L’Oracle du Mort: One of many amazing clockwork pieces by Thomas Kuntz to be featured here in the Archive.
Thomas Kuntz, a professional artist for over 20 years, began as a sculptor of Commercial Toys, but later gained notoriety circa ’89-98 as a pioneer in the making of model kits based on old silent films like Nosferatu, The Man Who Laughs, Vampira, and others.
After a period of time Kuntz found that merely sculpting his dark creations was not nearly enough for him, and that he wanted to give life to his creations through mechanical, perhaps supernatural means… This change in method resulted in some of the darkest and most interesting automations known to man, and not nearly as many fatalities and disappearances as may be rumored.
You may have seen Thomas’ twisted creations in many places, though you may not have been aware of the crafter behind them, or the astounding degrees of meticulous craftsmanship responsible for their being. Mr. Kuntz’ creations have served in the armies and arsenals of many noteworthy people, interesting types such as Kevin Ogilvie, a.k.a. Nivek Ogre, frontman of theatrical post-punk industrial band “Skinny Puppy”. Thomas has made mechanical props for the band, and for Nivek alone, with pieces for use on stage, and for use in video.
In his workshop, Thomas Kuntz controls an army of clockmaking lathes from 1880-present, and each piece he creates is more said to be more exquisite than the last. There are only a handful of builders in the world who make automata, and no one does it like Mr. Kuntz. Read the rest of this entry »
These films (found through the wonderful Emily Beighley) are shades of things to come for the coming Miskatonic Archive exhibit on Automata, featuring another (soon to be named) artist who, like the Amazingly Brilliant Keith Newstead, embodies the very spirit of steampunk ingenuity and craftsmanship.
Please enjoy the videos below, and if you would like to see more of Keith’s wondrous works, visit him at his aetherweb home Keith Newstead Automata – and be sure to check this space again next week, we have more amazing things to show!
In response to the discovery of lost Metropolis footage, issue #7 is dedicated to this 1927 classic of silent film and the metropolis in general.
Of course there is a review of the original Metropolis, by Mr Marcius Rauchfuß, as well as an article about the 2001 anime of the same name, by Mr Sigurjón Njálsson. For the latest about what is going on in that other fine city, the Old Smoke called Londontown, we introduce Brigadier Sir Arthur Weirdy-Beardy of The Steampunk Club, while Mr David Townsend is off to farther realms once again, traveling by the Indian Pacific from Perth to Sydney, Australia.
We are also extremely glad to present an exclusive preview of Mr Toby Frost’s upcoming Space Captain Smith novel, Wrath of the Lemming Men!
And it almost goes without saying that this issue features all the columns and features that you might have come to expect from us: Ms Hilde Heyvaert writes her “Steampunk Wardrobe” about ethnic steampunk; Mr Craig B. Daniel dedicates his “Liquor Cabinet” to a story about beer, and Mr Guy Dampier is back with a Quatermass review. More reviews come from Hilde (Unhallowed Necropolis), Mr Trubetskoy (The Court of the Air and Outcry) and Toby Frost (Gormenghast).
Myke Amend has spent the last day moving his store into the Archive’s Reliquiary, as his store sometime this coming week, for an uncertain amount of time will have a bad fail infestation as he seeks to redesign and re-arrange his domain.
There are many, many new items here now, some even that he had forgotten to put in his regular store, some new exclusives to us.
Myke will also be putting up many many more originals here in the Archive over the next day or two as well, for those who like to collect original pieces – aside from what is already here, there will be a number of additional engravings of all sizes and themes, as well as some small scuptures and perhaps even some wood and brass works.
So, please do take a look, everything is one sale right now. I don’t think there is a thing in the store that has not been at least somewhat reduced. This week will be the very best time to acquire some original art, and a very good time to purchase prints and other merchandise as well.
by Phillip Challis
Published with permission May 18th, 2009
Morgan Booth looked up at a stretch of wide blue sky and waited for the miracle to happen. With the winds kicking up, little dust devils tumbled across the plains and scoured the land. Standing on the edge of town, Booth found himself surrounded by a sizable crowd of townsfolk. Their mood struck him as electric, like the static carried on dry winds that sometimes threw blue sparks off wire fences at night. That’s how it was with the people. They had an excited air about them. He could see a few had even gone so far as to throw coarse blankets down on the bare ground. Families tucked into their picnic dinners and children played in what used to be fertile soil now gone to lifeless powder.
This town was just the latest in a string of used up little communities he’d wandered into and out of again over the past few months. The past few summers had seen withered crops and wasted stock across much of the rolling countryside out west of the Big Muddy. In his gut Booth knew a lot of places wouldn’t make it past another winter. Even at the tender age of nineteen those towns tended to rattle him. They were too full of empty houses and empty fields that had dried up. Wheat, corn, cattle, and sometimes even the people went to dust and blew away. The town, he decided, felt like death and he avoided them whenever he could.
