Category Archives: Society

August 19

The Jewish Ghetto and Photonostalgia: Roman Vishniac’s Vanished World

On the 19th of August 1897, one of the world’s most remarkable microbiologists and naturalist photographers, Roman Vishniac was born in Pavlovsk, the Russian Empire. Within the art world, however, he is best remembered for his photojournalistic coverage of the Eastern European Jewish ghettos prior to World War II. In the late 1930s, Vishniac was commissioned […]

July 21

Herbert M. McLuhan, Creator of The Global Village

On the 21st of July 1911, Herbert Marshall McLuhan was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. He is considered one of the foremost theorists on the subject of mass media, including television and computer technology.  He coined the expressions ‘the medium in the message’ and ‘the global village’, and predicted the World Wide Web almost thirty […]

July 01

Buckminster Fuller on Childhood and Education

On the 1st of July 1983, American neo-futuristic architect, system theorist, designer and inventor Buckminster Fuller died in Los Angeles, California. The man who used to launch his lectures by introducing himself as “the world’s most successful failure” was in fact one of the most brilliant and nonconformist minds of the twentieth century. Expelled from […]

June 30

Showmanship and Mass Frenzy: Blondin’s Niagara Stunt

On the 30th of June 1859, French acrobat Charles Blondin crossed Niagara Falls on a tightrope. “About 25,000 thrill-seekers arrived by train and steamer and dispersed on the American or Canadian side of the falls (…) Both banks grew “fairly black” with swarms of spectators, among them statesmen, judges, clerics, generals, members of Congress, capitalists, […]

June 29

James Van Der Zee: Life and Death in Harlem

On the 29th of June 1886, the largely self-taught African American photographer James Van Der Zee was born in Lenox, Massachusetts. He became the leading photographer of the Harlem Renaissance, also known as the New Negro Movement or the New Negro Renaissance – the cultural movement that spanned the 1920s. The term New Negro was […]

June 21

Jacqueline Livingston: Male Nudity Against the System

On the 21st of June 2013, American photographer Jacqueline Louise Livingston (nèe Barrett) died in Ithaca, New York. Born in August 1943, Jacqueline Louise Barrrett, grew up in Chandler, Arizona, where her father worked on the Air Force base as chief of the Fire Dept. He died when she was 12 years old, leaving her […]

June 17

The Guillotine: Does death by decapitation equal instant death?

On the 17th of June 1939, Eugen Weidmann, a convicted murderer, was guillotined in Versailles outside Saint-Pierre prison. He was the last person to be guillotined in public. Since then, until the 10th of September 1977 and the last ever execution by guillotine performed on Hamida Djandoubi, all executions by guillotine were done in private. […]