Bathymetry part 2: Infographic

Explore planet earth top to bottom, courtesy of

Bathymetry (Deepwater Horizon)

Deepwater Horizon: a name bearing the equal promise of plenty and the threat of oblivion. It’s very name thumb-noses the bathymetric problems of deepwater oil exploration.

Too big to fail…

Too deep to fail…

Too deep to succeed?


Other watery statements of intent…

Blackwater – opaque, for-profit paramilitary service

Corexit  – the name of the potentially toxic dispersant being used in the Deepwater cleanup. Corrects-it! (?) Seriously? Somebody has a sick sense of humour.


Is the world as it is the best world?

Video>>I found a grizzly bear, and it turned out he thinks ecology is a conservative ideology.

I question his definition of catastrophe as a mere (“unthinkable” and unthinking both) reshuffling of the deck, part of the weather system of deep time. This is true in the objective sense. Yet simultaneously he argues that our concept of catastrophe – self-centered fantasy, arising from our guilt/ sense of persecution/addiction to narrative – is a pathetic response to our position in nature, in the objective world. I wouldn’t say it was pathetic – or useless.

News 10.07.10

illustration by Tyler Stout

This week’s round-up of runaway fascinations… and in which Iguanodon (quite comfortably) escapes from a railway fire caused by the proximity of an eagerly combusting fast food restaurant.

Polarity 2 ‘Arms vs Song’

I’ve had some interesting visual arts submissions in so far and I’ll designate a little slice of this weekend to begin looking through them. I’m still looking for artists. We’re stoking up our marketing operation and I found some great potential stockists during my wanderings through town yesterday.


The internet contains no entries for ‘cetaceaphilia’ (or spelling variants), but a medical web page I glanced at does speak of ‘philia of cetacea’. Please: if I’m doing it wrong then it would be the humane thing to let me know. When one moratorium lifts, another shall come into place: it’s crunch time. I either get another blog to talk about whales, or I just try and talk about them a leetle bit less.

Our blubbery comrades in the sea have been in the news plenty. If you’ve ever wondered what the lovecalf of Jaws and Moby Dick would look like, then click here. Today I received a tip-off from a cetaceaphile well-wisher: scientists now think the forecalvers* of whales, dolphins and porpoises were wolf-like. Now I had thought they were deer-like? I’d be interested to know whether the wolf-to-whale or the deer-to-whale scenarios are really such separate scenarios. What does the wolf & deer family tree look like?

So here’s a time-lapse vision of what probably happened: something moves out of the water. It looks about. It croaks… ‘naah’, and throws itself back into the sea.

The Whale’s Companion – Murdoch Press

Not the best-looking, the best edited or the most easy to read, the design and tone of this book is child-like sweet. But dotted inside the book are a wealth of quotes from literary classics and obscure sources,  a large percentage of which I have never seen. Australian poet Les Murray’s ‘Spermaceti'(click here for audio) confirmed my long-standing suspicion that this very poem must exist. ‘Spermaceti’ is a poem with a firm function. The calling of the subject matter means that it must have been written – the world needed a poem about the echolocating abilities of the toothed whales.

My illustrator of the week

Commercial illustrator Tyler Stout has made lucid, complex writhing drawings of a giant polar bear dangling beneath ice cover. The one I discovered yesterday in a bookshop featured a very surprised looking orca in the bear’s grip. He’s also done posters for films such as Iron Man. If you like the Robert Downey Jr , if that’s your thing, then check this out….

*forecalvers = This is Iguanodon vocabulary, copyright pending.

Self-imposed moratorium on blogging about whales begins now. I can still think about them though. You can’t stop me.

23 degrees and icebergs

The graphic icebergs of cartoonist Seth

~ good night, sleep tight.

Call for submissions: Polarity Issue 2

Wanted: artists and art writers to submit work for issue 2 of Polarity magazine.

Arms vs. Song

(The Hunger 2008, Dir: Steve Mcqueen)

Artists working in any medium and writers interested in writing about artists and art movements should pitch towards this theme.

We have one foot in the door with the small-press literary world and another with the fine art world. Do you believe that this is another artificial ‘vs’? We do.

Issue 1 contained selected images from  Sharon Kivland’s photographic work on Freud, Kristin Sherman’s installations, Hazel Atasharoo’s sensuous and fantastical photography set-ups, John Yeadon’s plates of messy fish and finger paint, Oliver Bedeman’s accomplished drawings of gloomy interiors and more.

We’re equal opportunities for all mediums, all messages. We tip our hats across the corridor of time to the Surrealists – Bataille et al – but we look to the future and hope to become the New Surreal. Whatever that turns out to be.

The essays, fiction and poetry are of the highest quality too. You can expect to be featured alongside the best underground and award-winning authors and poets.

Please email finished items or proposals to

Deadline: 1st September 2010

We’ve just launched our first issue, ‘Death vs Taxes’, priced at £10, which you can purchase in order to get a taste at:

Follow us on twitter at @polaritymag

News… 28.06.10

Polarity Magazine launch last night

Well, our child is walking. Last night I held a physical copy of Polarity issue for the first time. It felt kinda…nice. You can buy a copy through the website or from one of us in person. Thank you to the launch attendees. Looking to issue 2 now!

Mc Sweeney’s San Francisco Panorama Vol 1, No.1 2009

I just realised that I’ve picked up a back issue of this arty newspapery behemoth. Well, I’ll be subscribing, cos it’s truly great. My excitement at pulling it out of the plastic slipcase was great – it should have, infact, been filmed and put on YouTube, as it would be worthy of inclusion with Youtube’s ‘unboxing’ greats. There’s so much I want to say about the phenomenon of ‘unboxing’ videos. But that’s another blog post.

My favourite piece is ‘The Only Muscle I Can’t Control’, where Joshuah Berman mixes in with hopeful Fabio’s and their fangirls at the 14th annual Mr. Romance Cover Model Competition in Houston, Texas. The Romance readers even get to pose for a mock cover with their hearthrobs, then rush to cast their votes for the McDreamiest (that is not an actual category – well, it might be). I am rather touched by the idea that though these cover model dreamboats must project a particular brand of sex appeal for a particular demographic of reader, the convention itself is rather ‘PG-rated’, as one organiser put it. It’s quite sweet actually.

Alan Moore interview in The Stool Pigeon free music newspaper

Northampton’s most famous son gives an interview about his upcoming music and video project ‘Unearthing’. The interview is a fairly jokey Q and A which will give his long-time fans a chance to finally hear his feelings about his place in popular culture. He comes across as the best kind of eccentric Brit – unearthly, charming, no-bullshit. The Stool Pigeon is available at various shops and galleries all over London, for the price of absolutely nothing.

New Links added…

Those of Emily Haworth Booth and Matteo Farinella, both comic strip artists. Check them out!