Each issue, the editors at Mousse invite a contributor to select a text or a group of texts to be reprinted in the magazine as part of their section “Reprint.” The reprinted work may be an article, a short essay, a piece of narrative, or something else, but the original layout is always kept. The scans are accompanied by a text/introduction by the contributor. I was delighted when they asked me to contribute and enjoyed the selection process enormously. The simple act of choosing a set of things and then writing something that helps to connect them was a productive one for me. My thanks to them for the opportunity, and for making it look great. — RG
Lydia Davis’s compact story “20 Sculptures in One Hour” begins like a word problem from a long-lost math class: “The problem is to see 20 sculptures in one hour.” We wait for more, but that is the entirety of the problem, which is a classic half-empty or half-full scenario — though this one comes with a twist, as it must account not only for perception but for the passage of time. Once the problem is stated, Davis’s prose quickly double-backs on itself, repeating the worry that although “An hour seems like a long time” it also seems like “20 sculptures are a lot of sculptures.” If anxiety can be described as the reflexive condition of worrying about worrying, then you might know where the first part of Davis’s story is heading.
I love Davis’s story all on its own, but I had the desire to stretch it out, to make it last longer, to parse it more closely, to somehow freeze-frame each sentence in motion, like Muybridge’s famous photographic study of a galloping horse. Muybridge’s images were made at the behest of university founder Leland Stanford in order to prove a supposition by French naturalist and early photographer Étienne-Jules Marey that all four of a horse’s hooves left the ground while galloping. With the help of twelve special cameras, Muybridge captured “movements whose speed exceeded the perception of any painter’s eye,” writes Prof. Friedrich Kittler in Gramophone, Film, Typewriter, and proved Marey correct.
By 1882 Marey had developed something better than Muybridge’s cameras for recording bodies in motion. Combining Gatling’s mechanized machine gun with a multi-chambered camera developed for capturing the night sky through a telescope, Marey introduced a “chronophotographic gun” that could fire twelve frames per second. “Shooting” film was born.
The chronophotographic gun was soon aimed at one of Marey’s assistants, Georges Demeny, who produced images of himself speaking common phrases in an attempt to understand the motor functions of the face and mouth in producing speech. He used his simulations to teach deaf and mute patients at the Hôtel de Ville in Paris. The 20 millisecond-long exposures shown here animate Demeny as he speaks a declaration of love, “Je vous aime.”
This might be your first time reading this blog, so you should know that some posts on PRR are better than others, and I think you might like the blog better if you started with one of my favorite posts. Here are a few posts I’m proud of:
A day in the park <3
Web-savvy Reader of Immense Attractiveness:
We created a little gift for you.
Christina Perry and Derrick Gee are two illustrators I commissioned for the Mad Men Unbuttoned book (pre-ordering is for winners!) to make it pretty. There are 5 original pieces and they are beautiful as this wallpaper you see above.
For this illustration we were trying to isolate what motivated us to do the book, we figured out that we loved so much was to getting closer to the characters by filling in the gaps. Looking at the history that surronds them and plugging it into the personal details of their lives. So Christina, Derrick and I imagined all the little treasures we would find in Don’s desk.
*A movie ticket from La Notte (one of Don’s favorite flicks)
*A copy of ‘Man in the Gray Flannel Suit’ which appears on his Sterling Cooper bookshelf.
*Keys to the Cadillac
*Mints for kissing your wife, ex-wife, or otherwise.
*Cufflinks in case a change of shirts is order.
*And of course, Don’s bread and butter: some Luckys.
Just right click and save! And here is What’s in Joan’s Purse?
Hok and i having some fun in our hotel in Nova Scotia. An acoustic version of our good friends LMFAOs “Party Rock Anthem.” hope you like it!
By Emi Kolawole
If you’ve been following the Post’s political coverage, you’ve probably come across @MentionMachine. The tool, which tracks mentions of the 2012 presidential candidates on Twitter and in the media generally, launched Tuesday and is the brainchild of Executive…
Say hello to Photojojo’s newest sidekick: We Love Phoneography!
Chase Jarvis said, ”The best camera is the one that’s with you,” and hey, that just may be your camera phone!
Well, this Tumblr is here to inspire phoneographers with…
- Weekly reviews of both iPhone & Android photo apps
- Your daily dose of phoneography eye candy
- The latest camera phone tech news
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Follow us if you haven’t yet, and don’t forget to check our first phoneography contest where you can win some brand-spanking new cell lenses to start your new year!