The Clown that lived forever… kind of: The life of Achile Chatouilleu

Achile Chatouilleu image from California Institute Abnormalarts

Achile Chatouilleu was born in 1886 and came from family of circus performers in America so he decided that he continue his family’s legacy and became a clown.

His last name: Chatouilleu named is translated from French as the “The French Tickler” and from various blogs and videos I read about this performer. Achile was a horrible clown and was not the best performer however he did love what he did. Actually he loved being a clown so much that when he died in 1912 from a kidney inflammation. He made some an interesting demands in his will. He wanted to be dressed in his full clown attire from a 1906 Shriner parade that he was part of in Detroit, Michigan. His also request was to be put in full clown makeup when he died. Then he also wanted his body to be preserved in glass coffin so it can be on view for people to come visit him even after he is long gone.

His body might have been embalmed in mercury and arsenic for preservation purposes. Having those chemicals in the air will be toxic so opening up the case and examining the body would be out of the question.

Another story of his persevered body is that when no one claim the body from the mortician. A circus bought the body and made up this story. Either way it’s here and it’s a little creepy. The last known wereabouts of this body was at the California Institute of Abnormalarts but they closed in 2021. I heard Ripley’s Believe it or Not has it but I am not a 100% sure.

Here is a great youtube that talks about it a bit more in detail:

What do you think? Comment below!!!

Source: Ripley’s Believe it or Not!, wikipedia.

Artist’s Spotlight: @ghoulishgary !

This week’s artist spotlight is on the wonderful talented @ghoulishgary

  1. Tell me a little about yourself:

“I’m a full-time graphic designer and illustrator and I create original artwork and branding for films, music and magazines mostly within the horror and sci-fi realm. Many years ago I started a career in graphic design working at a packaging design firm in Toronto and gained some great corporate experience. From there I moved on to become art director for Rue Morgue Magazine during it’s formative years. It was an incredible time but after 11 years in the publishing industry I decided to start working for myself and registered Ghoulish Gary. I quickly learned what the freelance model is like but I started working with galleries, directors and big company’s that owned licensing for my favorite movies. I love the diversity of projects and working with all kinds of different people. I do conventions whenever I can which has helped my artwork get in front of collectors and fellow movie fans.”

“Gary Pullin, known to horror enthusiasts and collectors as “Ghoulish Gary,” is a leading designer in the world of alternative movie posters, vinyl record packaging, and pop culture art. His colorful signature style has graced numerous magazines including MAD, Fangoria and Rue Morgue, where he started as their original art director. He’s had his artwork featured on blu-rays, book covers, soundtracks and in galleries across the globe, created highly sought-after screenprints for the likes of Mondo, Grey Matter and album art for Waxwork Records, Death Waltz, and Varese Sarabande.”
Mondo/ Pullin

2. What was the first art piece you remember creating”

“It’s hard to pin down what my first real art piece was but I was always doodling on my notebooks in school. I would try and copy drawings from comic books or magazines. I think my first real project was when I was in Grade 8  when my home room teacher asked if I wanted to draw something for her walls. It was Halloween so she wanted me to draw Freddy Krueger and whatever else I wanted. I went to the library and to use the equipment like an overhead projector to transfer my drawing onto the paper and I finished the poster with pencil crayons and markers. I still have them.”

3. What horror movie or villain best represents your personality and why?

Mad Magazine/ Pullin

“That’s a fun question. If I think about it, I’d have to say partly Vincent Price and a bit of Alfred E. Neuman. Vincent Price because of my love of classic horror films. His voice was so uniquely his and he was everywhere when I was a kid.

Alice Cooper/ Pullin

He appeared on Alice Cooper’s Welcome to My Nightmare as “The Curator” and in the early 1970s he co-hosted a show in Canada called The Hilarious House of Frightenstein. I was hypnotized by his laugh and the eerie intro music, the 1970’s aesthetics and all of the spooky characters played by Billy Van. I chose Alfred E. Neuman because I was obsessed with MAD Magazine when I was a kid. I poured over any issue I could find. The cartoonists that were employed by the magazine have remained big influences, Al Jaffee, Sergio Argones, Don Martin and Jack Davis were influential along with other horror artists like Basil Gogos and Bernie Wrightson. And I’ve always admired Alfred’s devil-may-care attitude, as someone who can maintain a sense of humour while the world collapses around him.”

