Category Archives: Pop Culture

January 09

The Bumsteads Are Us! The Story of Chic Young’s ‘Blondie’ Comic Strip

On the 9th of January 1901, the American cartoonist Murat Bernard Young, better known as Chic Young, was born in Chicago, Illinois. His first comic strip The Affairs of Jane, about a low-budget film actress who dreams of becoming a real movie star, earned young Chic $22 a week. Unsurprisingly, upon receiving a phone call […]

December 16

Denny Fouts – From Escort and Literary Muse to Gay Idol

On the 16th of December 1948, Louis Denham Fouts died in Rome of a heart attack at the young age of 35 after years of excess – drugs, cigarettes, alcohol and a wild and promiscuous lifestyle. In the 1930s and ‘40s, he became notorious as America’s luxury gigolo, socialite and muse to literary greats such […]

December 12

The Motel, Unsettling Icon of Popular Culture

On the 12th of December 1925, Arthur Heineman opened the first recorded motel along Highway 101 just north of San Luis Obispo, California. As he couldn’t fit in the full name ‘Milestone Motor Hotel’ on the sign, he left it as ‘Motor Hotel’, which then came to be abbreviated as mo-tel. This first example of […]

October 09

Che Guevara’s Revolution in Pop Culture

On the 9th of October 1967 Che Guevara, an Argentinian Marxist revolutionary, and allegedly one of the most famous revolutionaries in the world, was executed. The execution took place in a little Bolivian village, La Higuera, which since then has become a pilgrimage destination for numerous Che Guevara followers. The use of the word ‘pilgrimage’ […]

September 18

Franco Moschino: Anti-Elitist Haute Couture?

On the 18th of September 1994, Italian fashion designer Franco Moschino died in Annone di Brianza, Italy. He is still seen as “the irreverent enfant terrible of the fashion industry who poked fun at the excesses of the 1980s with his “tongue in chic” designs, most memorably creating suits festooned with cutlery, jackets with faucet handles […]

September 06

Feminism and Royalty: A Paradox

On the  6th of September 1997, the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales, took place in London. Two thousand people attended the ceremony in Westminster Abbey and the British television audience reached 32.78 million, one of the country’s highest viewing figures ever. Two billion people followed the ceremony worldwide, making it one of the most watched events in history. In death, […]

July 15

LSD and the Psychedelic Art Movement

On the 15th of July 1937, the American artist Wes Wilson was born in Sacramento, California. He is generally regarded as the pioneer of the psychedelic poster and inventor of the psychedelic font which made the letters look as if they were melting or floating. The style of the font was derived from a Viennese Secessionist style […]