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25th March

Image Galleries of the Paris Commune 1871. Includes early photographs and political caricatures.

Edo Prints Gallery. 'We specialize in late 18th century and 19th century Japanese Woodblock Prints. We have an extended collection of Ukiyo-e classical woodblock prints, representing most of the well known artists of the era.' Many viewable online.

Indians of the Yosemite Valley and Vicinity: Their History, Customs and Traditions. 'This short little book was written by one of the pioneers of Yosemite National Park, Galen Clark. In 1857 Clark was the first white person to view the Mariposa Grove, a stand of old-growth redwoods which are some of the largest living organisms on the planet. Clark was one of the first full-time white residents of Yosemite and is considered the first ranger of that park. Although obviously Clark had no training in ethnography, he lived for many years with the last generation of pre-contact Native Americans of Yosemite. It is apparent that the Yosemite Miwok, who had a disasterous first contact, were extremely reluctant to open up about the details of their mythology and culture, even to comparatively benign individuals such as Clark. '

David Hockney Pictures in the Salts Mill, Saltaire, Yorkshire.
A Hollywood Collection by David Hockney. 'These six prints (1965) were Hockney's idea of an instant art collection, pre-packaged in appropriate frames for a Hollywood starlet.'

Southern Mosaic: The John and Ruby Lomax 1939 Southern States Recording Trip. 'The John and Ruby Lomax 1939 Southern States Recording Trip is a multiformat ethnographic field collection that includes nearly 700 sound recordings, as well as fieldnotes, dust jackets, and other manuscripts documenting a three-month, 6,502-mile trip through the southern United States. Beginning in Port Aransas, Texas, on March 31, 1939, and ending at the Library of Congress on June 14, 1939, John Avery Lomax, Honorary Consultant and Curator of the Archive of American Folk Song (now the Archive of Folk Culture, American Folklife Center), and his wife, Ruby Terrill Lomax, recorded approximately 25 hours of folk music from more than 300 performers. These recordings represent a broad spectrum of traditional musical styles, including ballads, blues, children's songs, cowboy songs, fiddle tunes, field hollers, lullabies, play-party songs, religious dramas, spirituals, and work songs. Photographic prints from the Lomaxes' other Southern states expeditions, as well as their other recording trips made under the auspices of the Library of Congress, illustrate the collection, since no photographs from the 1939 Southern States Recording Trip have been identified. For more information about related documentary projects undertaken by the Archive of American Folk Song in 1939, see the 1939 Annual Report of the Library of Congress. This presentation is made possible by the generous support of The Texaco Foundation. '

Particle Sphere. An online comic. Excellent.

Karsha's Chuchikjyal Temple, Tibet. 'In the Summer of 1996, the Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation donated funds to help the Karsha Lhonpo stabilize the structure of the Chuchikjyal Temple in Karsha, Zangskar. I (Rob Linrothe) delivered the funds, and returned again in 1998. Progress was measurable. There is now an outer encasing wall to shore up the sagging structure. In addition, strong foundations for steps were made along the side of the wall, to decrease the weakening of the foundations. Timber has been purchased for the next stage of the project, which will entail removing the ceiling and replacing the warped and cracked beams.'

Greatest Engineering Achievements of the Twentieth Century. 'How many of the 20th century's greatest engineering achievements will you use today? A car? Computer? Telephone? Explore our list of the top 20 achievements, and learn how engineering shaped a century and changed the world. '

The Last of the Voudoos, by Lafcadio Hearn.
'In the death of Jean Montanet, at the age of nearly a hundred years, New Orleans lost, at the end of August, the most extraordinary African character that ever gained celebrity within her limits. Jean Montanet, or Jean La Ficelle, or Jean Latanié, or Jean Racine, or Jean Grisgris, or Jean Macaque, or Jean Bayou, or "Voudoo John," or "Bayou John," or "Doctor John" might well have been termed "The Last of the Voudoos"; not that the strange association with which he was affiliated has ceased to exist with his death, but that he was the last really important figure of a long line of wizards or witches whose African titles were recognized, and who exercised an influence over the colored population. Swarthy occultists will doubtless continue to elect their "queens" and high-priests through years to come, but the influence of the public school is gradually dissipating all faith in witchcraft, and no black hierophant now remains capable of manifesting such mystic knowledge or of inspiring such respect as Voudoo John exhibited and compelled. There will never be another "Rose," another "Marie," much less another Jean Bayou ... '

