Sunday, October 07, 2007

Hidden in plain sight


Henry Darger
- Mazarin
Watch it Happen (Amazon, eMusic)


Vivian Girls
- M. Shanghai String Band

From the Air (Amazon, eMusic)


Vivian Girls
- Seely
Winter Birds (Amazon, eMusic)


The Story of the Vivian Girls
- Comet Gain

City Fallen Leaves (Amazon, eMusic)


Vivian Girls
- Walker Kong
There Goes the Sun (Amazon, eMusic)


Vivian Girls
- Fucked Up
Hidden World (Amazon, eMusic)


The Vivian Girls are Visited in the Night by Saint Dargarius and His Squadron of Benevolent Butterflies
- Sufjan Stevens
The Avalanche (Amazon, eMusic)

Highly recommended:
Documentary, In the Realms of the Unreal (Amazon)
Monograph, Henry Darger: Art and Selected Writings (Amazon)

Wikipedia entry on Henry Darger
Online tour of selected work
"Further Adventures of the Vivian Girls in Chicago," John M. MacGregor
"Henry Darger: Realms of the Unreal" (exhibit review), G. Jurek Polanski
The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art

If you miss my usual words, I posted 800 of 'em on Elliott Smith a couple days ago.

David of Digital Audio Insider on Economists, Radiohead and Bob Mould.

Ethan of Berkeley Place on How to save the music industry.


Blogger Neil said...

For being songs inspired (or something) by Henry Darger, I was surprised by how content these songs were to pick one emotional tone and hang out there for a few minutes. One of the things that I love about looking at Darger's paintings is how I can get lost in their variety. Even within one image, there are so many details to attend to, and their combinations often put conflicting emotions in touch with one another. These songs, not so much, except for the Walter Kong song.

I'll second the recommendation of In the Realms of the Unreal, though. Even if I wasn't sure about the animation sequences, that was a fascinating little movie.

10:01 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

What interested me about this collection of songs was the stylistic variety--bluegrass to fuzzy pop to hardcore punk. Originally, I was going to write about the appeal/use of Darger's work/outsider art to/by independent musicians, but I thought I'd instead let people draw their own conclusions. You might be on to something about the singular emotional tone of each song, but that's why it's cool to put together a playlist--for a broader emotionally palette and sort of a recontextualization of each component.

I really loved Realms. Those animated sequences seemed to me the only possible (yet very creative!) solution to the problem of a mostly unknown subject.

10:44 AM  
Blogger TheWaide said...

Reminds me quite a bit of the way Howard Finster inspired musicians in Georgia during the 80s and 90s. I enjoyed how you put this together and can't wait to see more of Darger's works. Very interesting story.

10:42 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

Finster, that's right. There is a tradition. But Finster really participated in popular culture. I mean, he painted a bunch of pretty famous album covers.

6:30 PM  

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