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Archive for the ‘deep time’ Category

Cosmic Sentinels and Spiral Jetties: J.G. Ballard, Robert Smithson & Tacita Dean

By • Mar 3rd, 2013 •

Category: architecture, deep time, features, film, Lead Story, Robert Smithson, Tacita Dean, temporality, urban decay, urban ruins, visual art

Tacita Dean’s new film, JG, is currently on view at the Arcadia University Art Gallery. JG is inspired by Dean’s correspondence with J.G. Ballard, and explores connections between his short story ‘The Voices of Time’ and Robert Smithson’s iconic earthwork and film Spiral Jetty. To celebrate Dean’s new work, Andrew Frost explores the enduring and mysterious relationship between Ballard, Smithson and Dean.



‘The Dead Astronaut': RIP Neil Armstrong, 1930-2012

By • Aug 27th, 2012 •

Category: America, Brian Eno, conspiracy theory, death of affect, deep time, features, inner space, Lead Story, space relics, temporality

In the wake of Neil Armstrong’s death, we recall Ballard’s enigmatic relationship to the First Man on the Moon.



David Pelham: The Art of Inner Space

By • Feb 26th, 2012 •

Category: America, Brigid Marlin, deep time, dystopia, Eduardo Paolozzi, entropy, enviro-disaster, inner space, interviews, Lead Story, visual art

David Pelham produced perhaps the most Ballardian images ever to grace the covers of Ballard’s novels, prompted by this brief from the author himself: ‘‘monumental/tombstones/airless thermonuclear landscape/horizons/a zone devoid of time’. Here, Pelham discusses his apocalyptic art with James Pardey.



Apollo Roulette, Part 2

By • Feb 6th, 2012 •

Category: alternate worlds, America, conspiracy theory, deep time, features, hyperreality, Lead Story, nuclear war, space relics

In this, the final thrilling instalment of Brian Baker’s Apollo Roulette, the sequel to his 2009 Fleming/Ballard mashup, Baker continues to apply the method to desert imagery in Ballard’s work, uncovering the deadly secret that powers the American ‘nuclear state': an apocalyptic game of APOLLO ROULETTE!



Apollo Roulette: part 1

By • Jan 26th, 2012 •

Category: alternate worlds, America, conspiracy theory, deep time, features, hyperreality, Jean Baudrillard, Lead Story, nuclear war, Salvador Dali, space relics, William Gibson, WWIII

In this sequel to Brian Baker’s Ian Fleming/J.G. Ballard mashup from 2009, Baker applies the method to desert imagery in Ballard’s work. Finally, we are able to uncover the secret logic at play in the American ‘nuclear state’ – a deadly game of APOLLO ROULETTE!



Myths of a Near Future: Simon Sellars, Bruce Sterling and V. Vale

By • Nov 15th, 2010 •

Category: Barcelona, body horror, boredom, Bruce Sterling, celebrity culture, consumerism, cyberpunk, deep time, features, inner space, Lead Story, New Worlds, Salvador Dali, surrealism, William Burroughs

Two years ago, Simon Sellars, Bruce Sterling and V. Vale appeared on a panel, ‘Myths of a Near Future’, to discuss the work of J.G. Ballard. Our friend Tim Chapman was in the audience and he has kindly transcribed the discussion. Here it is, two years late, but hopefully still of interest: ‘Myths of a Near Future’.



Landscapes From a Dream: How the Art of David Pelham Captured the Essence of J G Ballard’s Early Fiction

By • Jun 14th, 2010 •

Category: deep time, Ernst, features, inner space, Lead Story, New Worlds, Salvador Dali, short stories, surrealism, visual art

For Ballard surrealist art was one of many possible routes to inner space. But inner space in its quintessentially Ballardian form needed something other than surrealist reproductions on the covers of his books. This was the challenge facing David Pelham, when Penguin’s Ballard titles came up for reprint.



Iterative Architecture: a Ballardian Text

By • Jul 23rd, 2009 •

Category: academia, alternate worlds, America, architecture, death of affect, deep time, features, film, inner space, invisible literature, Lead Story, memory, New Worlds, pastiche, perception, Shanghai, short stories, time travel, WWII

Readers hoping to solve the mystery of J.G. Ballard’s ‘The Beach Murders’ may care to approach it in the form of a card game. Some of the principal clues have been alphabetized, some left as they were found, scrawled on to the backs of a deck of cards. Readers are invited to recombine the order of the cards to arrive at a solution. Obviously any number of solutions is possible, and the final answer to the mystery lies forever hidden.



