Monday, 27 January 2014

Treasures at Chatsworth

A friend and I visited Chatsworth country house just before Christmas. At least we tried to. The estate is extremely proficient in sweating its assets and had a Narnia-themed event on that weekend. Consequently the entire place was coated in fake snow, baubles and was home to a menagerie of dodgey fantasy mannequins. Oh well...

The two things I was able to appreciate through the cacophony of screaming children were the statue of the Veiled Vestal Virgin (all the 'V's) and a monumental glass sculpture. The former is Victorian from the studio of Raffaelle Monti. He has used the transparent properties of the marble to great effect, and we spent several minutes craning our necks around the piece to ascertain what was actually carved into the stone's surface and what we were imagining.

Alas, I can't track down much about the large cut-glass piece that is mounted in the gardens.  The artist has achieved a wonderfully harmonious balance between areas of textural detail and large, smooth surfaces. The patterns remind me of the imprints of fossilised plants or sea creatures.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

AFT-07 Titanian Saint

An outfit called AllFun Toys is showing pre-production photos of a retro-clone figure.  Alpha Trion will be about six inches tall, and comes with clone packaging too! Apparently he's part of the Titanium Saints line. The awesome box art is by Spike Art.

Via Mecha Catalogue

Saturday, 4 January 2014

Monument Valley

Earlier this week I saw some screenshots and video for the forthcoming game Monument Valley. It looks absolutely stunning. A kind of lo-fi, California-colourway, Art Deco-meets MC Escher title.

Check out the video below.

Via Polygon

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

The Ash Tree

Continuing my rather haunted Christmas I watched the 1975 BBC adaption of MR James' The Ash Tree a few nights ago. The full version is below.

An aristocrat comes into his title and moves to occupy his hereditary seat. It emerges that his ancestors became wrapped-up in the witch-hunting craze and this inheritance drives the short narrative. It's rather a slow affair, but builds tension respectably enough. However, without spoiling things, James' original story relies on the visceral descriptions of some nasty little offenders. I rather felt that the film makers took an awkward path of not showing these grisly critters in enough detail, but also showing them too much to instill implied-horror.

Nothing can touch Whistle and I'll Come to You, but this is a solid addition to the great British canon of televised ghost stories.