May 10, 2009
The Temple Gallery in London has more than 200 items of Eastern Orthodox religious art, principally icons, on its website, both from the current exhibit as well as older pieces. Icons have been a part of Orthodox Christianity for centuries and they are loaded with meaning. The theology is elaborated upon in this essay on the history, principles and function of icons by iconographer Dr. George Kordis. One of the subjects of the essay is the Byzantine iconoclasm, a central event of which was the Seventh Ecumenical Council, depicted here in an icon. Here are some other icons I like: The Forty Martyrs of Sebasteia, St. Alypius the Stylite, Synaxis of the Archangels, Dormition of the Virgin and Presentation of Christ in the Temple. [Click on any image for a larger view]
Firefighting with an Air Tractor (SLYT with unflattering music).
Artist John Heartfield was one of those who recognized the threat of Nazism early on. Remarkably, he created his anti-fascist art inside Germany, until 1933 when Hitler came to power. He continued to pointedly satirize the Reich (and those who made it possible, as his bitter image of the League of Nations illustrates) from exile in Czechoslovakia. The nature of his work makes it very clear that Hitler's goals and intentions were obvious well before the war. (via)
Omega-3 fats are considered highly beneficial for the body. It may be important to take supplements because our bodies don't create it naturally. A nurse however, recently discovered that some supplements can make holes on Styrofoam cups.
Star Trek Lives. You may have heard - a new Star Trek film has opened to critical acclaim and box office bofo; Variety writes it "beamed up $76.5 million"). How are Kirk and Spock fans coping with this reboot/reimaging/alternate universe? And how are Kirk/Spock slash writers holding up? [more inside]
"I photograph people who skirt the edges of things; people whose connection to the broader flow is murky or obscured. Mistaken as more, less or different than they are; they aren’t really seen and don’t really belong. That’s everyone sometimes; but some more often. I try to establish a line for a moment. I hope to connect. And I see the most beautiful and the most heartbreaking things."
Today marks the first National Famine Memorial Day in Skibbereen, Co. Cork. Actually the first day in a week of activities (.pdf), Skibbereen was one of many areas in western Ireland hard-hit by the famine (or Great Hunger). [more inside]
Lost Vegas is a documentary that follows Laura Ling as she tours the wreckage of Sin City, from unemployed strippers and half-built, abandoned casino projects, to hospitals turning away cancer patients and ambulances, to one of the few remaining boom industries--evicting people. [more inside]
What to do with an abandoned water treatment plant while deciding what to do with it? In 1940, Raleigh NC opened a new water treatment plant to meet its needs. It's one of the very few art-deco style buildings in Raleigh, & is now on the historic property register & owned by Empire Properties. Empire has renovated a number of older buildings in the spirit of preserving the character of Raleigh. [more inside]
Last years New York City Waterfalls were mentioned previously. But what was not mentioned was a music video made last fall about the artist that created the Waterfalls. This is that video: Olafur Eliasson. SLYT
Edwin "Bud" Shrake - journalist, novelist, playwright, and screenwriter - died early Friday in Austin. [more inside]
Our project is a fart intensity detector which ranks fart magnitude on a scale from 0-9 according to sound, temperature, and gas concentrations. Two Cornell EE students built a Fart Intensity Detection Station as a final project for Introduction to Microcontroller Programming. [more inside]
He's Behind You, He's Got Swine Flu. New video from The Streets: stupid fun, or smart commentary on social panic?
The Toronto Star tested people's honesty by leaving 20 wallets in various places around the city. How many of them were returned? [more inside]
International Adoption may not necessarily be helping the disadvantaged in Third World countries as advertised. In some countries, like Guatemala and India, children are simply stolen from their families. The Hague Convention governs the rules for International Adoptions, but like all rules, they aren't always followed. Many adoptive parents believe that their children have been given up, but in some countries, "orphanage" doesn't mean what you think it means. [more inside]
The writers for the Late Show with David Letterman have recently had some trouble coming up with jokes about Obama. Perhaps they should take a lesson from the master of Obama jokes, the President himself. President Obama brought down the house at last night's White House Correspondents' Dinner, poking fun at himself, his administration, and everyone else within shouting distance. Host Wanda Sykes followed Obama's show stealing performance with a few choice jabs of her own. Unfortunately, it seems that Dick Cheney's prediction has come true since no one is safe when the Comedian-in-Chief steps up to the mic.
With Rupert Murdoch planning to start charging for access to some of the content of his newspaper's websites is this the end of the age of free? But will it rescue the newspaper industry? Or is the Kindle or other ebook reader the answer? And if free news on the web is unsustainable from advertising what about YouTube, Twitter and Facebook?
Five galleries of candid and behind-the-scenes production photos of the Star Trek cast, crew, sets, and soundstages in and around Los Angeles, circa late 1960s. I particularly like this one. And this one.