Today though, Booth saw the crowd of townsfolk out milling around and it raised his curiosity. Arriving on the coach an hour earlier, he’d made a point of finding what few stores lined the main street. There wasn’t much to see, and his hopes of finding work weren’t great. He walked from one end of the street to the other in the space of five minutes and that’s when he saw all the people. Ambling over, he quickly learned the reason for all the fuss. It was a man standing atop a wagon the likes of which Booth had never quite seen before.
The handbill pasted across the wagon’s side proclaimed the man to be a rain-maker. The crazy looking collection of kettles, copper drums, and India-rubber tubes in his wagon was apparently a ‘patented gas generator’. Dressed as he was in dusty spats, a powder white frock coat, and matching white top hat of the old John Bull variety, he looked to be an eastern dandy, a snake oil man, or both. Read the rest of this entry »
Whilst browsing catalogues, searching for new acquisitions for our fine collection, I came across these fine finds crafted by an artificer I had not heard of previously who is known only as “Naodi” …or as “Sheryl Westleigh” to others
I was so amazed and so incredibly impressed, that my first thought was to keep this find a secret, until after the time we could acquire at least a few all of these for ourselves.
But, in the spirit of fairness, which stems from a silly rule disallowing staff, even important staff such as myself from the wearing of artifacts from the archives, something to do with Ms. Etta Diem and the Magickal Bloomers of Azathoth.
In the spirit of giving, I, instead of hoarding them all for myself, have decided to ever so graciously share these great finds with you:
“All in all, the experiment was a brilliant success, though it ran for a shorter time than desired.
The Resonator had to be shut down prematurely, else we might not have had enough crew to make it comfortably back to port. Over forty Russian tribesmen bravely gave their lives to science this day – a terrible tragedy as they will surely be expensive to replace.
Also lost was an entire crate of ether, carelessly dropped from the edge of a berg in the midst of today’s activities – a tragedy on so many levels.
Nevertheless, we saw many wondrous and splendid things this day: creatures and landscapes from the aether danced and swam about us through the air, and we saw the laws of our world temporarily suspended by those of the aether world.
It leaves me to wonder: How closely does the placement of their world correspond with ours? Are these same creatures to be found elsewhere on our planet, or would we perhaps find other inhabitants should the machine be tested in new locations?
What sorts of variants or unique beasts might we see in other locations such as Beijing, Hong Kong, Indonesia, London or perhaps even New York City?
Needless to say, I am beyond eager to see!”
- Professor Aden M. Kemy, Miskatonic Archivist
This giclee, commemorating the event is available while supplies last, in three limited editions of 50: A giclee on Canvas, an archival pigment ink print on heavy metallic stock, and a fine-art rag paper print. All of which 24 inches by 24 inches – the size of the original painting by Myke Amend.
First available, is this limited edition giclee on canvas, printed in archival pigment inks on 200-year archival canvas, coated in a UV-protective and scratch-resistant coating, stretched and mounted for framing.
It comes with a watermarked hahnemuhle certificate of authenticity printed on fine art rag paper, with a matching and serial-numbered hologram on both the back of the giclee print and the certificate. All giclees are hand-signed and numbered in paint (see the signature on the image) and also signed, dated, and numbered in archival ink on the back of the mounted print.
Strange noises were heard coming from the ceiling beneath the attic space on the far east towers of the Archive. By the gentle prodding (and when we say gentle we mean rough and rudely, and when we say prodding we mean prodding mostly done with pointy sticks aimed firmly at her fanny) of her devoted interns, our good old lass Babel Jean Tea Hymn was convinced to investigate. Ms Tea Hymn was a bit skiddish at first, to blindly go into these dark and mostly unused areas of the Archive, but after a bit more gentle prodding (and by gentle we mean… oh you get the picture, we threw the fussy old bird right into that dark old room!) Ms Tea Hymn bravely weathered the spiderweb infested attic by candle light alone. Many bets were taken as to the outcome of this spur of the moment adventure, but much to the disappointment of the interns (all of whom are still a bit spiky where Tea Hymn is concerned after her year of rude and relentless memo tyranny the Archive staff suffered before some peace was had when it was rumored dead professor Mint T. Zolty introduced his living colleague to the joys of ectoplasm and getting busy with the dead) Ms Tea Hymn returned from the attic unharmed and holding the creative efforts of some nameless attic dweller at the Archive. A fine selection of art pieces reprinted on what looks to be antique book pages were found left about the attic. The interns and their pointy sticks dispersed and Tea Hymn has hung a few of the collage pieces in the hallway with a note on how to own the selected pieces. Please have a look and should any appeal to you, please stop by the Archive shop.