Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bad Romance

There are an endless amount of films that explore the relationships between men and women, but until the late 1960s it was rare to encounter a couple like Bonnie and Clyde. Young and rebellious, they acted out of desperation and recklessness. After all, it was the Great Depression and there were only so many ways to make a buck. They were both in their early 20s when they were killed in the infamous rural ambush, brutally memorialized in Arthur Penn's 1967 classic Bonnie & Clyde. Although many theories and controversies still surround their lives and their demise, they will forever hold their place in the annals of Americana. They were, after all, love addled outlaws - romanticized, demonized and forever scrutinized.
The real Bonnie & Clyde in March 1933.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Deus Ex Machina

As my obsession with redheads deepens, I would be remiss if I ignored the lovely Florence Welch of Florence And The Machine. There's just something about the way she belts out her dark lyrics from under that flaming tousled mane, that makes me want to bounce around my apartment in my skivvies and shout along. It's hard to pinpoint exactly where her music fits - is it rock, pop, soul, electro? Who cares! It has the ability to turn even the dreariest of days into glorious ones. Tomorrow I'll be meeting with her to talk about her love of fashion, her unique sense of style, and of course her chart topping record 'Lungs.' I can't wait to find out what makes this lioness roar! Look for the interview in the next issue of VenusZine, but in the meantime check out her latest video for 'Dog Days Are Over'.

Monday, March 29, 2010

The Queen Of Quirk

Happy Birthday Amy Sedaris! Cheers to a woman who proves that 'funny' and 'sexy' aren't mutually exclusive!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Flower Power

Artist Stephen Eichhorn created this series of plants on cats, and I just can't look away. There's nothing groundbreaking about this work - no hidden meaning for us to scratch our heads over. It's simple really, just cacti, succulents, and flowers coupled with cat glamour shots. Why didn't I think of this?

Via KitsuneNoir

Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Man History Forgot

We all know who Thomas Edison is, so why is Nikola Tesla such an unfamiliar name? Tesla was an inventor who's creations were just as groundbreaking as Edison's, but he never attained the same kind of notoriety as his competitor. Although rarely a source of actual historical information, I love Funny or Die's Drunk History, and the latest episode might be my favorite. In it we learn the story of Edison and Tesla's reported feud, as played by John C. Reilly and the amazing Crispin Glover.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Video Vault

For those of you who don't remember the 90s, Damon Albarn hasn't always been the mastermind behind Gorillaz. Although always infectiously catchy, Albarn's music with UK Brit Pop sensation Blur was substantially darker and twisted. Taking a cue from other British pop outfits like The Smiths, their music may have seemed upbeat and innocent at first but what lingered beneath the surface was far more sinister. Through their lyrics and music videos, Blur managed to entrance listeners with sarcasm, realism, and a knowing glance. Sure they were cute and floppy haired, but never squeaky clean, and you didn't quite know what they were capable of. Their video for 'The Universal' with its Kubrickesque set design and mannerisms, was all an angst-ridden teenager could ask for.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Filth & Beauty

The plastic bag from American Beauty has got nothing on this guy. He's even voiced by my beloved Werner Herzog. Unbelievable!

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Golden Era

So much focus is placed on Germany's dark history, but what is often ignored are the astonishing cultural and intellectual feats that were made just years before Hitler's rise to power. This time period, called the Weimar Republic, lasted from the end of World War I to around 1933 when Hitler gained power. Weimar culture was vibrant, daring, and unnervingly modern. Artists who were scarred by what they had seen during the Great War, used their medium as a way of dealing with their pain, and in doing so they unleashed a type of realism that is rarely seen even to this day. My favorite works emerged during this short but productive time, and artists like Otto Dix and Christian Schad (works pictured above) were part of the Neue Sachlichkeit movement, whose work was gritty, dark, and purposefully ugly. Thankfully I don't have to travel all the way to Germany or Austria to see these pieces in person, as my favorite New York City museum, the Neue Galerie, exclusively caters to my obsession. From now through August 30th, the Galerie is exhibiting a collection of Otto Dix's work, the first such collection ever held in North America. Now put down your bratwurst, and get yourself over to the Neue for a taste of some real German culture.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Have You Heard?

There's some serious talent coming out of Berkeley, California, and The Morning Benders are leading the pack. Their latest album Big Echo was released earlier this month, and on it the band embraces a new fuller sound that truly puts their older work to shame. Sure their last few albums were easy on the ears, but they lacked the drama and passion that's evident on Big Echo. If you don't believe me, take a look at this live video of their first single 'Excuses,' featuring other West Coast luminaries like Girls' Christopher Owens.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Invasion Of The Hover Cats!

Click the pic to see them in action!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The One-Two Punch

Even though everybody now knows him as "that guy from The Hangover," in my mind Zach Galifianakis is still that awkward bearded wonder working the NYC stand up circuit during my first summer living in New York. The crowd would go either way, you either loved him or you just didn't get it - I felt sorry for those who didn't get it. I've mentioned his Funny or Die show 'Between Two Ferns' before, and his latest installment is an interview with Ben Stiller. I don't think I've written this much about Mr. Stiller... well ever, but the following clip is well worth the key strokes. Watching Galifianakis and Stiller spar is like watching an old episode of Seinfeld: you can sense they're on the brink of losing it, but they somehow muster the self control not to laugh themselves to tears. Watch it and weep:

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A Right Delayed Is A Right Denied

Photographer Charles Moore captured some of the most powerful images from the civil rights movement. He died last week at the age of 79, but his photographs will continue to speak volumes about a time that for many seems far removed. There's something incredibly contemporary about his images, even though they capture a distant and incredibly tumultuous time in history. Maybe it's because when I look at this photograph in particular, I can transpose myself and my friends onto the faces of those young women. My gratitude will forever rest on their weary shoulders.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Build Me Up, Buttercup

Last Friday, March 12th, a bunch of funny people got together to make each other laugh, and to make a difference. They're tweeting their way to happiness, helping to rebuild schools in Haiti with the proceeds from Night of 140 Tweets. I'm pretty sure Ben Stiller was the brains behind the event, and after reading last week's New York Times article about his upcoming film 'Greenberg' I think I'll support him in anything he puts his heart to.

