The powerfully enchanting Larkin Grimm, previously interviewed by Angeliska on the Coilhouse blog and featured in Issue Four of our print issue, has a new album coming out next month! You can read about what she’s been up to recently, and preview/download her song “Paradise And So Many Colors” at the Village Voice website.
Last year, the sartorial site StyleLikeU (oh good gracious, LOVE these ladies) posted a wonderful “Closet Feature” on Grimm. It’s as endearing a portrait of the woman as you’ll find anywhere:
Sometimes, when creative and inspired people get together to collaborate on making imagery in a specific vein that no one’s attempted before, a special kind of magic happens. Case in point, this elaborate photo series independently produced by Jessica Rowell of J-Chan Designs and photographer Nina Pak in cahoots with model Elizabeth Maiden:
Κατάρα της Αθηνάς, η μοίρα της Μέδουσας Αθηνάς: Elizabeth Maiden Μέδουσας: Jessica Rowell of J-Chan’s Designs Photography: Nina Pak Costume Design & Styling: J-Chan’s Designs Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Ancient Greek lore and steampunk culture clash, titan style, in a sumptuous mythos-meets-modernity photo series depicting the Goddess Athena (Elizabeth Maiden) and the Gorgon Medusa (Jessica Rowell).
According to legend, the once ravishing Medusa was cursed with a monstrous appearance after “seducing” Poseidon, Lord of the Sea, under the roof of Athena’s sacred temple. Hence, this series title (which, translated into English, means) “Athena’s curse, Medusa’s fate.”
Rowell pulled “inspiration from Desmond Davis’ 1981 film Clash of the Titans, then put an atemporal spin on things by incorporating several contemporary ingredients that “also felt industrial and familiar to alternative culture.”
Darling Madame Darla Teagarden recently shared this image, saying “Early Parisian Goths, 1910. How amazing were they? Very.”
Oh, indeed! VERYvery. That is some unparalleled late fin de siècle bohemia-infused fierceness, for sure. A bit of Google-fu has helped me trace this scrumptious photo as far back as one Mrs. Inman on Flickr. Inman’s photostream is full of all kinds of wonderful vintage postcard scans… she’s a seriously devoted collector and curator. Her tags indicate that this is a century-old French photo postcard from her vast personal archive.
Hot off the presses, a brand-new episode of Jiz: the bizarre, hilarious, raunchily dubbed version of 80s cartoon Jem and the Holograms. Where the original theme song was “Exciting adventures, fashion and fame / Once you’re a Jem girl, you’re never the same,” the Jiz refrain goes something like: “Trannies and drag queens doing cocaine / Once you’re a Jiz whore you’re never the same.” And that about sums it up.
So here it is: the Jiz drug special. “I know what you’re thinking,” writes Jiz creator Sienna D’Enema. “Isn’t every episode a drug episode? Seriously though, Jiz gets cut off from her Electronic Drug Dealer. Witness her descent into madness.”
If this is your first exposure to Jiz, check out some of the older episodes, starting with the canonical Abortion Episode, in which Jiz is pro-choice. Really, really pro-choice:
In 1940, Disney released Fantasia; an epic animated film consisting of several shorts set to classical pieces. If you haven’t seen it, it’s perfect for the holidays. There are fairies and unicorns and dancing mushrooms.
And, of course, Fantasia includes the Pastoral Symphony. As a child, I was happily unaware of the heteronormative, gender essentialist overtones of this piece. I was just excited to see all the centaur boobs and watch the fashion show unfold. Multicolored centaurettes wearing hats made from lotus flowers, birch bark and even live white doves. Exotic mythical creatures lazing around all day, spending the beautiful sunset hours eating grapes, swinging on giant swings, and bathing by the waterfall. It was just lovely. Looking back, it’s clear how ridiculous the whole thing was. A post at Nectarade provides a hilarious, pitch-perfect overview (click through to the site, it’s better with pictures):
There’s a centaur meetup and the ladies are “dressing up” so it’s not so obvious they’re all clones of each other in different colors. The males are also clonic, but they don’t give a shit about looking alike because they’re there for the mare pussy (well, that sounded funny). Also, there are some weird “little cherubs” playing as sassy gay friends of the girls, matchmakers, makeover artists, and creepy voyeurs. My first reaction: “Why are there cherubs in Olympus, anyway? I suppose they’re sort of little cupids without the bow and arrows, but it’s still fucking weird.” I did my homework, and those things are called putto (plural: putti) . Oh, okay, it makes sense artistically then. It’s still weird because they’re little creepers in this movie, but I’ve learned something new today!
