Māgha Pūjā is an important Buddhist holiday that is celebrated in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka, on the day of the full moon, in the third month of the Thai moon calendar, in February/March. The word Māgha refers to month and Pūjā is the honoring. Legend has it that on this day 1,250 monks congregated to meet with Buddha. [read more] “Magha Puja – the full moon festival in Southeast Asia”
In 1984, the song »New Moon on Monday« was released by the British music group Duran Duran. This was deep in the 80’s, when men and women artistically draped their hair and wore gear that makes you chuckle looking at them from today’s perspective. The ambitious music video tells the plot of an underground rebel group called »La Luna«, who fight against a military regime, and who call upon the power of the Moon to help them. Back then, this was shot in the French village Noyers with great efforts during winter temperatures. [read more] “»New Moon on Monday« by Duran Duran”
The moths »Actias luna« and »Actias selene« in the family of Saturniidae, carry the Moon in their name – maybe because they are attracted to light and we connect them with the night; although, they can also be active during the day. But perhaps it is because of the crescent shaped wings or the pattern on top of the wings, which remind us of eyes that may have contributed to the naming. Luna is the moon goddess in Roman mythology, Selene is the equivalent in Greek mythology. [read more] “»Actias luna« and »Actias selene« – two luna moths”
This classic of the surrealistic movie scene (the original in French »Un Chien Andalou«) by Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dalí, evoked mixed reactions when released in Paris, in 1929. Even from a current perspective, the movie polarizes, whereby its artistic value remains indisputable.
The approximately sixteen minute act consists of a series of individual sequences, which show different encounters of men and women. There are dream-like, symbolic, and partly absurd scenes that do not create a plot in the classic sense. Yet, the movie projects some sort of development, however, it remains incomprehensible. [read more] “The full moon, the eye and the razor in the movie »An Andalusian Dog«”
Suitable for today’s 4th July, »Independence Day« in the US, and moreover it being the new moon, we pose the question of the dependency or independency of the Moon. Are we dependent on the Moon or not? And is the Moon dependent on us?
If we believe the surveys, more than 40% of people feel influenced by the Moon, in particular during sleep. In other ways as well and the influence of the Earth’s moon is being discussed in many areas, although there is still no evidence. Science rather confirms the opposite and verifies this by referring to various studies that the human is independent of the Moon; however, this does not correspond with the basic feelings of most. [read more] “Dependent on or independent of the Moon?”
»Moonwalker« is a musical film from 1988 starring Michael Jackson. The movie is a wild and trendy mixture of music videos, live concert recordings, action scenes, science fiction effects and cartoons – so less of a classical movie, but more so an anthology. The plot revolves around how Michael saves three children (i.e. played by Sean Lennon, John Lennon’s son) and the children of the world from the deadly intrigues of the villain Mr. Big (played by Joe Pesci). [read more] “Michael Jackson’s movie »Moonwalker«”
Are we alone in the universe? Are there other intelligent forms of life in space or are we alone? These questions have been on mankind’s mind, since we consciously reflect our existence and raise our gaze toward the starlit sky.
With the beginning of space travel, there arose the idea, of sending messages to potential extraterrestrial life. The question, which information is suitable, a representative picture of the entire human race and their lives on planet Earth, is particularly exciting. [read more] “The lunar plaques and other messages to the universe”
Who does not know the »moon boots« – these bulky snow boots, which appeared in the 70’s and 80’s and have taken their claim ever since in the winterly fashion scene. The Italian Giancarlo Zanatta designed the shoes, inspired by the moon landing in 1969. Astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin wore overshoes with wide soles, which provided the formal inspiration for moon boots. Zanatta took immediate care of the production of the shoes with his company called Tecnica, which is run by his son Alberto Zanatta today, and still sells up to 700,000 pair per year. [read more] “Moon boots”
Buzz Aldrin (* 1930) is an American astronaut and the man, who, as part of the Apollo 11 mission on 21st July 1969, stepped onto the Moon as the second person, just after Neil Armstrong. He stood in the shadow of his colleague and one could assume that he may have suffered under these circumstances. But this was not the case, he did not really want to be in the spotlight and was satisfied coming second. After he set his feet into the dust 20 minutes after Armstrong did, he said: »Beautiful, beautiful. Magnificent desolation.« [read more] “Buzz Aldrin – the second man on the Moon”
A moon bridge is a pedestrian bridge, of which the semicircular arch completes a full circle through its reflection in the water and reminds of the full moon. In the old days, the high arch especially, served the purpose for barges to comfortably pass through underneath. Moon bridges originate in the Asian culture and were often built in Japanese and Chinese gardens. The mostly used materials were wood, stone and metal.
[read more] “Moon bridges”
Chang’e is the Chinese moon goddess. She does not symbolically represent the Moon, like for example the Greek moon goddess Selene, but Chang’e lives on the Moon and is befriended with the well-known rabbit that is very familiar to us. But has she always been up there?
