Saturday, July 31, 2010




Illustration: Stuart Bradford. Source: ‘Click and Dagger Factory’ in MotherJones

Since our last post on the subject back in April (see WIKILEAKS) this groundbreaking network and their frontman Julian Assange continue to cause controversy and grab the headlines – most spectacularly with the recent release of thousands of US secret files on the war in Afghanistan.  This is being called the biggest leak in intelligence history.

The Guardian’s Afghanistan: The War Logs is the place to read it all.

How the paper came to run the story and interact with Wikileaks is documented in ‘A Tranformative Moment’ by David Leigh, which ran yesterday in the Media Guardian. It explains in detail how The Guardian, Der Spiegel and the New York Times collaborated in an unprecedented journalistic effort to analyse the raw intelligence and prepare some of it for publication, from a secret ‘bunker’ in The Guardian’s London office. A key figure in the operation was journalist Nick Davies whose book ‘Flat Earth News’ is now a standard text on the decline of journalistic standards. This new experience in computer-assisted reporting may have changed his perspective.

Running alongside Wikileaks (and in consultation with it) are the plans  to create the world’s first ‘information haven’ in Iceland, a place that will protect investigative journalism against litigation. The Icelandic Modern Media Initiative has already been unanimously passed by the country’s Parliament.

‘Shall We All Go To  Iceland’ by Afua Hirsch (Media Guardian 12th July 2010)  is an informative overview of the situation as of this month.

Rumours have been going round the net that Assange is planning to abandon Wikileaks. This report summarises the rumours and publishes a robust and sensible Wikileak response. Read it for yourself. Make up your own mind.

‘Is Wikileaks Really Being Abandoned’ by Martin Bryant [11th July 2010) 

Have just discovered

No Secrets: Julian Assange’s mission for total transparency. by Raffi Khatchadourian (New Yorker . 7th June 2010)



 BPBILLY1654 I’m a late-comer to the music of this man but I’m entranced. Like all the best things, I came upon it by chance – or not. I had just read a profile of him in The New Yorker (of which more later), whilst on the train going to London, thinking I must check this guy out. Two days later, I’m rehearsing with new BOHO guitarist Nick Benjamin, esteemed luthier, in  his small workshop (there’s wood shavings on the floor, exotic smells  of tropical tone woods). We’d  been playing through our set  - on acoustic guitars rather than using the electrics. It sounded great. The workshop is about one minute from the Lewes Arms, to which we repaired. I was buzzing with the music, enthusiastically drinking Guinness and jabbering with Leon (who also has a band and loves his music) when I brought up the name Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and this article I’d just read. Turns out Leon is a long-term afficianado of his work and fan. He goes upstairs (Leon’s partner Abbie is the licensee) and returns clutching a stack of CDs – official releases, live recordings -  of the man in his various musical incarnations. I go home and stick on this record. Its a very beautiful thing with exceptionally evocative lyrics and spare arrangements. It is steeped in the world of what Greil Marcus calls ‘old, weird, American music’ but it also has touches and flavours of The Incredible String Band and many other influences. Find a quiet space and just down with this this and be amazed and inspired. I started writing poetry while first listening to it – discontinuous verses

The mad and the delirious/The strange and the mysterious/Mixed together in a potent brew’

Real life i more extraordinary/Than you can imagine/more imaginative/Than you can conceive.’

The songs have unconventional structures and are constructed out of what appears to be very little, yet there is a full sound, illuminated by his affecting voice and lyrical notions.  A great album. Also check out ‘The Letting Go’.


‘The Pretender’ by Kelefa Sanneh. [The New Yorker. 5th Jan, 2009]


Saturday, July 24, 2010



Following my usual random practice of buying novels from second-hand bookshops for my morning novel-and-coffee sessions, these three come highly recommended.

Derek Raymond, widely credited as the father of British noir for his series of ‘Factory’ novels (you need a strong stomach), wrote this dystopian novel in 1970. The main character is journalist Richard Watt, who is living a quiet life of exile in the Italian countryside. Britain has become a dictatorship, run by the ruthless politician named Jobling, who Watt wrote an expose on before he came to power. Forced to return to the New Britain that Jobling has created, Watt comes face to face with its frightening reality. In a tradition that includes Orwell’s 1984, Ken Brownlow’s ‘It Happened Here’ and Constantine Fitzgibbon’s ‘When The Kissing Had To Stop’, ‘A State of Denmark’ is a haunting what-if read.