4. What is the most popular item in your store?

Jack White Poster/ Pullin

“I recently created a few posters for Jack White’s current tour and they’re doing really well. Certain bands have a big following for their gig posters so I was lucky enough to work with him and Third Man Records. If folks want to check out what I’ve got in my shop they can visit: https://store.ghoulishgary.com/

5. What is your favorite project you have worked on this year and why?

“Speaking of MAD Magazine, I was thrilled to have created my second cover for them. It was for their  “Par(AB)normal” October issue.

Magazine/ Pullin

They wanted a new image that spoofed their Poltergeist comic strip and it was a total blast to work on. The art director sent me a rough composition with the gag and I was off to the races. I’m think I’m still riding the high from the chance to work with them again.”

6. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

” I’ve been lucky enough to work on a few exciting things this year. I recently teamed up with AMC Networks on a book jacket design (link is here to buy : Creepshow book) for Shudder’s CREEPSHOW series that will be released though Titan in October. I’ll be releasing a set of posters for The Exorcist with Bottleneck Gallery over the holiday season. I contributed to an upcoming graphic novel dedicated to the songs of Weird Al Yankovic and I’m currently working on a soundtrack and poster design for a horror film that’s been number one on my bucket list for a long time. I’m very lucky and grateful for these opportunities and I’m constantly thankful for anyone who’s ever taken an interest. And big thanks to LadyCult too for reaching out and sharing my work. Stay safe and Happy Halloween!”

If you like to learn more about Gary. The following contact is below:

Store: https://store.ghoulishgary.com/

Instagram: @ghoulishgary

Twitter: @ghouslishGary

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GhoulishGaryPullin

Thank you so much for the interview Gary!

Until next time!

Fall books 2022: A birthday wish list

As many as you know I love to read. I consider books to be one of my best friends because they can show you new things and keep you up way past your bedtime. Also my birthday is next month in October so this list is also for those who would like to get me something but have no idea what to get me. What better gift to give than the gift of reading. This list is also for those who want to start a new read but do not know what to get. Here are five recommendations:

Maryland Monster Movie Memories: Baltimore-Washington Area Horror Hosts and More! by John Carter Stell- Being from the area I felt like this was a must wish list item. Even though I was not part of the horror movie host area. I am a fond admirer of it and would like to learn more about the hosts that were in the area.

Link to buy is here: https://atomicbooks.com/products/maryland-monster-movie-memories?_pos=1&_sid=7a0a1e0ce&_ss=r

Dangerous Rhythms: Jazz and the Underworld by T.J. English: interesting in learning about the crime world during the Jazz Age. Then this is a must read!

Link to buy is here: https://www.politics-prose.com/book/9780063031418

Knock Offs Totally Unauthorized Action Figures by Brian Heiler: I am huge fan of bootleg and interesting action figures. So when I learned there was a book about it I knew I had to add this to this list!

Link to buy is here: https://atomicbooks.com/collections/cultural-general/products/knock-offs-totally-unauthorized-action-figures

Alice A Novel by Blake Butler: I was walking through a book store one afternoon and read the back of the book and it caught my attention. It reminds me a bit of an Ira Levin (who is one of my favorite authors) novel.

Link to buy is here: https://www.politics-prose.com/book/9780525535218

The Chick and the Dead: Life and Death Behind Mortuary Doors by Carla Valentine. Were you ever curious what happens after someone dies? Well this is a great read to those who want to know!

Link is here to buy: https://atomicbooks.com/collections/society-medicine-and-anatomy/products/chick-and-the-dead-life-and-death-behind-mortuary-doors

See you at San Diego: An Oral History of Comic-Con, Fandom, and the Triumph of Geek Culture by Stan Sakai and Jeff Smith. I always wanted to go Comic-Con but until then I can live vicariously through this book.

