Archive for oddities

La Popular’s “Corpse Bride”

Posted in death, macabre, oddities, wedding with tags , , , on July 17, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I am basically going to reblog this morbid legend, because the source sites all the bizarre details quite well.

hcbotlfujhvwcdj4xljv

For the past 75 years, a tiny bridal shop in Mexico has been the subject of some pretty crazy rumors. Tales of supernatural fiddling abound, with whispers of disembodied voices, mysterious cold spots, and even the occasional darting shadow seen from the corner of a visitor’s eye. But the creepiest rumor centers around a bridal mannequin sitting in the window; a highly detailed dummy that many say is a perfectly preserved corpse.

cbxjoagllyxuwenm1ms5

The tale begins on March 25th in 1930, when the odd-looking mannequin was first placed in the windows of La Popular, one of the most well-known bridal shops in Chihauhau, Mexico. Almost immediately, the locals knew that something just wasn’t quite right with the figure. Before long, tales of the stunning mannequin began to spread far and wide, and visitors trekked from all over just to see the intricate details in the doll. From the individual wrinkles in the hands, to the real human hair, to the mesermizing gaze of her glass eyes, it was almost as if the figure was a real person frozen in time.

yfkrdceng4pxohi8gkpa

Eventually, people began to notice the similaries between the mannequin, nicknamed La Pascualita, and the daughter of La Popular’s proprietor, Pascuala Esparza. According to legend, Esparza’s daughter had tragically passed away on her wedding day, victim of a Black Widow spider bite. Locals whispered that the beautiful figure in the window was, in fact, the embalmed body of Esparza’s daughter. More and more, the details began to make sense, and the townspeople became outraged. Of course, Pascuala Esparza formally denied the allegations, but by that point, it was too late – the legend was set in stone.

1

75 years later, some have come to revere La Pascualita as a saint, leaving candles and offering prayers in front of the window. Some ask for good fortune, but most come to her seeking guidance in matters of love. Many brides even let Pascualita decide on their gowns for them, simply choosing whatever dress she’s wearing at the time they visit.

yznwicy0lyq6ekixvaad

So, is the strange mannequin really the preserved corpse of an ill-fated bride? Skeptics say no, pointing to the difficult upkeep when it comes to stopping a corpse from decaying, but those who have seen La Pascualita in person walk away believers… and very creeped out believers at that. After all, how strange is it for a store to keep the same mannequin for nearly eight decades, and shroud its undressing in secrecy?

What do you all think? The hands are indeed rather corpse-like, and graced with far more textured skin than any mannequin I’ve seen in the world. But…I’m not sure what methods could keep ANY flesh on a corpse over 80 years after the date of death.

Source
(Thanks to Steph for the link!)

The Morbid Anatomy Anthology

Posted in anatomy, antiques, Books, oddities with tags , , , on June 25, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

My The Morbid Anatomy Anthology just arrived, and I absolutely must sing its praises. I can’t wait to dive in and devour every word and image!

index

Since 2008, the Morbid Anatomy Library of Brooklyn, New York, has hosted some of the best scholars, artists and writers working along the intersections of the history of anatomy and medicine, death and the macabre, religion and spectacle. The Morbid Anatomy Anthology collects some of the best of this work in 28 lavishly illustrated essays. Included are essays by Evan Michelson (star of Science Channel’s hit show Oddities) on the catacombs of Palermo; Simon Chaplin (head of the Wellcome Library in London) on public displays of corpses in Georgian England; mortician Caitlin Doughty on demonic children; and Paul Koudounaris (author of Empire of Death) on a truck stop populated with human skulls. In addition are pieces on books bound in human skin, death-themed cafes in fin-de-siècle Paris, post-mortem photography, eroticized anatomical wax models, taxidermied humans and other animals, Santa Muerte, “artist of death” Frederik Ruysch, and much more.

