Ethically sourced?

by John Holbo on September 10, 2007

I just finished The Professor’s Daughter [amazon], by Sfar and Guibert. My favorite panel:


Imhotep IV takes refuge in the shop of an antiquarian, before resuming pursuit of his beloved – Lillian, daughter of renowned Egyptologist, Professor Bowell, who is owner of Imhotep IV. As the defense attorney sincerely declaims, a few pages on: “It was love that caused Pharaoh Imhotep IV to cross the centuries and attempt to breach the west wall of the central police station, and it was hastiness that caused Miss Bowell to confuse arsenic and chamomile.” Further complications ensue upon arrival of Imhotep III, who kidnaps Queen Victoria. Love conquers all, the watercolors are lovely.

You can read the first dozen pages at First Second books – purveyors of fine comic product all-around. (But Amazon will give you a better price. But maybe it’s better to buy from the publishers.)

In other art news, I just noticed that Hirst sold the skull:

Damien Hirst’s diamond-encrusted cast of a human skull has been bought by a group of anonymous investors for its asking price of £50 million, the artist’s representatives claimed yesterday.

It is, by a huge margin, the most paid for a work by a living artist.

Entitled For the Love of God, the skull was first displayed at the White Cube Gallery in Mayfair, Central London, in June where thousands queued for a two-minute viewing in a high-security darkened chamber.

Studded with more than 8,500 ethically sourced diamonds, it has been variously described as “an anthropomorphised disco ball”, “the first 21st-century work of art”, “a cosmic wonder”, “the vulgar embodiment of modern materialism” and, by Hirst himself, as “quite bling”.

And Texas can’t decide whether the grammar/penmanship is wrong enough for it to be $550,000 worth of right.



dsquared 09.10.07 at 2:38 pm

ethically sourced diamonds

I include by citation various iterations of my rant about “ethical” diamonds. The Kimberley licensing scheme really is a racket. It’s just a way of shutting African diamond producers out of the industry until they promise to compete in a “gentlemanly” fashion against De Beers (note that there is no “ethical” sourcing regime for Burmese rubies or for emeralds, because those gemstones are genuinely rate and thus don’t need these rinkydink non-tariff barriers to hold the price up).

I have a special scunner against Kanye West, because a) his song “Diamonds from Sierra Leone” doesn’t mention Sierra Leone at all, it’s all about Kanye West, b) the civil war in Sierra Leone has been over for nearly five years now, they’re even having the war crimes trials, c) I bet a number of his fans are boycotting the main foreign exchange-earning export of a number of struggling little African democracies on the basis of that damn song.


Bloix 09.10.07 at 2:42 pm

The “anonymous group of investors” includes Hirst himself. Wonder what his share is. $99 million, perhaps?

This is an effort to mask the fact that he couldn’t get the asking price so he’s taking it off the market.


Hidari 09.10.07 at 3:06 pm

I just have moral objections to Kanye West. Why do I need a reason?


James Wimberley 09.10.07 at 3:59 pm

Ethical source maybe, but what about the sink?


Shelby 09.10.07 at 5:03 pm

genuinely rate

Genuinely rare? Normally I’ll ignore a typo but I know little about gemology, so is “rate” the intended term?


yabonn 09.10.07 at 6:43 pm

Woohoo The Professor’s Daughter woohoo ! !


Jon H 09.12.07 at 1:04 am

The two people who did Professor’s Daughter also did Sardine in Outer Space, a very colorful, kid-friendly story about a little girl space pirate and her friends, and their struggles against the evil child-hating Supermuscleman.


John Holbo 09.13.07 at 6:04 am

Hey jon h, yeah I actually just ordered “Sardine”. Thanks for mentioning it. I’m looking forward.

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