Castle Fine Arts: Fine Japanese Woodblock Prints. 'Specializing in fine 18th to 20th Century Japanese Woodblock Prints, Castle Fine Arts has been providing fine art to collectors, corporations, museums, and the trade since 1977.'

The Hill. The newspaper for and about the US Congress.

James K. Galbraith. A selection of articles and essays.

Mandala and Temple Sacred Architecture in Tibet. 'In Tibet theories about religion, its spiritual power and tenacious hold on the human imagination become reality. Tibet is a repository of some of the most ancient beliefs and rituals. It houses temples such as the magnificent Jokhang in Lhasa, the ethereal national cathedral of Tibetan religion, where one can immerse oneself in an atmosphere that evokes the great temples of antiquity.'

The Nikolai Bukharin Archive. Russian revolutionary, executed by Stalin, rehabilitated under Gorbachev.

Nauwincx: Mountain Landscape with River and Wagon.

Van de Cappelle: Shipping in a Calm at Flushing. 'In the busy port of Vlissingen (Flushing) used by the Dutch East India Company in the 1600s, grand ships glide through placid waters. The cannon on a large yacht fires a salute announcing the arrival of a dignitary, who is carried ashore by the launch to the right. By the mid-1600s, the Dutch Republic had reached the height of its power as a global trading empire, and its domination of the seas found expression in the genre of marine painting. In 1649 Jan van de Cappelle introduced the "parade" picture, in which grand ships convene for a special occasion under dramatic cloudy skies. '

Congress Passes 'America is #1 Bill: 'Whoooooo!' Shout Legislators.

Van der Neer: Moonlit Landscape with a View of the New Amstel River and Castle Kostverloren.

Goyen: View of the Castle of Wijk at Duurstede.

An Apollo 12 Panorama. 'The Apollo 12 mission was the second ever to land humans on the Moon. The mission was dedicated to studying the Moon, developing techniques, and developing instruments that could be used in future lunar landings. Astronauts Charles (Pete) Conrad and Alan Bean spent just under two days on the lunar surface in November 1969, while Richard Gordon orbited above in the Command Module. Pictured above in this digitally stitched panorama, Alan Bean works near the Lunar Module. '

Stereo View Near Surveyor Crater.

Congress Approves $4 Billion for Bread, Circuses.

Congress Approves $540 Million for Evil.

24th March

From Ritual to Romance, 1920. The legend of the Holy Grail.
'In view of the extensive literature to which the Grail legend has already given birth it may seem that the addition of another volume to the already existing corpus calls for some words of apology and explanation. When the student of the subject contemplates the countless essays and brochures, the volumes of studies and criticism, which have been devoted to this fascinating subject, the conflicting character of their aims, their hopelessly contradictory results, he, or she, may well hesitate before adding another element to such a veritable witches' cauldron of apparently profitless study. And indeed, were I not convinced that the theory advocated in the following pages contains in itself the element that will resolve these conflicting ingredients into one harmonious compound I should hardly feel justified in offering a further contribution to the subject.'
'But it is precisely because upwards of thirty years' steady and persevering study of the Grail texts has brought me gradually and inevitably to certain very definite conclusions, has placed me in possession of evidence hitherto ignored, or unsuspected, that I venture to offer the result in these studies, trusting that they may be accepted as, what I believe them to be, a genuine Elucidation of the Grail problem ... '

File 49. An online comic. 'File 49 holds all the information regarding the people and practises of The Lennox Project. It is one of many files created and held by a secret agency of the government called the Keeper Division, pertaining to supernatural threats to the country. File 49 was a result of an unknown leak about The Project. File 49 was first created in 1986 and closed in late 1988 after all the information collected was enough to terminate the Lennox Project. Code-named "graduation day", the termination of the Lennox Project involved the disposal of everyone involved. Only about half were discovered. The other half went into hiding...deeming the mission unsuccessful by Keeper Division officials ... '

Nature Navigator: A Guide to British Wildlife. From the Natural History Museum, London. 'Explore Britain's wildlife and view artworks from the Museum's collections...'

The Mikhail Bakunin Archive. Russian anarchist.

Hiroshige. Gallery of prints.

Gongkar Chode Monastery. 'The monastery of Gongkar belongs to the Zung branch of the Sakyapa school, and was decorated in the 16th c. with beautiful wall paintings by the celebrated founder of the Khyenri school of Tibetan painting, Jamyang Khyentse Wangchuk (born 1524). Numerous wall paintings executed by him are still visible. These unique art historical documents will allow for the identification of this school which is known to have had a strong influence on later Tibetan painting, right up to the 20th c. The monastery used to house one hundred and sixty monks, and now has about thirty. The main building is in good condition, and the exterior has been restored.'

Judicial Watch. 'Judicial Watch, Inc. was established in 1994 to serve as an ethical and legal "watchdog" over our government, legal, and judicial systems to promote a return to ethics and morality in our nation's public life.'

Spitfire & Hurricane Memorial Museum, Kent. 'The Memorial and this website are dedicated to the pilots and aircrew who gave so much to preserve freedom in the dark days of World War II. It is available for everyone who wishes to maintain the memory of their sacrifice.'

The Information Clearing House. 'NEWS YOU WON'T FIND ON CNN OR FOX Mooooo's '

Hoffmann: A Hare in the Forest. 'Nibbling on a leaf pulled from a stalk of Lady's Mantle, an alert hare sits at the edge of a pine forest. Unlike the darkness one would expect to find in a forest, Hans Hoffmann painted a theatrically illuminated scene. Each plant and insect—snail, cricket, beetle—is seen in vivid detail. The finely wrought leaves of the thistle, the sprawling fronds of a plantain, and the bright blue flowers of the Hare Bell attest to Hoffmann's meticulous treatment of the subject. In fact, none of these plants could have co-existed in the natural world. Hoffmann imaginatively combined numerous individual nature studies in a single painting. Hoffmann's golden-brown hare is based on Albrecht Dürer's famous and influential watercolor which, much like his Stag Beetle, shows a hare against a plain ground. Hoffmann had seen Dürer's hare while in Nuremburg. Later, when he went to work in the court of Emperor Rudolf II, he helped the Emperor acquire the watercolor for his Kunstkammer. Hoffmann's hare differs from Dürer's however, appearing amid a striking arrangement of elegant plants and insects. At the time it was painted, this arrangement of nearly life-size subjects was entirely unique, not only within Hoffmann's body of work, but also within the tradition of German nature study.'

Molijn: Landscape with Cottage and Figures. 'A bright expanse of sky on the right balances lush, dark, billowing trees. A road winds into the distance, where the flat Dutch landscape seems to extend into infinity. Two majestic trees dominate the painting's center, dwarfing the figures and emphasizing humanity's comparatively small place in the world. '

Gallery of Shin Hanga. Japanese prints.

Max Stirner. German philosopher of egoism.
'As a preface to The Ego and Its Own, Stirner wrote a short piece Ich hab' mein Sach' auf nichts gestellt (I have set my affair on nothing; usually translated "All things are nothing to me"). In this piece, he shows how the Sultan, God, the Good etc. are not serving anything beyond themselves, but rather have set themselves up as the highest good to serve. Stirner writes: "I for my part take a lesson from them, and propose, instead of further unselfishly serving those great egoists, rather to be the egoist myself." '

A Distant Journey to Rajasthan. 'Through these slow paced and detailed travel narration, enjoy the intricate and complex details that constitute the Indian social and political system. It shows the agony of a young, Western educated scholar going home to serve India, and the joy he finds in studying the simplicity of Indian life.'

Bernard Descamps: Madagascar. Photography.

The Manor House Museum. 'The Manor House Museum, a magnificent Georgian town house in the timeless setting of Bury St Edmunds' Great Churchyard, houses a superb series of collections. The displays feature some of the finest clocks and watches to be found anywhere in the world, costume and textiles from the seventeenth century to the present day, and portrait paintings of national importance. '
'Art and technology constantly interweave themselves through these collections, whether in the intricate inventions of the clockmaker's craft, with magnificent examples drawn from every period and place, or in the gorgeously elaborate beaded decoration of the unique 1920's costume collection, or the innovative print making techniques of artists like Sybil Andrews. '
'At the same time the changing face of life in the small town of Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, is unfolded for us, sometimes comically, as in the satirical prints of Henry Bunbury, sometimes grandly impressive, in portraits by Reynolds or Tissot.'

American Gulf War Veterans Association. Check out the section on Gulf War Syndrome.

Guerrilla News Network.

RicksAstro Astrophotography. Photographs of planets, nebulae, galaxies, and other astronomical objects.

Ensor: Christ's Entry into Brussels in 1889. 'Ensor's society is a mob, threatening to trample the viewer-a crude, ugly, chaotic, dehumanized sea of masks, frauds, clowns, and caricatures. Public, historical, and allegorical figures along with the artist's family and friends made up the crowd. The haloed Christ at the center of the turbulence is in part a self-portrait: mostly ignored, a precarious, isolated visionary amidst the herd-like masses of modern society. Ensor's Christ functioned as a political spokesman for the poor and oppressed-a humble leader of the true religion, in opposition to the atheist social reformer Emile Littré, shown in bishop's garb holding a drum major's baton leading on the eager, mindless crowd.'

Monet: The Portal of Rouen Cathedral in Morning Light. ' "Everything changes, even stone." Claude Monet wrote these words in a letter and vividly demonstrated them in paint, conveying a wondrous combination of permanence and mutability as the sun daily transformed the facade of Rouen Cathedral. Extending the building's encrusted stone surface to the richly varied impasto surface of his painting, he portrayed the cathedral perpetually re-emerging in the suffused light of early morning.'

Bush Begins Hunger Strike to Protest Human Rights Abuses in Nepal.

Bush Calls on Business Leaders to Create 500,000 Shitty Jobs by 2003. Somewhat out of date but funny.

23rd March

Floating World Gallery. Japanese woodblock prints. Check out the online exhibitions.

Claude Iverne: Northwestern Sudan. Photography.

Louis-Auguste Blanqui Archive. French anarchist of the 19th century. "It is my duty as a proletarian, deprived of all the rights of the city, to reject the competence of a court where only the privileged classes who are not my peers sit in judgment over me"

The Great Pupkin. 'Pets can provide companionship, protection, and in some cases, an excuse to play dress-up. Writer Todd Levin and photographer Geoff Badner report on dogs in Brooklyn wearing clothes.' Launch the gallery here.

The London Motorcycle Museum. 'London's only Motorcycle Museum opened its doors officially for the first time on 2nd May 1999 and has become a thriving local attraction. Now open every weekend and bank holiday, it has already attracted visitors from Japan, South Africa, Australia, Norway, France and there is strong support from motorcycle clubs throughout the UK. For the keen biker, the well seasoned enthusiast or anyone with an interest in biking history, the London Motorcycle Museum has something to capture everyones imagination. '

Line Drawings of India in India Ink. 'During my travels and studies, for several reasons (lack of co-operation, Government regulations, prohibited photography, bad light, poor dark-room facilities, and cost) it was not always possible to document the happenings or artifacts on film. Over the years, I have learnt to authentically reproduce/enhance the experience via line drawings done in India ink. This is especially true of historical sculptures where the originals themselves were in extremely poor condition.'

Conspiracy Nation.

Domenichino: The Way to Calvary. 'The cross pins Christ to the ground under its weight as he struggles on the way to his Crucifixion. With his mouth parted as if to speak, Christ looks sorrowfully out at the viewer. The large figures and compressed composition enhance the sense of his oppression under the massive cross and the cruelty of his tormentors. '

Paelinck: The Holy Family. 'Joseph Paelinck stressed the humanity of the Holy Family in this moment of peace and intimacy. His simple, orderly composition gives equal attention to each of the individual figures. The device of the draped wall encloses the space and intensifies the viewer's focus on the interaction among the large, idealized figures. Elements such as the dramatic lighting and the sharply articulated folds of drapery show Paelinck's admiration of Jacques-Louis David's Neoclassical style. '

The Witch Head Nebula.

Dust Pillar in the Trifid Nebula.

British Parliament Accused of Plagiarising US Senate Bill S.576.

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms Reaches Trade Agreement with Food & Drug Administration. 'The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, & Firearms and the Food & Drug Administration reached a formal trade agreement Monday. Under the terms of the deal, the ATF will provide the FDA with alcohol, tobacco and firearms in exchange for equal value in food and drugs.'

22nd March

Richard May: Everything Is Illustrated. 'Successful illustrations need strange perspectives in order to tell a story and, hopefully, strike a viewer across the mouth. An interview with pro illustrator Richard May, plus a gallery of his recent work.' Launch the gallery here.< /a>

Gypsy Life. 'An on-line exhibition from collections at The Museum of English Rural Life. Fantastic.

Tuareg Salt Caravans. Photography. Use the symbols at the top of the page to navigate.

The Proudhon Archive. The 19th century anarchist thinker.

Japanese Illustrated Books. Gorgeous.

Drathang Monastery, Tibet. 'When Giuseppe Tucci visited this small monastery in the 1940s, he found the original wall paintings and large stucco figures in excellent condition. Clear and distinct influences from the surrounding Buddhist civilisations: Central Asia, India and Nepal, were manifest in both sculpture and painting, making Drathang an excellent source for the study of the development of early Tibetan art.'
'Used as a grain store from the Cultural Revolution to this day, the building itself has survived in reasonable condition. The stucco figures have all been destroyed, but six large painted panels, depicting scenes of the Buddha's teaching remain, as well as a superb carved and painted triple doorway that leads into the main chapel. Later wall paintings of fine quality, in various styles, adorn the walls of the entrance way and the first chapel ... '

My Kind of Town. 'A city with more than two-dozen neighborhoods and nearly every one of the world's ethnic groups can be a bit difficult to navigate. Correspondent Rosecrans Baldwin picks a single direction – north – and walks the entire length of Manhattan.'
(A feat I myself achieved in 2002).

Reni: Joseph and Potiphar's Wife. Art.

Breenbergh: The Stoning of Saint Stephen. 'Large Roman ruins loom in the background, against which excited figures engage in a brutal murder. In the shadowy right foreground, Saint Stephen kneels in prayer; behind him a shirtless man takes aim with a large rock. All around, people scurry to pick up rocks to hurl at the defenseless saint. A small boy helps out by bringing stones to the adults. '

How to Build a Successful Snowman.

A Dust Devil Crater on Mars.

Colourful Clouds of the Carina Nebula.

The Amazons, by Guy Cadogan Rothery, 1910. 'With all of the oceans of ink spilled over subjects such as Atlantis, Bigfoot and UFOs, not to mention the pop culture awareness created by the Xena, Warrior Princess TV series, I find it surprising that there are so few books devoted to the Amazons. The legend of the Amazons is amazingly consistent across three continents, even though actual documentary proof seems elusive. In particular, the Athenians were most insistent about the historical reality of a nation of all-women warriors; their legends described a prehistoric conflict with the Amazons as one of their finest hours. Although later the Amazons became just another map-filling imaginary creature alongside Centaurs, Cyclops, and Giants, Greek legend gives many fine-grained details about the geography, history and anthropology of the Amazon nation. It would be most interesting to see if any of these can be verified using modern techniques. '

Shinto Shrines. Loads of links.

