The Art Of Stephanie Vegh

The image at the top of the page, our banner, is courtesy of Stephanie Vegh, a Canada-based author and painter. It’s part of a wider set that she discusses here. Like many of us, Stephanie has been fascinated by Bartitsu and has brought images of it into her art.

She’s posted a wealth of other images and sections of her writing. Well worth checking out.

Science fiction author Neal Stephenson on Bartitsu

Popular science fiction author Neal Stephenson‘s comments on Bartitsu, from a recent interview with the UK Daily Telegraph:

“So we’d mostly been doing longsword, in my little group,” says Stephenson. Ropes of muscle on his forearms attest to this, as do the pictures online of a Stephenson-designed spring-loaded practice sword that flexes on impact to soften a blow. “But we became interested in cane-fighting, which was taught in London a hundred years ago or so as part of this school of Bartitsu, founded by EW Barton-Wright, a railway engineer who’d picked up ju-jitsu in Japan. And he brought in a Swiss guy called Vigny who’d taken informal methods of walking-stick-fu and codified them into a system called la canne: he taught the part of the curriculum which involved fighting with walking sticks.”

No way, I say.

“Yeah. There’s a whole curriculum over fighting with bicycles. Pictures of an Edwardian lady in a floor-length dress and a huge hat with flowers, riding primly down a country lane, and when a ruffian comes out she uses some trick with the bicycle to flatten him and rides off. It’s great stuff. The bicycles we’re not sure how to approach, but we’ve created a little assembly line to make rattan canes, with a knob on the end. But there’s, you know, how to use a bicycle pump as a weapon. How to defend yourself with a parasol. Crazy.”

Welcome!

After a long hiatus I am pleased to welcome you to the revamped webpage for the Bartitsu Society.

If you are new to Bartitsu then please browse the pages on the right or feel free to join in the discussions on the email list.

This new site is basically a blog, and to keep it current and vibrant it needs your input. Initially feel free to email me any queries, although I hope to add to the site team soon. Please do comment on any articles and if you have anything you feel should be up here then please do let me know.

I know the site layout is currently very basic, and I would appreciate any feedback on suitable wordpress themes. Do you know of a good theme that is evocative of the Edwardian era or fin de siecle martial arts? Are you a whiz with css? Do you have a great idea for a site logo? Please do let me know.

Finally, thanks for taking the time to stop by. Come back soon!