Link to buy is here: https://www.politics-prose.com/book/9781683966517

What is on your fall reading list? Please share and comment below!!!

Until next time!!

Great Small Businesses: Atomic Books!

This week I interviewed a great book store called Atomic Books !

  1. Why is the book store called Atomic Books?

“When the store name was decided on in 1992, the word “Atomic” was an ironic reference to the mid-century, Atomic/Nuclear-era of America where conformity was stressed and fear of anti-communism dominated, and the possibility of the world ending in a nuclear holocaust was an ever-present reality – a shadow we grew up under. The word “Atomic” was meant to signal the sort of underground/counter-cultural nature of the publications we carried that were pushing back against that sort of mainstream conformity and other forms of cultural colonialism and corporate sanitization of the arts. It also applied to a sort of tongue-in-cheek appreciation of a mid-century aesthetic.

Decades later, outside of that context, we get the occasional customer who asks, “What’s an ‘Atomic Book?'”

Usually, I respond, “It’s like an e-book, but more powerful.”

2. What kind of items  do you sell in the store? Is there a popular section in the store? If so, what is it?

“We carry fiction – Beats and crime being what we’re really best at.
We carry non-fiction – and our categories vary from Psychokillers to Conspiracies to Outer Limits to Strange Science to Occult.
We carry artbooks – lowbrow, tattoo and street art are what we’re mostly into.

We carry a wide array of comics and graphic novels, with our specialty being literary, underground and alternative. But we have some superhero and manga too.

But mostly we’re known for carrying zines and mini-comics (self-published periodicals).

Our aesthetic has always been counter-cultural, alternative, underground, transgressive, and experimental.
Our tag line is “Literary finds for mutated minds” if that helps give a better idea of what one might expect.”

3. Can you talk a little bit about the Atomic Book Club?

“Our book club has been going on for nearly 20 years, give or take. Basically it started with my partner Rachel Whang and I deciding that we’d like to get together with people and either get them to read some of our favorite books or get us all to read books we’ve been meaning to read.

Each year, Rachel and I decide on a topic. This usually involves lists we make throughout the year. We narrow those lists down to a couple of topics or themes, (we’ve done Cult Classics, Post-Apocalypse, Series Firsts, From Page to Screen, Short Stories, Music, etc.) and we then begin to populate it with  books. Typically, whichever list looks the most fun is the one we go with. This year, our theme of Cults has been especially popular.
When we select books, we typically choose a variety of fiction, non-fiction and comics.

We’re currently meeting the last Tuesday of the month in Eightbar, the bar in the back of our store. During COVID, we were meeting online, but we’re back to in person meetings now.”

4. If you have to pick a fall reading book list for the upcoming season: What four books would you pick and why?

“Here is a list of 10 in no particular order:

Liberation Day – George Saunders
I love short stories, and Saunders is a master.

The Passenger/Stella Maris – Cormac McCarthy
When a writer of McCarthy’s stature drops two new novels in as many months, well, it demands attention.

Weasels In The Attic – Hiroko Oyamada
I loved Hiroko’s previous book, The Hole. So I’m interested in this fictional look at gender roles and marriage in Japan.

Toad – Katherine Dunn

Dunn’s novel Geek Love is, really, the core DNA of much of our fiction section. So a previously unpublished novel from her feels like a gift.

Well of Souls: Uncovering the Banjo’s Hidden History by Kristina R. Gaddy

I love Kristina’s writing and Well of Souls looks to provide a much needed comprehensive history of this often misunderstood musical instrument.

No Justice, No Peace: From the Civil Rights Movement to Black Lives Matter by Devin Allen
Few photographers can capture the state of America as stunningly as Devin Allen.

No One Left To Come Looking For You – Sam Lipsyte
A suspense novel set in 1990s New York DIY scene – well, that’s just in my wheelhouse.

Below Ambition – Simon Hanselmann
A new book of weird stoner humor by Hanselmann.

Follow Me Down: A Reckless Book by Ed Brubaker / Sean Phillips

It’s stunning how consistently great Brubaker and Phillips’ crime comics are.

