Customer Reviews for

Madonna of the Toast

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2007

    'We see what we want to see'

    Buzz Poole (author of the brilliant GREEN DESIGN) brings his rather daunting gifts of communication both visual and verbal to yet another interesting release from the consistently creative Mark Batty Publisher in New York. This time Poole turns from ecological investigation to quasi-spiritual investigation and the results are pages of images that push the imagination and sense of humor cum fascination to new limits. Poole opens his pictorial series of essays with a definition of the term 'Pereidolia' - 'a psychological phenomenon elicited by random visual stimuli being mistakenly perceived as recognizable'. He then personalizes this universal phenomenon by entering the world of daydreaming, a space and arrested time when we stare at clouds or bits and pieces of detritus and find faces staring back at us. Some would call them miracles, some signs from on high (or down below!), and some as mechandisable fragments for financial gain. Poole doesn't just create his own experiences: Poole travels to meet people and places where images (not unlike the shroud of Turin) have been celebrated. We meet Myrtle and her potato chips, many of which hold images of the likes of Bob Hope's profile shower curtains with Lenin's image as clear as a ghost a Michelin-mimicking carrot a Holstein cow whose black spots coalesce into the image of Mickey Mouse endless images of Christ on mandolins, frying pans, pierogi a pancake with the incidental likeness of Pope John Paul II fish with Arabic signs from Allah a melted chocolate mound resembling the Virgin Mary - the list goes on. The pleasure in reading this book is a mixture of chuckling about what others have convinced the public is 'real' and the very tender way in which Poole captures the images and respectfully explains their derivation. This is not a book that denigrates anyone's belief: this is a book that merely shares them with a wider audience. As we are coming to expect from Poole, here is a writer/journalist/photographer/designer who has a keen eye for the little bit of paraphernalia that make our world tick! Grady Harp

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