Archived entries for New York

RHF museum glasgow

I have passed this building almost every working day for 9 years without venturing in once, waiting for tomorrow, maybe, perversely.

I knew that when I eventually did, it would be for the start of something new. The Royal Highland Fusiliers museum is all about the professional business and social etiquette of death in the space of life – like Major Jock Sinclair in Tunes of Glory when he encourages the raw recruit to look at Colonel Basil Barrow’s body in the latrine, to discover the facts of loss perhaps even before the facts of life…

And so today, 15 september 2010, I enter and leave 45 mins later slightly spaced out. I knew it had been built for Annan the photographers (Glasgow’s equivalent of Hill and Adamson – different styles and a bit later but as famous as), designed by Mackintosh through Keppie and then made the RHF museum after Annan as photographers folded – you might like to look at the much underappreciated James Craig Annan and his close links with the secessionists and new york here. And it did not disappoint.

Well there will be more, next year now, but for the moment a couple of images from today. The exterior and its angel-fluting neighbour I’ve snappy-snapped many times – it’s a shame the Locarno sign is no more – and Williamson and Wolfe, sometime photographic dealers to Robert M. Adam and Alasdair Alpin MacGregor – AAG is something of a hero and I must admit to writing most of the wiki entry – the fruits of the research feature in PsyGeo Edinburgh – a fascinating and contentious story linked to Patrick Geddes and zeppelins, mumford, krishnamurti, theosophy…

So 9 years is immaterial in this context. This is Glasgow Central in relation to – well – everything gone 100 years’ past. Now, I understand.

polaroid sx-70 promo : ray + charles eames

The Apple iPad may be a magical device from Jon Ives but the Polaroid SX-70 slr had Land and Eames’ on the case – no contest. This is a delightful promo film (11 minutes) full of intelligence, imagination and gentle humanity – no hard sell, it is self-evidently useful.

The two cameras I feel most comfortable with are the rolleiflex 3.5F and hasselblad 500c/m. The SX-70, like the braunschweig and gothenburg inventions, is I think grokkable (silly word but useful signifier), as described by berg.

Thanks to product designer Saikat Biswas for the find.

Also, there may (or may not) be a polaroid-phoenix’d announcement at Photokina 2010 from the impossible project… there is a lot of interest in the format worldwide – there was a photographer who took large format colour images in the polaroid netherlands factory after they closed it down a couple of years back but having trouble tracing – will update.

More here – a photographer who made new york something else for me.

magazines and iPad

This video summarises the thought processes involved in re-creating a magazine in a new way. That’s as in a new way since Caxton.

As an alternative, sure, to the print edition – but this is so immersive. Here’s Jack Schulze from BERG London, elucidating on the process.

Mag+ live with Popular Science+ from Bonnier on Vimeo.

By the way, it seems the 3G iPad is the one to go for… saving already for UK launch.

Catch more of Jack at the Horizonless Manhattan Project.

Will Self on psychogeography : R4 march 2010

On Broadcasting House this Sunday 21 March 2010, with Paddy O’Connell, with the hook of the BA strike and Self walking to Heathrow/JFK (an old story in media-years I know but he’s clearly still affected by it…).

||Everytime I do it it’s the shock of the realisation of where I am… it’s a kind of local sourcing of ones’ sense of being in the world… it does mint the whole city anew for me, I do this a lot, I walk out from Central London and it works every time…||

Liked this aside from Self : (on an underpass sign at heathrow) – No Pedestrian Access – go back to the Renaissance

Link to the original psychogeography piece in the Independent (oh those russians…). Sorry can’t locate the tv programme on the airport walk.


Last year whilst writing about geomagnetism in birds, I listened to Messiaen much more carefully. This year has begun with Arvo Part, starting with Bjork’s late 90′s series on Minimalism. The second clip, Part’s Magnificat (paired here by the youtube poster with 50s stock footage from Philadelphia, sourced from the excellent Internet Archive), becomes eventually like a Diane Arbus homage. The religious aspects of Part’s aural lullabys to the ineffable cease to matter, under the influence of humanity’s river – time, inference, memory – as it converges into a koyannasquatsi-esque lament to the impatience of the seconds into minutes into generations timeline we’re all being conveyed on.

from Z to A is a scotland-based psychogeography and urban topography magazine featuring creative, critical, playful urban journeys

© Edward Alexander : from Z to A 1991-2013 | All Rights reserved | Please credit if you use content | All other content © the owners and credited as such

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