As Donald Drumpf enters the white house and we enter deeper into the historical abyss of late-capitalism it might be worth to remember just how cheerful things seemed some 50 years ago, the 1967 Montreal World Expo and in the Osaka 1970 Expo.
World exhibitions are a genre that has kind of passed on from the world, which is a shame. In the past they were used to offer a vision of the future, and though those futures seem kind of naive today, I kind of miss those people who tried giving us a universalisitc and hopeful vision for the planet and mankind. This might be a time to revive the world Expo (there’s one scheduled to happen in Dubai in 2020).
Watch the last two minutes of the clip from the Osaka 1970 expo and you are in for a treat with all those Japanese dancers waving the flags of all the nations of the earth. Oh the camaraderie!
Back in the 1966 voice over artist Ken Nordine released a peculiar album named colors, with 34 tracks, each dedicated to a specific color on the color spectrum. Being the year when the psychedelic movement got launched into the public mainstream, it was a great year for an album about colors. It suffices to see this short music clip dedicated to the yellow color to get an idea of just what kind of genius went into this work… If you this has stimulated your interest, you might want to check out the full album here.
Some breath-taking videos of fluorescent underwater glory.
In 1962, Bruce Conner left San Francisco and moved to Mexico, apparently intending to “wait out the impending nuclear holocaust”. He spent about a year in Mexico before running out of cash and patience, and returning to the United States. During his year in Mexico, Conner hosted psychedelic guru Timothy Leary, who he had met on an earlier visit to New York. Conner and Leary occupied themselves with mushroom hunts in the Mexican countryside. It’s not clear whether their hunts were successful. But Conner’s staccato home-movies of their walks – combined with movies of previous mushroom hunts in San Francisco – became his film Looking for Mushrooms. The film rushes through the rustic landscape of rural Mexico, flitting past houses and through a crumbling graveyard.
Conner cut Looking for Mushrooms down to 100 feet in 1965 in order to fit it into an endless-loop cartridge for continuous projection. In 1967 he added a soundtrack by The Beatles (“Tomorrow Never Knows”).
Oh yes, more pancakes please. Here’s a vintage commercial for the International Hpuse of Pancakes. I don’t really know what’s up with this one. Is that soundtrack original? Whatever the story, it’s definitely trippy.
If you liked Jodrowski’s Holy Mountain, you might also enjoy Parjanov’s The Color of Pommegrantes (1969) which might very well be called the soviet holy mountain.