Paul Koudounaris has announced the release of his third and final book on the presentation of death in sacred contexts, Memento Mori.
From the publisher:
Through photos taken at more than 250 sites in thirty countries over a decade, Paul Koudoundaris has captured death around the world. From Bolivia’s “festival of the little pug-nosed ones”, where skulls are festooned with flowers and given cigarettes to smoke and beanie hats to protect them from the weather to Indonesian families who dress mummies and include them in their household routines; from naturally preserved Buddhist monks and memorials to genocide in Rwanda and Cambodia to the dramatic climax of Europe’s great ossuaries, Memento Mori defies taboo to demonstrate how the dead continue to be present in the lives of people everywhere.
Koudounaris’ previous two titles, Heavenly Bodiesand The Empire of Death, are both exquisite collections of his photographs of the reverence of death in cultures. The forthcoming title, Memento Mori, will be released in late April of this year, and is available to pre-order on Amazon.
Tentacle Candlestick Holders, $140
This week’s Etsy Shop of the Week is Dellamorteco (Dellamorte & Co.), beautiful handmade housewares with mythic, occult, and macabre themes. Many of the pieces are made to be functional as well as beautiful, although you will find some jewelry and purely decorative work here as well. And if any of you are planning to send flowers on Valentine’s day, I’m pretty sure the Anatomical Heart or Kraken vases will bump your posies into a whole ‘nother league.
Anatomical Heart Vase, $90
Kraken Vase, $125
Earlier this season, our beloved friends at Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab released their Yule 2014 collection, including the long awaited liaison with the restless spirits of the 19th century. An Evening With The Spirits is a twelve scent collection of olfactory mysteries from beyond the veil, ghostly and ethereal, transporting you to Victorian parlors with dimmed candle light, ectoplasmic explosions, and crystal balls.
Of the twelve fragrances, I have fallen deeply in love with The Fox Sisters, named for Kate and Margaret Fox, the infamous mediums of the late 19th century. Later confessed to be frauds, the scent is a mixture of deception and despair :: rose geranium and tea roses with mahogany wood, bourbon vanilla, and apple peel. Wrapping its scent around me like a haunting, I’ve ordered extra bottles since receiving the first.
Also of note in this collection are Spirit Board, a blend of lilac, roses, and black tea, Claircognizance, a scent of absolute and perfect clarity composed of life everlasting, white amber, and more, the clean and peculiar manifestation of lightness of Luminous Phasmatis, Eusapia’s effortless blanket of pale lilacs, white tea, and candle wax, and the heavy, tactile scent that thrums with voices from beyond: Table-Turning.
The Yule 2014 and An Evening With The Spirits will be only live on the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab shop until February 5, so I advise ordering yours shortly, and stocking up on your new favorites.
Death Bed Jacket: embroidered faux leather with chiffon sleeves, £40.00, from Dropdead.
It’s the first Disco Witch, shop update of the New Year, full of vintage books on Witchcraft and Satanism, and with a very special vintage Hasko Talking Board! What better way to start off your year than brushing up on your dark arts?
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I’m sure that you all remember the incredible playing cards based off of the Victorian Spiritualist movement by Dead on Paper that was crowdfunded last year. The artist behind them, Chris Ovdiyenko, has opened a new Kickstarter for his latest project, a playing card deck based off of the Arcana of the Tarot.
Influenced by the art of the popular Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot, the Arcana pays homage to the long history of the Tarot and cartomancy. Not intended to be a full Tarot, with the confines of the 56 playing card deck, Ovdiyenko has limited the Major Arcana to 4 cards: The Tower, The Lovers, The Fool, and Death. Offered in the Kickstarter rewards are two different versions of the sets, a light and a dark.
Pledge to the Arcana Tarot Playing Cards on Kickstarter, and also be sure to view the available add-ons.
This week’s Etsy Shop of the Week is Mothmeister, photographic prints and postcards from Wounderland. Bizarre tableaux featuring taxidermy and costumed nightmares, beautifully shot, starting at $4. Order a full set and send them back to the office next time you go on vacation.