…meanwhile, the clonic Ken doll centaurs get their own catwalk show from which they pick the girl they want to fuck senseless take to the prom. I don’t know if it’s racism or narcissism or fashion taken to the extreme, but I can’t help but notice that all the pairings have similar color palettes. Red/pink/brown/yellow goes with red/pink/brown/yellow, blue/purple goes with blue/purple. That’s very disappointing. You can also tell how much the couples want to have sex as soon as possible, but they can’t because there are little kids watching (and depraved putti stalking them).
Seriously, they have to settle with a lot of second-base touching and inane activities such as playing in swings and eating grapes and just hang out, sitting here consumed with lust for the rest of the evening. But OH NOES!! EMERGENCY!!! DISASTER!!! ONE OF THE CENTAURS IS ALONE! Don’t worry, guys! There’s a centauride who’s also alone! And in the same color scheme! We’re saved! How convenient that there was the same amount of boys and girls! So our team of putti, like fanbrats who feel compelled to pair every character up in the bad fanfiction they write, set them to a date by playing their phallic flute-trumpets. Thankfully, our two dorks liked each other and were actually the ones with less libido. Actually, they’re quite sweet and old-fashioned, and I’m glad for them. I mean, as happy as it can be since the putti are still stalking like Edward Cullen in Bella Swan’s period days, and even when they drop the curtain (literally) they’re still peeking over the centaurs. Eww, GTFO!
The above review of Pastoral Symphony was pretty complete… except, HELLO, WHAT’S THIS:
That’s right. Disney originally included a character named Sunflower – a half-donkey, half black girl servant figure who polished hoofs, brushed/decorated tails, and carried garlands for the centaurettes. It’s not surprising that Nectarade didn’t catch them; the scenes haven’t appeared on any release of Fantasia since the 1960s, and are hard to come by in high quality. Most versions on YouTube look like they were taped off a television. Here is the best-quality collection of all censored scenes. Sister Suffragette adds, “there’s also the possibility that there are more Sunflowers; the movie shows Sunflower with a couple different hair styles which could mean that they actually represent several servant/slave half-asses. It’s hard to tell, though, because the difference in hair style is the only distinguishing feature … of course she was happily shining the hoofs and fixing the tails of the non-black centaurs and there’s not even any thought or explanation given as to why she’s the only one that doesn’t meet a mate by the end of the segment. The others females are chosen by the males who picked them out of the lot after the females paraded and posed in front of the males.”
The real kicker is that, according to severalsources, Disney adamantly denied that Sunflower even existed up until somebody finally dug up the footage and put it on the internet (despite the fact that you can find her chowin’ down on watermelon, in stereotypical fashion, in the Fantasia cut-out book. Perhaps Disney was counting on the fact that it’s solidly out of print).
Recently, artists have been reclaiming and re-imagining Sunflower, so perhaps there’s a silver lining to all of this (as an aside, people are also reimagining some of the other Fantasia nubile centaurettes in a very – how shall I put this – non-heteronormative, non-monogamous way. Thanks, Rule 34. Thanks, Internet). People are imagining Sunflower (or Sunflowers) as a strong, confident young girl. Or a self-aware, independent woman. Or even painting her as a servant, but with much more emotion and character. If Disney won’t make this right, the people will. More remixes of Sunflower, after the jump.
Sunflower by AtomicFireball: “This is not a fanart. It’s a little wishful thinking of my own. This is my Sunflower, who never served a mistress.”
This is Cinamon. I remember seeing her on the very same day, though I didn’t take this photograph of her. I was probably 12 at the time, and as I passed by her on The Drag down by Sound Exchange, the trajectory of my life changed forever. I was completely mesmerized by this vision in black tatters, a gorgeous alien-wraith who seemed like an apparition drifting down a banal sidewalk in the bright Texas sun. She was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. I stopped and told her how amazing I thought she was, and she was so sweet to me. I’ve held this photo dear for years, a treasured gift from a mutual friend. She was such a huge influence on not only my style, but also for scores of others, (maybe even yours!) – Cinamon was the original inspiration for Neil Gaiman’s Death character from the Sandman series. Her friend Mike Dringenberg drew her years before, and by an odd twist of chance (or fate), this woman unwittingly helped shape the style of scads of wee gothlings. Cheers to you, Cinamon – you continue to inspire and astound!
