Thursday, June 30, 2022

Ludwig Favre's Coney Island

Traversing over three kilometers of boardwalk and beach, photographer Ludwig Favre documents a day in the life of Coney Island.

Image © Ludwig Favre

See more:   PLAIN Magazine 

Previously: Amalfi Coast and New York City

Remembering 'America's Youngest Ambassador'

Samantha Reed Smith was an American schoolgirl from Houlton, Maine. At the height of the Cold War in 1982, when she was just ten years old, she wrote a letter to  Soviet leader Yuri Andropov telling him she was worried about a nuclear war between the US and the Soviet Union and asked him what he planned to do to prevent it. Andropov replied that he did not want a nuclear war with the United States or any other country and closed his letter with an invitation for her to visit the Soviet Union. In July 1983 Smith and her family spent two weeks in the Soviet Union, visiting Moscow, Leningrad, and Artek, a children’s camp on the Black Sea.

Samantha speaking with the press on her trip to Russia in 1983

Yesterday would have been her 50th birthday. Samantha died in 1985 at the age of 13 in a plane crash while traveling with her father but her plea for peace remains as relevant as ever today, as threats of nuclear attack are made during the current war waged by Russia in Ukraine.

via perfect for roquefort cheese 

Path Through The Poppies

Marcia Burtt - Path Through the Poppies

via Duck Soup

The Origins of the Modern Conspiracy Theory

Conspiracy theories like 'Pizzagate' and QAnon seem like a modern phenomenon spread through social media but these theories have been around as long as human beings have existed.


The War in Ukraine Rages On

Four months in and the plight of civilians in Ukraine is dire. Every day people just like you and me are dying. This is a tribute to them.

Via everlasting blort

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

The Story of a House

Filmmaker Anne Magee Coughlin shares her family's deep roots in Brighton, Massachusetts, their home there, and the changes that threaten its existence. 

How Master Sushi Chef Kazushige Suzuki Gets Creative With His Omakase


Some days …


“But I don’t want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
“Oh you can’t help that,” said the Cat. “we’re all mad here.”

Toiletpaper Street Murals

The murals at 4 via Balzaretti in Milan, photo: Andrea Breda

An entire street was turned into a dreamscape for Milan Design Week 2022. The Via Giuseppe Balzaretti was transformed into a permanent installation by the artist Maurizio Cattelan and the photographer Pierpaolo Ferrari, founders of TOILETPAPER magazine whose headquarters are based on this street. 
Toiletpaper’s Headquarters had already been painted with the iconic lipsticks.
photo: Andrea Breda.

The murals represent many of the brand’s iconic images from their magazine, products and previous collaborations.

It Started with Muybridge

It Started with Muybridge was produced by the U.S. Naval Ordnance Laboratory in 1964, on the eve of Operation Rolling Thunder, the U.S. Navy and Air Force’s three-year campaign of aerial bombardment against North Vietnam. The documentary begins with a voiceover stating the center’s mission: “research and development for tomorrow’s weapons”.  The documentary shows how the famous scientific sequential studies of animal movement done by Edward James Muggeridge (aka Eadweard Muybridge) in the late 1800s contributed to the development of modern weaponry. We watch timelapse experiments with floral blooms and growth before the film cuts to instruments of human annihilation.

A Mother and Daughter Talk About Abortion

This 1987 film by Gail Singer documents an intimate conversation between a mother and her adult daughter on the subject of abortion. They discuss their personal experiences when trying to obtain the procedure before and after the 1969 amendment to the Canadian law. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Glasshouse Unfolds Like A Flower in the English Countryside

Located in the gardens of an historic property in West Sussex, Heatherwick Studio's Glasshouse is a sculptural and kinetic greenhouse filled with 300 species of subtropical trees and plants.

Read More: Dezeen

When the Allies settled in Berlin (1945)

This footage is in original color and HD before restoring for the documentary Spirit of Liberation (Kronos Media, 2016)

See restored pictures in the  trailer for the film.

(Thanks Bruce!)

Maison Feuillette, France


June Garden

It's been awhile since I posted a garden photo.