There are some brilliant minds and expert curators behind this book (namely, Joanna Ebenstein and Colin Dickey). If you are a fan of this blog, you should definitely pick it up! It’s an amazing treasure trove (and really fairly priced…even for a penny pincher like me!). Support these great folks. They deserve it.

Edward Keinholz

Posted in installations, oddities, sculpture with tags , , on May 19, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Today I bring you the evocative assemblages of Edward Keinholz, most of which contain a dash of sharp satire and/or criticisms of modern life (works range from the 1960′s-1980′s).

john_doe_1959

Although he obtained no formal training, Keinholz grew up on a farm where he learned carpentry, drafting and mechanical skills.

the_merry-go-world_or_begat_by_chance_and_the_wonder_horse_trigger_backside_1988_1992

His roster of formal jobs is as eclectic as his artistic endeavors: orderly in a psychiatric hospital, manager of a dance band, used car salesman, caterer, decorator and vacuum cleaner salesman.

the_widow_1962

birthday_1964

Edward Keinholz

Victorian Hearse Aquarium

Posted in antiques, death, home, oddities with tags , , , on May 15, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Here’s a truly unique modification: the Victorian Hearse Aquarium. It was up for auction (and has since ended), but is worth showing for the craftsmanship.

aquarium
Large Victorian Ebonized Aquarium Cabinet, 19th century and later. Fashioned from the rear glazed doors of a New Orleans style horse drawn hearse, adapted on modern stand to accommodate tank, filter and lighting, all included, 80.5″ x 57″ x 41″ – 204.5 x 144.8 x 104.1 cm.

What do you think of this item? Too goth? Completely awesome?

Source

Desktop Goodies 4/17

Posted in absurd, advertising, antiques, art, food, humor, kitsch, oddities, photography, vintage with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Welcome to this edition of desktop goodies!
1798486_789137281114356_1608670536_n

Would you buy Kellog’s corn flakes after seeing a child in the ad who looks like he’s be propped and posed postmortem?
4883113811_29c059f3ac_z

Antique “eye massager,” for when your eyes need a little therapeutic squishin’!
Eye Massager.

AXOLOTL in a portrait! (See some axolotl info here, and an artistic interpretation here)
lilaiathenaiad_web_by_pinkparasol-d73njl7

Don’t mind him…he’s really into that “sitting in a wall” thing.
tumblr_m035x7y5Ci1qzeqqeo1_500

The most complete system ever? Really?
tumblr_mvllc4fdMJ1rapuh3o1_500

I’m going to give you a great life tip here, folks. So listen up: be sure to set the iron to medium heat so as not to burn your crocodile.
tumblr_mwd1hq1EeE1st4bmvo1_500

The world’s most wistful butter substitute:
tumblr_n3a80thaZO1qz5hh4o1_500

You can conveniently sell your sister by placing a check mark in the appropriate box.
00a4cfbab78583dba61e10de3df836f2

Don’t say it, Dana…don’t say this piece of kitsch is…”corny.” D’OH!
5bd978f5d48cf37297e5094d1bcb1d94

Bayer Aspirin Prayer Card

Posted in ephemera, kitsch, oddities with tags , , on March 31, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

The recent guest post over at Morbid Anatomy showcases a truly amazing item: The Bayer Aspirin Prayer Card.

SV_WAKE7662

Made in the style of traditional holy cards in the 1940′s, this glow in the dark mass produced devotional object implies that faith is awesome…but for bodily ailments there’s aspirin (Jesus can’t fix it? Take a pill!). If you look at the image for thirty seconds, then view a white surface, it shows “God.”

I’ve actually never seen a black holy card, only the kitschy technicolor variety. What a great collector’s item. Can’t beat an endorsement from The Lord, now can we?

Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities

Posted in antiques, destinations, oddities with tags , , on March 9, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I’m thrilled that little curio cabinets of merchandise have been springing up all over the country in the past decade. Shows like Oddities have helped spur an increasing widespread interest in the strange and unusual (my longstanding loves!).

Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities looks like a great place to browse.

woollyexterior1

img_6045

Have any of you Chicago natives/travelers been there?

img_6097

img_6028

Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities

Guillermo del Toro: Cabinet of Curiosities

Posted in Books, film, monsters, oddities, undead, wish list with tags , , , , , on November 9, 2013 by shewalkssoftly

Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities has me drooling with anticipation!

del-toro-cabinet-of-curiosities-book-cover1

Over the last two decades, writer-director Guillermo del Toro has mapped out a territory in the popular imagination that is uniquely his own, astonishing audiences with Cronos, Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth, and a host of other films and creative endeavors. Now, for the first time, del Toro reveals the inspirations behind his signature artistic motifs, sharing the contents of his personal notebooks, collections, and other obsessions.

7a-guillermo_pg-126_1

The result is a startling, intimate glimpse into the life and mind of one of the world’s most creative visionaries. Complete with running commentary, interview text, and annotations that contextualize the ample visual material, this deluxe compendium is every bit as inspired as del Toro is himself.

8b-guillermo_pg-108_11

Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities

Does anyone have this yet???

Cannot type/talk due to severe illness (all words courtesy of voice software or kind typing helpers)…I read and appreciate all comments…Apologies for not being able to respond.

Halloween Countdown: Desktop Goodies Treat Bag #3

Posted in absurd, art, craft, ephemera, film, food, halloween, horror, humor, illustration, kitsch, macabre, monsters, music, oddities, postcards, retro, undead, vintage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 31, 2013 by shewalkssoftly

Damn, right in the eye…
tumblr_mucrfzxkV91rct58lo1_500

tumblr_mv07wtSIlR1qz72v7o1_500

Sarcastic ghost is like “Boo…or whatever.”
10710906-23744485-thumbnail

1391700_600047886723685_1175704552_n

Watched Poltergeist II the other day (great movie, but the first was awesome), and happened to pause for a break on this comical frame:
20131026_163023

0c72463dd28e2172220373b50881f6c0

Oh, hell yes, haunted kitsch sweater!
tumblr_mvgkksNOFl1qfvuj8o1_500

tumblr_mv0sf2S42O1sllnpro4_500

1282749_original

Amazing pancakes (check out the one on the lower left…wow!):
pumpkin pancakes[5]

tumblr_mvjcwqIT8V1qbyf2jo1_500

The inclusion of something that has eyes does NOT an eyeball make:
10710906-23799129-thumbnail

Oh, you think your pumpkin is scary? THIS is how they did it in early 20th Century Ireland.
raditional (and utterly terrifying) Halloween turnip jack-o-lantern carved in Ireland in the early 20th century. Note the horrifying teeth.

4b90611d0e70db6db5fdab8e0796f5b2

Ah, the 80′s…when movies had their own cheese-tastic rap theme songs. Take Monster Squad for example. What’s your favorite 80′s horror movie?

039bd6b569cab3f74c52ac5b70ad445c

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!
a3a72a1b145d42718803b93537f85e42

Cannot type/talk due to severe illness (all words courtesy of voice software or kind typing helpers)…I read and appreciate all comments…Apologies for not being able to respond.

The Pitt Rivers of Oxford

Posted in destinations, museums, oddities with tags , , on August 18, 2013 by shewalkssoftly

Morbid Anatomy has an amazing post about The Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford’s collection of anthropology and world archaeology.

PittRivers00

I’m nearly tipsy from the mere act of looking at these sample pictures. One day, I will visit. It will be my version of hiking a long journey…I’ll bring water bottles and bags of trail mix.

PittRivers01

See some more photos here.
The Pitt Rivers Museum

Cannot type/talk due to severe illness (all words courtesy of voice software or kind typing helpers)…I read and appreciate all comments…Apologies for not being able to respond.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 899 other followers