Sunday, 24 August 2014


A kenning is a much-compressed form of metaphor, originally used in Anglo-Saxon and Norse poetry. In a kenning, an object is described in a two-word phrase, such as 'whale-road' for 'sea'.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Bernard Palissy (c. 1510 – c. 1590)

Palissy is known for his molding from life of plants, fish, amphibians, and reptiles (Amico 1996). These creatures were captured alive, immersed in urine or vinegar, coated in grease, and finally pressed into plaster (Shell 2004). The resulting mold was used to make a clay impression of the animal, which was then posed with other animals and plants in a naturalistic scene, usually on a large shallow dish known as a rustic platter (see Figure 6.1).
These creatures appear extremely realistic: the process of manufacture permits every scale of fish or snake to be recorded, and Palissy spent years perfecting the glazes that allowed replication of the color and sheen of the living animal. However, rather than considering his work as mere imitation or mimicry of these creatures, Palissy saw his ceramics as replicating natural processes of fossilization (Smith 2000; Newman 2004; Shell 2004). In his Discours Admirables, Palissy describes the power of “generative salt” and “congealative water,” which provided the material substrate of the minerals (Shell 2004, 27). Minerals were seen as having a tendency to congeal within the earth, through the evaporation of “accidental water.” If this happened in an enclosed space, the mineral would congeal in the shape of its container. Palissy considered this to be the method by which fossils were generated. As Newman (2004, 157) argues, Palissy considered natural processes and the potter’s process of fabrication to be the same. His clay was also composed of congealing and generative material. He also made accidental water evaporate in his kiln, thus faithfully reproducing the process whereby nature created
fossils. Palissy’s belief in the equivalence of clay animals and fossils is made evident in his catalogue of his “teaching exhibit,” which he insisted visitors view after attending his lectures. These consisted of a series of fossils displayed alongside items of his own work. Both were used to illustrate the operation of natural processes (Shell 2004, 35–36). 
Deception and (Mis)Representation: Skeuomorphs, Materials, and Form
Chantal Conneller

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

In a dream I had built a palace, a castle or caves,

I was walking very fast when my foot caught on something that sent me stumbling a few meters away, I wanted to know the cause. In a dream I had built a palace, a castle or caves, I cannot express it well... I told no one about it for fear of being ridiculed and I felt ridiculous myself. Then fifteen years later, when I had almost forgotten my dream, when I wasn't thinking of it at all, my foot reminded me of it. My foot tripped on a stone that almost made me fall. I wanted to know what it was... It was a stone of such a strange shape that I put it in my pocket to admire it at my ease. The next day, I went back to the same place. I found more stones, even more beautiful, I gathered them together on the spot and was overcome with delight... It's a sandstone shaped by water and hardened by the power of time. It becomes as hard as pebbles. It represents a sculpture so strange that it is impossible for man to imitate, it represents any kind of animal, any kind of caricature."
"I said to myself: since Nature is willing to do the sculpture, I will do the masonry and the architecture"

Joseph-Ferdinand Cheval 

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

cranach melancholia

ironing rembrandt

holbein ambassadors


cellini's perseus & medusa sourced from webimages and recompiled as 3D model

henry compiled

compiled Henry from web sources

visible \ legible \ invisible

Working with photoscan for instance, produces a whole new set of digital picking points over the drums as the photos are aligned, producing new constellations, new strata of data.

Wednesday, 6 August 2014


Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko by Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera on 3 August from a distance of 285 km. The image resolution is 5.3 metres/pixel.

Monday, 4 August 2014

ungestalt // sign

ernst // at the first clear word

A Dream of John Ball

Illustration to William Morris' A Dream of John Ball
Wood engraving, 1892
'Ah, ye good people, the matters goeth not well to pass in England, nor shall not do till everything be common, and that there be no villains nor gentlemen, but that we may be all united together, and that the lords be no greater masters than we be. What have we deserved, or why should we be kept thus in servage? We be all come from one father and one mother, Adam and Eve: whereby can they say or shew that they be greater lords than we be, saving by that they cause us to win and labour for that they dispend? They are clothed in velvet and camlet furred with grise, and we be vestured with poor cloth: they have their wines, spices and good bread, and we have the drawing out of the chaff and drink water: they dwell in fair houses, and we have the pain and travail, rain and wind in the fields; and by that that cometh of our labours they keep and maintain their estates: we be called their bondmen, and without we do readily them service, we be beaten; and we have no sovereign to whom we may complain, nor that will hear us nor do us right.'
John Ball, in J Froissart, Froissart's Chronicles (1385) translated by GC Macaulay (1895)