I thought there was quite a trifecta on ABC-TV last night, starting with Compass doing a very informative piece on the Australian flag, its history and cultural (even religious) significance. I certainly remember when the Union Jack was more “real” than the now familiar blue ensign in our public symbology, and indeed when the red ensign was more often seen than the blue. Transcript now available.
This box of toffees was made the year I was born!
Next came a newish excursion into the Turin Shroud meme. This one posits that Leonardo da Vinci created it using a camera obscura and a knowledge of light-sensitive chemicals ultimately derived from Arabic sources. In fact, it suggested the image on the shroud is a composite, the face being Leonardo himself. Strangely enough, the theory strikes me as being far less crazy than may appear in that summary.
Not the documentary, but alluding to the same hypothesis.
You may find the Leonardo hypothesis on Kenneth Humphreys: Shrouded in Deceit – Leonardo’s Last Laugh.
Finally, because actor Norman Kaye died at the end of May 2007, ABC ran Paul Cox’s 2005 documentary The Remarkable Mr Kaye. This is a gem of a film, so loving, so wise, so beautiful. It is a shame TV is such a transient medium, almost as transient as blogging… To give some idea what you may have missed, go to the link which is to a review in The Age 9 July 2005. Here is a little of that review:
Called The Remarkable Mr Kaye, the film reveals the closeness between the two men, the mutually supportive company of their creative forces for nearly 40 years. It is a rare and fruitful love in one of the loneliest landscapes on earth, the performing arts in Australia.
Speaking in his soft yet compelling voice-over, Cox declares: “This is a blatantly biased portrait of an artist – a fine musician, a wonderful actor and a compassionate lover of life. This is a homage to a friend – to a friendship and a creative partnership that has shaped and changed my life.”
The Cox-Kaye story also contains deep pain because the older man now has an advanced stage of Alzheimer’s disease. This is goodbye. In the film, Cox quotes Shakespeare: “Does anybody here know me?” says King Lear. “Who can tell me who I am? I fear I’m not in my perfect mind. I should know you, and know this man. Yet I am doubtful; for I’m mainly ignorant what place this is, and all the skills I have remembers not these garments or where I lodged last night.”
Which also says far more about why we continue to see/read King Lear than that scholarly pack-rat I referred to yesterday ever could.
A brief scene of Norman Kaye in Paul Cox’s Man of Flowers (1983):
Did the month’s stats yesterday, but here’s the top five in the past seven days:
1. Malcolm Gordon Gleeson 25 May 1957-01 July 2007 107
2. The connection has timed out — Firefox 41
3. On the awkwardness (and fatuity?) of discussing religion 33
4. Malcolm Gleeson: the Memorial Service 29
5. Some thoughts on the events of June 2007 27