House, 1969)

This gallery of adverts is taken from the pages at the beginning and end of the Pakistan Year Book (1969), a publication packed with statistics and information pressing the relatively new nation state’s claims to late sixties modernity. To this end, questions of culture and other key matters play a supporting role to many pages of photographs … Continue reading

Sep 23 2011: How to Regulate the Sex of Your Child Before Birth (from Virtue’s Household Physician, c.1924)

I’m not sure there’s much that can be usefully added to the advice given below, in which some curious assumptions are made about how various behaviours during the process of attempted conception (one of which is ‘read light literature’, of all things) can help to sway the sex of the child eventually conceived. It’s every … Continue reading

Sep 22 2011: The Anatomy of the Head, or Opening the Mind (from Virtue’s Household Physician, c.1924)

Earlier posts here have featured anatomical plates and models from various volumes of this 1920s American home medical reference series, but there’s such a rich resource of visual material here that another barely scratches the surface: this time, it’s a phrenological map (a lovely thing in itself, and already used by Robert Holcombe in conjunction … Continue reading

Sep 21 2011: The Blacks by Jean Genet (Translated by Bernard Frechtman, Grove Press, 1960)

In case anyone were thinking about coming along to the Reading Genet session this evening (I think places are still available to book) but hasn’t had the opportunity to read the full play and feels put off, don’t be: previous discussions have ranged pretty widely, using the source texts – previously the essays Alberto Giacometti’s Studio … Continue reading