E.M.

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The Modern Art Cookbook: Recipes and Food-Inspired Treasures from the Twentieth Century’s Greatest Creative Icons

As a lover of unusual cookbooks — especially those at the intersection of literature, art, and cuisine, from the <i>Artists’ and Writers’ Cookbook</i> to Salvador Dalí’s erotic gastronomy to Andy Warhol’s little-known illustrated recipes to Dinah Fried’s magnificent photographs of meals from famous fiction …

Jie He

Drawing Autism: A Visual Tour of the Autistic Mind from Kids and Celebrated Artists on the Spectrum

Autism and its related conditions remain among the least understood mental health issues of our time. But one significant change that has taken place over the past few years has been a shift from perceiving the autistic mind not as disabled but as differently abled — and often impressive in its …

LIX Is The World’s Smallest 3D Drawing Pen That Lets You Draw In The Air

Imagine being able to draw a solid 3D object in the air, the way you might draw signs in the air with your finger. That’s exactly the idea behind the …

Prototypes

Isaac Asimov on the Thrill of Lifelong Learning, Science vs. Religion, and the Role of Science Fiction in Advancing Society

Isaac Asimov was an extraordinary mind and spirit — the author of more than 400 science and science fiction books and a tireless advocate of space exploration, he also took great joy in the humanities (and once annotated Lord Byron’s epic poem “Don Juan”), championed humanism over religion, and …

The Science of How Memory Works

<i>“Whatever becomes of [old memories], in the long intervals of consciousness?”</i> Henry James wistfully pondered upon turning fifty. <i>“They are like the lines of a letter written in sympathetic ink; hold the letter to the fire for a while and the grateful warmth brings out the invisible words.”</i> James was …

Mary Oliver on the Mystery of the Human Psyche, the Secret of Great Poetry, and How Rhythm Makes Us Come Alive

<i>“Poetry makes possible the deepest kind of personal possession of the world,”</i> James Dickey wrote. <i>“The way to develop good taste in literature,”</i> Joseph Brodsky advised, <i>“is to read poetry.”</i> Wordsworth believed the poetic form to be <i>“the breath and finer spirit of all knowledge.”</i> For Edward Hirsch, it …

Salvador Dalí’s Sinister and Sensual Paintings for Dante’s “Divine Comedy”

Something magical happens when a prominent artist interprets a literary classic visually, from William Blake’s paintings for Milton’s <i>Paradise Lost</i> to Picasso’s 1934 drawings for a naughty ancient Greek comedy to Matisse’s 1935 etchings for <i>Ulysses</i>. But the celebrated artist most prolific in …

The Unaddressed Business of Filling Our Souls: Mood Science and the Evolutionary Origins of Depression

<i>“Depression is a disorder of the ‘I,’ failing in your own eyes relative to your goals,”</i> legendary psychologist Martin Seligman observed in his essential treatise on learned optimism. But such a definition of depression, while true, appears somehow insufficient, overlooking the multitude of …

Whatever You Are, Be a Good One

In March of 1884, Leo Tolstoy resolved in his diary to create a “circle of reading” for himself, probing “the great philosophers of all time and all people” for wisdom on how to live well. This was the birth of his famous <i>Calendar of Wisdom</i>, which he spent the remaining seventeen years of his life …

Why Look at Animals: John Berger on What Our Relationship with Our Fellow Beings Reveals About Us

<i>“Erasing the awe-inspiring variety of sentient life impoverishes all our lives,”</i> Joanna Bourke wrote in her fascinating chronicle of our understanding of what it means to be human, an awareness inextricably entwined with a parallel understanding of the animal experience of our fellow sentient …

Orgasm Without Release: Alan Watts Presages Our Modern Media Gluttony in 1951

<i>“If the remission of pain is happiness, then the emergence from distraction is aesthetic bliss,”</i> Saul Bellow wrote in his poignant 1990 essay “The Distracted Public.” Nearly a century earlier, in his funny and wise reflection on feeding the mind, Lewis Carroll admonished that <i>“mental gluttony, or</i> …

Neurocomic: A Graphic Novel About How the Brain Works

Scientists are only just beginning to understand how the brain works — from what transpires in it while we sleep to how to optimize its memory to what love does to it to how music affects it — and the rest of us fall somewhere on the spectrum between fascinated and confused when it comes to the …

In Pieces: French Illustrator Marion Fayolle’s Wordless Narratives About Human Relationships

<b>In Pieces</b> (<i>public library</i> | <i>IndieBound</i>) is an uncommon piece of visual poetry by French illustrator and comic artist Marion Fayolle that calls to mind at once the surrealist whimsy of <i>Codex Seraphinianus</i>, the visual neatness of Gregory Blackstock’s illustrated lists, and the vignettes of Blexbolex — …

My Modern Shop Spotlight - Miro Simko's Secluded Moments

Self-taught photographer Miro Simko captures beautiful landscapes and stark black and white moments that are strikingly meditative. In this selection of work, energy emanates from colorful skies; lone trees sit against crisp, snowy white backgrounds; and single cars drive along the twisty curves of …

Barcelona

What 10 Things Should You Do Every Day To Improve Your Life?

Chris Pecoraro—Getty Images<p>Sam Edwards—Getty Images/Caiaimage<p>Jetta Productions—Getty Images<p>by nacoki ( MEDIA ARC )—Getty Images/Flickr RF<p>Reza …

The Soul Of The World's Most Expensive Violin

The Vieuxtemps Guarneri is a violin that is older than the United States of America — 273 years old, to be exact. It recently became the most expensive violin in the world, selling for an estimated $16 million. Its new owner anonymously donated the historic instrument to violinist Anne Akiko …