I just got back from the Allgäu and/or upper Swabia, and quite enjoyed it. Some comments as time permits. For now, your mission is to identify this object:
A few hints: it was made in 1730, and has a very specific purpose in the manufacture of a pretty common thing that is still very much in use today.
UPDATE: Kudos to Mathias Warkus, who correctly identified this as a spout for bran during the milling process. During the milling, the bran, which nobody wanted to eat in their bread back in 1730, was pushed to the side and fell out of this demon's mouth. The German name for this object is Kleiekotzer, 'bran-puker.' I spotted it in the German Bread Museum in Ulm, one of the many ludicrously specific small museums in Germany (including the German Packaging Museum in Heidelberg and the German Blade Museum in Solingen).
Nobody won the cultural trivia contest. The correct answer was the English pianist John Ogdon, heard above playing the beguiling Andante of Shostakovich's Piano Concerto No. 2. The source of the quotation:
"But few of you realize how sick Ogdon was, throughout much of his career. He was schizophrenic and manic-depressive. In 1975, he was out on the ledge of his 16th-floor San Antonio hotel room, seeing flaming crosses in the sky. The fact that he could play anything -- much less the most difficult piano piece ever published -- is something of a miracle. 'He reads fugues the way the rest of us read novels', somebody said during one of the recording sessions. [of Opus Clavicembalisticum]."
Kenneth Derus, 'Kaikhosru Sorabji: a centenary lecture' (Depaul University, Chicago, 11th February 1993).
A cultural trivia contest for you. Who was "out on the ledge of his 16th-floor San Antonio hotel room, seeing flaming crosses in the sky" in 1975?
Of course, there might have been more than one person seeing flaming crosses in San Antonio. It was 1975, after all. But the person I'm thinking about was a British musician who wore funny glasses but isn't Elvis Costello.
Nobody correctly answered the latest Obscure Cultural Trivia Contest, which was to name a work of art by a famous 20th-century artists that was destroyed by cats. So I will!
From Dieter Koepplin, "Fluxus, Bewegung im Sinne von Joseph Beuys", in Joseph Beuys: Plastische Bilder 1947-1970 (Verlag Gerd Hatje, Stuttgart, 1990), p. 25 (my translation):
In his 1963 FLUXUS-Exhibition which was hosted by the van der Grinten brothers, Beuys showed many smaller works whose titles hinted at a cooperative opennness. They were named, for example, Demonstration zur Todesstunde von Yves Klein [Demonstration on the Death-Hour of Yves Klein] (1962; Y. Klein died on 6 June 1962 from heart failure; the rather large-format work by Beuys was, incidentally, later destroyed by cats)....
I am disappointed in you lot. Nut up, poets and thinkers!
I can't believe nobody's even tried to win the latest cultural trivia contest.
Once again, here it is, in all its simplicity: name a work by an extremely famous 20th-century artist that was destroyed by cats.
Yes, there really is one. Come on, people, step up to the plate!
The shortest cultural trivia contest of them all: to win, name a work of art which was destroyed by cats. The one I have in mind is from a prominent 20th century artist.