Happy Nyan Year!

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Coilhouse Magazine + Blog wishes all of you an inspiring, creative, compassionate, exhilarating, loving, and giggle-filled 2012.

Three Kickstarter Projects Worth Supporting: Take This Book, Cakeland and Ethical Corsetry

2011 was an incredible year. With all the hope, uncertainty and weirdness that lies ahead in 2012 – election year, Alan Turing Year, the year of the Mayan Apocalypse, the year that 2011 seeds come to fruition – why not start on a good karmic note? Three incredible Kickstarter projects need your help. Here they are, in order of how soon they’re ending:

Take This Book: The People’s Library at Occupy Wall Street. A nonfiction book by Melissa Gira Grant that tells the story of the The People’s Library, as imparted by many of the librarians that maintained it in Zuccotti Park before the police raid on November 15th. Here is an excerpt from the book. To many people, the destruction of the library was a painful moment in Americna history; the image of police throwing carefully-curated, free books from the volunteer-run library into dump trucks felt like a symbol for the repression of free speech.

“Take This Book is an extended essay — just over 10,000 words — based on the stories of the librarians and the library’s patrons. (Maybe you were one of them.) It can’t be the whole story, because it’s still happening.” Donating $1 will get you a digital copy of the book, and donating $20 or more will get you a print edition. For $250 or more, you can get a signed and numbered “People’s Library” print from Molly Crabapple, seen above. There are only 18 hours left on this campaign at time of writing. Donate now!

Rachael Reichert’s Ethical Luxury Corset Collection. When you Google image search “eco clothing” and variations thereof, you get a lot of green and earth tones, lots of yoga pants, and more than a fair share of loose, flowy dresses. This is great, but it leaves many of us who care about ethical clothing of a more vintage/fetishy persuasion out in the cold. Designer Rachael Reichert wants to take on the challenge of crafting a collection of luxury corsets using nothing but ethical, fair-trade and (when possible) locally-sourced material.

Her fabrics will will include organic cotton that is grown, woven, and dyed according to Global Organic Trade Standards in India, as well as peace silk or wild silk, produced by a process in which “fibre is pulled out from the cocoon after the moth has emerged, and hand spun.” Reichert plans to use steels bones, vintage twill tape, aluminium grommets, and locally handmade bobbin lace as well as her own signature handmade thread lace. The goal is to make luxurious, elegant alternative clothes “with a clean conscience”.

Cakeland. A giant, cake-themed art installation built by Scott Hove. A magical wonderland of icing, joy and despair. See the beautiful high-res images over at Hi-Fructose. Cakeland will feature “60 full length mirrors, cake chandeliers, theatrical lighting, moving parts and sound to make the most stunningly beautiful and lush mirror maze and art installation you will ever see.”

The most incredible thing about this version of Cakeland (smaller ones have been built before) is that it’s entirely mobile! Cakeland will probably travel to your city, or a city near you. Help make Cakeland happen, and you will one day be able to walk its delicious halls.

The Ultimate New Year’s Eve Party

Coilhouse has a longstanding policy of never posting flyers on the blog. But I think we can make an exception for this one (uploaded to FB recently by Gym De Meo):


But srsly. What are you guys up to this year, pharmacy fer realz?

A Rainbow Post Apocalypse

Take one part Hieronymous Bosch and sprinkle liberally with bright, rainbow colors and you’re about halfway to describing the work of Jonas Burgert. Here is a world in which people inhabit barren wastelands and nameless nowheres, outfitted in the vivid hues of their particular tribes. I really like the interplay of these two elements; the color trying, and failing, to act as a camouflage for the decidedly bleak subject matter. The colors splattered and scribbled all over, it’s like some child’s coloring book of Hell — both unsettling and beautiful.

Via Hi-Fructose

Brooklyn NextLevel Squad, Shot by YAK FILMS

YAK FILMS strikes again! (Coilhouse <3s YAK a lot.)

(Via m1k3y/BoingBoing. Music is “Zilla March” by B’ZWAX.)

