Arts, Culture

Black-and-White Russians in Living Color

Because of a change in Internet service providers, The Sea Pearl’s publishing schedule was interrupted this past week. So I’m going to do something I never do (“Never? Well, hardly ever.”), which is to publish a link to somebody else’s site. (I rarely refer to private websites, which often disappear, but this one is really special. You have to see it to believe it.)

My other half sometimes shouts with joy when he discovers old Kodachrome photos online. Recently he came across colorized black-and-white photographs taken during the late 19th and early 20th centuries in Russia. Continue reading “Black-and-White Russians in Living Color”

Aesthetics, Culture

Ampersand in the Key of Beauty

Ampersands come in an astounding variety. Goldenflashes21 at English Wikipedia / CC BY-SA

In 1953 a German typographer, Jan Tschichold, published his study, The ampersand: its origin and development, in which he tracked that typographical device back to Pompeii. Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD, preserving the earliest extant example in some wall graffiti. That still doesn’t tell us how much earlier the mark was actually scrawled before the volcano blew – ten years, two months, five seconds? Continue reading “Ampersand in the Key of Beauty”

Arts

The Still Point of the Turning World

Beyond the technical aspects of making art, there is a language that allows us to truly see a work. All art exists within a structure of critical and historical knowledge that is constantly evolving and being reevaluated–just like language itself. For example, when I was teaching, I would make a drawing on the board and ask the class to identify it. It was very clear and precise, but no one ever guessed correctly that it was the Japanese character for rain.

Continue reading “The Still Point of the Turning World”