Saturday, July 26, 2008

Ongoing conversations

I’m going to put stuff here, as so many people don’t seem to use the forums right now, but this stuff is aimed at individuals, so don’t expect coherence or details.
Tons: just thanks for pointing us to the Traces du Sacré exhibition. With such a short time to visit Paris and meet new people that formed a great focus, and I enjoyed having the company of you and Fly as we roamed through the avant-garde, modernist and occult universes. I know we could neither afford the big book, but I have discovered that online you can find an enormous collection of photos, videos and information about the exhibition and exhibits...but (apparently) only in French.

They seem to have kept this virtual show quite low profile to English Speakers!
Découvrez le site Traces du Sacré.
Go there, and do mosbunall of it again! Many of the pieces, videos, paintings - also interviews with the artists, critics and all sorts.

They didn't have much on the roots of the word ‘hip’ in the Oxford English Dictionary – could it really come from long boots? Sounds fishy to me. :-)

Etymology: [Origin unknown.] Here's their timeline of quotes:
Propaganda Anonymous
1904 G. V. HOBART Jim Hickey
At this rate it'll take about 629 shows to get us to Jersey City, are you hip?

1926 Detective Fiction Weekly 16 Jan.
I sashayed for a legger an' run into a rube hip agent with a bottle and some jake which helped some.

1938 C. CALLOWAY Hi De Ho
Hip, wise, sophisticated, anyone with boots on.

1944 C. HIMES Black on Black
I'm a hipcat from way back.
Lord Buckley
1946 MEZZROW & WOLFE Really Blues
Their hipness..bubbled up out of the brute scramble and sweat of living.

1951 San Diego Even. Tribune 28 June
We did it because we thought it was ‘hip’ or smart.

1958 W. BRYANT Jive in Hi-Fi
The correct word is ‘hip’. It comes from a story of a fisherman warning young fishermen never to wade in deep water without hip boots on because they could run into trouble. So, when you hear the words, ‘I'm hip’ or ‘I'm booted’ it's said to let you know they have no fear of trouble or that they understand what's shaking [i.e., happening].

1957 J. KEROUAC On Road (1958)
Elmer Hassel, with that hip sneer.
Lord Buckley
1959 Spectator
He has a fast line of jive-patter and uses such hip endearments as ‘angel-cake’ and ‘gorgeous’.
Ibid. 7 Aug. Audiences there are hip to the latest gossip.

1959 C. MACINNES Absolute Beginners
It was like getting a hip cat into a symphony concert, but I succeeded.

1961 Listener
As Norman Mailer would say, it's ‘hip’ to use obscure terms and meaningless symbols.

1966 H. S. THOMPSON Hell's Angels
Frank was so completely hip that he went down to Hollywood and bought the blue-and-yellow striped sweatshirt that Lee Marvin wore in The Wild One.

1971 Black Scholar.
As Cannonball Adderly has said ‘Hipness is not a state of mind. It is a fact of life.’

1972 V. FERDINAND in A. Chapman New Black Voices
We sometimes..go in for that kind of living thinking it's hip.

Bogus (2008): The OED doesn’t seem too hip or precise, if they don’t know that Kerouac wrote “On The Road”, and Mezz Mezzrow wrote Really The Blues

Other people offer a bunch of other interpretations, from opium smoking to African origins.

Let's face it, these remain word game theories. Origin Unknown remains the safest bet!

I'd prefer to spend time with His Royal Hipness, Lord Buckley. I offered links to his Hip Semantics here on my blog. A general site for him exists, too. Now if I could have given you Shakespeare in his version, it might have been a riot! Wiki entry on the Hip Messiah.

ChrisM - lord of the snows I know I don’t seem to think much of the afterlife, but I have just enjoyed reading Will Storr vs. the supernatural. He starts off expecting to do a cynical piece about ghost-hunting, but after some vivid experiences he ends up believing that something exists that needs explaining. At the same time, he does do portraits of some weird and lonely people, as well as Christian nutcases (as a Quasi-Daoist I always assumed that strong belief in such weirdness as ‘being bathed in the blood of Jesus’ does tend to produce its opposite – just like finding yourself being tortured with Fire and hot irons by The Spanish Inquisition because you don’t believe in Hell and tormenting demons). Anyway – it wasn’t just hard-line sceptical.

