Deep Ends...

JG Ballard's First Story: "The Violent Noon"

In 1951 Ballard won first prize in a short story writing contest. Here it is.

JG Ballard in Vogue Magazine

"Peter Laurie, writing about 'People' in the February issue of Vogue, has a double-page spread on 'The Space Merchants' -- 'the nucleus of British SF atomy' [sic] as he describes Wyndham, Aldiss, Ballard, Brunner, book reviewer Flood and editor Carnell (with photographs)." -- New Worlds no. 116, March 1962

1969 Manuscript for The Assassination Weapon, A Transmedia Quest For Reality
"The show took Ballard's text from The Assassination Weapon with early analog electronic distortion and music, and played this back in surround streo around a vertical circular screen, about ten feet in diameter, which revolved slowly at the center of circles of concentric seats separated by four access corridors at the four cardinal points...The projection tables had a variety of image and light emitting parephanalia, still and movie projectors, boiling liquids (this was the sixties), rotating color filters. strobes, smoke machines, etc.  There was an image script but some room for improvisation to exploit happy coincidences on the screen which could become quite complex since, in addition to the front and back projection, the sides of screen segments (it was made up of six pizza slices bolted together) caught projections as the screen rotated, introducing lines of color and fragments of images into the main projection." So says Stewart McKenzie, who wrote and produced the show. Shown are all 16 pages of the script. 

Michael Foreman Sorta Remembers JGB, Maybe
I was emailing with the nice people at Ambit Magazine about back issues, and I happened to ask offhandedly if Michael Foreman, Ambit Art Editor during the JGB years, was still active. It turns out Michael is still at the office, and he agreed to answer some questions about those times. And then he didn't. OK, there's one interesting revelation about an unpublished JGB children's story called The Last Rocket To Mars. If you're interested in the current whereabouts of Michael, he's still the Art Editor of Ambit magazine, which also has a funky website.

Self on Ballard
Will Self explores the imagination and work of writer JG Ballard, who he came to know in his final years, drawing on the many telling interviews that he gave throughout his working life and on Self's own tapes of his encounters..." Transcribed by Mike Bonsall.

The Ballardian Videos of Jesús Olmo
It is always an exciting and happy time to introduce and help disseminate the work of a young artist entranced with the ideas of JG Ballard. For many years the dominant form of expression has come from musicians and other audio artists, but more recently, with the rise of internet bandwidth, video has begun to attract the attention of new artists, most notably screenwriter and video artist Jesús Olmo, who obviously admires the work of JG Ballard.

JG Ballard "Preliminary Inventory"
Library-speak for a clinical description of the contents of a box of drafts of The Unlimited Dream Company, which JGB almost named Fury, or The Stunt Pilot. Crazy.

1966: Matta Dis-Astronaute exhibition brochure
The front-page text of this brochure is referenced in The Atrocity Exhibition by the Kline character in the paragraph entitled "A Watching Trinity" in Notes Towards A Mental Breakdown. Here's what it looks like.

JGB's foreword to the 1969 Danish edition of Atrocity Exhibition
Originally written in English, then translated into Danish, and then back into English. Still great.

Autographs From The Merril Collection's Guest Book
No, JG's not there, but in 1971 Judy Merril started up a Library in Toronto and a lot of bigname SF stars showed up for the opening celebration..

My Dream Of Meeting JG Ballard
They call it Doorstepping. It's probably stalking. My bad.

From Norwich To Shepperton: Preliminary Pictures
Pix of attendees, Leys, Cambridge, Copper Kettle, JGB driving (!), JGB's home and The Thames in Shepperton

"My letter prevented JGB from receiving the Booker Prize"
Incredible plot revealed!

Wake Island
Many years ago I took a trip to the eastern end of Jamaica... halfway there we stopped at a grass strip airport, and there I found some very Ballardian abandoned planes.

JGB's Misunderstanding With Harlan Ellison

Turns out the boys had a spat in the late 60s and decided to fight it out in print.

JGB's "Home-Made" Lawn Sculptures
David Pringle checks out references to JGB's backyard art, and we find a pix of same.

JGB: Rock Fest Star
It's 1970 and JG and the three kids head out for a fun day at Phun City, a rock fest featuring "sci-fi" writers like WS Burroughs, Ballard and Bill Butler. Oh yeah, and a dead guy reviews Hello, America.

Wrong Answers
An 18-minute animation based on JGB's short story, Answers To A Questionnaire.

Our Man In Rio
Some pix of JGB and other SF authors as they attend the Second International Film Festival in Rio de Janeiro in 1969. Warning: sideburns are rampant.

Ballard Stuffing
Mark Boren's, ahhh, interesting piece of multi-media art.

Low Flying Aircraft: The Flick
A 2003 BBC fluff piece on the showing of this JGB-inspired movie.

Thirteen To Centarus
A BBC promo/review touting a replaying of this 1965 scifi classic.

You Can't Go Home Again
Home is a movie based on JG Ballard's short story, The Enormous Space, found in his 1990 anthology, War Fever. Another BBC promo piece.

David Pringle's JGB Obituary
A thoughtful and comprehensive piece. Thanks, David!

JG Ballard Fridge Magnets
No kitchen is complete without the set.

JGB Makes Predictions About The Car in 1971
The Man analyses the reality that the 75-year-old motoring dream has become and foresees a future when the right to turn a steering wheel may lie out of our hands...

Issue #1 of Jannock Storm's JGB newsletter, Limbo
Produced in 1970, this newsletter contains two short stories and a JGB interview... in Danish.

Daytripping Ballardland (a personal reflection)
Join Saul Franks as he recalls his recent pilgrimage to the Shepperton house, street, town and general environs of JG Ballard.