Coming this weekend: a SPIRA-TVTA collaboration honouring the 480 BC battles of Thermopylae and Salamis

Greek hoplite and Persian warrior depicted fighting. Ancient kylix, 5th century BC.

An introduction to a virtual collaboration

My good WP blogging friend Spira invited me earlier in the year to join an art collaboration to mark the 2500th anniversary of the battles of Thermopylae and Salamis which took place in 480 BC during the Greco-Persian Wars.

The collaboration will consist of sculpture (by Spira) and poetry (by me).

Why?

The battles of Thermopylae and Salamis are regarded by many historians and scholars as two vital armed conflicts which not only saved Greece and shaped the advancement of its democracy, political and social systems – but helped shape the development of Western civilisation. Both ancient and modern writers point to the two battles as an example of courage shown by a nation defending itself against a powerful invader and overwhelming odds.

DVD edition of Zack Snyder’s 300. TVTA.

In popular culture, many will be aware of the battles of Thermopylae and Salamis thanks to the 1962 film The 300 Spartans; and Frank Miller’s graphic novel 300. The novel was given an operatic and stylistic film adaptation in 2007 with Zack Snyder’s 300, and a 2014 sequel 300: Rise of an Empire.

French and Japanese movie posters for 300, and 300: Rise of an Empire. TVTA.

The Battles

Thermopylae

Leonidas at Thermopylae, by Jacques-Louis David, 1814. Image by © The Gallery Collection/Corbis

19th-century painting by John Steeple Davis, depicting combat during the battle.

In the battle of Thermopylae, the outnumbered alliance of Greek city-states led by King Leonidas of Sparta lost to the invading Persian forces led by King Xerxes I. Although a defeat, the battle is referenced as an example of resistance and courage against an overwhelming force.

The site of the battle today. Mount Kallidromon on the left, and the wide coastal plain formed by accretion of fluvial deposits over the centuries; the road to the right approximates the 480 BC shoreline.

Salamis

A romantic style painting of the battle of Salamis by artist Wilhelm von Kaulbach. Image: public domain.

In the naval battle of Salamis, the outnumbered alliance of Greek city-states led by Athenian politician and general Themistocles resulted in a decisive Greek victory against the fleet of Xerxes. The victory marked a crucial turning point in the course of the Greco-Persian wars, leading to the abandonment of the invasion of Greek lands by Persian forces.

Monument for the Battle of Salamis, Kynosoura peninsula, Salamis Island, Greece, by sculptor Achilleas Vasileiou

The poem:

Will not celebrate war – rather freedom from it. By looking back on history we have valuable learning opportunities to build bridges, communication, respect, friendship and peace. The young poet and protagonist of the poem is an idealist and advocate for peace, yet he is also a realist who will defend his land if the hand of friendship is attacked.

The sculpture:

Created by Spira, a Greek artist with a passion for reimagining found natural objects into artworks invoking ideas of nature and spirituality, and exploring the boundaries of consciousness.

I will reblog Spira’s post this weekend – when you can see the fruits of our ‘virtual collaboration’ which has crossed the waters between Greece and France to honour a moment in history when the freedom of a nation was at stake. Indeed, perhaps without those battles 2500 years ago, we may not today be in a position to exercise the pleasure and freedom of such a simple thing as artistic collaboration.

Watch this space this weekend!

Ford, TVTA

The Heavy Metal Kettle Special

Heavy Metal. Starlog Japan. 1981.


I’m linking up with Denise at Girlie On The Edge Blog, where she hosts Six Sentence Stories, and everyone is invited to write a story or poem or article constructed of six sentences based on a cue word given.

This week’s cue word is Kettle


There once was a lady who lived in a kettle

Who loved to listen to Heavy Metal:

Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath and AC/DC

And many more groups besides these three.

Yet she also loved other styles of music:

Gothic, Post-Punk, New Wave, New Romantic,

Classical, K-Pop, Hip-Hop and Be-Bop,

Ragamuffin, Reggae, and Lovers Rock.

