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A Turkish Delight of musings on languages, deflations of metaphysics, vauntings of arcana, and great visual humor.
From Our Abecedarian Blog . . .

Today — November 25, 2017

Images Moving Through Time (permalink)
[For Abigail McBride.]
Through a tissue and beyond the veil: the ghosts of a cat caretaker and a cat, as conjured through "necromancy by proxy" (explained below).  From Concerning Cats, My Own and Some Others by Helen Maria Winslow, 1900.
This recalls our repository of ghostly images that were never meant to be, entitled The Ghost in the [Scanning] Machine.  The specters were conjured unwittingly, through a mechanical process of book scanning.  Their portraits technically do not exist, except within this context.  To explain: in old books, frontispieces were typically protected by a sheet of translucent tissue paper.  So thorough is the Google Books scanning process that even this page of tissue paper is scanned.  The figure in the plate beneath the tissue—"beyond the veil,” as it were—emerges as from a foggy otherworld.  The frontispieces were never meant to be seen this way.  Their wraithlike manifestations have been artificially "fixed" in time by the scanning process. In essence, timeless phantasms of dead writers have been captured and bound into a new age.  And so we call this phenomenon "unforeseen art," as it constitutes an aesthetic expression without original intent.  Just as artists often credit their inspiration to a Muse, the accidental art herein is in the domain of real ghosts; every author here has departed to the Other Side.  We call it "necromancy by proxy," as the scanning machine serves as our "spirit medium" or shaman.


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Images Moving Through Time (permalink)
Blurred on the sidelines of suffragette demonstrations (1909-12).  These are details that caught our eye, from photos courtesy of the Library of the London School of Economics and Political Science.  
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Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)
It's like looking at our own bed canopy, only ours also blocks electromagnetic fields.  From Der Orchideengarten, 1919.
[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
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Only Funny If ... (permalink)
From Le Rire, 1896.
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Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)
From Jugend, 1921.
[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
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Yearbook Weirdness (permalink)
From The University Magazine, 1892.   See How to Hoodoo Hack a Yearbook.

*For some unbelievably weird yearbook imagery, see our How to Hoodoo Hack a Yearbook.

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Yesterday's Weather (permalink)
Still no cancer cure, but "Milk not soured by thunder."  From Popular Mechanics, 1932.
*Inspired by the world's only accurate meteorological report, "Yesterday's Weather," as seen on Check It Out.
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Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)
From Jugend, 1903. 
[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
. . . read more from Restoring the Lost Sense . . .


What's In a Name (permalink)
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Yearbook Weirdness (permalink)
From The Scarlet Letter yearbook (Rutgers, 1882).  See How to Hoodoo Hack a Yearbook.

*For some unbelievably weird yearbook imagery, see our How to Hoodoo Hack a Yearbook.

. . . read more from Yearbook Weirdness . . .



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Copyright © 2017 Craig Conley