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You searched for "Melancholy". Your search returned 31 results.

Brand melancholy

Who would want to brand their city as melancholic? I’ve just caught up with the Guardian’s city brand barometer. One of the parameters by which they measure brand success is “buzz”: “a combination of social media (Facebook likes and Twitter sentiment analysis) and media mentions.” They don’t measure melancholy, but if buzzing is frenetic activity, then it’s opposite is … Continue reading

Absence of melancholy

The muted joy of autumn melancholy: who can resist the temptation to be lyrical in such a season? By all accounts melancholy is the feeling you get in the event of loss or absence, as in the passing of summer. Melancholy is also absent from classifications of mood and emotion as devised by experimental psychologists. For … Continue reading

Melancholy urbanism

I revisited Waverley Cemetery in Sydney a few weeks ago. It covers a valley that looks out to the Pacific Ocean. It’s a site of loss and remembering of course, but it also conforms to the architectural geometry of melancholy. The horizon is sovereign, and reminds the visitor of the reaches of time, distance and … Continue reading

The melancholy medium

It’s depressing when spoilsports sully the open and aspirational ethos of the Internet with anxieties and obsessions about cyber wars (CNN). Two weeks ago the Independent.ie reported, “North Korea has blamed South Korea and the United States for cyber attacks that temporarily shut down websites at a time of heightened tensions over the North’s nuclear … Continue reading

Melancholy and media

In an intellectually astute observation about his own Olympic success, cyclist Bradley Wiggins said, “There is almost slight melancholy. I realised on the podium that that is it for me. I don’t think anything is going to top that. To win the tour and then win Olympic gold in London at 32. I’ll look back in … Continue reading

Postcard from Chernobyl

Chernobyl is a site of melancholy. It’s not just the grief, the loss, the cost and the risk of extinction. Chernobyl and Pripyat’s melancholy is inscribed in the landscape. Forest takes over the agricultural and industrial ground plane. Apartment blocks stood proud on this stratum of Soviet achievement. But the horizon breaks through, symbol of … Continue reading

Politics as art

Art can bring into sharp relief aspects of life and the world to which people (some of us) previously paid little attention. Art can accomplish this through an ecology of signs — pointing stuff out i.e. by making direct reference. But art also informs by presenting the opposite to what we art lovers might expect as the object of … Continue reading

You have reached your destination

It sounds final. “You have reached your destination,” says my car SatNav. Achieving a goal is melancholic in several respects. Some achievers realise there’s nothing left. It’s not going to get any better. Then some think their achievement doesn’t accrue all the benefits they expected. Freud also explained melancholy as a tendency to focus on losing something, even if it is … Continue reading

Less of one and more of the other

The natural is in opposition to the artificial — or so we think. Some oppositions lie at either end of a spectrum, with gradations between. e.g. light versus dark. That’s an opposition with an inverse relationship. The more light you add to an image, the less dark it is. The louder things get, the less quiet; the hotter, the less … Continue reading

Mixed feelings

Here’s the grimy hull of an abandoned ship on an isolated beach surrounded by barbed wire and covered in rust and flaking graffiti. If you like that kind of ruin then you are drawn to it. If not you will probably keep away. You are either attracted or repelled; you approach or avoid. (My instinct was to approach.) To approach … Continue reading

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