Log24

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

See More Glass

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 4:00 PM

The first story of "The Snow Queen, in Seven Stories"
by Hans Christian Andersen (1845) (see yesterday morning)—

Story the First,
Which Describes a Looking-Glass
and the Broken Fragments

You must attend to the commencement of this story, for when we get to the end we shall know more than we do now about a very wicked hobgoblin; he was one of the very worst, for he was a real demon.  One day, when he was in a merry mood, he made a looking-glass which had the power of making everything good or beautiful that was reflected in it almost shrink to nothing, while everything that was worthless and bad looked increased in size and worse than ever. The most lovely landscapes appeared like boiled spinach, and the people became hideous, and looked as if they stood on their heads and had no bodies. Their countenances were so distorted that no one could recognize them, and even one freckle on the face appeared to spread over the whole of the nose and mouth. The demon said this was very amusing. When a good or pious thought passed through the mind of any one it was misrepresented in the glass; and then how the demon laughed at his cunning invention. All who went to the demon’s school—for he kept a school—talked everywhere of the wonders they had seen, and declared that people could now, for the first time, see what the world and mankind were really like. They carried the glass about everywhere, till at last there was not a land nor a people who had not been looked at through this distorted mirror. They wanted even to fly with it up to heaven to see the angels, but the higher they flew the more slippery the glass became, and they could scarcely hold it, till at last it slipped from their hands, fell to the earth, and was broken into millions of pieces. But now the looking-glass caused more unhappiness than ever, for some of the fragments were not so large as a grain of sand, and they flew about the world into every country. When one of these tiny atoms flew into a person’s eye, it stuck there unknown to him, and from that moment he saw everything through a distorted medium, or could see only the worst side of what he looked at, for even the smallest fragment retained the same power which had belonged to the whole mirror. Some few persons even got a fragment of the looking-glass in their hearts, and this was very terrible, for their hearts became cold like a lump of ice. A few of the pieces were so large that they could be used as window-panes; it would have been a sad thing to look at our friends through them. Other pieces were made into spectacles; this was dreadful for those who wore them, for they could see nothing either rightly or justly. At all this the wicked demon laughed till his sides shook—it tickled him so to see the mischief he had done. There were still a number of these little fragments of glass floating about in the air, and now you shall hear what happened with one of them.

 "Was there more to come? Was I done?
I wondered if I had dreamed
the connectedness of Being
the night before, or if now, awake,
I dreamed distinctions.
I didn’t know where I was for an instant."

"Alethia," by Charles Johnson, as
     quoted by Eve Tushnet on Aug. 22, 2013

Tushnet on Johnson —

"Somebody–I hope a commenter will remind me who it was–
has suggested that the Left typically thinks in terms of an
opposition between oppression and liberation, whereas
the right typically thinks in terms of an opposition between
civilization and barbarism. I would reframe the latter opposition
as order vs. chaos; if we do that, it’s obvious that both
oppositions are unrelentingly relevant, yet few thinkers or artists
are able to hold both conflicts before our eyes at once.

I just finished Charles Johnson’s 1986 short-story collection 
The Sorcerer’s Apprentice: Tales and Conjurations ,
a bag of broken glass which is equal parts liberationist and
reactionary, yearning for freedom and knuckling under to fatalism." 

Related material —

Saturday Night Live, Dec. 11, 1976

Consumer Reporter: Alright. Fine. Fine. Well, we'd like to show you another  one of Mr. Mainway's products. It retails for $1.98, and it's called Bag O' Glass. [ holds up bag of glass ] Mr. Mainway, this is simply a bag of jagged, dangerous, glass bits.

Irwin Mainway: Yeah, right, it's you know, it's glass, it's broken glass, you know? It sells very well, as a matter of fact, you know? It's just broken glass, you know?

Consumer Reporter: [ laughs ] I don't understand. I mean, children could seriously cut themselves on any one of these pieces!

Irwin Mainway: Yeah, well, look – you know, the average kid, he picks up, you know, broken glass anywhere, you know? The beach, the street, garbage cans, parking lots, all over the place in any big city. We're just packaging what the kids want! I mean, it's a creative toy, you know? If you hold this up, you know, you see colors, every color of the rainbow! I mean, it teaches him about light refraction, you know? Prisms, and that stuff! You know what I mean?

Tommy Lee Jones perhaps knows what Mainway means.
Kristen Wiig (see Aug. 22, 2013, in this  journal) perhaps does not.

See also Tushnet on The Man in the High Castle  as well as
Tommy Lee Jones and Hexagram 61.

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Remembering Karl Gerstner

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:46 PM

See Karl Gerstner in this journal and posts from
the date of Gerstner's reported death —
New Year's Day, 2017.

Gerstner seems to have been forgotten in the
current Programmed Art exhibition at the Whitney.

Related material — See More Glass.

Friday, January 29, 2010

More Glass

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Part I:

"…although a work of art 'is formed around something missing,' this 'void is its vanishing point, not its essence.' She shows deftly and delicately that the void inside Keats’s urn, Heidegger’s jug, or Wallace Stevens’s jar forms the center around which we tend to organize our worlds."

Harvard University Press on Persons and Things (April 30, 2008), by Barbara Johnson

Part II:

"Did you see more glass?"


Louis Kahn, design for nine large glass cubes forming a Holocaust memorial

Part III:

From the date of Barbara Johnson's death:

"Mathematical relationships were
enough to satisfy him, mere formal
relationships which existed at
all times, everywhere, at once."

Broken Symmetries, 1983

X    
  X  
    X

The X's refer to the pattern on the
cover of a paperback edition
  of Nine Stories, by J. D. Salinger.
Salinger died on Wednesday.

"You remember that book he sent me
from Germany? You know–
those German poems.
"

In Germany, Wednesday was
Holocaust Memorial Day, 2010.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Monday August 31, 2009

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 5:24 PM

Ask a Stupid Question

continued from   
last Wednesday…

 Log24 on August 26

"Did you see more glass?"


http://www.log24.com/log/pix09A/090831-GlassMemorial.jpg

Wednesday, August 26,
was the date of death
for Hyman Bloom.

Bloom, described in
today's New York Times
as "a painter of the
 mystical," died at 96.
 
Bloom often painted portraits of imaginary rabbis; an article titled "American Mystic" describes
 
"… the mesmerizing paradox at the heart of the rabbi portraits– they remember keepers of a tradition in a method that tradition expressly forbids. As Bloom explains, age and illness endowing his voice with a hoarse, prophetic quality, 'Jewish culture has nothing to do with painting. That’s a rule, "Thou shalt not make an image of anything in the air or on the earth."'"
 
– Stephen Vider, Tablet Magazine, February 28. 2007

Related material:

An entry in this journal linked to twice on the date of Bloom's death–
Art and Man at Yale

and an illustrated entry from this journal on the date of the "Mystic" article–
Elements of Geometry.

"So, there is one place
where modernism triumphs.
As in the cases of the pyramids
and the Taj Mahal, the Siegfried line
 and the Atlantic wall, death always
 calls on the very best architects."
 – J. G. Ballard,
"A Handful of Dust"

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wednesday August 26, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:01 PM

"Did you see more glass?"

Proposed holocaust memorial-- nine large glass blocks in a 3x3 array-- by Louis I. Kahn
Background: 

1. "Jesus's Response to Dishonor"
2.  For Stephen King, August 11, 2009
3.  Art and Man at Yale

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