Joy Of Quitting by Keiler Roberts

Domestic comedy in the form of autobiographical comics. And Roberts’ art is terrific.

For older book recommendations – on our site we have an Atomic Canon section where we list our key, core books: https://atomicbooks.com/collections/atomic-canon

5. What is your best memory or event you have of the book store?

“We’ve been fortunate to have a number of great memories/events with the shop. But at the top of my list of favorites are always the John Waters signings. John’s fans are so great, they’re so excited, they’re so fun, and John is so great and he really enjoys meeting and interacting with them. There is so much wonderful positivity that it almost feels like it can’t be contained. Rarely do so many people, standing in line for so long, have such a good time. But they do at John Waters signings.”

6. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

“This year, the store is celebrating its 30th anniversary. Somehow, we’ve become Baltimore’s oldest independent bookstore. So we have a number of limited edition totes and t-shirts we’ve been releasing that we’ve designed with artist friends of the store from over those 30 years. And the response to those has been overwhelming.

We have a string of events we’re hosting coming up I’m super-excited for:

October 2 – Old Line Plate: Stories and Recipes from Maryland Kara Mae Harris – Kara has this amazing Maryland food history website. She’s self-published a book based on her site. So she’s doing a talk and, hopefully, bringing some pie.

October 4 – Well Of Souls by Kristina Gaddy – we’re hosting this event at the Pratt Library. I’m very excited to see Kristina talk about her book.

October 8 – Michael DeForge & Sadie Dupuis  – comic book artist DeForge and musician and poet Dupuis return to the Atomic Books to talk comics and read poetry in our bar, Eightbar.”

If you would more information about Atomic Books. The following contact information is below:

https://atomicbooks.com/

Instagram: @atomicbooks

Until next time!!!!



Welcome to the insta-hood: @traycegigifield !

This week I interviewed @traycegigifield !

  1. Tell me about yourself:

“Hi. My name is Trayce Gigi Field and I am a native Los Angelino. I am a high energy person and am super passionate about life. I come from a multicultural background that helps me see the world through a broad perspective.  Love and be loved is my favorite mantra.”

2. What made you interested in becoming a Costume Designer/ stylist?

“My interest in becoming a Costume Designer started with wanting to know when the actors would get their clothes. I guess you can say I found out!  I went to the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angles, there I was able to better understand design. I started as a Costume PA on Sabrina the Teenage Witch and worked my way up to being a Costume Designer.”

3. Who are your top 3 favorite designers and why?

“My top three fashion designers are – Alexander McQueen, for his beautifully cut pieces.  Such precision and structure. His Fashion shows were works of art that he masterfully pulled off with a flavor for decadence and the unusual.  Jean Paul Gaultier, for his unconventional designs and the Fifth Element Costume Design .  I have always felt Jean Paul understood the female body and used corsets and such to highlight a women physique. Karl Lagerfeld is probably my favorite designer of all time.  More for his presence in fashion then his designs – although I do love his designs I have always been more intrigued in the way Karl lived in the world.  The uniform he wore everyday, the gloves, his dogs, and my favorite quote (all the kids will disagree) “Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life, so you bought some sweatpants.” I am sure he is rolling over in his grave with the sweatpants trend that is everywhere right now.”

4. Can you talk a little bit about your time on “A league of their Own.”? What inspiration did you have on the costume designs for the show? Was there a favorite outfit(s) you made/style that was on the series and why?

“Designing ALOTO was such a fantastic experience.  I love anything vintage and the 40s are a beautiful era for clothing.

We had over 2000 pages of reference and we poured over each one to take in and memorize what the look, fit, and feel of the clothes were.  So many different styles and silhouettes.  We took into account demographics and status, so we really understood how to authentically dress various people. I have so many favorites.”

 Custom designs for Clance and Greta were so fun to create.

 The various baseball teams were exciting too.  I really am passionate about Bertie’s clothes.  Getting them just right was so important to me. “

5. What is a random fact about yourself that not a lot of people know about you?

“I laugh like a dolphin in front of my friends love to tease me about it!”