Image: M. Bellamy

Battle of Verdun In Lego

The JD Brick Productions YouTube channel creates videos depicting historical events using stop motion animation. This video by Jordan Durrenberger recreates World War I's Battle of Verdun in Lego. The battle in Eastern France was the longest and one of the bloodiest battles of the war .

Date Night

Andrew Interisano's photograph of coyotes roaming the streets of Ontario was the overall winner at Picfair's 2022 Urban Wildlife Photo Awards.

“Date Night” by Andrew Interisano (Canada), Picfair Urban Wildlife Photo Awards Overall Winner

Read more:  PetaPixel

Monday, June 27, 2022


A closeup of a chabutra in the town of Anjar.

Photographer Nipun Prabhakar documents the ornamental birdhouses of India, known as chabutras.

A chabutra with a crescent moon and star — an Islamic symbol — at its peak.

Gas Prices are so High…



Nine Letters

In Cristina Müller's Nine Letters,the experience of living far from home is conveyed by letters, and by images of everyday urban life.

The Surgeon Ahead of His Time

James Barry improved conditions for wounded soldiers and performed the first recorded caesarean section by a European in Africa in which both the mother and child survived the operation. Barry kept a secret that was only revealed post-mortem.

Lift Every Voice and Sing

This is lovely.

Sunday, June 26, 2022

A Doghouse For Eddie

image credit: Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation

Frank Lloyd Wright once designed a doghouse for a labrador retriever (no charge).

Via: perfect for roquefort cheese

Read More: designboom

Sunday Links

Kokea Kwok (above) is a photographer and designer who has used bedding and textiles to create a series about our relationship with comfort food.

This looks like a wonderful holiday: Tea Estate Bungalows in Sri Lanka

The Lost Glamour of the Department-Store Restaurant I vaguely remember the dining rooms at Eaton's and Simpsons in Montreal and Toronto. As a kid I thought they were pretty swanky.

Grayson Perry's End Of Covid Bell was made in support of the campaign to Save the Whitechapel Bell Foundry.

Atomic Bombing: How to Protect Yourself (Thanks Bruce, I feel much safer now)

The newest room at the Swedish Treehotel is suspended among the trees and covered in 350 birdhouses.

When I was a little girl my favourite lunch was Chef Boyardee ravioli with a slice of Wonderbread and butter. Here's the story of how it made its way to our table. (Via Dr. Caligari's Cabinet)

If those adorable little badgers couldn’t make it, what hope was there for the rest of us? Disturbing Biographies of Children's Book Authors

How To Declutter Your Home - Step By Step Guide (I'm going to share this with Mr. Nag) 

Remember the days when concerts were free and mostly peaceful? High Times And Green Grass: Stones In The Park 

Unai no tomo Catalogues of Japanese Toys (1891–1923)

Paint your nails with Velveeta. I'm a gardener and keep my nails cut almost to the quick so no. Maybe you're interested?

Music For Sunday Morning


Colour Footage of the Liberation of Paris (1944)

The liberation of Paris took place from 19 August 1944 until the German garrison surrendered the French capital on 25 August 1944.  Hollywood director George Stevens headed a film unit in the US Army Signal Corps that shot most if not all of this footage.

More:  Open Culture

Saturday, June 25, 2022


Jinmenseki is a Japanese word for stones that look like faces. There is a museum in Japan that holds 900 of these rocks.

via  Futility Closet

Happy Caturday!

Kaori Someya — Hand Fishing, 2021

Éclair Pistache

I want someone to make a Sicilian pistachio eclair for me. (Make sure to use Bronte pistachios grown in the foothills of Mount Etna.)


For The Birds

 In collaboration with some of the world’s greatest musicians, artists, and actors, For The Birds: The Birdsong Project includes over 200 tracks of original music and bird-related poetry. In The Gale by Yo-Yo Ma and Anna Clyne is included in the second volume of music supervisor Randall Poster’s five-volume set.

All proceeds from the sale of this collection and supporting events will directly benefit the National Audubon Society's mission to protect birds and the places they need, today, tomorrow, and for all our futures.