The legend says that she got there some thousand years ago. There are different versions of the story, which we don’t want to elaborate on. In any case, her husband Hou Yi plays a central role, who came to help because of his skillfulness in archery, when ten suns threatened to burn the Earth and he shot down nine from the sky. [read more] “The Chinese moon goddess Chang’e”
»Moon Wood« (aka »lunar cycle wood«) is the name for the wood of trees, which are felled during a specific time of the lunar cycle, and are therefore attributed with better traits, with regard to quality, stability, durability, and resistance against pest etc. Just like with many other moon related traditions, there is currently very little proof of the actual influence of the Moon. Still, many people have faith in this special effect and are prepared to pay up to 30% more for moon wood. The use is popular from buildings through to musical instruments. [read more] “Moon wood”
The medium-format cameras by the Swedish manufacturer Hasselblad, enjoy a legendary reputation and were – at least back then – probably the best cameras in the world. Not surprising that NASA chose exactly this brand during their equipment selection for their Moon missions. At that time, everything revolved around photographic quality of taking the pictures and moreso, around the reliability of the cameras. Back then, you did not have the opportunity to immediately examine whether a photograph turned out well, because all material could be developed only after the return to Earth. So, with regards to cameras there was the need to hedge one’s bets – inconceivable, if those photos would have turned out a complete flop. [read more] “Hasselblad cameras on the Moon”
Richard Riemerschmid (1868–1957) was a German artist and architect and a major figure in Jugendstil (German form of Art Nouveau). Further, he worked in arts and handcrafts and created furniture, fabrics, wall paper, and dishes, and was the co-founder of the German Association of Craftsmen – an association of artists, architects and business men. [read more] “»Ghost Clouds« by Richard Riemerschmid”
»Koyaanisqatsi« is a film by the American director Godfrey Reggio, which was made between 1975 and 1982. The term »ko-yaa-nis-qatsi« derives from the language of the Hopi tribe and means »life out of balance« or »life in turmoil«. The movie manages without words, conveys its message with powerful images and haunting music by Philip Glass. It is a critical film that serves as eye-opener for the dark side of our civilization through comparing of poetic impressions of nature and images of the consequences of human activity. »Koyaanisqatsi« is the first part of a trilogy, followed by Powaqqatsi (1988) and Naqoyqatsi (2002). [read more] “The full moon in »Koyaanisqatsi«”
The song »Space Oddity« by the British musician David Bowie (1947–2016) made history. Bowie’s inspiration for this piece composed in 1968, was the science fiction classic »2001: A Space Odyssey« by Stanley Kubrick.
It tells the fictional story of the astronaut Major Tom, who leaves his spacecraft during a flight through space and says his farewell to the people. The last four lines of the lyrics also mention the Moon: [read more] “The Moon in »Space Oddity« by David Bowie”
Frank Frazetta (1928–2010) was an American fantasy and science fiction illustrator and belongs to one of the greatest artists of this genre. With his distinctive style, he was as a great example to an entire generation of artists. His work continues to receive high appreciation, down to the present day.
He began with illustrations of covers for comics and books in the 60’s began (i.e. »Conan the Barbarian« or »Tarzan«), designed movie posters (i.e. »What’s New Pussycat?« or »The Fearless Vampire Killers«) and album covers. In addition, he created a lot of free art work. [read more] “»The Moon’s Rapture« by Frank Frazetta”
The Christmas advertising campaigns of the well known English department store John Lewis, have developed into a yearly tradition since their start in 2007 and have become part of pre-Christmas Internet culture. John Lewis has been awarded the »IPA Effectiveness Award« with its 2012 Christmas campaign. This year, the video called »Man On The Moon« was published – parallel to the Christmas full moon on 25th December 2015. [read more] “The department store John Lewis and the »Man On The Moon«”
The American astronaut David Scott (* 1932) conducted an interesting experiment on the Moon, toward the end of the Apollo 15 mission in July/August 1971. In front of a running camera, he dropped a hammer (2.9 lb) and a falcon’s feather (0.06 lb), just to prove Galileo Galileis’ (1564–1641) thesis that objects fall to the ground with the same speed, regardless of their mass, provided the air resistance does not slow them down, as it is the case on Earth. On our planet, this experiment could only be demonstrated in a vacuum. [read more] “The hammer and feather on the Moon”
When the sunlight appears on the Moon’s surface in a flat angle, interesting lighting effects are created, due to the mountains and valleys, which can be observed quite well from the Earth. A well-known effect is the so called »golden handle«. This is when the Jura Mountains (»Montes Jura«) are illuminated 4 to 5 days before the full moon and appear as a bright arc, in front of the still darkened Sea of Showers (»Sinus Iridum«) of the Mare Imbrium. This is reinforced by the fact that the boundary of light and shadow, which is called »terminator«, runs directly through this area. [read more] “The »golden handle« of the Moon”