Tom Sachs

Skull, 2003
Foamcore and hot glue

New York born artist Tom Sachs is something of a troublemaker on the art scene. Focused on critiquing fashion and street cultures, he manipulates our ideas of consumption, branding, commercial imagery and objects of money and power. Addressing the mania around fashion and attempting to change viewer's perceptions of precious items and revered brands. His pieces have a very "do-it-yourself" quality, made from mundane materials: foam core, Sharpie markers, duct tape and hot glue.

Chanel Chainsaw, 1996
cardboard and glue

Chanel Guillotine (Breakfast Nook), 1998
Mixed media


Chanel Sports

Chanel’s founder Coco Chanel was an avid cycler and to commemorate her and make an environmental statement Chanel have released a bicycle as part of their Spring/Summer 2008 collection. The Chanel bicycle is covered in their signature quilted leather and has a quilted leather bag on the back. The bicycle has eight speeds and will be available exclusively by order from certain Chanel stores in December.

I might be able to afford the tennis racquet, but I know I would just feel guilty about not using it... and then probably feel like a jerk if I did. I also have the sneaking suspicion that the fancy flower would just jack up my spin.


Serial killer breaks into song? You had me at Johnny Depp.

The story of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street first appeared in the 1830s in England and was soon adapted for the London stage. When Stephen Sondheim saw a version of the play in London in the mid 1970s, he asked Hugh Wheeler to collaborate with him on a musical adaptation. When the new Sweeney Todd opened on Broadway in 1979, it became an instant hit and later walked away with that year’s Tony award.

Although successful on Broadway, the film adaptation for the play turned musical has languished in development for decades. Alan Parker (Evita) was said to be interested in the '80s. Burton himself took a stab at it in the early '90s, but he says it came to nothing because there wasn't a script in place. Sam Mendes worked on a version for several years with Gladiator scribe John Logan before making 2005's Jarhead instead. Then, in the summer of 2006, Burton suddenly had an opening in his schedule after his Jim Carrey movie, Ripley's Believe It or Not!, fell apart. He pounced on Sweeney, and quickly persuaded Depp to join him.

Is there a large overlap between fans of Stephen Sondheim and horror movie aficionados? Paramount Pictures must be banking on it, because director Tim Burton's R-rated feature-film adaptation of the Broadway musical Sweeny Todd, one of the season's highest-profile offerings and an Oscar aspirant, includes moments that are bloodier than anything ever seen in the show's various Broadway and West End stagings.

Burton, who is still working on his final cut, brought 17 minutes of footage to New York on Wednesday evening for a sneak preview hosted by the Film Society of Lincoln Center, where the film's realistic depictions of throat-slashing murders sent a few audience members cowering in revulsion at the onscreen splatter. The event, which showed off three scenes, marked the first time any of the film had been unspooled for a North American audience. The film goes into limited release on Dec. 21.

Set in 19th-century London, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street stars Johnny Depp in the title role of the vengeful barber who, after serving 15 years in Australia on a wrongful conviction, returns to London to find his wife dead and his daughter the ward of the judge who sent him away. When a killing spree results in more corpses than he can easily hide, his love-struck landlady Mrs. Lovett (Helena Bonham Carter) grinds up his victims for use in the meat pies she sells at her downstairs shop.

The film also stars Alan Rickman as Judge Turpin and Sacha Baron Cohen as the competing barber Signor Adolfo Pirelli.

During one scene shown on Wednesday evening, Sweeney Todd slashes the throats of four customers while singing an ode to his lost daughter, Johanna. After killing the men, Todd sends their suddenly lifeless bodies sliding like sacks of wet cement down a chute to the basement, where they land with a horrifying head-first thud on the stone floor.

Burton felt Sweeney should be deliberately grotesque; a Mario Bava gorefest with ballads. "It just goes with the story," he says of the geysers of plasma. "I'd seen different Sweeney Todd productions on stage, and when they skimped on the blood, the production lost something. Everything is so internal with Sweeney that [the blood] is like his emotional release. It's more about catharsis than it is a literal thing." Shot in a muted palette of smudged Victorian browns and blacks, blood red is the most vibrant colour. (via)

Never Forget, Never Forgive

For further reading: Johnny Depp: Cutting Loose in ''Sweeney Todd''; a Q&A by EW.

If you enjoy a bloody musical every so often, may I suggest:

Eating Raoul
Repo! The Genetic Opera
Blood Brothers
Bat Boy
Evil Dead
Little Shop of Horrors
The Rocky Horror Show
Jekyll and Hyde
Dance of the Vampires | tanz der vampire

* Feel free to comment if you have a musical to add to the list!


Death Watch

Dating back to 1810, the Memento Mori Death Watch is a particularly dark reminder (even more so than most timekeepers) of our inevitable demise. Designed in the shape of a miniature skull with hinges, this pocket watch tells the time when you peel back the upper dome of the cranium. Made from 18K gold, enamel and diamonds, the fusée skull sold for $16,000.

via The Watchismo Times


Mori ex Cacao

Modern Alchemist Douglas Little & Confectioner Valerie Gordon, drawn together by a mutual admiration for the quality and beauty of each other’s creations, are pleased to debut the MORI EX CACAO COLLECTION. The genesis of DL & Company’s gastronomic collaboration with Valerie Confections is the belief that any modern luxury brand should appeal to all of the senses.

Based on DL&Co’s Memento Mori Collection, the exquisite skulls are rendered in bittersweet chocolate, filled with one of three delicious centers, then individually painted with colored cocoa butter to achieve the pristine, disturbing result.

Loosely translated, MORI EX CACAO is Death by Chocolate – dangerously overwhelming indulgence. These marvelous and macabre chocolate skulls are among the most extravagant confections made today, notable for the excellence and purity of their ingredients and the intricacy of their design. A single skull will set you back 40 bones, and the three piece gift set is nearly a Benji at $95.00.

Scorched Caramel
Organic cream is slowly combined with sugar over an intense flame, until the deep amber confection appears. Decadent.

Bitter Brandied Cherry
An exquisite and unusual confection of indulgent bitter chocolate, Kirsch-perfumed ganache and succulent sour cherries steeped in liqueur, finished in porcelain white cocoa.

Curious Chili
An eccentric array of chilies and spices are combined with the deepest chocolate into an exotic and exciting sensation, with a heat that lingers long after the chocolate is gone. An extraordinary experience.



To commemorate my Father's Birthday (Halloween) and the Día de los Muertos, I thought I would post an image yanked from Skulladay; my new favorite treat loaded with links and updated daily.