Remnants of the American space race, photographed from Florida to California. "There is a spiritual quality to Launch Complex 34. The launch pedestal with its large round opening to the sky gives it the look of some ancient astronomical archaeological ruin, something like Stonehenge."
From a new book.
From a new book.
Teachers at two Seattle high schools have decided to boycott a district-required standardized test. [more inside]
The universe (which others call The Twitter) is composed of every word in the English language; Shakespeare's folios, line-by-line-by-line; the Exegesis of Philip K. Dick, exploded; Constantine XI, in 140 character chunks; Sun Tzu's Art of War, in its entirety; the chapter headings of JG Ballard, in abundance; and definitive discographies of Every. Artist. Ever... All this, I repeat, is true, but one hundred forty characters of inalterable wwwtext cannot correspond to any language, no matter how dialectical or rudimentary it may be. [more inside]
The main thing about impersonation, Tom thought, was to maintain the mood and temperament of the person one was impersonating, and to assume the facial expressions that went with them.
A map of the locations in JG Ballard's fiction. Click a marker on the map to read the relevant text.
The term Brutalist Architecture comes from the French term for raw concrete, beton brut. The style resonates strongly in the works of JG Ballard. (previously, previously) [more inside]
"He surely had an indispensable role in the morphing of suburbia into disturbia in the cultural imagination, the real conception underlying the pretend-naïveté about the Sheppertons of the city and the mind--not only in the simple and tediously scandalous fact of his living there but in the power of his depicted suburbs too." China Mieville reviews J. G. Ballard's posthumous collection of short fiction.
Edith Macefield is stubborn. Man, is she stubborn. That's what her mother told her when she was a little girl back in the 1920s. It's a characteristic that has followed her all her life. Now that unrelenting stubbornness has won the 86-year-old woman admirers throughout Ballard. Macefield refused to sell her little old house where she has lived since 1966 to developers, forcing them to build an entire five-story project, which includes a grocery store, fitness club and parking garage, around her. She was offered $1 million to leave. She turned it down flat.Old Ballard's new hero
Newsfilter, local interest filter, too, but, oh, man, it lifts the spirits. Her's is the last house on the block, the one in which she grew up, the one her mother died in. She is going to be surrounded by five storys of shopping mall but she isn't moving. It's like The Little House come to life. And bonus points: Mike's Chili Parlor, the other hold out on the same block, is the bomb. So you get two Old Lost Seattle treasures in one post.
The South Bank Show is the longest running arts show on television. Melvyn Bragg has presented an eclectic mix of televisual joy since 1978. SBS has presented in-depth portraits of many different types of artists during this time, covering a huge range of topics. From high art to low art, classical music to pop music, canonical literature to airport blockbusters it has offered some of the most insightful and enjoyable arts programming around. Much youtubery awaits inside [more inside]
Martha Ballard's Diary Includes a transcription of the diary (written between 1785-1812), images of the original MS, and a number of contextual documents and photographs, plus many other things. (Those of you who enjoy old diaries should bear in mind that one of the greatest diarists of them all, Samuel Pepys, has a blog.)