The Twelve Tone Method - loved and revered, hated and damned.

"The metaphysics of tones - banned in a single album. This music has never been more compelling than now. addictive!" A production, done in 1977 by Robert Conrad, the founder of WCLV classical radio in Cleveland, Ohio, USA. 


(Previously posted here 3 years ago)

Friday, June 24, 2022

Japanese Tile Museum

Image © Akitsugu Kojima

The Mosaic Tile Museum Tajimi holds more than 10,000 individual tiles, sample books or boards portraying tile products, tools and utensils, and objects such as wash basins, bathtubs, and export goods.

Image © Akitsugu Kojima

Many of the artifacts were obtained by a few volunteers who set about salvaging tiles from buildings earmarked for demolition, and asking tile factories closing down for product samples.

Read more: Colossal

J'ai Été Au Bal (TRAILER)

This 1989 documentary by Les Blank and Chris Strachwitz is a classic about Cajun/Zydeco music and its evolution. It was remastered by Harrod Blank and Anthony Matt in 2021 and premiered at SXSW.


 Get entire film here.

A Working Miniature Of The Beachcombers' Persephone

If you are a Canadian of a certain age you will be familiar with the Persephone, the boat made iconic by CBC’s show The Beachcombers (1972-1990). Now there is a working mini version of it made by YouTuber Pete Kurelek who has a channel featuring his miniature off-road radio-controlled vehicles. Here is a parody of the Beachcombers opening complete with Nick Adonidas (Bruno Gerussi would be so proud):

Charles Thompson Goes to School


Making a Hulk/Yoda Sculpture


(Thanks Bruce!)

Thursday, June 23, 2022

575 Wandsworth Road

I came across a post today on Ian Visits about a London house that was bought in 1981 by Kenyan-born writer Khadambi Asalache. For 20 years, he decorated it internally with Moorish-influenced fretwork which he cut by hand from discarded pine doors and wooden boxes. The house was gifted to the National Trust when Asalache died in 2006 and tours are now offered twice a week. I found a remarkable video for those who can't visit the house in person.


This series of photographs by Christoph Morlinghaus is overwhelming.

Fire-Fighting Cadets In Rome, 1962


Silkworms spin a cocoon with a single strand of silk up to ten city blocks long. Humans have bred these insects into weaving machines that can no longer survive in the wild.

 (Thanks Bruce!)

Opel Automobiles In the 1950s

1951-1953 Opel Kapitän

I love this collection of advertising photos of Opel automobiles in the 1950s. Opel traces its roots to a sewing machine manufacturer founded by Adam Opel in 1862 in Rüsselsheim am Main. The company began manufacturing bicycles in 1886 and produced its first automobile in 1899.

1953-1954 Opel Olympia Rekord

1954 Opel Olympia

See more: Vintage Everyday

Sisters of the Road

Debbie Dingo © Anne Marie Michel

Anne-Marie Michel's series, Sisters of the Road, documents the remarkable lives of forty female American truckers. She was inspired by a trip across America she took with her mother in 1998 to make a fresh start.

Michelle Kitchen © Anne Marie Michel

Read More: Creative Boom

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Sisters and Brothers

Today is National Indigenous Peoples Day 2022 in Canada. Here is a powerful short film by Cree artist Kent Monkman that draws parallels between the annihilation of the bison in the 1890s and the devastation inflicted on the Indigenous population by the residential school system.

Summer Solstice 2022 Sunrise

See today's sunrise over the Stone Circle ahead of the longest day of the year.


This short film is made with MeshMinds in association with United Nations Environment Programme to raise awareness to end plastic pollution in South-East Asia.


Directed by Philip Rom 

DIY Butterfly Zoetrope

via Memo Of The Air

Riding the last Wooden Escalator in New York

Only two exist and one is under repair so this century old mechanical fossil may finally coming to end of its existence!

Monday, June 20, 2022

Happy National Martini Day!

Here's the classic James Bond recipe for a Vesper Martini:


Technology for Talking

Tech advances have greatly improved lives with very little downside in the area of alternative and augmentative communication aids (AACs).