By contrast Lebanese journalist and writer Amin Maalouf’s ‘Samarkand’ is a magical exploration of the life of Omar Khayaam and the fabled city of the title. The  book  begins tantalisingly with the information that the only original copy of the Rubaiyaat went down with the Titanic.  We are then plunged into the world of 11th-century Persia, brilliantly realised, following the adventures of Khayaam (his love affairs, his narrow escapes from death) and the magic book he has created, in a skilful blend of fact and fiction. One of the book’s other major characters is Hassan Sabbah – a latterday Osmama bin Laden - whose disciples were contemptuously described by his enemies as hashishiyun (‘hashish smokers’), which has widely been considered the origin of the word ‘assassin’. Maalouf corrects this, writing that ‘Hassan liked to call his disciples Assassiyun,  meaning people who were faithful to the Assass, the ‘foundation’ of the faith. Beuatifully written, this entrancing saga has important contemporary relevance,giving readers in the West a deeper understanding of the roots of Iran and Khayaam’s towering importance.

Nobel prize winner José Saramago, one of the greatest of Portugese novelists alongside Pessoa, recently died. His legacy is a series of deep novels which I am continuing to gradually explore. Some years back I read ‘The Cave’, a wonderful book about an old potter and his dog (a wonderful characterin his own right) which was unlike anything else I had ever read. ‘All the Names’ is equally unusual and centres round the life of Senhor José, a humble clerk in the city’s Central Registry, a vast Gothic archive where the basic details of all citizens, alive and dead, are carefully documented in mass banks of card files by a cadre of bureaucrats, rigorously organised, whose lives are dominated by this suffocating and cloistered world. Jose’s life is upturned by chance when he accidentally finds a record of an unknown woman and sets out (illegally and clandestinely) to find out who she was. Saramago is the polar opposite of  Cormac McCarthy, who’s recent books ‘No Country for Old Men’ and ‘The Road’ are  virtually entirely composed of short sentences. Saramago, by contrast, writes in huge compound sentences that often fill an entire page. The book is chapterised but the chapters have no paragraphs, thus the text looks quite daunting. Once ensnared in his tale, which becomes curiouser and darker as it progresses, one realises that one is in the hands of a master storyteller who seems able to reach into other dimensions of time and space and describe and inhabit states of mind beyond our ken. His characters have many dimensions and  subtleties and the worlds he creates have an intensity that haunts the mind.

In his 1998 Nobel Prize lecture, entitled ‘How  Characters became the Masters and the Author Their Apprentice’ :

‘Saramago outlined the progression of his novels, explaining how each protagonist's journey paralleled his own life, and that each of his creations was also partially responsible for creating him. "Letter-by-letter, word-by-word, page-by-page, book after book," he said, "I have been successively implanting in the man I was the characters I created.’ [Source: L.J. Lindhurst at The Modern Word]

Saramago’s obituary in The Guardian



I stumbled into this great Polish website while looking for information on the banquet that Picasso staged in 1908 at the Le Bateau-Lavoir in Paris in honour of Douanier Rousseau. I then spent the next hour or so sampling its delights. is just one of the outputs from Poland’s National Audiovisual Institute, established on April 1, 2009. This on-line journal – a beautifully designed, multi-level experience – was originally just published in Polish at The new English-language version started in May this year and is currently on its 6th issue. A treasure trove of interesting stuff, with fresh perspectives and thought-provoking ideas.

The single most exciting piece I’ve so far discovered is ‘You Have To Be Ruthless’ an interview by MICHAŁ CHACIŃSKI with WERNER HERZOG – one of the most important and vital filmmakers in the world today – currently experiencing yet another renaissance with a clutch of new movies due for release. Anyone interested in making movies should read this extraordinary account of Herzog’s working methods. They don’t teach this at film school.

‘Culture in Times of the Cornucopia': A New Agenda for the Cultural Institutions’ by ALEX TARKOWSKI

‘Less than twenty years ago, with democracy and the free market, the Web came to Poland. Twenty years from now, a generation will become fully mature that has never lived in analog times. Thus, we’re halfway from the analog world to a truly digital one. We’re living in interesting times, facing the task of creating foundations for a culture that for many of us will no longer be comprehensible.