Iterative Architecture: a Ballardian Text, part 2

By • Jul 23rd, 2009 •

Category: academia, alternate worlds, America, architecture, death of affect, deep time, film, inner space, invisible literature, memory, New Worlds, pastiche, perception, Shanghai, short stories, temporality, time travel, WWII

‘Iterative Architecture: a Ballardian Text’ by Brian Baker ..:: CONTINUED from >> Part 1 ::… ♣♠♥♦ The Joker. The Joker in the pack is the card that, in some games, can replace (or substitute for, take the place of) any of the others. In this sense, the Joker is the empty sign. ♣♠♥♦ Hearts ♥ […]



Crown Casino: ‘A snarling, digitised mutilation’

By • May 27th, 2009 •

Category: advertising, alternate worlds, architecture, audio, Australia, boredom, CCTV, consumerism, death of affect, deep time, fascism, features, hyperreality, Lead Story, leisure, micronations, occult, perception, photography, psychogeography, schizophrenia, surveillance, temporality, time travel, utopia

Simon Sellars, Mel Chilianis and Melb Psy take an audiovisual tour of Melbourne’s Crown Casino, seeking to map the coordinates of this micronational zone — consumer-driven control space with a raging need.



"Paradigm of nowhere": Shepperton, a photo essay (part 2)

By • Mar 5th, 2009 •

Category: autobiography, biography, boredom, consumerism, crime, deep time, features, flying, Iain Sinclair, inner space, perception, photography, psychogeography, psychopathology, Shepperton, suburbia, time travel

Finally: the long-delayed conclusion to my photo essay, ‘”Paradigm of nowhere”: Shepperton, a photo essay’, in which I aim for the traversal of a distinct psychic terrain: the blanket overlay of Shepperton with a mental template gleaned from so many Ballard novels and short stories.



Kosmopolis 08: Switching stations

By • Oct 25th, 2008 •

Category: alternate worlds, architecture, Australia, Barcelona, body horror, Chris Marker, deep time, features, flying, posthumanism, psychopathology

Here are some preliminary thoughts from the city of Barcelona, where I am appearing on a panel to talk about the work of J.G. Ballard as part of the Kosmopolis literary festival.



Rick McGrath's Letter from Barcelona: The Exquisite Corpse, An Autopsy of the New Millennium

By • Jul 29th, 2008 •

Category: alternate worlds, autobiography, Barcelona, David Cronenberg, deep time, dystopia, enviro-disaster, features, gated communities, inner space, Lead Story, medical procedure, Salvador Dali, Shanghai, surrealism, visual art

Transmission from Barcelona stop Having a wonderful time stop I believe in nothing stop Lost in surreal image machine and deep-blue-drenched corridors stretching to infinity stop Startling comma perverse visuals stop Rare books and writing stop Exhibition a raging success stop JGB would be proud stop Full letter to follow comma Love Rick end transmission



Ballardoscope: some attempts at approaching the writer as a visionary

By • Jul 26th, 2008 •

Category: Alain Robbe-Grillet, America, autobiography, Barcelona, Bruce Sterling, deep time, drained swimming pools, features, flying, hyperreality, inner space, literature, medical procedure, science fiction, sexual politics, Shanghai, Shepperton, space relics, speed & violence, Steven Spielberg, surrealism, technology, war, WWII

Jordi Costa, the curator of J.G. Ballard: Autopsy of the New Millennium, currently exhibiting at the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona, gifts us this incisive analysis of the major themes in Ballard’s work. Accompanying the essay is the alternate version of the exhibition’s promo trailer.



Chris Marker: Imperfect Memory

By • Jul 18th, 2008 •

Category: Ballardosphere, Chris Marker, deep time, film, inner space, photography, science fiction

New Marker blog: ‘Quoting mostly, writing little, ever fascinated by and admiring always the oeuvre of Chris Marker, le plus célèbre des cinéastes inconnus.’



Ballard and the Vicissitudes of Time

By • Jul 3rd, 2008 •

Category: America, deep time, features, flying, inner space, Lead Story, space relics, temporality, time travel, urban decay

Mike Holliday investigates a strange interregnum in Ballard’s career, three short stories that return to earlier concerns: psychological dislocations and disturbances, somehow caused by human space-flight, in our perception of the flow of time.