Via Aeon Videos

God Help the Girl - "Come Monday Night"


First posted here 13 years ago

Excuse Generator

Apparently we're back to needing this:

Via everlasting blort 

The Lost Coloramas

The Colorama was a Kodak advertising campaign. In 1949, these massive backlit transparencies (measuring 18 feet by 60 feet)  were designed to introduce Kodak color film to a mass market and promoted a distinct Kodak American lifestyle. 565 Coloramas were displayed at Grand Central Station in New York City. Neil Montanus created many of them. 
A few years ago Jim Montanus, Neil's son found a box containing dozens of original Colorama negatives that were never used in Grand Central but are still amazing in their own right.

Around Cape Horn 1928

This film was made by Captain Irving Johnson in 1928, when he was but a swabby before the mast.

(Thanks Bruce!)

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Happy Father's Day


Fathers and Daughters Christian Morrisseau ~ Anishinaabe

Sunday Links

When his childhood home in Ste. Marie, Quebec was due to be demolished due to flood damage, the creative director of Paprika Design in Montreal honoured those who have lived  and visited over many decades. The typography picks up the architectural details of the columns. See more.

Sign in to Small World using your Twitter account and you can view all the people you follow on Twitter on an interactive map.

This does not make sense to me: The Prison Bra Rule

This is what I call collaboration (via Memo Of The Air)

The Smallest International Bridge is just 32 feet long.

LARPing Goes to Disney World Before my friend Bruce sent me this link I was not familiar with the term 'LARPing'. Now I know what it is.

Transcript of an interview with an advanced AI named GPT-3, who is secretly a squirrel.

Yoko Ono's Art of Defiance Did celebrity deprive her of her due as an artist?

The Airstream Heritage Center holds a collection of vintage “Silver Bullet” trailers.

I've already read a few of these and just ordered two that are new to me. NYT favourite summery reads

The Best Bridges to Drive Across (via Perfect For Roquefort Cheese) One that is not on the list is the Irminio Bridge in Sicily. I was a little bit terrified driving across it but it was mighty impressive.

A vision of heaven: A gorgeous collection of John Hinde's photos of rural Ireland in the 1950s and 1960s. 

An alternative to expensive and costly cosmetic surgery? Apparently the parasite Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii), commonly transmitted through cat feces, can also make people appear more attractive. (Thanks Bruce!)

Birds, dragons, faeries, and more: These miniature automata are adorable.

He left a restaurant because his girlfriend was slurping her spaghetti. Is this man an a**h**e?  

Paradise Learned I came across this 12 year old post in my Facebook Memories and  I still find it interesting so I thought I'd share it. (Also interesting is the fact that I cannot remember writing it…)

Riding a bike on a highway Sometimes it's faster than a car. 

These vases by Vanessa Mitrani!

What Men Don't Like About Women Today there's a name for guys like this: incel. (via Memo Of The Air)

Music For Sunday Morning

Saturday, June 18, 2022

On this Day

A three-day music festival in Monterey CA was wrapping up on June 18, 1967. Here's a documentary about it:

The Man Who Accidentally Killed The Most People In History

Via  3 Quarks Daily

Good Vibrations - Lost Studio Footage

In 1966 rock 'n' roll was changing and "Good Vibrations" sounded like a symphony. It is the last No. 1 song Brian Wilson wrote. 

 via bookofjoe

Simone Leigh: Sovereignty / Pavilion of the USA at Venice Art Biennale 2022.

For ‘Sovereignty,’ the exhibition in the U.S. Pavilion at the 59th Venice Biennale of Art, artist Simone Leigh has created a new body of work: sculptures in bronze, ceramic and raffia placed inside and outside the pavilion that highlight the often unseen and unacknowledged labor and resilience of Black women.


Melting Mannequins

Creepy photo of the day: It was so hot in London in 1929 that these wax mannequins in a department store window melted. 

This photograph was originally published in the June 1, 1929 issue of “The Sphere,” a British newspaper that ran from 1900 to the 1960s.

Happy Caturday!

