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    Before Moby-Dick there was Mocha Dick—not a coffee-chocolate phallus but “a real-life whale … who fought off whalers for decades before being killed by harpoon.” It was a magazine story about Mocha that inspired Melville to write his novel; now, in a new illustrated book, Mocha Dick: The Legend and the Fury, the original whale gets his due.

    For more of this morning’s roundup, click here.


    Nam June Paik. please, return the fish (inside) to water. 

    \n.p.: Nam June Paik, [1969]. First edition. Black lithograph print on paper, affixed to white envelope containing a small dried fish.

    A scarce and unusual Fluxus multiple. There appear to be two states, one bearing the title “Liberation Sonata for Fish” in addition to instructions, which appears to be the more common state. This example, which we haven’t seen before, is similar to the Walker Art Center copy from Paik’s archive. According to the Walker Art Center’s catalog entry, these envelopes were handed out at the 7th Annual NY Festival of the Avant-Garde in Wards Island, New York.

    From today’s new arrivals. More details at our website here. Inquiries:

    Catalogued by Sam. The Division Leap staff would also like to get back to the river. 

    norealbusinessbeinghere replied to your post “norealbusinessbeinghere replied to your post:1. There’s probably a…”

    The equivalence between brain and computer is one of the more unfortunate developments of the last twenty-five. What did Romantics do with their emotions?

    Well, the Romantics outsourced them to a tree, so take that as you will— both these options rely on a sort of narcissistic symbolism, and at least computer analogies don’t have that pesky anti-positivist bent…. It’s so absurd that I should just ignore it, but I do get angry when an author goes the symbolic route without any hysterical scare quotes or subtitle about how all interpretation is going to be inadequate, arbitrary, and unreliable, so they might as well pull this crazy stunt and wander lonely as a cloud…. It’s a niche concern. But I do worry that we’re- hey- operatingon a false, life-sapping register by not compulsively writing about how impossible it is to write….. 

    1. There’s probably a conspiracy behind how bad American instant coffee is. I had spent years saying that when instant coffee became potable, we’d know that it was truly the future— before realizing that we’re actually pretty isolated in this, and that a solid percentage of Europe is far into the future. This can’t be a technology lag; there has to be some Profitable Uses For Sludge [PUS] cabal hidden under the Rocky Mountains, counting on the fact that only 30% of their customers will own passports.

    2. Almost all of The Fifties (the decade-biography based on David Halberstam’s book) is on youtube.

    3. ‘To process [your emotions]’ is just not an effective verb, b/c what it evokes is too linear, passive (all the zest of minimized defragging window), and codependent (classical processing— the Lowell mills, McNuggetifiers, eighties-era hardware— is a human-machine team effort detourned from the interior). It’s too specific for its metacognitive britches, without ever touching on that right-brain jer-ner-say-qua. It creeps me out almost as much as the ’50s’ family-unit fetish, but I might start saying /prəˈses/, like, just taking my thoughts out for a stroll….

    4. For the past two nights, at 2:43 and 1:54 AM, respectively, I’ve heard a train whistle four times outside of my room…. I don’t know if ghost trains just kill you— not so original— or lure you on board, to become like the Charlie of Charlie Card fame.


    Lawren Harris

    Street Scene, c.1920s


    “Harris had a special affection for his major canvas, Street Scene. He felt that while the majority of his city paintings were portraits of specific dwellings, Street Scene encapsulated a total mood of the Toronto metropolis during the early nineteen twenties. In it, he captured the grey, overcast feeling of a metropolitan morning, stark and treeless. One of Harris’s great achievements was matching a theme to a style, whether in town or in the isolation of Lake Superior…

    Unlike other Harris urban canvases, Street Scene stresses a marked verticality in its design, unlike the more passive horizontality found in most of his other street paintings. The penetration of the picture plane by the composition’s deep perspective is balanced by an almost flat passage of the side of a building and the grey ribbons of clouds which weave the entire design together. Stylistically, these clouds are virtually identical to those featured in some Lake Superior canvases of 1922, which makes Street Scene an important transition picture. Street Scene is an emotionally charged and very complex creation, bringing Harris’s urban series of paintings to a dramatic conclusion. It is a landmark in his career.”

    -Paul Duval

    (Source:, via hipinuff)

    Experiments with Weird: Eugène Savitzkaya.


    Edward Gauvin on Savitzkaya’s prose. Read the rest here.


    J. S. Bach - “Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht” (“Kaffeekantate”), BWV 211.

    The Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir
    Conductor - Ton Koopman
    Soprano - Anne Grimm
    Tenor - Lothar Odinius
    Bass - Klaus Mertens

    For the English text:


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