‘Photography, Stills and Gnash: Which Way Photojournalism’ by CHRIS NEIDENTHAL

‘The ABC of New Culture': B as in Blog’ by Mirek Filiciak / Alek Tarkowski

‘A good blogger writes primarily for himself, while internet users read over his shoulder’

NOT IN ENGLISH YET is a fantastic and tantalising glimpse into the ocean of material not yet available in translation.


There’s a lot of loose talk around about the ‘death of journalism’ and the decline of journalistic standards. so it was heartening and impressive          (and frightening) to discover the results of a two-year Washington Post investigation into Top Secret America. What a brilliant piece of work.

A hidden world, growing beyond control

The top-secret world the government created in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs, how many programs exist within it or exactly how many agencies do the same work.

These are some of the findings of a two-year investigation by The Washington Post that discovered what amounts to an alternative geography of the United States, a Top Secret America hidden from public view and lacking in thorough oversight. After nine years of unprecedented spending and growth, the result is that the system put in place to keep the United States safe is so massive that its effectiveness is impossible to determine.

The investigation's other findings include:

* Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.

* An estimated 854,000 people, nearly 1.5 times as many people as live in Washington, D.C., hold top-secret security clearances.

* In Washington and the surrounding area, 33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2001. Together they occupy the equivalent of almost three Pentagons or 22 U.S. Capitol buildings - about 17 million square feet of space.

* Many security and intelligence agencies do the same work, creating redundancy and waste. For example, 51 federal organizations and military commands, operating in 15 U.S. cities, track the flow of money to and from terrorist networks.

* Analysts who make sense of documents and conversations obtained by foreign and domestic spying share their judgment by publishing 50,000 intelligence reports each year - a volume so large that many are routinely ignored.

Read full story here


The National Counterterrorism Center's operations floor. (Photo by Alex Wong and Melina Mara / The Washington Post)

An extensive, searchable database built by The Post about Top Secret America is available at

See also:

Top 10 blockbuster revelations from the Washington Post’s intelligence complex exposé

Why has the Post series created so little reaction?

Sunday, July 18, 2010



Source: Map of the northern Gulf of Mexico showing the nearly 4,000 active oil and gas platforms. NOAA

One of the world’s biggest natural disasters continues to dominate the headlines, as BP struggles to control the ‘Deep Horizon’ spill. This multi-headed hydra of a story continues to expand and deepen.

Two  major stories are now coming to the fore

– BP’s appalling safety record in the US prior to this latest disaster

See: The Project on Government Oversight story

‘According to our Federal Contractor Misconduct Database, BP has 52 instances of misconduct since 1995 (the most of any contractor in our database) for which it has paid $1.6 billion in fines, penalties, settlements and judgments.

Before the Gulf tragedy, BP’s most notorious misconduct incident in recent years was the 2005 explosion and fire at its Texas City refinery which killed 15 and injured hundreds. That refinery alone accounts for nine separate instances in our database and over $477 million in penalties, including civil and criminal damages and fines for workplace safety and environmental violations.

There was also “Black Thursday,” when BP racked up over $380 million in penalties in five separate instances on one day in October 2007

See also: ‘The well is capped. But what else lurks below the surface for BP?’ by Tim Webb [The Observer July 18, 2010]


- BP’s ongoing contracts with the US military. The key story was ‘BP has steady sales at Defense Department despite U.S. scrutiny’ by Washington Post Staff Writer R. Jeffrey Smith [July 5, 2010].

He reports US Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) figures which show that, in the fiscal year 2009, BP was the Pentagon's largest single supplier of fuel, providing 11.7 percent of the total purchased. BP has contracts worth $980 million in the current fiscal year

‘BP spokesman Robert Wine said he was aware of at least one "big contract" signed by the U.S. military after the oil rig explosion on April 20, involving the supply of multiple fuels for its operations in Europe’

In the US there is a process called ‘debarment’ which is used to shut off companies from receiving federal contracts.

‘Jeanne Pascal, a former EPA [Environmental Protection Agency)  lawyer who until recently oversaw the review of BP's possible debarment, has said she initially supported taking such action but held off after an official at the Defense Department warned her that the Pentagon depended heavily on BP fuel for its operations in the Middle East.