Of course, I haven’t had the experiences, so remain unconvinced about demons, but have never been a real fundamentalist materialist when it comes to ‘atmospheres’ or replay ghosts - traces recorded in the environment.

Lethbridge suggested water might record events, but here the people he meets subscribe to ‘natural iron’ (in parallel with Ferris Oxide in recording tape, and Electronic Voice Phenomena, etc) – the Stone Tape Theory.

And at least I stayed off the subject of the Headless Way, even if I found a copy of Wei Wu Wei's The Tenth Man: The Great joke (which made Lazarus laugh) when I got home, which I guess comes to a similar conclusion.

The Tenth Man is the only man. There is no other.

And you did ask about where to find the Nine Characters Wiki - well, you may find I smuggled The Tenth Man into the Absolute Elsewhere already (he looks a little like Orson Welles). Oh, and we now have ten avatars, too, just to add to the confusion. :-)
Borsky – you know we couldn’t ID some of the avatars on Bobby's mock-up cover – you may recognise the one that represents Prop, as you can see on his MySpace page.

Oh, and (from the online exhibition) here's the Mushroom Mantra

Fly – I loved that Beat room at the exhibition, and in particular John Giorno on the Death of William Burroughs video – which you can see on You Tube.
William died on August 2, 1997, Saturday at 6:30 in the afternoon from complications from a massive heart attack he'd had the day before. He was 83 years old. I was with William Burroughs when he died, and it was one of the best times I ever had with him.

Doing Tibetan Nyingma Buddhist meditation practices, I absorbed William's consiousness into my heart. It seemed as a bright white light, blinding but muted, empty. His consiousness passing through me. A gentle shooting star came in my heart and up the central channel, and out the top of my head to a pure field of great clarity and bliss. It was very powerful - William Burroughs resting in great equanimity, and the vast empty expanse of primordial wisdom mind.
I was staying in William's house, doing my meditation practices for him, trying to maintain good conditions and dissolve any obstacles that might be arising for him at that very moment in the bardo. Now, I had to do it for him.
Last word in the Traces exhibition - from Giorno
In pursuit of more Giorno I came up with this page, scroll down and you will find a sample of a hilarious sound recording of Eating The Sky (Prop might like that, too – especially as he missed the exhibition - below there's a link to the whole thing).

I first heard this on a pirate cassette of the Nova Convention, an event so hip that I’d commit suicide and reincarnate retrospectively at the right point in spacetime, just so I could attend.

Laurie Anderson, W.S. Burroughs, John Cage, Allen Ginsberg, Brion Gysin, Julia Heyward, Timothy Leary, Les Levine, Peter Orlovsky, Anne Waldman, Robert Anton Wilson, John Giorno, Philip Glass, Patti Smith, Terry Southern, Frank Zappa
Giorno at UbuWeb: Track 4 is the whole 13 minutes of Eating The Sky at the Nova Convention - 1978

12:03 "And we sit here drinking Scotch and smoking a joint, and we sit here drinking Scotch and smoking a joint..."

5:30 "And when you wake up, it's breakfast in a foreign country, and you're in Paris, France..."


Thanks for the Lovecraft and Houdini link. I had vaguely heard that HH commissioned HPL (and others) to ghost-write for him ( stories published in Weird Tales but had never focused on that bit of HH’s career before.
HH and HPL write for Weird Tales
"In 1926 the magician Harry Houdini hired Lovecraft and his friend C. M. Eddy, Jr., to write an entire book combating superstition. This work -- perhaps analogous to Houdini's own previous work, A Magician Among the Spirits (1924), a debunking of spiritualism -- was to be called The Cancer of Superstition. Houdini had earlier asked Lovecraft to write a rush article on astrology, for which he paid $75; this article apparently does not survive. A detailed synopsis prepared by Lovecraft for The Cancer of Superstition does survive, as do three chapters of the treatise written by Eddy; but Houdini's sudden death on 31 October 1926 derailed the plans, as his widow did not wish to pursue the project."

Fortean Times piece for people who consider HPL an initiated believer, rather than a debunker.

"My brain is the key that sets me free." HH

I had it as ‘Mind’ not ‘brain’ when I did the Magical Means piece. Hey ho.

