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14th February

Kšthe Kollwitz' is undoubtedly one of the most important women of the modern age.'
'Her art developed completely autonomously and shows all signs of genius. Her language ist understood worldwide, whereas such prominent masters as Thoma and Menzel find lasting acclaim only in Germany, or, at most, in German speaking arcas.'
'With the exception of a few works commissioned for a specific purpose, Kšthe Kollwitz' art is timeless; as Nolde would say, it is "everlasting". Even Paula Modersohn-Becker's art which is so important for early Expressionism, does not carry the same significance nor does it have the same international profile as that of Kšthe Kollwitz ... '
Selected works.

The Billboard Liberation Front. 'In the beginning was the Ad. The Ad was brought to the consumer by the Advertiser. Desire, self worth, self image, ambition, hope; all find their genesis in the Ad. Through the Ad and the intent of the Advertiser we form our ideas and learn the myths that make us into what we are as a people. That this method of self definition displaced the earlier methods is beyond debate. It is now clear that the Ad holds the most esteemed position in our cosmology ... '
' ... Old fashioned notions about art, science and spirituality being the peak achievements and the noblest goals of the spirit of man have been dashed on the crystalline shores of Acquisition; the holy pursuit of consumer goods. All old forms and philosophies have been cleverly co-opted and re"spun" as marketing strategies and consumer campaigns by the new shamans, the Ad men. '

The Thai Buddha Image. 'For over 2500 years Thailand has been under the peaceful shelter of Buddhism. The Buddha's teachings (Dharma) colour almost every aspect of life within the kingdom, uniting the people into a harmonious, peace-loving society.'
'Images of the Buddha were originally created as an object of worship and as a means of spreading the Buddha's message. Accordingly the images were designed not simply to represent the Buddha's physical characteristics but his teachings too. '
'Overtime, and in different locations within the kingdom, the specific form of Buddha images has undergone subtle changes, creating visibly different characteristics that reflect the cultural values, craftsmanship and the influences of neighbouring countries of the period ... '

World War II People's War. Stories about the war from a British perspective; wonderful site.
'Way back in 1932 I applied to join the army, and at the medical the doctors tested me carefully ... here, there, cough, so far so good ... and then one doc said, 'I'm sorry, mate, but its no good, I'm afraid Iíll have to fail you'. As I had a terrible stammer, when I asked him why, he said, 'Well, if you was up the Khyber Pass, before you could shout for help, your throat would be cut!', so that was that, and no army for Dicky Brew ... '
HMCS Snowberry, Convoy Escort. 'During 1941 I served on HMCS Snowberry as a submarine detector operator. Snowberry was built on the Clyde at Greenock/Gourock where she was commisioned. She was one of the original flower class corvettes, and escorted several convoys from the Clyde and Londonderry to Iceland, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia often in appalling weather. Corvettes were designed for coastal convoy duty but were used for north Atlantic convoys, for which they were unsuited. As such crews received double 'hard lying money' because of the discomfort. Convoys often took weeks because they had to zig zag, and their speed was that of the slowest ship, such as a whaling factory - often only three knots ... '
An Encounter with a German Submarine 1941.

Ancient Greek Cities. An online gazzetteer.

Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Imperial Family of Russia. Site of an 'real life' exhibition of 1999-2000 ; lots to see here. Explore the galleries.

Out on the Street. Political comix by mike flugennock. Anarchist-oriented comix.
Top ten posters.
'A better world is possible ... '

The Book of Noodles: Stories of Simpletons; Or, Fools and Their Follies, 1888.

African Heritage Architecture. West African architecture, galleries and journal.

a.m.p.m. Japanese photographer Yumiko Fujita.

John S. Dykes. Illustrator.

Steve Dunn. Paintings of cars.

Mark Dobson. Illustrator.

Paul Jacoulet. 'Paul Jacoulet, born in France and raised in Japan, fits into none of the mainstream art movements. His Japanese woodblock prints are a mixture of traditional ukiyo-e printmaking of highest standards and new lavish techniques invented by the artist himself. A Jacoulet print can be the result of up to 60 different blocks. '

Jacob Jordaens. Online gallery.

Prince Charles Louis of the Palatinate with his Tutor Wolrad von Plessen in Historical Dress.

Nicolaes Eliasz. Pickenoy: Portrait of a Young Woman.

13th February

Prefecture of Attica. Greek monuments and museums. 'This is a sensitive map. It is also a "magic" map. Behind each icon you see on your screen lays a fascinating piece of the Greek history. If you wish to learn about it, just select the icon of your preference on the map or the corresponding title in the tables underneath. '

Gallery of Old Settle. A small town in the Yorkshire Dales. 'This site contains a set of images depicting Settle in the past. We have put them into these pages so they can be appreciated by people all over the world, as well as by local people who may be particularly interested to see how Settle used to look in by-gone days. '

Bean Soup Times. "All The News That's Very Near Correct". American satire site with an urban focus. Uppity Negro describes it as 'the black Onion'.

