Saturday, August 17, 2019

Rosie the Riveter, WWI style

Click any image to nelarge
WWII leading to a lot of women in the workforce, personified by Rosie the Riveter, is well known. Less well known is that in WWI a lot of women were also employed in industries. These pictures, and those after the jump, show some of those women on the job.

They are taken from The Public Domain Review's article Women at Work during World War I where there are more.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Showing off

Finnish cavalry stunt from the 1930s
(click to enlarge, from Hippodrome Almaty)
If there hadn't been women we'd still be squatting in a cave eating raw meat, because we made civilization in order to impress our girlfriends. - Orson Welles

Monday, August 12, 2019

Restoring a broken 1880 Martini-Henry target pistol

The above video is from Andre Will Do It, a YouTuber who shows the steps he takes to restore old guns and equipment. There are more of his videos at the link.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

The Wilson House, a mid-20th Century time capsule

Click any image to enlarge
In 1959 Ralph Wilson, owner of Wilsonart a laminate company, designed and built his home. It was his residence as well as a test-bed and model home for his company's products. I imagine modern hipsters drool over it since it is a well preserved example of 1960's interior design. It is quite striking and stylish.

From the Wilsonart webpage:
The Ralph Sr. and Sunny Wilson House represents a hybrid of ranch and modern-style home architecture. The open interiors and U-shaped plan reflect the influence of the California Case Study House - a series of architectural experiments from the early 1940s and 1950s that were offered as better solutions for residential living.

The interiors of the Wilson House feature extensive use of decorative laminates in innovative applications, most of which had never before been seen in the home. The kitchen countertops reveal some of the earliest work in post-forming, a process where laminate is bent and wrapped to form continuous curves from the top to the side edge of the counter. Other applications include laminate clad built-in cabinetry in the kitchen, laundry, and bathrooms—even in the shower! The house also boasts some of the earliest undermount sinks in laminate tops – considered an innovation even today. While these types of installations are commonplace now, they were virtually unheard of in the late 1950s.

The Wilson House was featured in Ralph Wilson Plastics Company advertisements, as well as in the editorial pages of the nation's top trade magazines. It represented an ideal of design for affordable and fashionable residential housing and had a profound influence on future uses of laminate. Today, the house stands as one of the best residential examples of the mid-century modern style in the state of Texas.
There are more images after the jump, as well as more information and pictures at: Wilsonart's The Wilson House,  Mid-centuria's The Wilson House: A Laminate Laboratory and Roadside Wonders' The Wilson Laminate House.

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

A sculptor draws doctors operating

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Barbara Hepworth was a 20th Century English sculptor. Her statues were similar in style to Henry Moore (she was a fellow student with him in her formative years). In 1947 her daughter fell ill and Hepworth ended creating a series of drawings of surgeons at work in the operating theater. Hepworth's comments from Tate's Sculpture and the scalpel:
“In about the middle of 1947, a suggestion was made to me that I might watch an operation in a hospital. I expected that I should dislike it; but from the moment when I entered the operating theatre I became completely absorbed by two things: first, the extraordinary beauty of purpose and co-ordination between human beings all dedicated to the saving of life, and the way that unity of idea and purpose dictated a perfection of concentration, movement, and gesture, and secondly by the way this special grace (grace of mind and body) induced a spontaneous space composition, an articulated and animated kind of abstract sculpture very close to what I had been seeking in my own work.  
From the very first moment I was entirely enthralled by the classic beauty of what I saw there; classic in the sense that architecture and function were perfectly blended and purity of idea and grace of execution were in complete harmony.”
Considering how abstract her sculptures are, it is interesting to see her drawings. It is striking how detailed her faces and hands are, while the rest of the image is barely sketched.

HT: Flashbak.