This Linocut Print of  a Cat and Bouquet by Vanessa Lubach looks a lot like my cat, Carmen.

Friday, June 17, 2022

One More Try

This experimental skate video shows skateboarders falling multiple times until they finally land their tricks. 

Los Angeles Had an Alligator Farm?

Public Domain via Los Angeles Public Library

The Los Angeles Alligator Farm was a major city tourist attraction from 1907 until 1953. Alligators slid down chutes and young children rode the backs of large reptiles outfitted with a saddle.

One Year Of Renovations In 10 Minutes

A British family stumbled upon the Château de Lalacelle in North-West France which had been abandoned for over 40 years and was in a state of extreme disrepair. They saw the potential and took on the painstaking job of restoring it to its former glory.

(Thanks Bruce!)

The Search For Dark Matter

Astronomers think there should be 5 times as much dark matter as ordinary matter – a shadow universe that makes up most of the mass in the universe. 

via  3 Quarks Daily

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Happy Bloomsday!

Watch famous Dublin writers embark on their own, slightly disastrous, Bloomsday tour, 1954. The first Bloomsday of renown. Some alcohol was consumed

Read more about their revelry here

The First Cat Film

Renowned French physiologist Étienne-Jules Marey was also a pioneer of photography and was influential in the history of cinema. The first motion picture to feature a live cat is believed to be his 1894 short where he drops an inverted feline to watch it land on its feet.  Marey created the chronophotographic gun which could  take twelve consecutive frames a second. This enabled him to study a cat which was dropped from a height in order to see if it always landed on its feet. 

Via  Futility Closet

Shores of the Polar Sea: A Narrative of the Arctic Expedition of 1875–6

Edward L. Moss was a Royal Navy Surgeon and an artist. In his book  Shores of the Polar Sea he records his journey on HMS Alert in 1875-76. It includes intimate journal entries, miscellaneous engravings, and sixteen chromolithographs.

Just When I Thought Airplane Travel Couldn't Get Any More Unpleasant…

Alejandro Núñez Vicente says his Chaise Longue Airplane Seat concept design could revolutionize budget travel. 
I say "no thanks" to this seating. It looks like it would induce claustrophobia and would make me feel even more like an anchovy crammed into a tin.
So why would an airline do this? Núñez Vicente nails it when he says: "It makes money. That's the goal of the airline at the end of the day, not to make your flight better."

Doting Dad Made Charming Books To Teach Daughter To Draw

An origami bird made by Pablo Picasso for his daughter from exhibition invitation cards. Photograph: Adam Rzepka © Private collection

Pablo Picasso was known to borrow the lines of children’s drawings in his artwork. When his daughter, Maya Ruiz-Picasso, was five years old she wanted to learn to draw and her father obliged. Maya's daughter (Picasso's granddaughter) has discovered an extraordinary collection of sketchbooks used by the artist to teach his daughter to draw and colour. 

A detail from one of Picasso’s sketchbooks for his daughter. Photograph: Marc Domage/© Private collection

A new exhibition, Maya Ruiz-Picasso, daughter of Pablo, runs until 31 December and includes his many portraits of Maya, personal possessions and photographs, along with the sketchbooks and origami sculptures, which are being shown for the first time. It shows how Maya’s presence nourished and amplified the artist’s fascination with childhood.

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Squirrel Cinema

Jason Lenzi of Detroit built a movie theater for squirrels, complete with concession stand, marquee, auditorium, and a toilet. It's adorable.

The Cat in the Hat Horror Trailer

I always thought the mess that the cat made was horrific. 

via Miss Cellania

Frank Zappa Plays The Bicycle

Frank Zappa shows Steve Allen how to make music on and with a bicycle (1963) 


Building The Great Pyramids

John Heisz demonstrates the method he believes was used to construct the Great Pyramids of Egypt.

Read more:  IBUILDIT.CA

(Thanks Bruce!)

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Eldorado To The Moon

The music video for Eldorado to the Moon by Michael Nesmith (my favourite Monkee). This music video premiered in the first episode of Television Parts in 1985.