"My contact at DESC, another attorney, told me that BP was supplying approximately 80 percent of the fuel being used to move U.S. forces" in the region, Pascal said.

She added that "BP was very fortunate in that there is an exception when the U.S. is involved in a military action or a war."

A DLA spokeswoman told the Washington Post that "none of BP's current energy contracts are in direct support of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan" and that the department could meet its requirements without BP fuel.

Further details emerged on in a story ‘BP is still a top supplier to US military’ (July 15th)

‘BP is still among the biggest suppliers of fuel to the U.S. military, and the Defense Department has no plans to stop awarding the company lucrative contracts.

‘As of last week, BP has been awarded 17 contracts valued at just under $1 billion, the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) said. That makes BP the third-largest supplier of fuel to the armed services so far this fiscal year.

‘In fiscal 2009, the DLA granted BP a total of 26 contracts valued at $2.2 billion, or nearly 12% of overall fuel purchases, making it the military's largest fuel supplier that year.

’In fact, BP has already received one small contract since the April 20 explosion on the Deepwater Horizon killed 11 workers and led to a catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. On May 17, the DLA awarded BP a contract worth $342,854 over four years to supply jet fuel to a regional airport in Oregon.

See Also:

Pascal Spills It on BP, Sporkin, and the Disaster in the Gulf on ‘Corporate Crime Reporter’

EPA Officials Weigh Sanctions Against BP’s U.S. Operations by Abrahm Lustgarten [Badlands Journal. June 21, 2010]

BP May Lose U.S. Oil Leases, Contracts as Gulf Spill Punishment by Jim Efstthiou and Jeff Plungis [Bloomberg. June 14, 2010]


BP buys up Gulf scientists for legal defense, roiling academic community

Monday, July 12, 2010







Six months after the Haitian earthquake, the issue of emergency and transitional housing and the longer-term reconstruction of Haiti’s built environment is now at the fore.

In a powerful article by Gamaliel Eaton Frederick - ‘Is Haiti’s Vernacular Architecture Worth Investigating ?’ – he answers his own question with a resounding ‘Yes’.  Gamaliel is the CEO and President of  The American Institute for Educational Exchange and Global Integration Inc.  which has a  Haiti-Nouvelle: Planning and Development Consortium. (See his page on Haiti Rewired)

Frederick is concerned that many of the proposed plans for rebuilding Haiti being proposed by either architectural & building companies around the world or non-profit architectural organisation will provide  ‘sub-standard alternative housing for Haitians’. He believes only vetted  professional firms from Haiti and abroad should be invited to participate in this process. This should happen, he believes,  in conjunction with a thorough investigation of Haiti’s existing vernacular buildings.

‘This is important because Haitian vernacular architecture has evolved over 200 years, it is sustainable and resilient. It utilizes local materials, mostly organic and biodegradable. We should apply modern technology and scientific expertise to design and improve the architectural technology native to Haiti which utilizes local materials before we implant new unsustainable design practices (if a practice is so alien to the population that they will not be able to implement it without extensive help from foreign professionals then it is not sustainable) and imported materials, which the developed world should be phasing out of in the first place.

‘Haitian Vernacular architecture can resist both earthquakes and hurricanes and it can be made to withstand high wind velocity or lateral loads. They are convenient for the country’s hot climate, cheaper to build, and they draw on the culture and way of life of Haitians…

‘In fact, in the Cul-de-Sac region, near Port-au-Prince, Haitians customarily build transitional smaller vernacular homes, while saving money to build a proper family home. The government should have a moratorium on building formal houses (typically concrete), while encouraging people who can afford it (and sponsoring those who cannot) to build 1 and 2 room traditional straw houses (kay clisse and kay vetive) on their respective plots. This would give us time to properly investigate and document Haitian vernacular architecture and devise the right way to improve it. Most importantly, this would be a viable alternative to tents. Such initiative would help employ locals, and sustain the livelihood we need during the massive reconstruction to follow.’

