Quote and Credit

Quote and Credit

Creepy Homemade Bird Feather Victorian Postcards Extinct Practice Extinct Birds and the Most Expensive Feather

Gross handmade postcards from Borat land! Circa 1900 and circa disgusting! This year a single feather from the extinct Huia bird sold for nearly $7000.00 at an auction in Auckland. I don't think you can clone a bird from a feather, but maybe one day. Ritual objects of Native American Tribes containing eagle feathers are illegal to sell, and there are numerous other laws protecting the use of our animal friends in collectibles today, thankfully. I don't know the species here, or if the feathers match the paintings...but they are grisly and gross reminders of when Victorian "fashion" dictated the wholesale harvesting of feathers for silly hats. Not to mention post cards.

Four handmade Bird Feather postcards circa 1900 Collection Jim Linderman
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Hitched in Hardboiled Heaven Hollywood Hi-jinks of Bellem and Barreaux

Robert Leslie Bellem did the words. Adolphe Barreaux did the art. Decades before Harvey Pekar wrote stories for others to illustrate, Bellem did the same, but his were goofy crime tales told in the Hollywood hills. Bellem was the auteur of the pulps...this one issue of Hollywood Detective is edited by Bellem, contains four articles by Bellem AND a "Dan Turner in Pictures" cartoon done by the two. It's nuts...but it works if you care to immerse yourself in one man's odd vision of fictional crime (supported by another man's vision of the scene.)

During his time, Bellem became something of a joke for his writing. 300 of his estimated 3,000 stories were about Dan Turner. S.J. Perelman satirized his work in a hilarious essay "Somewhere a Roscoe..." for the gumshoe slang he created...and he didn't have to work too hard to make it funny.

I can't put it any better than Kevin Burton Smith does on the outstanding Thrilling Detective website HERE "...it was the high-octane use of every slang word known to man (and more than a few Bellem must have coined himself) that fueled the tales. Women were wrens or frills, and their breasts were pretty-pretties or tiddlywinks, something that Dan, "as human as the next gazabo," always took the time to notice. Cars were chariots, money was geetus and no one ever got killed in the stories, they were croaked, cooled, iced, de-lifed or had an act of killery performed upon them. Guns didn't go bang – they were roscoes and they spat, coughed and belched. Or sometimes they just sneezed, though the end result was the same -- people ended up dead."

I guess when you write 3,000 stories, you reach a bit. I'm glad he did! I could spout the slang all day long and feel tough as nails, even if I am not. It is certainly no coincidence Bellem later wrote the story lines for the stilted Superman television series.

And seldom does an illustrator merge so well with a writer. Barreaux did more than draw, and was actually editor of Trojan Publications later...the company which put out Hollywood Detective. When the comics code came in and artists of his ilk were S.O.Luck and S.O. Work..he turned to producing "art" books with naked photographs of the dames he portrayed in his drawings. He even produced Bunny Yeager's Nudes!

Dan Turner Hollywood Detective (illustrated by Adolphe Barreaux, Story by Robert Leslie Bellem) from Hollywood Detective December 1944 Collection Jim Linderman

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Bernard Kobel Photograph Freak and Freak Photographer Tattoo Sideshow Abnormalities and More (Worse?)

I pride myself on collecting unusual photographs, but no one collected more and with more vigor than Bernard L. Kobel. It is a clear case of the freak collecting the freaks!

You see, Bernie didn't just take and COLLECT photographs of medical abnormalities, circus freaks, war atrocities, lurid and lewd crime scenes and such, he reprinted and SOLD them from the back of sleazy magazines! You have likely seen some if you are a bit adventurous...the woman with the world's largest whatevers, the guy with the giant stuff, the bizarre pair of thingamabobs...even I don't want to show them and I'm pretty much immune by now. I'm cheeky but Bernie crossed the line!

You have also seen reproductions of his collection without knowing it. The famous picture of armless and beautiful sideshow performer (and actress) Frances O'Connor who appears on the cover of the Re/search book Freaks (linked at right) is a Kobel photo, even if not taken by him, but he did take plenty himself. Some of the photographs shown on the billboard at Hubert's Museum in Times Square (and later, on the cover of the Rolling Stones Exile on Main Street album) were Kobel shots. His reprints sold fairy well, at least well enough to have entered the sleazy underground where gourmands of gore dwell. They continue to sell long after Bernie moved from Indiana to Florida and then Sideshow heaven, as bootleg reproductions and, I guess, authentic ones on auction websites.

Not all Kobel's photos were gruesome or gratuitous, but plenty were...As you can see here, he advertised kinky tattoo photos in girlie magazines, (often showing far more than the tattoo) freaks and contortionists in entertainment trade magazines, and I suppose he advertised his gruesome war photos in whatever war folks read. A pair of originals are shown HERE.

I do not know much about Bernie, but I know as much as I want. Interestingly, a later advertisement shows he was trying to leverage his collection into a new direction....stamp collecting! "Lists sent, natch...Will trade for U.S. stamp collections."

Natch indeed...one of his catalogs from the 1950s lists nearly 500 photos which I don't even want to print the descriptions of. On the other hand, one of his photographs for sale in a catalog is "The First Official Hair Pulling Contest...held at the Palisades Amusement Park with 24 girls from the Walter Thornton Modeling Agency as contestants."

I'd trade a few stamps to see THAT one.