This was me at maybe 15 or 16? It was for a fashion show at the old Club 404, a legendary big gay bar from back in the day here in Austin. I was total monster-child jail bait, who spent most of my time scampering around in the woods on drugs wishing I wasn’t human, poring over Elfquest and Sandman comics and Storm Constantine’s Wraeththu trilogy. I made my outfit in five minutes out of electrical tape, eyeliner, wire and black tulle. Oh, and a thong. Heaven forbid that should I ever spawn a girl-child as naughty as I was! With any luck, I’ll end up with a Saffy.
(photo by Monte McCarter)
At the tender age of barely 17, I became the armed spokesmodel for FringeWare Review’s book catalogue. This involved posing in my underpants and various getups made of rubber and dollparts with books and guns. Real guns. That’s totally an actual Uzi or Tech-9 or whatever the hell, too. I was super blessed to be part of FringeWare when it was around – it was a strange and magical era.
Good morning! On this day in 1965, in Reykjavík, Iceland, a strange and delightful being called Björk Guðmundsdóttir was born. Or hatched out of a pod. Or was ejected from a volcano. Or something. Whatever.
Anyhoo… 46 years later, she’s still brimming with vim, vigor, and weirdness. Coilhouse has compiled a massive YouTube playlist of her music videos to honor the occasion of her whelping, and hopefully help you to wake your ass up on this glacially chilly November morn.
This week’s installment of BTC comes to us courtesy of the ineffable cinematic WTF-fest that is The Forbidden Zone. Take it away, Susu…
Directed by Richard Elfman, TFZ stars real life ex-lovers Hervé Villechaize and Susan Tyrrell (who steals the show with the above number, which she wrote the lyrics for herself!) along with various members of the Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo. TFZ also features the first full-length film score by Richard’s younger brother, Danny Elfman, along with Warhol Superstar Viva, B-movie maniac Joe Spinell, performance art duo the Kipper Kids, and the pioneering street dance troupe, The Lockers.
Made on a shoestring over the course of three years in the early eighties, TFZ is “basically a filmed version of what we were doing on stage with the Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo,” Richard Elfman said when Coilhouse interviewed him last year. “As the group was becoming less ‘theatrical’ and more rock based, I wanted to preserve on film the essence of what we had been doing on stage.” Elfman’s final cut is reflective all of the funniest, weirdest, most brazen and poignant attributes of ‘Boingo.
You can read all about this subterranean cult classic in Issue Six of the magazine, which will probably sell out of our web store pretty soon, so don’t put off buying your copy if you want to learn more about the on and offscreen adventures of Queen Doris, King Fausto, Squeezit Henderson the Chicken Boy, Frenchy and Renee.
This week’s BTC is dedicated to two darlings: firstly, to our brave and steadfast Circulation Director, Gretta Sherwood, who will be mailing off thousands of copies of the magazine over the coming weeks, and secondly, to Wiley Wiggins, who got Coilhouse a quote from Queen Doris herself for the magazine article. Gret and Wiley are both celebrating birthdays this week! Big love and gratitude to each of you beauties.
Thomas Negovan of Century Guild is an incredibly brilliant and intuitive creative force whose latest curation, “Grand Guignol II: HÄXAN – Satan + The Women Who Love Him” opened to the public tonight (Saturday October 22nd) at the Century Guild salon in Chicago. The art –which, as you might guess from the name, focuses on dark femininity and the demonic– assembled for this group show is astonishing:
“Austin Young’s 1999 portrait of avant-garde diva Diamanda Galás; Georges de Feure’s 1893 Japonist conjuration of wickedness “Friends of the Devil in the Flesh” ; Gustav Klimt’s ultra-seductive “The Witch” (1919) ; and “Italian Art Nouveau master Adolfo Hohenstein next to modern Italian artists Malleus, painter Gail Potocki, and sculptor Stanislav Szukalski.”
Carlos Schwabe’s “Destruction”
(Un)holy fucking shit, right?!
Thomas says “This is far and away my favorite show I’ve curated. Ever.” As of this moment, he tells Coilhouse that most of the works are available, but they’re going to fly off the walls shortly, so if you’re in Chicago, you gotta go see this jaw-dropping collection of pieces brought together for one luxuriant, once-in-a-lifetime event. Incroyable.
Generals, marines, lawyers, coach drivers, politicians, and even artists! These were “Les Femmes de l’Avenir,” or “Women of the Future,” as imagined in a series of 20 postcards from the turn of the last century. Above is the wasp-waisted, tattooed General; below, the smartly-dressed, attentive Journalist with a post-modern duck on her hat. Despite some of these being a proto-version the whole “Sexy (fill-in-the-blank)” thing, which can be problematic, there is a sweetness and feeling of empowerment to these that modern costume equivalents (i.e. today’s “sexy general“) often lack.