Rosie sent b.kane in her place I'm glad we met up to talk before the madness started. Ideas we threw around on the train continue to pop into my mind, but I haven't begun to digest all the things that you know already...

[he puts his hands behind his ears, and flaps them madly, as Stein grabs his nose and blows - as they go through a tunnel and their ears pop. He looks out of the window of the speeding train...]

"Are we in France yet?"

Friday, July 25, 2008

Maybe Ingolstadt next year?

All together now - yeah that's Notre Dame in the background

Yeah we made it - Fuzz, Bogus, Chris, Fly, B.Kane, Borsky, Tons, Prop Anon on the first day with all of can just see Notre Dame (top left) behind us, but some of us came for Shakespeare and Co...

Outside the atelier, saying goodbye
And now we went our separate ways again...

Rosie slips out of the heart chakra, leaving the body of B.Kane

Fly contemplates a new model of the universe

Prop's 23 dollar burger de la maison - so good it was almost worth it

Up to Mischief

And in memory of the guy wot brung us together in the first place, Propaganda Anonymous interviews RAW on Reality Sandwich

Homage to Dali

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Traces du Sacré

First of the Dog Days - 8 different bodies (with like minds) arrive alive and well...July 23rd in Paris on a warm (maybe hot) night with a bunch of MLA people.


I came back here through an internet cafe with French keyboard so can't type quickly. I can't do photos yet...the other guys have gone to The Catacombs...

Borsky Underground, and I don't mean the Metro

Very hot again, and now we have bags to carry...time for a coffee or a beer...

On 23rd mosbunall of us spent 3 great hours at the Traces of the Sacred exhibition. A really fantastic collection.

Check out this video on YouTube (not sure Blogger will let me embed it these days)

from the online description:

At the end of the period commonly known as "disenchantment of the world", a section of modern art reinvented itself in a landscape of overturned beliefs, which continues to contribute to the invention of contemporary forms. Following a journey that embraces the entire history of art in the 20th century, from C.D. Friedrich to Kandinsky, from Malevitch to Picasso and from Barnett Newman to Bill Viola, the exhibition investigates the way in which art continues to demonstrate, often in unexpected forms, a vision that goes beyond the ordinariness of things and how, in a completely secular world, it remains the secular outlet for an irrepressible need for spirituality.

Art would seem to be a characteristic of Homo sapiens; since prehistoric times, it has always appeared in close conjunction with our fundamental interrogations on the questions of who we are, where we come from and what will happen to us. This link between spiritual disquiet and creativity has been deepened by all the great religions. Since the 18th century, in the Western world, the relationship between art and religion has changed considerably. The Reformation, the growth of capitalism, the ideas of the Enlightenment, the cult of reason, and the expansion of cities all led to what Max Weber called "disenchantment of the world". At the same time, the feeling of withdrawing from God as expressed by the Romantic artists, then the announcement that God was dead by Nietzsche at the end of the 19th century, plus the beginnings of psychoanalysis, and advances in physics and Marxism, all led to a rethinking of Man's place in creation, and as a consequence his relationship to religion.

Into this landscape of overturned beliefs, modern art was born. Although during this long process, the secularisation of society delivered artists from their subjection to the Church, the religious crisis did not mean the disappearance of metaphysical questioning. The thesis of this exhibition is that a section of modern and contemporary art was born out of these preoccupations.

Monday, July 07, 2008

RAW On The Psychedelic Salon

The latest episode of Lorenzo Hagerty's wonderful podcast; The Psychedelic Salon, features 2 interviews w/ Robert Anton Wilson. The "Everything is Under Control" interview w/ D Scott Appel and the audio companion to RAW's book, TSOG: The Thing That Ate the Constitution.

RAW recently made a cameo on the salon via audience participation during a Timothy Leary lecture, but Podcast 147 - RAW: “Conspiracies and TSOG” is his first full appearance.

Lorenzo regularly podcasts lectures from prominent psychedelic thinkers, Terence McKenna most usually, though Timothy Leary has also begun appearing lately, the salon's archives are definately worth persual. I most highly regard the large collection of Trialogues w/ Mckenna, Sheldrake, and Abraham. Many of these talks are exclusive to the salon, donated directly from Ralph Abraham.


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