BLOG Carl McTague rss icon
mathematician, composer, photographer, fiddler

3 Aug 2018 | categories: Photographs, Archaelogy, Film

The Standing Stones of Stenness

Standing Stones of Stenness (2018)

Possibly the oldest henge in the British Isles – the Standing Stones of Stenness in Orkney, Scotland. The Stenness Watch Stone is visible in the distance. The Ness of Brogdar, Ring of Brogdar, Maeshowe, and Skara Brae are nearby but not visible.

Compare my photo with the following still from Powell & Pressburger’s first collaboration, The Spy in Black (1939).

Conrad Veidt with standing stones in The Spy in Black (1939)

In it Conrad Veidt is sneaking with a motorcycle between moonlit standing stones in Orkney, on his way from his U-boat near The Old Man of Hoy to a clandestine rendezvous in a house overlooking the British Grand Fleet in Scappa Flow.

Conrad Veidt pushing a motorcycle up a cliff  in The Spy in Black (1939)Conrad Veidt with motorcycle near The Old Man of Hoy in The Spy Black (2018)

Title card for The Spy in Black (1939)

I incidentally once dressed up for Halloween as one of Veidt’s earliest screen roles – the somnambulist in The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920).

Besides Powell & Pressburger – and of course Kubrick – the sunset at Stenness also made me think of “The Mathematician’s Nightmare” from Bertrand Russell’s Nightmares of Eminent Persons and Other Stories (1954).

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13 Dec 2014 | categories: Photographs, Serpents, Archaelogy, Chronology

After Laocoön [or Before?]

Little is known with certainty about the serpent—not even how many thousand years old it is.

After Laocoön [or Before?] (2014)

References

Der Schrei der Natur (1893)
[It struck me later how sim­i­lar my com­po­si­tion is to Edvard Munch’s in The Scream (1893).]