An incredibly valuable document in this regard is ‘Haitian Wisdom for Aid Buildings’ by Landscape Artist Patti Stouter [Pub. March 15th, 2010] Its available for download here: Haitian%20Wisdom.pdf 

These are two of the main kinds of Haitian vernacular house styles:

image image

‘The kay (or calle, meaning house) ‘was an
adaptation of West African earth dwellings to
new materials and conditions in Haiti.  Although
used for slave shacks, it developed into an
architecture of defiance, coming to symbolize
pride and independence.  This house type is most
prevalent in southern Haiti, where many freed
slaves first settled.’  Kays face the road end-on and usually consist of a line of 2-4 rooms but can be up to eight rooms long. The house grows to fit the demand as families expand. Many have porches added on one or both sides and L rooms can also be added on each side towards the rear, with a shed roof. 


The  Creole house:  ‘In colonial Haiti it developed from a predominantly Spanish house style adapted with
some African influences to suit the tropical climate of the Caribbean. Creole houses were the homes of manor owners and
plantation managers.  They were traditionally more
common in the northern areas of Haiti. The  Creole house’s entrance is on the long side of  the building.

The report contains the following wise advice:


‘Much of the loss of life in the recent earthquake was related to the misuse of  reinforced concrete.  A material whose strengths can either be seen or intuitively understood is a better fit for the Haitian culture (as well as the cultures of many other parts of  the developing world.) … Most Haitians are more oral than literate. The particular dangers of reinforced concrete arise from the mysterious technical standards it requires.  Working with it on a job site either teaches a builder that he knows nothing and cannot build for himself, or it gives him a false sense that a rule-of-thumb understanding is good enough. Since most construction is done by building owners in a gradual, additive process, few professionals ever give advice. Reinforced concrete works for commercial and institutional buildings when carefully supervised. ‘

See Also:  Haiti's Buildings Weren't Fit To Withstand Quakes by Christopher Joyce:

‘Haiti’s magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck a country whose buildings were barely built to engineering standards and were hopelessly fragile in the grip of such a strong quake. That's the assessment of Pierre Fouche, an earthquake engineer from Haiti — in fact, the country's only earthquake engineer, to his knowledge. ‘


Created By Kian Goh on May 19th, 2010

The themes and  issues discussed here surrounding the reconstruction of Haiti are prefigured by the situation in  New Orleans as this article ‘Brad Pitt’s Houses: Good Intentions Gone Astray’ by Clem Labine on his blog ‘The Civitas Chronicles’, makes clear.

ALIEN FORM #1: This angular Modernist house, designed by Graft, a 
Los Angeles architecture firm, is one of the new homes built by Brad 
Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation. The house is raised on piers to protect
 against the possibility of future flooding. The design, however, 
intentionally sets it apart from New Orleans’s architectural tradition. 
Photo: Virginia Miller for Make It Right Foundation

ALIEN FORM #1: This angular Modernist house, designed by Graft, a Los Angeles architecture firm, is one of the new homes built by Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation. The house is raised on piers to protect against the possibility of future flooding. The design, however, intentionally sets it apart from New Orleans’s architectural tradition. Photo: Virginia Miller for Make It Right Foundation

‘The Brad Pitt Houses in New Orleans’s devastated Ninth Ward  are a frustrating example of what happens when buildings are considered as individual sculptural objects rather than as part of an urban ensemble. Brad Pitt has been extremely generous with his time and money in attempting to provide new homes for victims of Hurricane Katrina. And the houses resulting from his foundation’s well-intentioned efforts so far have made eye-catching photos for the design magazines.

But viewed in their context, unfortunately, many of the new homes are bad urbanism. The majority of the structures are alien forms plopped down into a city that already has a well-established look and a rich history of vernacular architecture. Many of the Brad Pitt houses built so far detract from the character of the place they are meant to help.’

HISTORIC PRECEDENT: This vernacular Shotgun House is typical of 
the historic architecture that gives New Orleans its style and flavor. 
It is puzzling why so many of the prototypes for the Lower Ninth Ward 
sponsored by the Make It Right Foundation have purposely distanced 
themselves the city’s unique architectural character. Photo: Katherine 

HISTORIC PRECEDENT: This vernacular Shotgun House is typical of the historic architecture that gives New Orleans its style and flavor. It is puzzling why so many of the prototypes for the Lower Ninth Ward sponsored by the Make It Right Foundation have purposely distanced themselves from the city’s unique architectural character. Photo: Katherine Slingluff

Incidentally and finally, Shotgun houses are a refinement and development of the kay,  brought to Lousiana by Haitian immigrants. It all connects.

