Falling in love with Akihabara again: Queen Dolce

I’ve just come home after a month-long research trip in Japan, during which I re-discovered my love of Akihabara. I loved the things you find in Akihabara long before I ever set foot in the place – in fact, by the time I actually went on my first trip to Japan, my university course had peed on my geeky parade by immersing me in more acceptable things like Edo period woodblock prints and religious history. So most of the magic of Akihabara passed me by, because the lonely teenage otaku in me was lost behind a head full of academia. But no longer! Now I’m lucky enough to be studying computer games, pursuing electronics as a hobby which artists sometimes pay me for, and occasionally writing about genderqueer fashion. All three of those things are great excuses for me to spend endless hours trawling the streets of Akiba. Continue reading

Virtual Reality Design Logic in Copenhagen

Today was the last day of my brief visit to Copenhagen for the Against Procedurality seminar at IT University. After going to the Design Center (meh) I decided to take myself on an architectural walk using a map provided by the Architecture Centre, which I visited a couple of days ago. I popped into the Royal Library to use their internet, so that I could go on the CopenhagenX website and get information about some of the sights I was going to see – you’re supposed to buy the book to go with the map, but this way was cheaper and I was perfectly happy with it. I planned a 2-3 hour walk that would take me out of the city and home again. This was kind of a strange thing to do, because it meant leaving a lot of historical sites behind me and heading into a post-industrial wasteland, but it turned out to be very interesting. I wish more cities had architectural maps available like this, because it really does turn the cityscape into an exhibition of sorts, and with an extensive map such as the one made by Copenhagen X you end up finding very striking buildings in unexpected places.

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Desktop Wallpaper 2.5.11

My latest desktop wallpaper is a photograph of an illuminated manuscript of the Koran which I saw at the Islamic Arts Museum on a recent trip to Istanbul. This is one of the wallpapers I’ve been the most satisfied with so far – I like the tension between media and the way the use of the photo as wallpaper imposes flatness onto an image with a shallow depth of field. Its not too busy, but you can still enjoy picking tiny details out of the small part of the image that’s in focus. Hope I can make more like this in future.

DapperQ in Japan

I wrote this for awesome transgressive fashion blog DapperQ.com. Thought I’d repost it here for anybody interested:
All dapperQs know that female masculinity has its own unique style, swagger and sexual charms. But in a world dominated by polarised gender norms, celebrating dapperQs can seem like a pioneering step into unexplored, new territory. So it came as a surprise to me when I learned that in Japan, women taking masculine roles in musical theater are followed by hordes of screaming fangirls and praised for being the ideal man.

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