jeweled platypus


sunday, august 26, 2007
The scientific odd is another market niche

Paxton Gate is next to the pirate store at 826 Valencia, and it sells supplies for your garden and your cabinet of curiosities. So it has a lot of things I like:

two little bonsai trees, with price tags

a mirror picture of me wearing a shirt with a snake skeleton on it

The only problem with seeing a bunch of my aesthetic interests in one place is re-encountering the fact that I’m not terribly special, but I like that kind of problem. It is nice to belong to a city.

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tuesday, august 21, 2007
Laziness when I should be asleep

While I rewrite unfinished posts about information and the web, here are things I have posted elsewhere in the past few months:

i like this shop window a lot. yay creepy-crawlies!

I also updated Super OS X menubar items and my silly art page.

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sunday, august 05, 2007
Things I found at the bookstore

Poking around William Stout Architectural Books, I picked up Representing the Passions because “passion” is a loaded word and the cover looked pretty, and I skipped to “Observations on the Natural History of the Web” by Horst Bredekamp, which traces a connection between early modern engravings of personified Nature (including the Leviathan) and late-90’s net art gardens: Nerve Garden, TechnoSphere, and Life Spacies II. I like that connection, and it reminds me of the plant-related net art that Petra Cortright has made recently. Horst Bredekamp has also written a book titled The Lure of Antiquity and the Cult of the Machine: The Kunstkammer and the Evolution of Nature, Art, and Technology, which means that he is my kind of academic.

Then I flipped around in a big square book of public art, and I liked this gilded staircase in New York:

a gilded staircase in an old concrete bridge structure

The typography books were generally bland, but Dimensional Typography included amusing bits like “The circumflex and the circumcision are both forms of marking. The three-dimensional extrapolation of the circumflex reveals a distinct homology.” and a connection between crowns of thorns and rhizomes.

When I saw Art Deco Bookbindings on a shelf, I knew I would like the subject:

a blue and yellow cover with a house

There’s more here; most of it is nicely geometric, and I especially like the typographic ones near the end.

Then I looked at the industrial design books and found a neat ad:

a comparison of flowers and glasses of similar shapes

It reminds me of The Architecture of Happiness, page 86:

masculine and feminine glasses

The next page continues, “If we can judge the personality of objects from apparently minuscule features…it is because we first acquire this skill in relation to humans, whose characters we can impute from microscopic aspects of their skin tissue and muscle,” which goes back to the book about passion, since it included an essay about systematized representations of strong emotion in faces. Books are annoyingly physical objects though, so I can’t re-read it right now and include more detail. Of course, the most annoying thing is that the contents of books can’t be bookmarked on, so I have to write something about them.

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I’m Britta Gustafson.

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