We’re off today for Memorial Day, but I thought I’d share this editorial piece from the New York Times, which I think frames this day of remembrance quite well.
It has always seemed fitting to mark the purpose of this holiday — honoring those who have died in our country’s service — at the exuberant end of May. The outburst of spring is just slowing into summer’s cadence, and yet you can still smell and feel the biological crescendo all around you.
Whether it consoles the people who are gardening those graves is for them to say. And these years, after a decade of two wars, there are many lost lives to mourn. But nature is doing all it can to comfort. Life, it seems to be saying, continues on from summer to summer. There are memories and sadness, but also a verdancy that makes us celebrate what we have.
This is the Alésia Museum designed by Bernard Tschumi Architects. The museum commemorates a battle that occurred between Julius Cesar and the Gauls some two thousand years ago where the museum now stands. Although the scheme for the museum includes two buildings, these images are of the Interpretive Center. According to the architects:
The interpretative center is built of wood, much as the Roman fortifications would have been at the time of the siege. The roof of the building is a garden planted with trees and grass, camouflaging the presence of the building when seen from the town above. Visitors may look onto reconstructions of the Roman battlements from the roof garden, or stroll down a path to experience the reconstitutions first-hand.
I found these really incredible space suit motion tests through the Flickr of the San Diego Air & Space Museum, which is a veritable trove of space goodies. I’m not entirely sure what the back story is on these but it would seem to me that they were testing the mobility of the suits, making sure the people who wore them could move adequately to do their jobs (aka play golf on the moon). I doubt these images were never meant to be seen as “artsy”, but I can’t help but think of how cool they look.
Dear San Diego Air & Space Museum, if you own the rights to these photos you should blow them up to a giant size and sell them as art prints, make your fine organization a little money!
Earlier this morning world class illustrator Tom Gauld announced that he’s started a Tumblr for all of his weekly Guardian pieces called You’re All Just Jealous Of My Jetpack. He says that, “some will be old ones but most will be new. The cartoons appear in the Review so they will often be about the arts.” There are only six cartoons up so far but they all made me laugh, so I’d say he’s off to a really good start.
I think there are a lot of opinions on Banksy, but one thing I’ve always believed is that he truly is a remarkable artist. I mean, I think he really does have genuine artist talent. If you look at some of his re-appropriated paintings, or even the proportions to the stencils he makes, you can see he must have had some sort of fine art training.
I think a bit of that comes through in this recent piece he posted to his site, a ballerina on the back of a painting, walking the string you would normally hang it from. Dare I say this piece is elegant, or even beautiful? Could I be bold enough to say that if Degas had used spray paint rather than oils it may have looked like something like this? I could, but that might rile too many people up. Instead I’ll simply say how nice this looks, and that it’s interesting to see Banksy making commentary on fine art culture in such a lovely way.