Michelangelo's Shopping List

3:46 AM
Owned by the Casa Buonarroti museum in Florence, Italy, this 500-year-old list was written and illustrated by the sculptor / painter / poet / personality on the back of a letter. Michelangelo’s servant was likely illiterate, so Michelangelo sketched out what he wanted to eat.

Victoriana Cats

3:35 AM
Just a whimsy of mine today. Victorian trade cards and advertisements featuring cats that I found online. ;-)

Al Sufi’s Book of Fixed Stars

5:39 AM
The Book of Fixed Stars is an astronomical text written by Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi (Azophi) around 964. The book was written in Arabic, although the author himself was Persian. It was an attempt to create a synthesis of the comprehensive star catalogue in Ptolemy’s Almagest (books VII and VIII) with the indigenous Arabic astronomical traditions on the constellations. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Fixed_Stars

Ray Gun Magazine

9:51 PM
Founded in 1992, Ray Gun was the only magazine wherein a die-hard culture seeker could find information on alternative music and the street-inspired style that really mattered. Punk rock had torn pop music to shreds and created a hunger for an original lifestyle beyond mainstream culture, and Ray Gun was its graphic chronicler: across its pages blasted a visual feast made up of era-defining artists such as Sonic Youth or Iggy Pop, music-inspire…

A Celestial Atlas by Alexander Jamieson

7:16 PM
This is a star atlas by British author Alexander Jamieson, published in 1822. The atlas includes 30 plates, 26 of which are constellation maps with a sinusoidal projection. Some of the plates are hand-colored. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Celestial_Atlas

Anatomical Diagrams from 19th century Iran

4:47 PM
From a manuscript dated 1893 with a seal which bears the words: Murajiah va taftish shud. Found on the Wellcome digital library: https://wellcomecollection.org/works

Paul Rand: Sparkle and Spin

5:44 PM
A 1957 children’s book illustrated by legendary designer Paul Rand, and written by his then-wife Ann. Read more here: https://www.paulrand.design/writing/books/sparkle-and-spin.html

English Herbal: Cotton MS Vitellius C III

7:45 PM
The illustrations that adorn more than 100 of the herbal’s pages are captivating on their own. Each accompanies short descriptions of a remedy and how people may prepare it (although these entries may not have actually served as practical guides). Small winged creatures appear above a treatment for spider bites, for example, and a snake and scorpion in battle illustrate a recipe made from dried heliotrope and wine, which was purportedly used to…


9:15 PM
An antiphonal from France/​ Burgundy, 1st half of 16th Century https://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/diglit/salVIII16/0029/thumbs

When Bauhaus sends you a postcard...

5:56 PM
In 1923, a flurry of colorful postcards heralded the first major Bauhaus school exhibition. Both students and established artists including Paul Klee, László Moholy-Nagy, Wassily Kandinsky, and Herbert Bayer offered snapshots of the German modernist aesthetic that would majorly influence art and design for the rest of the 20th century. https://hyperallergic.com/221572/the-exuberant-postcard-art-of-the-first-bauhaus-exhibition/

Transparent Solar System

4:26 PM
One of a set of 12 hand-tinted astronomical prints with an explanatory card. The publisher is identified on each print as J. Reynolds or James Reynolds of the Strand, London. These cards were first issued by Reynolds in 1846, although he and other publishers continued to produce them throughout the second half of the 19th century. https://collections.rmg.co.uk/collections/objects/263841.html

Ulisse Aldrovandi

3:55 PM
Ulisse Aldrovandi (11 September 1522 – 4 May 1605) was an Italian naturalist, the moving force behind Bologna's botanical garden, one of the first in Europe. He is usually referred to, especially in older literature, as Aldrovandus; his name in Italian is equally given as Aldroandi. https://peoplepill.com/people/ulisse-aldrovandi/

Sword Hilt Designs

5:10 PM
A set of plates by Antoine Jacquard representing designs in blackwork for sword handles, dagger hilts and pommels, decorated with abstracted foliage, grotesques, chimeric figures and drolleries. Produced between about 1610 and 1630. More on the biblioodyssey blog, one of the best resources for most things that I feature on this page:  http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.com/2009/12/sword-hilt-designs.html

Typographic Objects in Vanitas Paintings

2:29 PM
A vanitas is a symbolic work of art showing the transience of life, the futility of pleasure, and the certainty of death, often contrasting symbols of wealth and symbols of ephemerality and death. Best-known are vanitas still lifes, a common genre in Netherlandish art of the 16th and 17th centuries; they have also been created at other times and in other media and genres. Common vanitas symbols include skulls, which are a reminder of the certai…

The Big New Yorker Book of Cats...

12:18 PM
... is a shiny, well-fed tome that gathers the best cat-coddling articles, essays, short stories, poems, cartoons, covers, and other feats of literature and art from the New Yorker archives. Spanning nearly nine decades, the collection featuring contributions from such celebrated minds as John Updike, Margaret Atwood, James Thurber, Susan Orlean, and even the patron saint of “the other side,” famed dog-lover E. B. White. https://www.brainpicking…

Malay Illuminated Manuscripts

12:13 PM
Two anonymous beauties from the late 18th to the early 19th centuries. Read more about them here: https://blogs.bl.uk/asian-and-african/2015/12/a-malay-manuscript-artist-unveiled-datuk-muda-muhammad-of-perlis.html


12:00 PM
Swissted is an ongoing project by artist and designer Mike Joyce, owner of Stereotype Design in New York City. Drawing from his love of punk rock and Swiss Modernism, two movements that have almost nothing to do with one another, the designer has redesigned vintage punk, hardcore, new wave, and indie rock show flyers into International Typographic Style posters. Each design is set in lowercase Berthold Akzidenz-Grotesk medium—not Helvetica.

Theatrum Orbis Terrarum

5:28 PM
Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, ("Theatre of the Orb of the World") is considered to be the first true modern atlas. Written by Abraham Ortelius and originally printed on 20 May 1570 in Antwerp, it consisted of a collection of uniform map sheets and supporting text bound to form a book for which copper printing plates were specifically engraved. The Ortelius atlas is sometimes referred to as the summary of sixteenth-century cartography. The …

Audubon's Birds

4:19 AM
Only two of the full collection found on wikimedia: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Birds_of_America
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