Flooded London

By • Jun 29th, 2008 •

Category: alternate worlds, architecture, Ballardosphere, deep time, enviro-disaster, urban decay, urban ruins, visual art

Film and media studio floods London 82 years hence, evokes Ballard.



'All about stars and time…'

By • Jun 25th, 2008 •

Category: alternate worlds, Ballardosphere, deep time, film

Jean Seberg, Rudy Wurlitzer and Ballard…



The Light-Painter of Mojave D: An Interview with Troy Paiva

By • Jun 6th, 2008 •

Category: alternate worlds, America, architecture, deep time, entropy, enviro-disaster, flying, interviews, Lead Story, Philip K. Dick, photography, science fiction, speed & violence, surrealism, urban decay, urban ruins, visual art

Troy Paiva’s desert photography evokes the crumbling, decadent resorts and enervated cityscapes of Ballard’s Vermilion Sands and Hello America stories. Enjoy this interview with Troy, the Light-Painter of Mojave D.



Zodiac 3000

By • Apr 22nd, 2008 •

Category: architecture, Ballardosphere, celebrity culture, consumerism, deep time, photography, psychology, Salvador Dali, sexual politics, speed & violence, surrealism, visual art

For this upcoming exhibition, the International Project Space in Birmingham will be transformed into the J.G. Ballard Centre for Psychopathological Research, “an institute built to interrogate the New Psychology explored in Ballard’s fiction.”



Relocating Absence exhibition

By • Apr 21st, 2008 •

Category: Ballardosphere, deep time, inner space, urban ruins, visual art

Details of a new exhibition in London that “often plays with the constants of space and time”. It includes the work of Michelle Lord, whose “Future Ruins” series previously featured on Ballardian.



From Toronto to Shanghai

By • Oct 2nd, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, deep time, Shanghai, Shepperton, travel

Above: the Ballard family’s former house, now lit up in the colours of capitalism. Photo: Rick McGrath. “Do you believe in synchronicity?” Andy asked. “That’s the 10 o’clock signal for today’s national anniversary. Sirens are blowing all over the country right now.” He leaned in, conspiratorially. “It was precisely 70 years ago today the Japanese […]



Shanghai Jim: Form Dictated by Time

By • Aug 27th, 2007 •

Category: deep time, features, film, filmography, Shanghai, Steven Spielberg, WWII

ABOVE: Youtube uplink for Shanghai Jim (BBC Bookmark, 1991; produced by James Runcie). by Pippa Tandy SHANGHAI JIM (1991) Director/Producer: James Runcie Executive Producer: Nigel Williams Starring: J.G. Ballard, Michael Troughton, Hans Gebruers See here for a transcript of J.G. Ballard’s commentary from the film. DOCUMENTARY FILMS about the lives and works of artists have […]



Shanghai Jim: Voiceover Transcription

By • Aug 27th, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, deep time, features, film, filmography, flying, Shepperton, WWII

ABOVE: Youtube uplink for Shanghai Jim (BBC Bookmark, 1991; produced by James Runcie). NOTE: The following is a transcription taken from J.G. Ballard’s commentary for the documentary Shanghai Jim. It also transcribes the film’s brief interviews with his daughters, Fay and Bea, and the film’s direct quotes from Ballard’s work. See here for Pippa Tandy’s […]



The Melting Fabric of Time

By • Mar 6th, 2007 •

Category: architecture, Ballardosphere, deep time, surrealism, visual art

Nice article by Jonathan Jones tracing the influence of Surrealism, including in the works of Ballard. It’s as neat a summation as you’d want of one of JGB’s major inspirations: When we speak of something being surreal, we mean something between funny peculiar and funny ha-ha. It is undoubtedly this comic dimension that made surrealism […]



Ballardosphere Wrap-Up, Part 1

By • Feb 26th, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, celebrity culture, cyberpunk, deep time, Jean Baudrillard, photography, space relics, speed & violence

Photo: Stephen Hughes. Read recently… + Via Fanny Magnate, David Chandler’s essay on the work of photographer Stephen Hughes: Over the last five years Hughes has worked all over Europe, developing an interest in what might be called ‘peripheral places’, sometimes places literally on the edge — of cities perhaps, or by the sea — […]



The Drowned World (1962)

