Asger Jorn (1914 – 1973) was a founding member of CoBrA, a European artists coalition active from 1948 to 1951 that emphasized material and its spontaneous application. Even after 1957, when Jorn began participating in the Situationalist International — a group of writers, artists and theorists who sought to destabilize societal practices and structures — he continued to work within the CoBrA aesthetic, as seen in A Soul For Sale (1958 –59). With its expressive brushwork and its collapsing of foreground and background, figuration and abstraction, this painting articulates some of Jorn’s most significant interrogations of the precepts of geometric abstraction.
In Verner Panton’sNotes on Color, the Danish designer stated:
“In Kindergarten, one learns to love and use colors. Later on, at school and in life, one learns something called taste. For most people, this means limiting their use of colors.”
The design career of Verner Panton (1926 – 1998) reached its first peak toward the end of the 1950s. With a furniture series based on simple geometric shapes, Panton anticipated elements of Pop Art, while also emulating the elegance of Scandinavian Modernism in the execution of the bases.
The most famous designs from this series are the Cone Chair and the Heart Cone Chair (1959). The Heart Cone Chair takes its name from its heart-shaped silhouette. The extended wings of the backrest are reminiscent of Mickey Mouse ears, but can also be interpreted as a contemporary development of the classic wingback chair.
Photographed at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum in NYC.
The Replacements, from left: Paul Westerberg, Chris Mars, Bob Stinson and Tommy Stinson
Bob Stinson, lead guitarist and founding member of The Replacements, who passed away on February 18th, 1995 after years of hard drug and alcohol abuse, would have celebrated his birthday today, December 17th (born in 1959). I remember reading an article called “Hold My Life,” a brutally honest and deeply sad interview with Bob, in SPIN magazine less than six month before he died. You could see right then that he wasn’t long for this world. Rest in peace, Bob.
Poison drummer, animal rights activist and chain-smoking vegan Rikki Rockett (Born Richard Allan Ream) celebrates a birthday today, having been born on August 8th, 1959. The last time I was on the phone with Rikki – and I admit this was a few years ago – and the subject of age came up, he insisted that he was two years younger than me. Which, no. Gee whiz. It’s one thing to lie about your age to the press, but it’s extremely bad form to lie when that member of the press is supposedly a friend. So Happy Birthday, Rikki! And just keep in mind that as long as this thing called the Internet exists, people who know how to use the Google will always be able to call you out!
Martin Atkins of Pigface, Public Image Ltd and Killing Joke, among many others, was born on this day, August 3rd, in 1959. I’ve interviewed Martin a few times in my career and he is such a character; so very candid and full of great road stories! Here’s a link to the first interview we did together from way back in 1998! Happy Birthday, Martin!
Jerry Garcia, guitarist and songwriter for the Grateful Dead and undeniably one of contemporary rock music’s most enduring pop culture icons, was born on this day, August 1st, in 1942.
Today is also a day to remember the late Tommy Bolin, guitarist for the James Gang and Deep Purple, who died of a heroin overdose at the very young age of just 25, and who was born on this day in 1951.
Last but not least, Happy Birthday to Joe Elliot of Def Leppard who was born in 1959. Def Leppard can still kick any band’s ass live.