6.  Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

“I was recently written in Fashionista.com and The Hollywood Reporter for my work on the show.  I am just wrapping a new Series titled Poker Face – starring Natasha Lyonne and directed by Rian Johnson. Its such a cool series!”

If you would like more information. The following contact information is below:

Instagram: @tracycegigifield

Thank you so much for the interview Tracyce!!!


A true companion: The Cast Iron Dog

Hollywood Cemetery is located in Richmond, Virginia. It is a cemetery known for having some historic and/or famous people’s final resting place. However there is one statue that I am going to cover today. The Cast Iron Dog:

This statue of a dog is directly facing the grave of two year old Florence Bernadine Rees. There are many stories of why this particular statue is here either watching over or guarding Florence’s grave. Florence past away of scarlet fever around February of 1862 and her father was heartbroken over this. While she was still alive they would stroll by stores and she would always want to stop and want to go into the store they had the cast iron dog. She would want to play with it and it always brought her joy in her short life.

So when she past away her father bought the dog to be put near her grave. Because if it brought her so much joy and companionship during her short time on this earth. It should be with her in the after life. Her father actually saved this iron cast dog because shortly after Florence’s death all types of iron were being given to the Confederate Army to be repurpose into guns and other weapons for the war.

People who have heard of the story of this particular gravesite would visit and leave little trinkets for Florence as well as the dog. There had been some reports by some visitors of hearing growling, or barking at night near the grave. Some even claim that they feel like the dog’s eyes are watching them while they are paying their respects to Florence.

Do you have any interesting gravesites with unique stories? If so comment below!!!

Sources:

https://gravelyspeaking.com/2015/12/12/cemetery-hound

https://deadbell.com/2015/02/24/hollywoods-black-iron-dog/

Strange Carolinas

Until next time!!!

Welcome to the Insta-hood: @captainafab !

This week I interviewed: @captainafab! !:

  1. Tell me a little about yourself.
    “My name is Glen Kalliope Rodman (he/him) and I’m the editor & co-founder of Shapeless Press. My
    dear friend Amalia Vavala (@amaliavavala) is the other half of the team: she’s our entire graphic
    design and production department, and Liz Taylor to my Monty Clift. I’m a writer, a New Yorker
    and a trans man. If you see a five-foot-tall guy in a Stetson bopping around the New York metro
    area, it’s probably me. My background is in academia and education, so naturally I’m broke. I
    studied in, then taught for the Narrative Medicine master’s program at Columbia. I write about
    media and narrative (especially science fiction and horror) from an intersectional Trans Studies
    perspective. I’m also a cat sitter, so feel free to hit me up at @thatcatguynyc if you need someone
    reliable to take care of your cat!”

2. How did you start Shapeless Press?
“Shapeless Press began with my own frustrations as a trans writer trying to publish. Most
publications are by cis people, for cis people. When trans voices are filtered through cis platforms,
we are expected to make trans experiences accessible to cis readers. This means trans writers
have to spend time and energy explaining basic stuff, making ourselves simpler, more “palatable”.
We have to be educators and activists as well as writers and artists. In the zines we publish at
Shapeless Press, we aim to create a space for gender expansive people to publish art and writing
for other gender expansive people. No apologies, no explanations, no Trans 101. Trans people are
a vastly diverse continuum with a multitude of experiences and perspectives. At Shapeless Press,
we hope to give our collaborators the opportunity to publish without considering the cis reader at
all.”

Art by Atlas A Lee-Reid

3. Who was the first author you collaborated with on Shapeless Press?
“The generous contributors of our first collection, SEEN/UNSEEN, who believed in the project
enough to trust me with their work! These folks were willing to contribute pieces without pay or
even a proof of concept. I’m honored and awed by the trust our collaborators have given us, a
micropress with a shoestring budget. It motivates me to do right by everyone I work with. I want to
give a special thanks to Andy Lindquist ( @quindlisting), who was one of the first collaborators I approached. Andy is an up-and-coming indie cartoonist whose work just completely blows me away and it’s a privilege to get to work with him at this early stage in both of our careers. Keep an eye on this guy, he’s going places.”

by Andy Lindquist

4. What themes or characteristics do you look for when adding someone to your roster?

by Myf Norris

“We seek to platform all trans/nonbinary/gender expansive creatives! We are especially seeking to
platform more BIPOC in general. (If this describes you and you’d like to work with us, please send
me an email!) We will not publish hate speech or bigotry, and individual publications may have
content parameters or themes, but we’re interested in creatives working in any printable medium.
My aim is to publish a proliferation of voices and to showcase the vast array of diverse talent in the
trans community, and I don’t want to be another gatekeeper.”