In Daniel Lombroso’s “Greywater,” a Queens resident discovers an alleged wildlife- poaching ring in his back yard.

The Feline Ukiyo-e Prints of Utagawa Kuniyoshi

Cats Suggested As The Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō, (1850), woodblock print. Source: WikiArt

Utagawa Kuniyoshi was a Japanese Ukiyo-e Print artist during the Edo period (1603–1868) and he was also a cat fanatic. His studio was overrun with cats and they appeared in many of his prints. 

Detail from Cats Suggested As The Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō showing cats suggesting the towns of Miya (left) and Narumi (right) (1850), woodblock print. Source: WikiCommons


A kestrel couple court and become parents to three wee chicks.


(Thanks Bruce!)

I love vintage road trips

Rare Kodachrome home movie of trip to California (including shots of San Francisco landmarks such as he Bay Bridge), Pacific Northwest.


Monday, June 13, 2022

Hedgehog Gets A Haircut

This was cut from a single leaf!

Via everlasting blort 

The Witkar Project

The Witkar (White Car) was one of the first technology-based carsharing projects in the world. It took place in Amsterdam between 1974 and 1986 and provided daily service for more than 4,000 registered users over those years but the project never got beyond the demonstration phase due to a lack of government support.

Via Das Kraftfuttermischwerk

Phygital Supermarket

Filmmakers Nix Liu Xin and Zhu Yuting explore the diverse expressions of everyday objects in the virtual world of Phygital Supermarket.


Smoking or Non-Smoking?

It's hard to believe that smoking was allowed on airplanes. This mid 1980s Pan Am training video showed flight attendants how to handle a difficult passenger.

Italian UNESCO World Heritage Archaeological Sites

Archeo3dItalia is a UNESCO website that provides comprehensive and historically-rich rundown of various UNESCO World Heritage archaeological sites across Italy. Here's a video from the section on the Villa Romana del Casale in Piazza Armerina, Sicily, with its bikini sporting girl mosaics. 

Gorgeous Garden Time-Lapse


Photo: Marilyn Bellamy

I have a garden (photo above) and in May and June I'm always amazed by how quickly everything changes from day to day. It's almost like a time-lapse but not quite. This beautiful 4-minute film from the National Geographic channel captures an awakening garden:

How City Design Influences Children

YouTube channel Not Just Bikes tells stories about urban planning and urban experiences from Amsterdam and the Netherlands. Here's a video that explains why he decided to raise his children in Amsterdam rather than in London, Ontario.

(Thanks Bruce!)

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Sunday Links

It's a quilt! Late Day Shadows - Nancy Messier (above) 

The Noise of the City a mapped sonification of noise pollution in New York, Paris and London.

The Sphinx House, a modern interpretation of an Egyptian House built in Oxfordshire in 1994, can now be yours for £2,500,000. (via Things Magazine)

"For two years, a flamboyant, out-of-work rock guitarist rode out the pandemic in our Hollywood Hills home. Then, one day, he was gone." The Rock Star Next Door

 Fredrik Gran is a Swedish composer and robotist who explores the potential of mechanical processes using new performative strategies. (In simple terms: robot music) (Thanks Bruce!) 

UK's first Stolperstein installed in Westminster.  A few years ago I stumbled upon Solpersteine for the Frenkel family in Dordecht Holland.

A chameleon changes colour in the blink of an eye.

A smoking octopus and pointy-eared aliens: LBJ's Presidential Doodles

The Pentagon's U.F.O. and "Not of This World" Vehicle Research is Officially Restarted (Thanks Bruce!)

Solving the Mystery of Harriet Tubman's Family Cabin

Just a couple of parrots talking

Selling churches to pay for sins: Dozens of Newfoundland churches will be sold to compensate survivors of sexual abuse at Mount Cashel. Catholics are scrambling to buy buildings they thought they already owned.

Batagay, the "gateway to the underworld," has expanded year by year, as the permafrost thaws.

Be Like The Lobster - An interview with narcissistic right-wing Canadian professor, Jordan Peterson.  (via Memo Of The Air)