See Previous Posts:



Monday, July 05, 2010



Dennis Hopper R.I.P.  

Rebel in Perpetuity


image  Dennis Hopper & The New Hollywood. Contributions by Pierre Evil, Bernard Marcade, Matthiew Orlean and Jean-Baptiste Thoret Hardcover, 192 pages, 230 color & b&w illustrations Published by Flammarion (distributed by Rizzoli through Random House)




‘Rebel Without a Cause ‘ (1955). Hopper at top of picture.


Giant’ (1956) ‘

image Dennis Hopper as Johnny Drake in Night Tide (1961), Curtis Harrington's eerie psychodrama. Night Tide was Hopper's first lead, in which he played lovestruck sailor Johnny Drake, whose new girlfriend may be a cursed modern sea siren, luring men to their deaths. "We made that film for $28,000 and it was in Time magazine's 10 Best Pictures to See for the whole year but nobody saw it because we did it non-union and the projectionists were all union and we didn't have a (union) stamp on the print so no theatre would screen it," Hopper says.

Dennis Hopper as Peter Vollmer in The Twilight Zone’s "He’s Alive" (1963)


Dennis Hopper: Photographs 1961-1967  Shafrazi, Tony (Editor)
Shafrazi, Tony / Hopps, Walter / Hundley, Jessica
Hardcover + Box, 33 x 44 cm (13 x 17.3 in.), 546 pages, £ 650.00

See the excellent Taschen video here.


‘Easy Rider’ (1969)



Dennis Hopper 1 by everglobe. Dennis Hopper 2 by everglobe.

Andy Warhol Screen Test (1970)                                                              Stills: www.  Video:


Photo: Andy Warhol


Portrait of Dennis Hopper by Andy Warhol (1971)



Douglas Kirkland took this iconic photograph of the multi-talented actor/director Dennis Hopper in 1970.


Douglas Kirkland’s photo of Dennis Hopper, directing "The Last Movie", 1970

image image

Dennis Hopper working on ‘The Last Movie’ (1971)


image Hopper was arrested after he fled from a traffic accident that he caused in Taos, Mexico. He was charged with careless driving, fleeing the accident and not informing police of the accident. He received a $250 fine and spent 20 minutes in jail.


Dennis Hopper as Daniel Morgan in ‘Mad Dog Morgan’ (1976)


‘The American Friend ‘ (1977) directed by Wim Wenders 


Apocalypse Now’ (1979) ‘



Matt Dillon & Dennis Hopper  as Rusty James and Father in ‘Rumble Fish’ (1983)


Blue Velvet (1986)

image image

‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2’ (1986)


Leonardo DiCaprio and Dennis Hopper - Red Rock West party, New York City, April 2, 1994. Photo: Steve Eichner/


‘Waterworld’ (1995) 


Dennis Hooper in front of Julian Schnabel’s plate painting


Basquiat (1996) Jeffrey Wright, David Bowie, Gary Oldman, Dennis Hopper | Photography | © Jean-Michel Basquiat


San Francisco 1996

Dennis Hopper and Allen Ginsberg are having a discussion at the opening of the Whitney Museum of American Art's exhibit Beat Culture and the New America: 1950-1965 at the H. M. de Young Museum in San Francisco.


Dennis Hopper and Johnny Brenden at CineVegas 2005


Dennis-Hopper-in-front-of-001 Dennis Hopper to get art 
Image: Cor Mulder/EPA


Dennis Hooper’s Last Interview, with Bob Colacello for Vanity Fair

Dennis Hopper laid to rest in simple Native American burial after memorial service attended by Jack Nicholson and Val Kilmer


The Native American-style burial mound in the Jesus Nazareno Cemetery in Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico, is believed to have been the Easy Rider star's final request.

Read more:


Hopper - OOAK Windup Sculpture

Mechanical Hopper - OAK Windup Sculpture

Using the insides of a windup tin toy for the body, I sculpted the head to balance the weight. The head is sculpted in polymer clay and is painted in acrylic. The hair is wool.

Video of his motion here: