Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Virginia & Francis

Virginia & Frances.

Collage using pictures of Virginia Eliza Clemm Poe and Frances Sargent Osgood, a close friend of Edgar Allan Poe, by Colette Saint Yves.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Monday, November 28, 2011



Hello! Did you have a delicious Thanksgiving? Did you cook or cater? Football game or post-feast nap? Did you wind up covered in various kinds of flour while trying to prepare pumpkin pies? :) I always forget to put on an apron until about halfway through a recipe, and by that time... well, let's just say I'm glad my parents have an in-house washing machine. Other holiday highlights included molasses sweet potatoes, several evenings out with one of my closest friends, and a weepy viewing of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II.

I'm going to be out of town for the next week and half, but I've got some lovely minimalist posts lined up for you to keep you entertained. My book reviews for this month will also be postponed until the end of December due to trip preparations and such. Hopefully, I'll have some exciting news and some absorbing reads to share with you in the coming weeks! Until then, enjoy your leftovers and the wonderful, smoky smell of early winter.

Above, hand rolled candles by Jill Rizzo of Small Stump and Studio Choo, via Flickr.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Danny Kaye

Photographs of the inimitable Danny Kaye. His musical ability and flair for physical comedy and tongue-twisting lyrics made him one of my favorite comedic actors growing up. The Inspector General, Hans Christian Andersen, and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty were constants in my childhood. Kaye is joyous onscreen, and the palpable fun he has dancing and erupting into seemingly improvised nonsense is irresistible. While searching for these photos, I learned that his wife, Sylvia Fine, wrote the majority of his lyrics which is just so cute, no? There's a quote from her on IMDB about Kaye:
"I can't say what Danny Kaye is like in private life. There are too many of them."
Given her writerly wit and his vivid performances, I'd say they were a perfect creative match.

If you're unfamiliar with Kaye, here are a couple clips to get you warmed up: the gypsy drinking song (by Fine) from The Inspector General (1949), and the pellet with the poison bit from The Court Jester (1956).

Photographs via the Life photo archive.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Gemma Correll

the circle of woe

Ahh, it feels so good to know I'm not alone on that! :)

Gemma Correll really deserves a giant solo post here on Length x Wit considering how much I love her work. I've been a huge fan since the moment I laid eyes on her portfolio a couple years ago, and I just ordered a pack of her kitty postcards to hoard send out to friends since they make me laugh every time I look at them. However, much like the lady above, I'm a bit swamped with work and hopeful preparations for an exciting life change (more on that soon, fingers crossed!), so that giant solo post will have to wait. If you can't bear to wait though, check out her Tumblr to get an immediate fix. You won't be sorry, I promise.

Have a lovely Monday!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Valerie Hegarty

The beauty of these weather beaten, half eaten, regressive works by Valerie Hegarty makes my heart ache. With these four, Hegarty takes the subject matter and applies its natural, real world effects to the physical work: a painting of fruit left sitting out has rotted away and been picked at by animals. In Fog Warning with Barnacles (2010), Winslow Homer's The Fog Warning (1885) is ravaged by salt water. As Hegarty says,
My piece suggests the storm has caught up with the man in the boat, now the image itself has been the subject and victim of the storm. I like the idea of the Homer image being swept away in a Homeresque manner, engulfed by the ocean.
I also love how the canvases and wooden frames transform into branches, stretching and clawing to return to their natural, knotty state.

From the top: In the Woods, Of the Woods (2009); Fog Warning with Barnacles (2010); Autumn on the Hudson Valley with Branches (2009); Still Life with Half-Eaten Fruit (2011).

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Autumn/Winter 2011: Stewart Parvin

Presenting my fantasy grown up wardrobe, brought to you by Stewart Parvin. The 2011 fall couture collection would be good for work, parties, and work parties.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Molecular Works

Karen Margolis plots out intangible thoughts and feelings and turns them into mixed media works:
Curious about what thoughts and emotions might look like inside the brain, I translate my interior monologues into molecular patterns of color... These mind maps function to chronicle the behavior of chemical interactions in the brain for the duration of various “states of mind”, offering a glimpse into the formal arrangement of emotions.

From the top, left to right: Mercury (2006); Scattered (2008-09); Calculational Impasse (2008-09); Dehiscence (2008-09); Gegenshein (2006); Dvitva (2009).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Farm Security Administration Color Photographs

A cross roads store, bar, "juke joint," and gas station in the cotton plantation area, Melrose, La. (LOC)Going to town on Saturday afternoon, Greene Co., Ga. (LOC)Trucks outside of a starch factory, Caribou, Aroostook County, Me. There were almost fifty trucks in the line. Some had been waiting for twenty-four hours for the potatoes to be graded and weighed (LOC)
Boys fishing in a bayou, Schriever, La. (LOC)
A starch factory along the Aroostook River, Caribou, Aroostook County, Me. (LOC)
"Backstage" at the "girlie" show at the Vermont state fair, Rutland (LOC)
Georgia oat field? Southern U.S. (LOC)

While rooting through the Flickr of the Library of Congress, I came across a collection of color photographs from the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information taken in the 1930s and 40s. FSA photographs from this time period were mostly in black and white, so I was happily surprised to see such an array of richly colored images.

Check out more of the collection here and here.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Gorgeous stone and silver jewelry by the Portland-based lumafina. I'm borderline obsessed with that Herkimer diamond ring - you can choose the quartz you want set, and there are some seriously delicious smoky black stones to pick from. Of course, I wouldn't say no to that trio of chevrons either. Lust much? :)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Big Wigs

Justin Richel transforms a classic Western symbol of power and refinement into one of absurdity and complacency.
These men sit ridged and firm in their positions of power and deeply entrenched in their glory, so much so that they essentially become “monuments” of their own making. As a result birds move into their hair and natural events such as fire take their toll, all the while the big wigs struggle to save face and maintain their proud and victorious posture, ignoring their surroundings and the ensuing predicaments.

From the top: Too Big For His Britches (2009); Stag Party (2009); Fowl Disposition (2008); Stag Party (2007).

Friday, November 4, 2011

Branding 10,000 Lakes

Nicole Meyer's ambitious endeavor to brand all of Minnesota's lakes has resulted in some beautiful logos. In her own words:
Lake logos have a tendency to be, well, fairly ugly. This project was created to rethink what they could be. One Minnesota Lake. One Logo. Every day. Should only take a little over 27 years to hit 'em all.
See more of Meyer's work at Branding 10,000 Lakes.
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