A Book of Five Rings (Go Rin No Sho), by Miyamoto Musashi. A classic on military strategy, from medieval Japan.
'When I reached thirty I looked back on my past. The previous victories were not due to my having mastered strategy. Perhaps it was natural ability, or the order of heaven, or that other schools' strategy was inferior. After that I studied morning and evening searching for the principle, and came to realise the Way of strategy when I was fifty. '

James Eads' Architectural Drawings. American architecture.
'In building the St. Louis Bridge, James Eads faced hundreds of decisions. How would the spans be stiffened? What would the train tunnel look like? How big would the roadway be? Eads and his team wrestled with these choices for over 8 years, drawing detailed bridge construction documents to record and help implement their ideas. We're lucky that many of these drawings are preserved in the special collections of the library at Washington University in St. Louis ... '

Presence: Images of Christ for the Third Millennium. Starting at St. Paul's Cathedral in London; ecumenical Christian art.

Lost Treasures of Tibet.

Delphi at the Greek Ministry of Culture. 'During the Mycenaean period, the female deity of Earth was worshipped in the small settlement of Delphi. The development of the sanctuary and oracle though, began in the 8th century B.C. with the establishment of the cult of Apollo. Under the protection and administration of the Amphictyony, the sanctuary continued to be autonomous after the First Sacred War and, as a result, increased its panhellenic religious and political influence. The Pythian Games were re-organized, the sanctuary was enlarged and it was enriched with nice buildings, statues, and other offerings. In the 3rd century B.C. it came under the domination of the Aetolians and later, in 191 B.C., was conquered by the Romans. During the Roman occupation the site was sometimes plundered but was also favoured by some of the emperors. With the spread of Christianity, the sanctuary lost its religious meaning and was permanently closed down with a decree of emperor Theodosius the Great ... '

Into the Net: Explore the History of Football. Association football (soccer), that is.

Africa and More. 'Africa and takes pride in providing excellent service and quality ethnographic and tribal artifacts on line. We have an outstanding selection of African art, trade beads and collectible jewelry from Yemen. Our inventory includes masks, figures, currency, weapons, trade beads, archeological objects, ancient beads and antique Bedouin and Yemini jewelry ...'

Ancient Tibet: Photographs. 'A portfolio of 20 haunting black and white photographs primarily made by Sonam Gyatso Thartse Ken Rinpoche (1930-1988), abbot of Ngor Monastery in Tibet in the early 50's, before the Chinese Occupation of Tibet. Other images were taken by his brother Lama Kunga Rinpoche (1935- ) presently teaching in Berkeley, California and his cousin Jetsun Sakya Kushola, one of the highest woman Lamas in Tibet, presently teaching in Vancouver, B.C. Photos made by the few foreigners who entered Tibet before the Chinese Communist takeover tend to appear staged and their subjects overly emphasized. These photos made by Tibetan ecclesiastics of their own environment are direct and uncontrived even though they sometimes depict some of the most famous celebrities of Tibetan culture. Without being at all mystical these pictures seem to be portraying the "unseen", a certain presence that goes beyond the ordinary. Though Sonam Gyatso was abbot of the strictest monastery in Tibet he maintained a simple darkroom and photo lab. It is fortunate for us that he left us this visual document of a world now destroyed as seen in the photos of Ngor Monastery before and after the Chinese Communist invasion.'

Japanese Architecture in Kyoto.

As If! Online comic.

Freefall. Online comic.

Pearls Before Swine. Online comic.

Paul Gauguin and the Russian Avantgarde. Many images.

Alberto Giacometti. "I could not understand it. All my statues ended up one centimeter high. One touch more and hop! the statue vanishes." --Giacometti.

Giorgione. Online gallery.

Rubens: Four Studies of a Male Head. Art.

12th February

Contemporary Japanese Woodblock Prints. These are good.

Jubilee Songs. 'Combining the heritage of African culture and the experiences encountered while in bondage, early African American music would become a unifying and driving force among America's slaves. Spirituals, as many of these songs came to be called, expressed faith in God, helped make work more bearable, and also revealed plans to revolt. The songs' lyrics offer a glimpse of the true horror slaves endured as well as a hope and faith that one day they would be free. The voice for generations of African Americans, these songs laid the groundwork for the development of other forms of music in America. '

A Short History of the Sex Film. Safe for work.

Smelly Water. British environment blog. 'This blog exists to highlight examples of sewage flooding in the Thames Water region. We don't think sewage flooding is very nice and think that Thames Water ought to sort the problem out. Please help us by linking to this site.'
(Sewage flooding was a major annoyance in the area of Surrey where I used to live; poorly maintained pipes seemed to be a major contributing factor, along with blocked streams etc. One summer my neighours and I actually did some dredging of our own - getting down into the chest-high water in waders. It was quite interesting to see the stream from that perspective, especially if you're interested in natural history. It was also very hard work.)

