5-24-23 to 5-25-23
Vintage Photos of Celebrities and Their Pets
HILARIOUS & CRINGEWORTHY KNITTED SWEATERS OF THE 1980S
’s November, and the temperature in my neighborhood in northern Ohio reached 77 just two days ago. It felt like the start of September really, just a lovely day to be outside. Not at all cold.
One of the benefits of the balmy winters brought on by catastrophic climate change is that there’s no risk someone will trick us into donning one of the absolutely amazing sweaters featured in a remarkable book of knitting designs from the fashionable 1980s. Wit Knits, which presented “lively and original” knitted sweater suggestions by George Hostler and Gyles Brandreth, came out in 1986, and the photographs showing off the finished designs are simply jaw-dropping in their silliness.
There’s a website devoted to these pictures, but its proprietor, rightly sensing that the visual impact of these doozies is the primary appeal, therefore “won’t post patterns, buy the book if you want to make them.” Harrumph. The book is, like everything else, available on Amazon.
The really peculiar thing about Wit Knits is that virtually all of the models are well-known figures from 1980s British television. I don’t know how Hostler and Brandreth were able to sucker such famous personages into agreeing to be involved with this, but perhaps it was simply a paid gig like any other. Maybe they got to keep the sweaters?
For instance: I can remember watching, on WNET Channel 13 in New York back around when this book came out, a delightful British show called Good Neighbors (it was known as The Good Life in the U.K.), and Richard Briers, here wearing the light blue sweater with the “wee Scottie” on it, was the lead actor on that show. Meanwhile, Joanna Lumley—then perhaps best known for her stint in The New Avengers, who later became an icon of decadence in Ab Fab—here is shown wearing a ridiculous sweater with a horsey; she also has a different one with what is most likely an owl on it. Lizzie Webb, who presented morning exercise routines on TV, is wearing a sweater with a kittykat on it. Most of the people here are like that.
The most important black woman sculptor of the 20th century deserves more recognition
Augusta Savage started sculpting as a child in the 1900s using what she could get her hands on: the clay that was part of the natural landscape in her hometown of Green Cove Springs, Florida. Eventually her talents took her far from the clay pits of the South. She joined the burgeoning arts scene of the Harlem Renaissance when her talents led her to New York.
Her work was lauded, and she was consistently admired by contemporary black artists, but her renown was transient. And much of her work has been lost, since she could mostly afford to cast only in plaster.
Like other key figures of the 1920s such as Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston, Savage skillfully challenged negative images and stereotypical depictions of black people. One of her largest commissions, for instance, were sculptures for the World’s Fair of 1939, inspired by “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” a song often described as the black national anthem. “The Harp,” another work in the commission, depicted black singers as the ascending strings of that instrument. Regrettably, both pieces were destroyed when the fairgrounds were torn down.
Born in 1892, Savage would often sculpt clay into small figures, much to the chagrin of her father, a minister who believed that artistic expression was sinful. In 1921, she moved to Harlem, where she enrolled at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. A gifted student, Savage completed the four-year program in only three and quickly embarked on a career in sculpting. During the early to mid-1920s, she was commissioned to create several sculptures, including a bust of NAACP leader W.E.B. Du Bois and charismatic black nationalist leader Marcus Garvey — two key black leaders of the period who were often at odds with each other.
Both pieces were well received, especially in black circles, but the racial climate at the time hampered wider recognition of her work. Savage won a prestigious scholarship at a summer arts program at the Fontainebleau School of the Fine Arts outside of Paris in 1923, for instance, but the offer was withdrawn when the school discovered that she was black. Despite her efforts — she filed a complaint with the Ethical Culture Committee — and public outcry from several well-known black leaders at the time, the organizers upheld the decision.
The Beautiful Men of Goth and Post-Punk
The men of goth and post-punk are undeniably some of the most beautiful male specimens to have graced a stage or have played an instrument. In fact, some of them wear more makeup than the many talented women in which they share a scene that overall embraces androgyny, while defying gender norms and sexuality.
We’ve compiled a list and gallery dedicated to some of the most iconic musicians and singers making the best music to come out during the late 70s and 80s, some of which who inspired boys and girls to spend a fortune on cosmetics and hairspray in attempts to achieve the varying looks made by their heroes listed below.
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