Sunday, 3 May 2009

The Empire That Was Russia.

'The photographs of Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863-1944) offer a vivid portrait of a lost world--the Russian Empire on the eve of World War I and the coming revolution. His subjects ranged from the medieval churches and monasteries of old Russia, to the railroads and factories of an emerging industrial power, to the daily life and work of Russia's diverse population. '

'In the early 1900s Prokudin-Gorskii formulated an ambitious plan for a photographic survey of the Russian Empire that won the support of Tsar Nicholas II. Between 1909-1912, and again in 1915, he completed surveys of eleven regions, traveling in a specially equipped railroad car provided by the Ministry of Transportation....'

The Russian Empire's ethnic diversity :

Architecture :

The Oriental Carpet in Early Renaissance Paintings.

'The Carpet Index contains over 180 examples of European paintings from the years 1250 through 1550, compiled into three chronological sets (with the primary focus on carpets in paintings from the century spanning 1420 through 1520). '

Old Photos of Japan.

Japan 1860s-1930s.

Good Girl Art Paperbacks.

'The GGA designation seems to have originated with comic books and is usually applied to attractive sexy young women who are either in peril or are perpetrating the peril like my favorite gun moll on the right. So it is often politically incorrect but can also be empowering when at the right end of a gun. There are two Galleries where you will see some of my favorite GGA covers from early Paperbacks and Pulps. '

Jonas Hallgrimsson: Selected Poetry and Prose.

'This Web site is intended to make available, through interactive technology, a wide range of materials that will enable interested persons to familiarize themselves with the work of the Icelandic poet and natural scientist Jónas Hallgrímsson (1807-1845) and to have at their fingertips resources contributing to an understanding and appreciation of that work. Jónas is generally acknowledged to be the most important and influential Icelandic poet of modern times. In addition he has a secure place in the annals of Icelandic science and of his country's cultural and political history.'

Interactive map of Iceland with sites connected to Jonas Hallgrimsson's poems :

East German Architecture.

'The architecture of the former DDR is woefully under-appreciated and undocumented in today's world of pre-fabricated "historicist" trends and aura of political correctness.'

'While other Modernist and mid-Century buildings have received some kind of ersatz recognition, the architectural legacy of East Germany has been relegated to the dustbin of anachronism and political guilt. It is considered distastefully out of date and "ugly."'

'That kind of attitude is what caused Penn Station to fall to only cite one infamous example.'

Russian Professor's Prediction for the Breakup of the US.

Blue-Green across Cultures.

'The English language makes a distinction between blue and green but some languages do not. Of these, quite a number, mostly in Africa, do not distinguish blue from black either, whilst there are a handful of languages that do not distinguish blue from black but have a separate term for green[1]. Also, some languages treat light (often greenish) blue and dark blue as separate colors, rather than different variations of blue, while English does not.'

Aoi and midori.

The History of the Peace (CND) Symbol.

'One of the most widely known symbols in the world, in Britain it is recognised as standing for nuclear disarmament —and in particular as the logo of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND). In the United States and much of the rest of the world it is known more broadly as the peace symbol. It was designed in 1958 by Gerald Holtom, a professional designer and artist and a graduate of the Royal College of Arts. '

A Book of Hours.

A lovely medieval prayer book.

Serbian Manuscripts.

'The Digital National Library of Serbia has more than five hundred cyrillic manuscripts available online¶. (in english) The images above were selected from: National library of Serbia's collection of cyrillic manuscripts (RS); Jernej Kopitar's collection of slavic manuscripts (Kop) and the Chester Beatty collection (Dublin) of cyrillic manuscripts (RU).'

Crazy Embroidery.

'The many samplers which the V & A has in its collection are remarkable not just for the amazing needle skillz of the very young makers, but the fact that it looks as if these girls had to embroider absolutely everything...'

Selections of Arabic, Persian, and Ottoman Calligraphy.

The Nature of Utamaro.

'The Fitzwilliam Museum at the University of Cambridge has a flash presentation of three elegant multi-colour woodblock Ukiyo-e books by Kitagawa Utamaro (1753-1806) known as 'The Bird Book', 'The Shell Book' and 'The Insect Book'. Just exquisite. The site was developed to compliment an exhibition --- Kachōfūgetsu - the natural world in Japanese prints --- running in the Shiba Gallery until May 17.'

The Rat Temple, Karnimata, Bikaner, India.

Where rats are worshipped as divine messengers.

'Campbell's Soup Cans'.

The Lewis Carroll Scrapbook.

'The Lewis Carroll Scrapbook at the Library of Congress is an original scrapbook that was kept by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. Better known as Lewis Carroll, the Victorian-era children’s author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass (1871), Dodgson was a lecturer in mathematics at the University of Oxford. The scrapbook contains approximately 130 items, including newspaper clippings, photographs, and a limited number of manuscript materials, collected between 1855-72.'

Astro Pics.

The Whale Galaxy.

The Eskimo Nebula.

Omega Centauri.

Titan Beyond the Rings.

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