Roadside Architecture. Photos. Lots of them! Gas stations, eateries, giant things, motels, bottle houses, etc.
'Roadside Architecture is one of my life-long passions. When I go off to agility trials on the weekends with my dogs, I try to squeeze in side-trips to check out unusual buildings, mini golfs, muffler men, etc. My traveling range is usually limited to the Northeast but you will find plenty of things included that are outside this area as well. '

Chocophelia: The Consuming Passion. Overview of chocolate history, with recipes.

The Composers' Political Compass. 'Writers and artists have been generally more engaged in the big political debates of their day than composers, and their views are often more easily discerned through their works. So how well can we tell the positions of the great composers ? '
'Woody Allen quipped that every time he heard Wagner, he was overcome with the urge to invade Poland. The positions of most others are less clear in their work, although we can hear the difference between the assertive nationalism of Wagner and the gentle folk nationalism of DvorŠk or Greig. In the case of opera, of course, there are more clues. Mozart's, for example, dealt with class war (The Marriage of Figaro) and the liberal values of the Enlightenment. Biographies often provide helpful political information as well. Some composers, like Bartůk, were known to have championed the underdog and sometimes clashed with the authorities as a result. Others, like Stravinsky, Mascagni and Puccini, enthusiastically embraced fascism. Still others, like Smetana and Tchaikovsky, were tolerant individualists who kept their distance from mass movements ... '
(From the Political Compass website - see where you stand, if you haven't already).

The Chinese in California 1850-1925. 'The Chinese in California, 1850-1925 illustrates nineteenth and early twentieth century Chinese immigration to California through about 8,000 images and pages of primary source materials. Included are photographs, original art, cartoons and other illustrations; letters, excerpts from diaries, business records, and legal documents; as well as pamphlets, broadsides, speeches, sheet music, and other printed matter. These documents describe the experiences of Chinese immigrants in California, including the nature of inter-ethnic tensions. They also document the specific contributions of Chinese immigrants to commerce and business, architecture and art, agriculture and other industries, and cultural and social life in California. Chinatown in San Francisco receives special treatment as the oldest and largest community of Chinese in the United States. Also included is documentation of smaller Chinese communities throughout California, as well as material reflecting on the experiences of individuals. Although necessarily selective, such a large body of materials presents a full spectrum of representation and opinion ... '

Hiroshima Peace Site. 'In 1949, an A-bomb materials display room (called A-bomb Memorial Hall) was opened to the public in the Hiroshima Central Community Hall. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and an accompanying building, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Hall, were opened in Peace Memorial Park in 1955 ... '

Madhubani Painting, 'an on-line exhibit of folk paintings by women artists who live in the Madhubani district of northern India.'

The South Texas Border, 1900-1920: Photographs from the Robert Runyon Collection. 'The Robert Runyon Photograph Collection of the South Texas Border Area, a collection of over 8,000 items, is a unique visual resource documenting the Lower Rio Grande Valley during the early 1900s. Donated by the Runyon family to the Center for American History in 1986, it includes glass negatives, lantern slides, nitrate negatives, prints, and postcards, representing the life's work of commercial photographer Robert Runyon (1881-1968), a longtime resident of South Texas. His photographs document the history and development of South Texas and the border, including the Mexican Revolution, the U.S. military presence at Fort Brown and along the border prior to and during World War I, and the growth and development of the Rio Grande Valley. '

Tending the Commons: Folklife and Landscape in Southern West Virginia. 'Functioning as a de facto commons, the mountains have supported a way of life that for many generations has entailed hunting, gathering, and subsistence gardening, as well as coal mining and timbering. The online collection includes extensive interviews on native forest species and the seasonal round of traditional harvesting (including spring greens; summer berries and fish; and fall nuts, roots such as ginseng, fruits, and game) and documents community cultural events such as storytelling, baptisms in the river, cemetery customs, and the spring "ramp" feasts using the wild leek native to the region.'

Cold off the Presses 'is a growing collection of classic anarchist pamphlets and journals. Click on a cover to open the issue.'

The Picture Palace. British cinemas and their architects.

The Story of the Chaup: A Myth of the Dieguenos. A Native American tale.

Georges de Feure. 'The Dutch painter Georges Joseph Van Sluyters was known in France under the pseudonym Georges de Feure. Drawn at first to the art of advertising posters, de Feure painted Symbolist compositions of Baudelairian inspiration on the theme of woman, and showed them at the Rose+Croix Salons. Around 1900 he turned to the decorative arts. His contributions to Bing's Art Nouveau pavilion at the Universal Exposition of 1900 were much admired. Gifted with a highly inventive mind, he was as skillful at designing airplanes as theatre sets and costumes.'

