A match made in . . .
Above: arguably the world's smallest item of quality gold jewelry, a 16-atom configuration newly created by scientists but not yet available in stores. As this article from the New York Times notes, 20-atom configurations of gold take a pyramidal shape, an array echoed in the golden sands of Egypt.
DA VINCI CODE EXTRA: click the pic for Ka Gold's explanation of the mystical merkaba and you'll see a rather familiar figure, pictured here in a more family friendly version!
Saturday's New York Times has an article on the merchandising of the Da Vinci Code. Pictured below from eBay: a unique, customed designed Da Vinci Code bracelet made in part from vintage charms depicting symbols in the book.
As of when I'm writing this post (Saturday night), it's up to $49 with three days to go. Too steep or not too your taste? Click here for a guide on how to make your own charm bracelet, from the folks from Silver Enchantment, purveyor of a wide range of spiritual jewelry.
Good luck if you're bidding on the Da Vinci Code bracelet. Personally, I'm holding out for something else.
. . . is not anything like Velvet Elvis, although its name does have a Coded hidden reference. Beyond that, VdV is a sophisticated art and jewelry gallery in San Francisco. Its exhibits rival those of most major museums, and you can often find any number of items reflecting spiritual or metaphysical themes. Below is a piece from its 2005 collection, 100 Brooches:
Above: The Vinci Diamond, patented by Israeli designer Shlomo Cohen. What makes this diamond different from any other diamond is the cut. Cohen based it on the "golden ratio," also commonly referred to as the divine proportion, which not coincidentally also features prominently in The Da Vinci Code.
While Christians are protesting the theological content of the book and film, mathematicians have a beef of their own: "In an apparent blatant misunderstanding of the difference between an exact quantity and an approximation, the character Robert Langdon in the novel The Da Vinci Code incorrectly defines the golden ratio as exactly 1.618 (Brown 2003, pp. 93-95)."
Looks like poor (ha!) Dan Brown can't catch a break.
The first reviews are in, and it looks like the only real "teachable moment" of Da Vinci Code movie will be for critics to instruct us what a good film is like. Still, that "Tom Hanks was a zombie" is welcome news indeed. I like zombie movies.
What I don't like, however, are theater concession stands. Instead of washing down a 15oz pack of Good 'n' Plenty with 72oz of Coke, I'm gonna sneak in a stylish Da Vinci Code cocktail.
Haven't heard of it? The DVCC is a mix of Cointreau, Tequila, Campari and lemon, and as any expert symbologist knows it's an ancient icon of decadent pleasure. Knock back a few of 'em and pretty soon you'll forget whether you have a spouse and kids!
You can get this divine concoction at the Hotel d'Angleterre by Lake Geneva as part of their Da Vinci Code package. In addition, the hotel's house painter will paint you a portrait guaranteed to "capture your essence and immortalise your persona." The package also includes a "daily newspaper"--which is a better deal than it sounds, what with your becoming immortal.
Despite what one might think, Dan Brown didn't concoct the Da Vinci Code's account of Christian history out of thin air. Stories about an intimate connection between Christ and Mary Magdalene have been around for a while, and not only among conspiracy buffs.
Below, for example, is a devotional icon of Jesus, Mary M & their child from prizewinning artist Sofia Christine's Ambrozjin collection. This same image is available in smaller form as a pendant or pins.
The Da Vinci Code movie is upon us, and (in Manhattan, at least) everywhere you go there's DVC hype. "JoinTheQuest" placards on the subway. DVC specials on cable TV. Tom Hanks explaining his new hair line to reporters everywhere. And of course, evangelists of all stripes seizing the occasion as a "teachable moment."
Is there no refuge for those weary of the hype?
Well, no. Case in point: the hidden history of the "Armani Black Code," a high-end fragrance for men. Recently Armani hailed a new addition to the line--the "Armani Code" for women, with a marketing campaign built around such memes as secrets, symbols and solving the "code of seduction." But look carefully, believers--the name of the men's line has not so mysteriously undergone a subtle change that now renders it gender-ambiguous.
Top: an ad for Armani Code for women on the back cover of the May 2006 Vogue.
Bottom: a symbological (!) unveiling of what is now "Armani Code" for men
Andy Warhol once observed that the true art of his Campbell Soup Cans lay not in the paintings themselves but in how people react to them.
Here at the B of G we think the same holds true for movies with religious themes--like, just to pick a random example, The Da Vinci Code. Sony has
shrewdly co-opted Christians to help hype the film provided a forum for critics, while Catholics and evangelicals have taken the lead to make this a "teachable moment" for spreading the Word.
Will people really stake the future of their eternal souls on a Tom Hanks movie? Beats me. I just want to look at the tchotchkes. So while the Code is saturating mindshare, let's take the opportunity to scope out related bling--and not just bling related to this movie, but to some of the pop hits of the past that fueled the Passion of believers Lion in wait to tout their Dogma.
For more on the Vitruvian Man and pop culture, click the original Leonardo pic. Then scroll down a few pixels for what we might have seen if Leonardo had done design work for George Lucas.