(A post on Vintage Sleaze the Daily Blog as well)

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Manhattan Mapbacks! Dell Paperback Maps of the Big Apple New York City on the Back of a Book

All great fake crimes take place in Manhattan. Sure, some happen elsewhere, but except for a few genre-creating masterpieces set in Los Angeles (okay...maybe they can claim a few) the dark, scary corners of the West Side are still the best place to fictionally stab or shoot someone. Dump them in the Hudson and they won't float up until spring.

Maps are snoresville...GPS killed them, and piles of the once familiar gas station freebie now fill baskets at the flea market. All of us still have a few crumpled and stuffed in the back of the glove compartment, still as ungainly and unmanageable as ever. I once drove from Manhattan to Los Angeles, a trip everyone should do, not only to realize the scope of the country but to obtain major bragging rights. 6 days for me...and I traced every mile on my faithful USA road map until the Petrified Forest in Arizona, when a big wind grabbed it right out of the car. I watched it fly down an ancient ravine, just like a recent automobile commercial which has sullied my memory.

By far the coolest paperback books are the Dell Mapbacks which were published from 1943 to 1951. I recently disparaged them in a post about a more obscure publisher...but they remain most collectible, mostly affordable and mostly available. And they are cool. My father, who visited me in Manhattan annually, used to love reading them and he would shout "I was there" a few times in each volume. Most were hard-boiled mysteries, the greatest fictional genre EVER. Shown here are a dozen or so Dell Mapbacks located in Manhattan. I do not believe there is one placed in the Petrified Forest.

A complete directory to the Mapbacks in shown HERE. There were hundreds, and all are great...but the ones set in the Big Apple were always my dad's favorite.

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Big Giant Kachina and a Cigar Store Indian Authenticity Spirit Trade Sign and Antique American Indian Art

Many a young girl received a doll today, Merry Christmas, by the way. They may teach, but they aren't spirits.

Hopi and Zuni dolls are and were used to allow young women from the tribe to participate in sacred dances performed by the men. A rich, complicated cultural ritual I am not qualified to discuss, and I am not really sure anyone of European origin can, to tell the truth. We can "own" kachina dolls, but can we understand them? I guess as interlopers. There are some 400 identified, each with distinctive features represented by adornment and design.

Once you have an appreciation for cottonwood carvings from 1900 and before with flaking natural pigments, you may desire to own them as well. Not easy today, as the early ones, or what could be called "real" ones are for the most part tucked away. There are different levels for collectors...19th century, of which I have cribbed a few here from the catalog of an exhibition at the Galerie Flak in Paris from ten years ago (link here to the catalog) those from 1900 to before World War two, and those since. The later ones are purely decorative and produced for tourists, and although fine carvings are still produced by Native American artists they are far more elaborate in design and far less transcendent than the early ones.

The earliest kachinas were flat, simple, rudimentary wooden objects with sparse adornment but great magical power. The later ones can be beautiful but are more decorative, and it is quite common for dealers to date them earlier than they really are.
There are literally hundreds of identified and collected kachina carvers working today, and there are festivals and such to display their work. You can even take a bus tour right to the carvers, they don't have to set up outside train stations any more to sell to Paleface. (I am sorry to use what is now a derogatory, and likely Hollywood invented term, but after what we did to those who took care of our land before we got here, and what we have done to it since, let's face it...some of us have earned names worse.)

The photograph above is dated 1944 on the reverse. It is, of course, a Southwestern trading post with a symbolic gigantic Kachina out front. (A "Cigar Store Indian" as it were...another large sculptural object with racial and cultural baggage!) The rugs would indicate this is a shop of Navajo goods...I hope the women asked if they had any old Hopi or Zuni ones behind the counter, as the Navajo didn't make them then, but they do today. I understand now you can even find Kachinas carved in Korea. Ugh.

Snapshot 1944 Collection Jim Linderman

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Separated at Birth Brushcut Edition George Jones and Jim Carrey

Brushcut! George Jones and Jim Carrey meet in buzzy hell. Two masters, one haircut.

The NEXT Jim Linderman Book 2011 (Hopefully)

Okay, I don't want anyone to think all I write about (or care about) is smut...so here is the subject of my NEXT book. I'm not tipping my hand, as there are no other photos of him around, I found the archive and bought it. I'm not saying who he is either, but he is a good story. A DAMN good story! I might have to ask for help. Inquiries from grown-up real publishers welcome. Stay tuned. Until then, my current inventory HERE. The format "BOOK" isn't dead yet, it's just dying.

World's Largest Bird?

They say birds used to be dinosaurs... The Largest Pheasant in the World Postcard (Huron, South Dakota)

Best of Comic Art on Art Matters 12/19/2010 Jim Linderman Articles

Today EIGHT articles by Jim Linderman appear on the Art Matters BEST OF COMIC ART site! Shazam. The page is floating, so they might not be there tommorow. Links to the original articles follow. All appeared on my sister Vintage Sleaze site, so if material of a slightly risque manner scares you...pass. I believe the expression is "Not Safe for Work" but none will scar you permanently and none are anywhere near x-rated.

Stanley Rayon Cartoonist

Jim Linderman Interview

Kopeefun Copies

Lost Art of Tattoo Comics

Satan Press Bibliography and History

The Expert Man who was a Dame

Who is the Girl Next Door

Penny Smith

Hair Memento Folk Art 1850 Woven Love Tokens A Lost Art

An remarkable collected set of family hair weavings, mounted and presented as mementos, each dated 1850.

Human Hair and Ribbons woven and mounted, 1850 Collection Jim Linderman