Recently, the street dance documentarians ventured deep into the NYC underground (literally) to document the Flexing prowess of the Brooklyn-based NextLevel Squad.

Flexing (also called Bonebreaking) is a relatively new and potently individualistic fusion dance form that evolved in NYC out of Jamaican bruk-up, and incorporates popping, gliding, contortion, as well as various moves gleaned from martial arts, jazz dance, ballet, gymnastics, and whatever else looks damn good.

There are many, many things to love about this video… not least of which is watching a burgeoning subculture breathe new life (so to speak) into ye olde gas-mask chic!

Parisian Proto-Goth Beauties, 1910

(The Lene & Nina of their time?)

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.

Dang, right?

Tono Stano’s White Shadow

A bizarre series by Slovakian photographer Tono Stano, White Shadow is actually a series of printed black and white negatives. In this case, however, Stano has gone to the length of painting his models with the idea of printing the negatives so that they would appear to be positives. It’s an effect that is not entirely successful — you won’t mistake these for a regular black and white print — but Stano seems to understand the limitations of the trick and plays with them.

Using bits and pieces of other negatives he tapes eyes over the eyelids of his subjects, fills their mouths with photograph denture. The end results are surreal portraits of some of the more interesting denizens of the uncanny valley. Hit the jump for a (nsfw) video (as well as a few more, nsfw images) in which Stano gives a behind the scenes look at the process.

Via lens culture

“Like a Blanket” by David Garland, Featuring Vashti Bunyan

Film by Anne Garland.

Things that make the world a better place:

  • The multifaceted, subtle genius of David Garland
  • The legendary and heart-melting voice of Vashti Bunyan
  • Sweetly strange, warm-yet-cool, complex-yet-cuddly songs
  • Sleepy, slowly blinking cat face

Garland wrote this song especially to sing with Bunyan. It’s a single from his upcoming album Conversations with the Cinnamon Skeleton, to be released in early 2012. Keep your eyes and ears open.

The Prodigy’s Music – Recreated “From Scratch”

If you remember the 90s, you probably remember Smack My Bitch Up and Voodoo People from The Prodigy. It’s generally known that both these tracks tracks use a lot of samples, but just how many samples – and to what effect – wasn’t clear until Ukranian music producer Jim Pavloff put together a masterful recreation of the two tracks using Ableton Live.

As part of the same phenomenon that allowed entire musical genres to crop up from a 6-second drum sample called the Ahmen break, The Prodigy was able to create these tracks at a time when copyright law had not yet caught up with sampling trends in the music world. Recreating The Prodigy’s process using more modern software, Pavloff copies, pastes, stretches, cleanses, folds and manipulates the samples until The Prodigy’s rave hits emerge. Secrets are revealed: SMBU samples Rage Against The Machine’s “Bulls On Parade”, while Voodoo People opens with  a riff inspired by Nirvana’s song “Very Ape.” Kool and the Gang, The Last Poets, Led Zepplin, Johnny Pate, Ultramagnetic MC and others make an appearance in the songs.

And now you know how The Prodigy hot dog is made. Does it alter your enjoyment/perception of the songs?

[via @nicoles / @sfslim]

BTC: Future World Orchestra

Hooray for flarpy synths and dubious Danish E.T. impressions!

This cover of John Williams’ E.T. theme was recorded in 1983 by two yacht-rockin’ electropoppets known as the Future World Orchestra. It is, IMHO, so utterly beyond happystupidwonderful, some of you may have trouble restraining yourself from spasmodic flailing or propulsive flatulence.

Behold, below, as the space-age lotharios radiate raw moustachioed magnetism while performing their hit single “Desire” on the Italian music show Discoring:

Via Dirk Janssen, with thanks!

Here is the amazeballs cover of their 1982 album, Mission Completed:

And this, comrades, is the last offical Better Than Coffee of 2011. If the FWO ain’t afraid of the future, then let us not be, either. Onward and upward and o’er we go!