  1. What themes or genre(s) do you write and do you have a favorite or personal piece of yours?
    Why is it your favorite or most personal piece?
    “My favorite piece is always the one I’m currently working on. I’ve been an academic/educational
    writer for most of my career, and I’m afraid that shows in my writing voice no matter the genre.
    One of my personal passions is science fiction, and I particularly love writing about how it engages
    with gender. It was a science fiction story that inspired the name of the press – a Robert Sheckley
    story from 1953 called “Keep Your Shape.” I read it and thought it so perfectly expressed what I
    wanted the press to be about, this kind of utopian vision of choosing your shape as liberatory, and
    conversely, the idea that the state has a vested interest in policing shape so it can continue to
    function. Anyway, my favorite published piece of my own is a column I wrote for the journal
    Synapsis, “Trans Futures: Speculative Fiction as Gender Liberation.” If you want to read my case
    for why science fiction can be important for trans folks, you can check it out at the link in my bio.”

6. Do you have any favorite authors or collaborators that you read or often work with?
“How could I pick a favorite! I’ll use this space to promote some of them, though.
Atlas A Lee-Reid (@aleereid) has contributed to multiple Shapeless Press projects. They make these gorgeous,
ruminative slice-of-life comics about art, gender and embodiment. AJ Thursday ( @ajthursday ) wrote a piece for
PLAY about Elvis impersonators that I’m very proud to have published. She has this distinctive,
confident writing voice and a million fascinating stories to tell. Wow Quisqueya is a wonderful
painter and poet, and they were generous enough to contribute an original painting to PLAY that I
love. charlie jasper is a repeat collaborator and friend of the press who’s not only contributed
poetry but has also given me a lot of good advice. The PRPL PPL genrequeer multimedia collective
has been a constant source of support, inspiration, and labor. Shapeless Press would not exist
without them.”

By Wow Quisqueya

7. Do you have any exciting news or upcoming events that you would like to share?

Me and Amalia Vavala- Shapeless Press graphic designer

“You can pick up a copy of our most recent zine, PLAY: Trans & Nonbinary Creatives on the
Opposite of Work, at Bluestockings Bookstore, or for free on our website: https://www.prplppl.website/shapeless-press , where you can also read our previous collection
SEEN/UNSEEN. We’ll also be at ZineFest on November 13th if you’re in New York! Follow us
@shapeless.press for information on upcoming projects, contributor spotlights, and guidelines for
submission. We are always looking for more collaborators. Again, we especially want to platform
more BIPOC creatives. If you’re interested in working with Shapeless Press, don’t be shycomrade! Send me an email at shapelesspress@gmail.com or dm me at captainafab.

If you would like more information. The following contact information is below:

Email: glenkallioperodman@gmail.com

IG Handles: @captainafab & Shapeless Press IG: @shapeless.press

Website: https://www.prplppl.website/shapeless-press

Banned book week!: 2022

Banned book week is coming up! It runs from September 18-24, 2022. What is banned book week? It is a yearly celebration in the US that is a week long that highlights books that have been challenged or ban to be a public and school libraries. Here are a couple of books that at one point that have been banned or challenged either once or many times:

All American Boys: A Novel (2015) by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely – Banned due to discussions of drugs, alcohol and anti police views.

Link to buy is here: All American Boys: A Novel

Annie on my Mind (1982) by Nancy Garden

Reason it was banned or challenged: discussions of a preteen relationship between two girls.

Link to buy is here: Annie on My Mind

Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya (1972) reason it was banned or challenged: discussions of extreme violence, dark arts, and acts of Satanism.