The History & Making of Butter. 'Butter – the everlasting delight of the gourmand, the faithful ally of the culinary arts, the constant symbol of good living. '
'Through time and across the globe, butter has had a sacred quality. From the ancient Fertile Crescent to the present day, butter has symbolized the powerful, life giving and sacred, the good, the happy, the healthy and pure. It has sustained lives, cultures and civilizations for millennia.'
'Butter is a culinary treasure as old as King Tut's tomb. "She brought forth butter in a lordly dish" (Judges 5:25). A jug of wine, a loaf of bread – and butter! Pure butter is produced today essentially as it was in King Tut's time, though butter made of milk from cows instead of camels or water buffaloes ... '

London. A narrative history.
'When the Romans invaded Britain in AD43, they moved north from the Kentish Coast and traversed the Thames in the London region, clashing with the local tribesmen just to the north. It has been suggested that the soldiers crossed the river at Lambeth, but it was further downstream that they built a permanent wooden bridge, just east of the present London Bridge, in more settled times some seven years later. As a focal point of the Roman road system, it was the bridge which attracted settlers and led to London's inevitable growth. Though the regularity of London's original street grid may indicate that the initial inhabitants were the military, trade and commerce soon followed. The London Thames was deep and still within the tidal zone: an ideal place for the berthing of ships. The area was also well-drained and low-lying with geology suitable for brickmaking. There was soon a flourishing city called Londinium in the area where the monument now stands. The name itself is Celtic, not Latin, and may originally have referred merely to a previous farmstead on the site ... '

Jamaica Anansi Stories, by Martha Warren Beckwith, 1924. 'This classic of Jamaican folklore was collected by Martha Warren Beckwith, whose translation of the Hawaiian Creation epic, the Kumulipo, is also at sacred-texts. Beckwith studied under the famous ethnographer Franz Boas, who also encouraged the pioneering Afro-Caribbean ethnographic field work of Zora Neale Huston. Jamaica Anansi Stories includes folklore, transcriptions of folk music, and a large collection of riddles, all cross-referenced with folklore studies from other cultures. The index below includes links to scanned images of music notation in the text; note that the song titles have been assigned arbitrarily. To assist search engine robots and visually impaired readers using text-to-speech programs, I have also transcribed the song lyrics below each image of scanned music notation. Each story is cross-linked to the notes, both in the index and the particular file. '

The Erotic Arts of India. 'To appreciate the erotic arts of India, one must understand the role of sex in the scheme of things according to Hinduism. Hinduism is a way of life according to prescribed codes. Every Hindu has to undergo sixteen denotary rituals (samskara) and four stages of life (ashramas). The final aim of life is salvation, which is the merging of the individual soul (atma) with the supreme soul (paramatma). One can attain salvation (moksha) through dharma, artha and kama. The ancient Indians took a healthy, integrated view of all aspects of life and gave sex its due importance in the overall picture. The pursuit of pleasure (kama) is one of the important aims of life, on the path to deliverance.'

Charles Benefiel. Outsider artist.

John Snow's London in 1859. A historical map.

Diego Rivera: Mother and Child 'The most famous Mexican painter of his age, Rivera was a pioneer in the mural revival of the mid-twentieth century. After a precocious childhood he was sent to study in Europe in 1907 with the support of the governor of Vera Cruz. For fourteen years he lived in Spain and in Paris, experimenting with Cubism, Surrealism, and other radical styles. Although he never became devoted to any of these, the ideas of the modernists liberated him from the academic manner that he had learned in Mexico.'

Diego Rivera in the San Diego Museum of Art.

American People Ruled Unfit to Govern. 'The controversial decision, the first of its kind in the 210-year history of U.S. representative government, was, according to Justice David Souter, "a response to the clear, demonstrable incompetence and indifference of the current U.S. citizenry in matters concerning the operation of this nation's government." '

Bill of Rights Pared Down to a Manageable Six. 'Flanked by key members of Congress and his administration, President Bush approved Monday a streamlined version of the Bill of Rights that pares its 10 original amendments down to a "tight, no-nonsense" six.'