Discover Soviet-Era Illustrations Of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit (1976)

≡ Category: Art, Literature |10 Comments

Until I read J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of The Rings, my favorite book growing up was, by far, The Hobbit. Growing up in Russia, however, meant that instead of Tolkien’s English version, my parents read me a Russian translation. To me, the translation easily matched the pace and wonder of Tolkien’s original.

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The Only Drawing from Maurice Sendak’s Short-Lived Attempt to Illustrate The Hobbit

≡ Category: Art, Books |1 Comment

I envy nobody the clearly torturous task of interpreting the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, from Peter Jackson on down.

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Listen to Tree Rings Getting Played on a Turntable and Turned into Music

≡ Category: Art, Music |1 Comment

There’s something oddly soothing about listening to music on vinyl. Regardless of what digital music lovers say, and irrespective of the fact that the same sound may be produced digitally, die-hard vinyl fans will tell you that nothing compares to the warm scratchiness of a needle on a record.

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The Strange and Wonderful Movie Posters from Ghana: The Matrix, Alien & More

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A cottage industry quickly sprang up in the early 80s when the first videocassettes made their way to the West African nation of Ghana.

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Sketches by Guillermo del Toro Take You Inside the Director’s Wildly Creative Imagination

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Guillermo del Toro is perhaps the most visually imaginative director alive today. Unlike Paul Thomas Anderson, with his infuriatingly perfect sense of visual balance, or Alfonso Cuarón, whose Oscar-sweeping Gravity required the invention of a novel, hyper-realistic filming method, del Toro doesn’t deal with real life.

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“Be All You Can Be. Read”: Peter Max’s 1969 Psychedelic Poster for National Library Week

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In 1969, Peter Max was creating psychedelic illustrations that captured the countercultural spirit of the 1960s. Bright, trippy, and thought-provoking, Max’s artwork fused together ”eastern yogi philosophy, astronomy, comic books, studies in color, and music.” And it certainly found an audience.

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The Art Assignment: Learn About Art & the Creative Process in a New Web Series by John & Sarah Green

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If you haven’t seen the works of John Green, whose “Crash Course” series on world history and English literature we previously featured here, you’ve missed out on first-class examples of the learning experiences video technology, the internet, and burning curiosity have now made possible.

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The Postcards That Picasso Illustrated and Sent to Jean Cocteau, Apollinaire & Gertrude Stein

≡ Category: Art |1 Comment

Pablo Picasso’s coterie of friends and collaborators was vast and glamorous. Following his move to France, Picasso befriended the flamboyant Russian ballet impresario Serge Diaghilev, whose Ballets Russes sets he went on to design, and whose prima ballerina Picasso went on to marry.

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See Ottoman-Style Posters of Star Wars, The Godfather, Scarface and Other Classic Movies

≡ Category: Art, Film |1 Comment

Every now and again, we like to bring you a reimagining of an old classic. Some time ago, for example, we posted about a reinvention of Star Wars: A New Hope, shot by scores of ardent fans, and spliced together from 15-second fragments.

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Watch the Experimental Short Films by Tezuka Osamu, the Walt Disney of Japan

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Tezuka Osamu (1928-1989) is known as “the God of manga” in Japan. He created classics for both children and adults in every genre – from horror to romance to action. The sheer amount of work produced in Osamu’s relatively short life is staggering; some estimates have it that he drew over 150,000 pages of comics.

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