Category Archives: Science

Graphic Library #00018

Mattioli Botanical Prints c1750
This is a botanical woodcut, with contemporary colorization. It and many others first appeared in the 1562 Discorsi (“comments”, directed at Materia Medica of Dioscorides) by Pietro Andrea Mattioli, later reprinted in 1750s in Traité des Arbres et Arbustes qui se cultivent en France en Pleine Terre. The plant depicted is the Hawthorne Tree in the genus Crataegus. I often use their spikes in my artwork. While working on a new concept I discovered this image in my research, and added the file to my reference library.

Artist: Mattioli Botanical Prints c1750
Title: Crataegus, Hawthorne
Date: 1562
Medium: Woodcut

California Deathrock – The Photo Book

 Mark Splatter circa 2003 at a Release the Bats photo session with Amelia G and Forrest Black 
2000-2005 was a particularly relevant time in deathrock culture. I had just moved to California from New Jersey, as the proprietor of Deathrock.com, a webzine that served as a sort of beacon for the dark-minded music aficionado. Part reference guide, part webzine, it was a place where bands like UK Decay, TSOL, and The Mob first got more than just a mention in a collectors’ trade list. I was a young zine publisher who’d taken up web design in its infancy and was eager to share my love for anything remotely Misfits-esque, or even darker, more somber sounds like Southern Death Cult and Kommumity FK.

The New York presence of adherents for such sounds was lacking, apart from a small corps of gloom rockers like Charlie the Slut and Paul Morden, who took me under their wing as an aspiring DJ, and our close friends. When I visited California to meet some of the Los Angeles correspondents I was blown away by the packed floor of a club dedicated to just such sounds at Release The Bats. NYC always stood apart as too homogenous and sophisticated in its tastes to cater to such a niche and outmoded (although beloved) style. It was a no-brainer that the West Coast was where I wanted to be, where deathrock, as many argue, was born. 

Six months later I packed my bags and arrived, a 21-year-old devil lock-wearing deathpunk, and a postage stamp-sized record distributer with a case of music and a pair of DJ headphones. There it was not that it was still going strong, as it was ground zero for a full-on rebirth. New bands were evolving and converging, local bands coming into their own distinct style, Cinema Strange and The Deep Eynde pumped all sorts of energy and fishnet into our veins, and local legends were showing their faces again. Kommumity FK, Dinah Cancer and Gitane Demone resumed their positions as luminaries. Release the Bats was our Mecca, facing west. Bands from all over the globe were sending their energy into it too. Crews from further north and south were getting in touch. First the San Francisco synth-damaged Phantom Limbs with The Vanishing one on top of the other. Frank The Baptist and Diana Death from San Diego.

In that motley crew of deathrockers, gothpunks, dark new wavers, postpunks and horrorpunks were Amelia and Forrest, of Blueblood fame—one of the only established alt-porn names of the day. With their camera savvy and eye for the exotic black-clad, they managed to capture in brilliant gloss the blackest the Sunshine State had to offer, from Los Angeles to San Francisco. Now their work has been collected in this deluxe photo book, California Deathrock.

It reads without words like a yearbook of the era. Looking through the photos brings “ooohs” and “aaahhs” of recognition; the friends, acquaintances, strangers, lovers, and adversaries (if only for their makeup flair or record collections!). Fishing names and memories out of a golden era is just one of the perks of this book. The first of all being the gamut of styles, the theatrics, the glamour, the variety and poetry of appearance that this book represents, a jewel in the collection of anyone who finds beauty in the creativity and expression of the gothic style.
http://californiadeathrock.com for more info:

  
and

http://ameliag.com/cadramzn.php to order!

  

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Preserved In Glass: The Art and History of Wet Specimens

Wet Preservation, Human child's arm with Embryo, by Bernardus Siegfried Albinus, Circa 1730, Musee Boerhaave, Netherlands.
Wet Preservation, Human child’s arm with Embryo, by Bernardus Siegfried Albinus, Circa 1730, Musee Boerhaave, Netherlands.

Illustrated lecture with Mark Batelli, Wet Specimen Preparator and Restorer at Obscura Antiques
Date: Tuesday, March 25
Time: 8:00 PM
Admission: $8
Presented by Morbid Anatomy

“Wet specimens” preserve an organic object–be it a human body part, zoological specimen or plant–in fluids such as alcohol or formalin and airtight case, generally for use by student of science and medicine. Such pieces can last indefinitely; many specimens–some stretching back to the hundreds of years–still exist today, looking much as they did when originally preserved. Earliest wet specimens–such as those by Bernahard Albinus and Frederik Ruysch–were often also highly inventive and artistic, and valued as collectables by private collectors, aspiring cabinetists and museums alike.

In tonight’s heavily illustrated lecture, wet specimen preparator and restorer at Obscura Antiques Mark Batelli will outline the art and history of these fascinating objects, focusing on their inception, development, refinement, obsolescence, and present day relevance.

Brooklyn based artist Mark Batelli works as a wet specimen preparator and restorer at Obscura Antiques, with a history as a traveling DJ and artist, digerati and a nomadic Boheme through the western world from California to Greece.