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Entries in Curio (170)

Monday
Jul212014

Curio: James Garner, Jim Rockford, and an altered matchbox car

Alexa here, back from vacation with an atypical Curio. I was very saddened at the news of James Garner's passing. While I am a fan of many of his films (The Americanization of Emily ranks especially high), he is primarily remembered from television, and, for me especially, as Jim Rockford. His beleaguered, Marlowe-esque hero was a touchstone of my childhood.

In fact, I am something of a Rockford Files obsessive: I even altered a toy Firebird to more closely resemble the one made famous from many a car chase. [More...]

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Tuesday
Jun242014

Curio: Uneek Dolls

Alexa here. It was an empty dollhouse that inspired Debbie Ritter to start making clothespin dolls. Over time, inspired by history, literature, and old movies, she's designed hundreds of different miniature caricature dolls; her etsy shop currently stocks over 600.  Her clever classic film dolls have been catching my eye for awhile now; I really admire her ability to paint a caricature on the end of a clothespin.  And the fact that she has a Bette Davis obsession doesn't hurt either. And, she does custom orders!

Bette, Joan, Tippi, Edith Head (!) and more after the jump...  

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Tuesday
Jun172014

Curio: Movie Posters Most Minimal

Alexa here. These were making the rounds last week, but because I love anything involving fancy paper I had to share. Perhaps bringing the minimalist movie poster trend to its logical conclusion, Spanish design firm atipo has created a movie poster collection entitled “Papers For Characters” that uses only papers of various colors, textures and weights. The paper is manipulated by hand in various ways - burned, cut, sewn, torn - to demonstrate an essential motif of each film.

As the A.V. Club pointed out, they also make a fun guessing game.  (You can find captions here if you don't want to play.) I'm sharing some and I've numbered them for reference...

1

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Monday
Jun092014

Curio: Czech Film Posters

Alexa here to share my latest movie poster obsession: Czech film poster design. Under the communist regime from 1948-1989, Czech films were distributed by the government without the use of Western advertising. Czech painters and designers were commissioned by the Central Film Distribution Center to create posters, often with little information on the films. In the 60s and 70s, designers such as Zdeněk Ziegler, Karel Vaca and Wolfgang A. Schlosser created a defining Czech style, distinct from other movie posters in Eastern Europe, with an emphasis on typography and photomontage (as it happens, two of my favorite things).  

Here are some highlights...

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Monday
Jun022014

Curio: Heather Theurer's Disney heroines

Alexa here with your weekly art post.  This past weekend was another big win for Disney; clearly the public at large did not have the same trouble talking the family into seeing Maleficient as I did (my daughter didn't want to see that movie about the "scary fairy").  From the trailer I was entranced by the look of it, but I'll have to wait. Reading about the painterly, Pre-Raphaelite stylings of the film reminded me of Heather Theurer. Theurer is a painter who has done a series of oils of Disney heroines, transforming them with a realism akin to the Pre-Raphaelites.  

So far she has completed Cinderella, Mulan, Rapunzel, Lilo, and Merida...

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Tuesday
May202014

Curio: Celebrating Sir Ian 

Alexa here with some film curios for you. It's a big week for Sir Ian McKellen.  X-Men: Days of Future Past opens with his return as Magneto (along with Fassy playing the younger version of course) and on Sunday he turns 75.  He has much to celebrate, such a long and storied career on stage and screen, but I do wish there'd been an Oscar by now (he was my pick in 1999 for his James Whale in Gods and Monsters).  Maybe his turn as an aged Sherlock Holmes in A Slight Trick of the Mind will bring one? I'm already excited to see his interpretation of the deductive master.

 For now, here are some goodies to wish him a happy three-quarters century.

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