Brian Cairns. Illustrator.

Two Myths of the Mission Indians of California.

Jon Conrad. Illustrator.

F. Carlson. Illustrator.

Indianapolis Museum of Art: Japanese Art.

Portrait of Barbara Kressin.

Portrait of a Man with a Sheet of Music.

Portrait of a Philosopher.

Amnesia. A story about holding onto memories.

11th February

Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage. 'The heritage of Newfoundland and Labrador is the result of a unique combination of geographical and historical forces. Located on the northeastern corner of North America, the province is closer to Europe than any other part of the continent. '
'It was perhaps the first part of the New World to be explored by Europeans. Firm archaeological evidence has shown that Norse voyagers reached Newfoundland and Labrador around 1000 C.E. There are also strong indications that Newfoundland was the site of John Cabot's landfall during his first voyage to North America in 1497. In the wake of European voyages of "discovery," migratory fishers from Portugal, France, and Spain began to harvest cod off the coast of Newfoundland in the early sixteenth century ... '

The Zambian. All things Zambian.

Jussara Luz Padilha. 'Jussara Luz Padilha was born in Brazil. She arrived in New York at the age of 10 years old. Her interest in art led her to receive a scholarship to Pratt Institute. Soon after, she was accepted to join "Yoko Masaki" in New York, a highly successful design studio. She bacame deeply interested in meditation which has made a strong impact on her as an artist as well as a poet. '

Marianna Johansen-Ellis. 'Mariann Johansen-Ellis was born in Denmark, but spent most of her child-hood in Sweden. Following in the footsteps of her grandfather, who was a woodcarver and painter, it did however take Mariann until after university to discover that the arts would be her chosen career...'

The Truman Chryslers. Images of Harry Truman's cars.

Gerald and Betty Ford Historical Photographs. 'This web page provides access to images of about 230 photographs comprising Series H (Historical Photographs) of the Ford Library's White House Photographic Office collection. They cover members of the Ford, Gardner, and Bloomer families. The Gardners were President Ford's mother's family and the Bloomers were Betty Ford's family.'

The Magna Carta. 'King John of England agreed, in 1215, to the demands of his barons and authorized that handwritten copies of Magna Carta be prepared on parchment, affixed with his seal, and publicly read throughout the realm. Thus he bound not only himself but his "heirs, for ever" to grant "to all freemen of our kingdom" the rights and liberties the great charter described. With Magna Carta, King John placed himself and England's future sovereigns and magistrates within the rule of law ... '

Stone Age Reference Collection at the University of Oslo. Masses of information. Check out these scrapers, or these projectile points.

Dolmens in the Netherlands. 'The only website with full information on all 54 prehistoric burial chambers in Holland.'

Murals of Karnataka. 'With a distinct style embellished with linear grace and high impact color harmonies, the murals of Karnataka state in southern India have a romantic and exciting history and are equal in artistic value to the better known sculptures from the state.'
'There is enough evidence to prove that mural art has played as significant a role in the heritage of Karnataka. That the renowned caves of Badami are decorated with this style of painting is enough to confirm that the style was extant before the 7th century A.D. The narrative panels there give an idea of the monarch's daily routine as also the life and times of the people ... '

India's Street Culture. 'India's streets are truly a melting pot of her culture. Indians take to streets on all important festive occasions, whether they are celebrating a wedding, a victory, or a religious event. For a large number of poor Indians, indeed, the streets are the stage where the drama of their entire life unfolds...'

Big Dead Place. All about Antarctica. Via things magazine.

Fairy Tales of India.

Japanese Medical Prints.

Kim Ludbrook: The Unknowns. South African photography.

Port Cities: Unearthing Britain's Maritime Heritage.

American Dream Road. 'You will find photos of old neon signs, Route 66 in the Southwest U.S. and, perhaps some answers to the quest for the "American Dream." '

112 Gripes About the French, 1945.

Marxist Children's Literature. 'Revolutionary movements in Russia, Germany, United Kingdom, China, Cuba and the U.S. emphasized the importance of literacy and education for its youth. Major radical publishers had children's departments and heated debates over expectations and development of socialist character traits raged within parties and in radical newspapers ... '

El Greco in the Prado.

Canadian Cartoons.

Memorials of Madhya Pradesh.

Smokey the Bear Sutra. Buddhism and ecology.

Route 66 Association of Missouri.

Ohio Diners.

Portrait of Isabella of Portugal.

Portrait of a Jeweller.

Koryak Texts. 'This is a collection of mythological texts from the Koryak, a traditional people who live on the Kamchatka peninsula, in the far east of Russia. '

Portrait of Laura Pisani.

The Pot-bellied Pig and the Preacher's Wife. An amusing tale.