Fighting Tooth and…Snail? Why Knights Are Often Depicted Battling Nature’s Slowpoke (Smithsonian)

SnailLook through medieval manuscripts or at castle tapestries and one might find a knight fighting a lopsided battle against a snail. Researchers have been perplexed by this recurring image.

The snail could possibly allude to biblical references on mortality or, as some have suggested, be solely meant for laughs. The Smithsonian discusses this interesting symbol and what it could potentially mean.

Bowdoin’s Erin Johnson Curates Performance Series at Fort Gorges in Casco Bay


Built on a small Casco Bay island in the nineteenth century not far from Portland’s wharves, Fort Gorges was designed to protect the city in wartime. But it was never used in battle. By the time it was completed, in 1869, modern explosives had made the structure obsolete. The island is now a public park.

Inspired by the site and its history, Bowdoin Visiting Artist Erin Colleen Johnson is curating a three-day event, called A Long Wait, at Fort Gorges on July 9, July 15, and July 23. The $10 or $15 tickets include a round-trip ferry ride from Portland’s Chandlers Wharf to the island.

A Long Wait…uses Fort Gorges…as context, material, and site for performance, sound, video, and social practice artworks,” a press release explains. “Responding to the fort as icon and conceptual inspiration, this project aims to finally give purpose to this site, whose arresting physical presence belies the banality of its true history.”

On July 9, Artist Anna Wolfe-Pauly will lead participants through a one-day training on how to survive future weather events. On July 15, knightworks, a dance theater company that tells stories of the African Diaspora, will use movement, music, and verse to explore the impulse to make art in the face of catastrophe. The final event, on July 23, directed by musician Ken Ueno, will be a sound piece that includes trumpets, trombones, throat singing, and the Fort itself.

Hunting for a $2 Million Treasure—And Getting Outside (New York Times)

Money bagAn 85-year-old art dealer in Sante Fe has excited the dreams of thousands of people—perhaps as many as 65,000—who think they can decipher his mysterious clues and find treasure worth $2 million hidden in the Rocky Mountains.

The clues are found within a poem Forrest Fenn included on page 132 in his self-published memoir, The Thrill of the Chase. Some are skeptical about whether the treasure is real, suggesting Fenn made it up to sell more copies of his book, which tells of his ordeals with cancer and in the Vietnam War.

Fenn, in turn, says he hid the “265 gold coins, hundreds of gold nuggets, hundreds of rubies, eight emeralds, two Ceylon sapphires, many diamonds, two ancient Chinese jade carvings, pre-Columbian gold bracelets and fetishes, and more,” to get people off the couch. Read the story about the mysterious treasure.

Secure Styling: The Marriage of Architecture and Security (Atlas Obscura)

night sky australia modern city lightsNew advancements in crime fighting technology have been wedded with new architecture to make cities safer.

While this may make us more secure in one sense, it may also infringe on privacy.