southern exposure

Orthodox Christianity has a knack for building its churches and monasteries in inhospitable places. But only a few can rival Trinity Church on King George Island. It is the southernmost Orthodox church in the world, built near Bellingshausen Station, Russia's permanent outpost in Antarctica.

In the mid 1990s, Patriarch Alexius II of Moscow gave his blessing for this audacious project. The church was constructed in Russia and transported by a supply ship to its present location. One or two monks from Troitse-Sergiyeva Lavra, the most important Russian monastery, volunteer to man the church year-round.

While most buildings in Antarctica are built to hug the ground in order to reduce their exposure to the polar wind, this church proudly stands 15 meters tall. It is a wooden structure, built from Siberian pine and carved in the traditional Russian style by the master carpenters of Altay.

The priests take care of the spiritual needs of staff from nearby Russian, Chilean, Polish and Korean research stations. Their obligations include praying for souls of 64 Russians who lost their lives in various expeditions — as well as performing the very occasional, very chilly, baptism.

The church is large enough to accommodate 30 visitors, although it is rarely filled to capacity. Recently, the first wedding ever celebrated in a church in Antarctica was performed in Trinity Church. Two researchers were married: a Chilean and a Russian.

:images atlas obscura


philip guston and other passover seder apparitions

:217project no. 19; images dianamuse; i like all these images, though the mind boggles at the difference in light quality and texture among them. i shot them last night with the same camera. must be that low-skill/no-flash alchemy at work again.

30 rock, c. 1933

Such a photo.

:image via shorpy; rockefeller center and rca building from 515 madison avenue, december 5, 1933; digital image recovered from released emulsion layer of the original 5x7 acetate negative. photo by samuel h. gottscho.


triple triptych

Can you plot the locations of each of these threesomes on a map of Manhattan?

Hint: If you draw lines connecting the three location points, you'll end up with a very long, narrow scalene triangle with the longest side on the right. Fun, huh?

First responder to email me with an answer (undoubtedly clever, perhaps correct, but not necessarily both) identifying the three locations will receive something nice and New Yorkish (I won't send gefilte fish through the mails - promise) via United States
Postal Service. From me to you.

e address = dianamusemail [at] gmail [dot] com

:217project no. 18; images dianamuse



Fine weekend, everyone. Wherever you may be.

:image rob kroenert, 2/18/10; every year during the month of february, the horsetail falls in yosemite national park turns golden around sunset.



This found collage is courtesy of the construction guys working at the corner establishment. They were demolishing and/or renovating something or other yesterday - in the process, they unintentionally (I think) assembled some amazing sidewalk sculpture. This was a one-day-only exhibit; by this morning, the sidewalk had been swept clean.

(I love that the shadows add a dimension of their own. Shadows intrigue me ever so much.)

:217project; image dianamuse



:217project no. 15; dianamuse, wednesday afternoon


Fascinating typographic collages from artist Alexis Anne Mackenzie. Mackenzie started making collages in a visual journal she kept in high school. She went on to study at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. She now lives and works in San Francisco.

All of my collages are composed by hand, cut from books I've been collecting for years, and painstakingly pieced together as seamlessly as possible. They create themselves through a process beginning with a loose concept, followed by a series of trials and errors, subtle maneuvers, selection/elimination, harmonious unions and happy accidents. It is a meditative process....

My general intent, throughout all my work, is to portray the world as a flawed thing of beauty - a place that shines brightly, but has a dark side to match.

:images © alexis anne mackenzie, (top to bottom) dust, dreaming is easy, it matters to me, youthless



A rite of spring: The early-Sunday-evening happy dance on West Houston.

:217project; image dianamuse



Spoils from this week's Central Park treasure hunt.

:217project; image dianamuse

Good weekend, everyone. Wherever you may be.

Happy Spring!

:image boston globe; masked dancers wear their traditional ritual masks during a festival in the village of kalipetrovo, northeast of the bulgarian capital of sofia. participants dress in sheepskin garments and wear scary masks with the intention of driving away evil spirits and ghosts for the beginning of the spring season. now that's what i call spring cleaning.



Fierce and constant, the guardians of New York are legion.

:217project; image dianamuse, cornice detail, fifteen-story residential building, upper west side


floral lab: annet van der voort

Photographer Annet van der Voort observes the transformation of flowers, especially tulips, and captures images of them in their various states of decay. Her technique for producing this remarkable artwork is completely without camera. In a complex process, van der Voort scans the wilting splendor of the flowers and, in doing so, expresses her understanding of vanitas — the philosophical idea of the transience of everything mundane.

:order limited edition prints of annet van der voort's work at lumas


We must cast our bread
Upon the waters
, as the
Ancient preacher said,

Trusting that it may
Amply be restored to us
After many a day.

That old metaphor,
Drawn from rice farming on the
River's flooded shore,

Helps us to believe
That it's no great sin to give,
Hoping to receive.

Therefore I shall throw
Broken bread, this sullen day,
Out across the snow,

Betting crust and crumb
That birds will gather, and that
One more spring will come.

- Richard Wilbur

:image tabi**chu; richard wilbur poem, ecclesiastes 11:1, courtesy of the new yorker, 3/22/10


saturday fare: dan gualdoni

The imagery from Dan Gualdoni's body of work, Coast Redux, examines vast, ethereal, invented environments along the sea. Rocks rising from fog, clouds floating in the atmosphere, light captured in translucent layers of color all fuse to create a mysterious sense of place. By layering the surface with thin skins of paint and by varying the positions of the horizon line in the composition, Gualdoni is able to produce paintings that “hover between pure abstraction and natural realism.”

Gualdoni will participate in the upcoming Invitational #1, opening April 22 at Kathryn Markel Fine Arts.

:work from dan gualdoni's coast redux will be on view april 22 - may 22 at kathryn markel fine arts in chelsea;
posted by diana murphy



Joyful weekend, everyone. Wherever you may be.

:217project; image dianamuse, facade of the russian tea room
russian tea room slogan: six minutes and twenty-three seconds from lincoln center and slightly to the left of carnegie hall


dreams of flying

Inspired by classic children's books as well as modern superheroes, Jan von Holleben started producing Dreams of Flying in 2002 with children from his local neighborhood in southwest Germany. Jan brings the influences of his parents (a cinematographer and a child therapist) to his work. His focus on the visual representation of childhood comes from his teacher-training coursework: he combines the theories of 'Child History' and 'Play' with his personal experience and childhood memories.

Do you still fly in your dreams — or dream that you will once again?

:jan von holleben



Post no bills.

:217project; image dianamuse, west 57th street


Good weekend, everyone. Wherever you may be.

No one knows for sure what creates these picturesque dark streaks on Mars. A leading hypothesis suggests that the streaks are the result of fine-grained sand sliding down the banks of troughs and craters. In this image, dark sand appears to have flowed hundreds of meters down the slopes of Acheron Fossae. The sand flows like a liquid around boulders, and, for some reason, lightens significantly over time. This sand flow process is one of several which can rapidly change the surface of Mars; other processes include dust devils, dust storms and the freezing and melting of areas of ice.

:image nasa, slope streaks in acheron fossae on mars