Photograph by Chad Batka for the New York Times.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Mother Knows Best

I've been a fan of Korean cinema since seeing 2003's A Tale of Two Sisters, so I get really excited any time Korean flicks make their way to our shores. I have yet to see Park Chan-wook's vampire odyssey Thirst, but Bong Joon-ho's Mother has just made it to the top of my list. This is his first feature since 2006's The Host, and from the looks of it Mother has more real-life substance and power. Already being praised as a Hitchcockian masterpiece, Korean television star Kim Hye-ja is poised to freak out overbearing moms everywhere.

Via Flavorwire

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I Just Called To Say...

"Hi, it's me Gaga. Did you see my awesome new video featuring Honey B? Yeah, I go to jail, and then when I get out B and I drive around in the Pussy Wagon. I know! Crazy right? Anyway, just called to tell you that I'm still busting out incredible dance moves while wearing next to nothing. Oh yeah, and let Quentin know I'll get the wagon back to him ASAP. Love ya my little monsters!"

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sugar & Spice

During my early teen years I decided that being girly wasn't for me. With that decision in mind, I started playing with edgier fashion, and I pretended that I wasn't still sleeping in a pink canopy bed surrounded by pink rose wallpaper. Suffice to say when I was a youngster I was mighty girly. I loved my pink bedroom with matching pink accessories, and I couldn't be separated from my pink Betty Boop sweatshirt that was fully equipped with a battery pack to power perfectly placed tiny red bulbs amidst her slinky dress. But more than all of those things I loved my Barbies - and boy did I have plenty. I had a plastic milk crate full of them, and I spent many of my summers making them tiny custom outfits with extra scraps of fabric my mom would give me. So of course upon reading today's New York Times article about the release of Mad Men-styled barbies, the little girl inside of me automatically thought: I want! Ok, maybe not just the little girl inside of me. You have to admit that these dolls are really amazing! With the approval of Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner and costume designer Janie Bryant, the dolls will hit shelves in July, an arrival that's perfectly timed with the beginning of season four. I'm hoping come July I can get my hands on Joanie, and she can take her rightful place in my apartment - I think she'll feel right at home.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Let The Takeover Begin...

There's an article about me on this week, so who knows what could be next?
Photography by the fabulous Samuel-Christophe Tedjasukmana.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Glamour Nanna

There's something incredibly inspiring and exciting about seeing the elderly living their lives to the fullest. Whether it's charity work, traveling, or making music, it's great to know that our desire for fun and fulfillment really is everlasting. Take DJ Ruth Flowers (below) for example - the lady knows how to rock!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Arsenic And New Lace

1. Lace and Zip Detail Mini Dress by Opening Ceremony, $340;, 2. Lace Back Tee by LNA, $93;, 3. Tall Lace Stripe Top, $55;, 4. Cheap and Chic Shoe by Moschino, $554;

Lace is often thought of as an antiquated fabric that speaks more to each end of the spectrum (read: geriatrics or toddlers in princess attire), than to fashionable young things. But that's all changing with a new spin on lace, and the many possibilities it offers. It's feminine, it's sexy, and it's somewhat unexpected. Garments can be played up with just a hint of lace, or whole swaths of fabric can be swapped out to bare shoulders, backs, and midriffs. I think it's a great staple for spring and summer, and will be especially useful when the New York City humidity really hits. With lace you can taunt and tease without revealing too much. So get ready to show off a little skin ladies!

Editor's note: I do realize that it's both ironic and depressing that Moschino decided to name the little lace number above their "Cheap and Chic Shoe," and yet it's still over $500. Argh.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Making Lemonade Outta Lemons

Even though my mother has had an obsession with Hummers since I was a kid, I always thought they were repulsive. I'm not sure if it was because of their ridiculous size, or because every person behind one of their wheels seemed like a total douchebag. Either way I always thought they were wasteful, and way too Schwarzenegger for my taste. Artist Jeremy Dean and I obviously see eye to eye. His piece entitled "Back to the Futurama" is exactly what you think you see pictured above: a hummer that's been turned into a horse-drawn carriage. The New York Times ran a short article about Dean last week, and "Back to the Futurama" will be on display at the Pulse Art Fair in NYC from March 4-7. Dean's blog sums it up best: "Unless we come up with alternative fuel sources and rethink our reliance on a hyper inflated consumption based economy; we may be left with no other options than to hook our cars up to a horse."

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Going To The Dogs

This has been making the interweb rounds for a few weeks now, but I still find it hilarious. I've tested out this theme song theory on The Boyz, but have found that their only reaction is to my obvious excitement in anticipation of watching an episode. I'm not exaggerating when I say that when I hear the theme song I get incredibly giddy. There's nothing like a great crime drama to relax me after a long day at work... not sure why that is but I'm still addicted to Law & Order even after all these years of watching it, and I truly dread the day when I will have seen every episode. Dun dun dun-dun-dun-dun-duuuun! Ahhhh that's the stuff.

Monday, March 1, 2010

We Did It!

So Canada won Olympic gold, but before we get all nationalistic and teary eyed let's go back to in time to Canada in the 1980s... when things were equally as awesome! Joey Jeremiah I still love you, and this song triggers memories of not wanting to go to school on Monday morning. Ironically I now feel the same way about work.