Link to buy is here: Bless Me, Ultima

Detour for Emmy (1993) by Marilyn Reynolds: reason it was banned or challenged: talk about sexual relationships and teen pregnancy.

Link to buy is here: Detour for Emmy

Kaffir Boy: The True Story of a Black Youth’s Coming of Age in Apartheid South Africa (1986) by Mark Mathabane. Reason it was banned or challenged: Discussions of sexual abuse and male prostitution.

Link to buy is here: Kaffir Boy: The True Story of a Black Youth’s Coming of Age in Apartheid South Africa

Where’s Waldo? (1987) by Martin Handford:

Reason it was banned or challenged: Nudity

Link to buy is here: Where’s Wally?

Books challenged our minds as well as expanding our point of view. I am a lover or books and this is one of my favorite weeks. Because it celebrates our freedom to read any kind of material and express expression in word form.

If you would like more information please used the following link: https://bannedbooksweek.org/

Sources: https://bannedbooksweek.org/

Wikipedia.com

https://www.youtube.com/user/BannedBooksWeek

What books do you reading during this week comment below!

Until next time:)

Artist’s Spotlight: @postcardsfrombox39

This week’s artist’s spotlight is on @postcardsfrombox39:

  1. Tell me a little about yourself.

“I’m from a very small town in Northern California. I was always artistic and
although it felt like I was raised by wolves, my parents were super supportive of my
artistic talents. My mom would nick reams of dot matrix printer paper from work (dating
myself with that printer reference) and I would draw, paint, and make banners
relentlessly. My parents didn’t bat an eye at the stacks of big breasted mermaids I drew
after becoming obsessed with The Little Mermaid, and if they did, I never knew.
I took as many art classes as I could throughout high school. I worked my way
into advanced painting classes, won some awards, and smoked a lot of pot. I figured art
school would be my next stop but found myself at community college instead. There I
fell in love with the study of film and art became my hobby. I still made things, mainly for
friends and certainly for every boy I ever liked. I eventually graduated with a BA in
Cinema Studies from San Francisco State University.
I bounced around some and got married, all the while creating and making
art…until I got a career. My career in the Los Angeles floral industry ended up being a
creative one and successful as well. But with a creative career, I had no energy left for
my own art projects. Once I became a mother I decided to give up my career, change it
all up and move to Montana. I became a stay-at-home mom. Between my career and
motherhood I probably didn’t make any art for nearly 10 years.
Long story short, I figured out that the stay-at-home life wasn’t for me. I mean, It
is for some people, just not me. Something was missing and I wasn’t doing so hot in life.
Then it finally clicked. I got sober which led to the discovery that I was bipolar. But
through all that I found art again. Once I had that figured out, I was unstoppable. I was a
creative person once again but with a new medium all my own. Today, I manage a
vintage clothing store and have found a balance between work, motherhood, and
creativity.”

2. How did you come up with the name Box 39?

“I love sourcing old and weird objects for my work. Mainly thrifting and antiquing or just plain
finding. Before I knew what to call the art project I was creating I found a collection of postcards
from the early 1900s in a small Montana antique shop. The collection belonged to Mollie
Jermaine of Oregon and the cards were all addressed to PO Box 39. Her correspondence was
fascinating and I found it so remarkable that she’d kept everything and that it stayed intact after
all these years. I had discovered the memories of someone who lived 100+ years ago! I decided
to use Mollie’s stories to tell my own. I wanted to give them a new life and what a way to start
my collection of found objects. I decided to call my art endeavor Box 39 because that’s where
my story started and I wanted to “fill” Box 39 back up with memories. Mollie’s postcards were
the makings of some of earlier works and still show up in my work today.”

3. What was the first miniature diorama you made?

“During my stint as a stay-at-home mom I was desperate for a hobby or something to do
with myself. I found a miniature kit at the craft store, I think it was a little tiny greenhouse
or something similar. I thought little stuff was cute and maybe this could occupy some of
my time. Being a retired florist I went to make the flowers first. I made about three and
thought I could make more accurate flowers diverting from the kit. I made some
poppies, some daffodils, and roses. After that I put the kit away and went rogue. I
thought to myself: what would be cooler than the little vase provided in the kit?