By • Oct 10th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, deep time, enviro-disaster, inner space, urban decay

OPENING LINE: “Soon it would be too hot.” From Amazon UK: In the 21st century, fluctuations in solar radiation have caused the ice-caps to melt and the seas to rise. Global temperatures have climbed, and civilization has retreated to the Arctic and Antarctic circles. London is a city now inundated by a primeval swamp, to […]



The Burning World (aka The Drought; 1964)

By • Oct 8th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, deep time, enviro-disaster, urban decay

OPENING LINE: “At noon, when Dr Charles Ransom moored his houseboat in the entrance to the river, he saw Quilter, the idiot son of the old woman who lived in the ramshackle barge outside the yacht basin, standing on a spur of exposed rock on the opposite bank and smiling at the dead birds floating […]



The Crystal World (1966)

By • Oct 8th, 2006 •

Category: bibliography, deep time, inner space

OPENING LINE: “Above all, the darkness of the river was what impressed Dr. Sanders as he looked out for the first time across the open mouth of the Matarre estuary.” Ballard’s fourth novel. My 1993 Flamingo version has quotes on the back: Through a ‘leaking’ of time and a supersaturation of matter, a forest area […]



Hello America (1981)

By • Sep 16th, 2006 •

Category: America, bibliography, celebrity culture, deep time, media landscape, William Burroughs

OPENING LINE: ‘There’s gold, Wayne, gold dust everywhere! Wake up! The streets of America are paved with gold!’. From the Carroll & Grad 1981 edition: A century after America’s financial collapse and the climactic upheavals of the 1990s, Wayne stows away on SS Apollo, bound for the New World on a voyage of rediscovery. He […]



A User's Guide to the Millennium (1996)

By • Sep 5th, 2006 •

Category: advertising, architecture, bibliography, boredom, celebrity culture, consumerism, death of affect, deep time, dystopia, enviro-disaster, fashion, film, flying, humour, invisible literature, media landscape, medical procedure, non-fiction, photography, politics, psychogeography, psychology, Salvador Dali, science fiction, sexual politics, space relics, speed & violence, surrealism, television, urban decay, visual art, William Burroughs, WWII

OPENING LINE: “In his prime the Hollywood screenwriter was one of the tragic figures of our age, evoking the special anguish that arises from feeling sorry for oneself while making large amounts of money”. (from ‘The Sweet Smell of Excess’). From the 1996 Harper Collins edition: The first-ever collection of J.G. Ballard’s articles and reviews, […]



J.G. Ballard: The Complete Short Stories, vols 1 & 2 (2006)

By • Sep 1st, 2006 •

Category: advertising, architecture, bibliography, boredom, celebrity culture, consumerism, death of affect, deep time, dystopia, enviro-disaster, flying, humour, invisible literature, media landscape, medical procedure, New Worlds, photography, politics, psychogeography, psychology, science fiction, sexual politics, Shepperton, short stories, space relics, speed & violence, suicide, surrealism, television, terrorism, urban decay, urban revolt, visual art, WWII

OPENING LINE: “I first met Jane Ciracylides during the Recess, that world slump of boredom, lethargy and high summer which carried us all so blissfully through ten unforgettable years, and I suppose that may have had a lot to do with what went on between us.” (from ‘Prima Belladonna’). From the 2001 Flamingo edition (originally […]



Kingdom Come (2006)

By • Sep 1st, 2006 •

Category: advertising, bibliography, consumerism, deep time, dystopia, sport, terrorism, urban revolt

OPENING LINE: “The suburbs dream of violence.” From the 2006 Fourth Estate edition: Richard Pearson, unemployed advertising executive and life-long rebel, is driving out to Brooklands, a motorway town on the A25. A few weeks earlier his father was fatally wounded at the Metro-Centre, a vast shopping mall in the middle of this apparently peaceful […]



Retrospecto: La Jetée

By • Oct 7th, 2005 •

Category: Chris Marker, deep time, film, New Worlds, Philip K. Dick, photography, reviews, science fiction, suicide

Nothing sorts memories from ordinary moments. They claim remembrance when they show their scars. Chris Marker. La Jetée. review by Simon Sellars The films of Chris Marker are often termed ‘essayist’, participating in a phenomenological play with deep roots in French intellectualism. Working within documentary and pseudo-documentary modes, they mimic the manner in which memory […]