There was Afrobeat, Zouk, Funk and Jazz,

Country and Western, Honkytonk and Bluegrass,

Shoegaze, Electro, Jungle and Grime,

R&B, Disco, Folk and Ragtime.

Then Punk, Ska and Rock, and Congolese Rumba,

Chicago Blues, Gospel Blues, Swamp and Delta.

And all this she loved, did that lady in the kettle,

Yet none so much as her dear Heavy Metal.

Her dear Heavy Metal, her dear Heavy Metal –

None was so loved as her dear Heavy Metal.



Thank you for rocking the metal kettle with us 🙂 \m/

1980s Space Fings, Crazy Fings, and some very British comic ads

If you were around in Britain in the 1980s you might well remember some of the following adverts for comics, sweets, bubble gum, Hot Wheels, MOTU, Weetabix, Grange Hill, and, erm… Understanding Electricity. Actually, if anyone recognises the artist from the Understanding Electricity ad at the end of the post, please let me know. The style is familiar, but so far I can’t find any info.

Enjoy this blast from the past 🙂

Trebor Space Fings. 1981. UK.

Trebor Crazy Fings free stickers. 1981. UK.

‘5 for Fun’. Comics. 1981. UK.

Western Magazine. 1980. UK.

Hot Wheels. 1981. UK.

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My Horror and Fantasy Themed Beer Bottle Awards 2020!

Horror / fantasy themed beer bottles.

The drinks are on TVTA!

And it’s never too early to start celebrating Halloween is it? September being the warm-up to my favourite ghoulish month? Add a beer or two, and all is good 🙂

Without further ado, here are the beer bottles I’ve saved since the beginning of the year. There are 13 of them, and they all feature a horror or fantasy theme.

The contenders…

The ratings…

La Bière Du Demon / Demon Beer. France. 12%. A design to induce nightmares, and coming in at 12% this is the strongest of the bunch and not to be taken lightly. A diobolical pleasure.

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Japanese Godzilla print goodies

Godzilla Store Tokyo. Chirashi side a.

The King of the Monsters is back! TVTA takes a look at some more Godzilla chirashi movie posters, along with posters for the Godzilla Store Japan, and the Atami Kaiju Movie Festival.

Let’s kick off with a shopping trip…

Godzilla shopping?

Rarrrr!!

Yes!

Japan – a country I hope to one day visit for its culture and landscape. Tokyo – a city that is a must for me to see because of its toy and pop culture heritage. Add to this now the Godzilla Store, Tokyo. Imagine if you will, dear readers, a whole shop dedicated to Godzilla!

Godzilla Store Tokyo. Chirashi side b.


And there’s a festival too…
… devoted to Godzilla and other Kaiju monsters…

Godzilla Atami Kaiju Movie Festival 2019. Chirashi poster. Japan.


Two new film posters…
Shin Godzilla, 2016

Shin Godzilla. 2016. Japanese Chirashi poster side a.

Shin Godzilla. 2016. Japanese Chirashi poster side b.


Godzilla, 2014

Godzilla. 2014. Japanese Chirashi poster. Side a.

Godzilla. 2014. Japanese Chirashi poster. Side b.


Coming soon…

Godzilla vs King Ghidorah anyone? Don’t miss the next TVTA Godzilla thriller!

Until then… thank you for rising from the sea and destroying cities with us 🙂


To see TVTA’s other Godzilla Japanese chirashi posters, click here

Freshly scanned – my latest Star Wars ads for film, toys and merchandise

Star Wars S.H.Figuarts catalogue. C 2017. Japan.

Today’s post brings a formidable fleet of Star Wars goodies in print form. Featuring Japanese catalogues, adverts, newsletters, and chirashi movie posters… this post is certain to draw attention from both Imperial and Rebel forces across the galaxy!

Enjoy 🙂


S.H.Figuarts action figures and models catalogue. Japan. 2017

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