Then I had an idea; I had seen vintage matchbooks at the antique store and I thought it’d be
cool if the matches were replaced with little flowers. I figured I could make tiny floral
arrangements just like I made when I was a florist. I got out the tacky glue and started
gluing away. The pieces started to take a personal turn. I was feeling anxious and
uncertain about life at the time and decided I needed to listen to my gut. The first
matchbook I posted was advertising caskets (I loved the morbidity of it). I used the
poppy, made some grass, and a field of red flags. It felt as though I had found a place
for my feelings and all of a sudden I felt reassured about myself. I knew I was seeing
metaphorical red flags in real life and now I had found a place to put them. From there I
was off to the races.”

4. Can you talk a little about the themes in your art: “Tiny people making
out?”

“Whatever I’m thinking or feeling ends up in my art. Through my work I can give those
thoughts, feelings, and memories a safe little place to live. I don’t have to process them
or figure anything out; they can just be. So sometimes my sexual self or frustrations find
their way into a matchbook or two…or three. Besides, I think it’s fun and cheeky.

5. Do you do custom orders? If so, can you talk a little bit about the
process of ordering one?

“The custom pieces I have made have been from admirers of my art who give me carte
blanche. I do usually get a little direction: It’s for so-and-so, it’s our anniversary (or some
other occasion), I’d like a matchbook or diorama. Occasionally I get someone who has
an object they’d like me to incorporate or utilize as a vessel. I don’t even know what I’m
going to make until inspiration hits. If clients are cool with that, then I’m all for it and all
it’d take is a DM to get the ball rolling.”

Also what are some popular pieces on your esty store and why do you
think they are so popular?

“To be honest, I don’t do great on etsy. I have made some sales on etsy but I seem to do
better at my shows. I don’t think the etsy audience, or any one really, is searching for
“tiny makeout scenes on a matchbook.” But, out of all of my sales, etsy included, I’d
have to say the matchbooks are the most popular. I think because they are a unique
canvas. Vintage matchbooks are just plain cool on their own anyhow. Whenever
someone recognizes me from my work they always ask, “ you make the matchbooks,
right?”

6. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

“I’m really excited about my next show. It’s going to be a collaborative effort with
Sarahjess Hurt of a @apaper_knife_studio this October at Heist Art Gallery in Red
Lodge, MT. Sarahjess is a talented jeweler. She makes the tiny wearable receptacles
and I fill them with my found objects or tiny handmade paper flowers. It’s been fun
working with another artist and discovering the ways we’re inspiring each other. I can’t
wait to see the show come together!”

Movie of the day: Resurrection (1980)

This week’s movie of the day is Resurrection from 1982. Starring Ellen Burstyn, Sam Shepard and directed by Daniel Petrie.

This movie is about Edna Mae who brought a car as a birthday gift for her husband. As her and her husband are driving back from his job to celebrate his birthday. They got in an awful car accident which left her husband dead and herself horribly injury but survives. While she is struggling to live she begins to experience an out of body experience. Where she momentarily gets stuck between the afterlife and the living world.

As Edna tries to move on with her life from the accident. She moves back with her dad and goes back to her childhood home where she finds out that she extraordinary powers to make people feel physically better from their injuries. Here she is trying to describe her experience to her grandmother.

Some of the townspeople’s celebrate her healing powers while others feel like it’s a gift from a darker evil source.

Here is a clip of all of the healing that Edna Mae is able to do throughout the movie:

Although added frustration comes from the townspeople who say that Edna’s ability to heal was a gift from Gods. However Edna is not sure where her ability stems from but she never admits that it is sourced from God or the devil.

Some facts about the movie: Ellen Burstyn was nominated for both a Golden Globe and an Oscar for her role in this movie.

Most of the film was film in Texas.

There was a novelization based on the screenplay of the movie and written by George Gipe in 1980.

If you would like to watch this movie. The following links are below:

Until next time!!!

Source: Youtube.com, IMDB.com and Wikipedia.com