The appearance of realism in a superhero costume made from real materials is generally recognized to be difficult to pull off, and many such costumes do not even bother to simulate the presumable effect on the eye and the spirit of the beholder were Black Bolt to stride, trailing a positronic lace of Kirby crackle, into a ballroom of the Overland Park Marriott.”

— Michael Chabon

The picks of the week from around the web.

  • The New Yorker: Michael Chabon, “Secret Skin.” This essay on the superhero costume might literarily be much ado about nothing, but it’s a crackling read.
  • American Gods for free! Neil Gaiman’s most succesful novel, and one of his best despite it petering out somewhat in the end (as usual), has now been made available for online reading in its entirety. A good read.
  • Venetian pigments. OK; this is rather old, and for nerds, but I hadn’t seen it, and am one. And it’s a great article, containing interesting new information on especially Bellini and Titian’s Feast of the Gods.