Narrative Transport. The official Michael Pryor website.


Ah, 1971, what a year! Even though it was technically well inside a new decade, the spirit of the previous ten year was unwilling to die. In some ways, the early seventies were the culmination of the Sixties, in music, fashion and culture. And in good taste, of course.

Take this advertisement for Rit dye. There’s so much to love here! Look at the astonishing colour combination she’s wearing. Look at her belt, which looks as if it’s made of macrame pasta. Look at the empty-eyed doll on the table, pre-flattened so it can slip under your bedroom door at night and haunt your dreams. Look at the wallpaper – can you imagine a whole room done up with that pattern? Black Ops teams are probably studying it right now to see if it can be used in psychological warfare.

And then there’s the art that’s on the wall, the art she’s so proud of. Yes, that’s tie dye. Everyone was doing it in 1971. Tie dyed jeans, tie dyed shirts, tie dyed sheets. But tie dyed art? I can imagine being at a dinner party in 1971, tucking into my French Onion soup and getting ready for a main course of Steak Diane, then glancing up at the wall to see that art in all its hideous power. All thought of polishing off that Ben Ean Moselle would fly out the window, confronted by this majestic capturing of the giant alien amoebae coming to get us.

Not many people would be game enough to hang this wonder on the wall, but the early seventies made heroes of us all.



  • Comment by Stephen — April 11, 2012 @ 1:12 pm

    It is an art, yes- a Martial Art.I have a green/blue/orange belt in tie-dyeing. Aha ha ha.

    I don’t mind a bit of tie-dyeing here and there, and have committed quite a few colourful near-atrocities on t-shirts, bedsheets and a few other unwary cloth items. I would dearly love the artwork as presented- it would go very nicely on my cubicle wall at work. Not only would I find it pleasant in a retro-colour-riot sort of way, but also because it would seriously annoy my colleagues in a way that is happily outside HR policies.

  • Comment by michael — April 11, 2012 @ 2:49 pm

    I, too, have done my share of tie-dyeing and, I admit it, a bit of batik wax dyeing too.

  • Comment by Shirley — April 20, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

    Brings back memories, but you forgot the french Onion Soup DIP!And the Bean Ean Mosell didn’t stand a chance with the Blue Nun Liebframilch.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

Complete the following equation to add your comment *