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Posts Tagged ‘Statue of Liberty

“You cannot get a grip on blue… blue is sly, slick, it slides into the room sideways, a slippery trickster”*…

 

Vermeer, Girl with a Pearl Earring, ca. 1665

Michelangelo couldn’t afford ultramarine. His painting The Entombment, the story goes, was left unfinished as the result of his failure to procure the prized pigment. Rafael reserved ultramarine for his final coat, preferring for his base layers a common azurite; Vermeer was less parsimonious in his application and proceeded to mire his family in debt. Ultramarine: the quality of the shade is embodied in its name. This is the superlative blue, the end-all blue, the blue to which all other hues quietly aspire. The name means “beyond the sea”—a dreamy ode to its distant origins, as romantic as it is imprecise…

The whole fascinating story at “True Blue- a brief history of ultramarine.”

* Christopher Moore, Sacré Bleu: A Comedy d’Art

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As we dip our brushes, we might recall that it was on this date in 1886 that a gift from France was formally received in the U.S.: it was on this date that year that “Liberty Enlightening the World”– a token of friendship from the French to the U.S. better known as the Statue of Liberty– was dedicated by President Grover Cleveland.

Designed by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, a French sculptor, it was built by Gustave Eiffel (his Eiffel Tower served as the statue’s armature), who had it shipped from France encased in more than 200 crates, then reassembled it and placed on its pedestal on (what was then known as) Bedloe’s Island, where Cleveland took her in.

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Written by LW

October 28, 2016 at 1:01 am

Huis Clos, Edition Galactique– avec pop-corn!

Existentialist Star Wars (in French!)

Star Wars with a French Existentialist twist. Almost all the subtitles (except for little things like “Despair!” and “I die!” and a few others) are actually quotes from Jean-Paul Sartre. And obviously this will make no sense if you understand French. If you do know it, hit yourself in the head repeatedly before watching this. And then hit yourself repeatedly when you’re done watching.

More from creator OneMinuteGalactica here (Do be sure to check out “Luke Skywalker- Worst Scout Ever“)

As we steep in ennui, we might recall that it was on this date in 1889 that the Eiffel Tower opened to the public.  The spire, now iconic of Paris, was designed by Gustave Eiffel (who also created the armature for France’s largest gift to the U.S., the Statue of Liberty) and served as the entrance arch to the 1889 World’s Fair.

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A matter of perspective…

From Darren Rouse‘s Digital Photography School, a 90-year-old example of forced perspective photography:

The picture is of 18,000 men preparing for war in a training camp at Camp Dodge, in Iowa.

A few facts about the image:

* Length from base to Shoulder: 150 feet
* Right Arm: 340 feet
* Length of Torch and flame: 1000 feet
* Total Length: 1490 Feet
* Number of men in body and head of figure: 2,000
* Number of men in right arm: 1,200
* Number of men in torch: 2,800
* Number of men in the flame only: 12,000
* Total men: 18,000

(Thanks SC for the pointer)

As we adjust our focal lengths, we might pause to slip a celebratory tickle to Elmo– it was on this date in 1969 that Sesame Street first aired…

The original cast

That’s Entertainment!…

As one prepares to add to one’s Netflix queue, it’s helpful to have a little guidance.  There’s Rotten Tomatoes, of course; but as wonderful as it is, it requires one to ask after specific films.  And then there’s Netflix’s own near-neighbor matching algorithm  (“recommended for you”)… but sometimes there’s just no accounting for one’s neighbors’ taste.

Happily, the good folks at Vodkaster, the French cinephile site, have stepped into the breech– and delivered a gift that is, if not quite as momentous as the Statue of Liberty , nonetheless altogether nifty, “The 250 Best Films Map” (… as voted by IMDb users on the 19th of June, 2009; English version here).  A taste:

See the full map (and download it in various sizes/resolutions) here.

As we fire up the popcorn maker, we might celebrate two artistic anniversaries:  it was on this date in 1910 that the exquisite British comedy team, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, arrived in the U.S. (on tour with an English vaudeville troupe).  Then, 31 years to the day later, The Maltese Falcon opened.

The One-Sheet

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Know your intellectuals!…

One of the gentlemen above is (American professor and philosopher of social habit) Michael Pollan; the other is (French professor and philosopher of social institutions) Michel Foucault…

Take the test– that is, look at the other pairs of photos– at “Michael Pollan or Michel Foucault?” to see if you can tell them apart!

As we get in touch with our inner structuralist, we might recall that it was on this date in 1885 that another gift from France arrived in the U.S.: it was on this date that year that “Liberty Enlightening the World”– a token of friendship from the French to the U.S. better known as the Statue of Liberty– entered New York Harbor.  Encased in more than 200 crates, the statue was reassembled, placed on its pedestal on (what was then known as) Bedloe’s Island, then dedicated by President Grover Cleveland in October, 1886.

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