About this Blog

"In the future everybody will be world-famous for 15 minutes." So said the bleached-out, late lamented artist Andy Warhol. Having lived and worked in New York City, Warhol came to fully grasp the hold celebrity has on us. In this very famous sentence, he meant to point out that in a culture fixated on fame, many people will suddenly flash brightly onto the public screen, then--poof--will just as quickly disappear from public view--like shooting stars. Other individuals derive their celebrity from one stellar accomplishment (one hit song, one iconic role, etc.) that they never again match.

This blog is devoted to the one part of our celebrity culture that no one has written much about: temporary/one-shot celebrities.

The pace of modern life has quickened, and now we hear people speaking of someone's 15 seconds of fame. These "celebrities with a lower-case c" who will appear in this blog sometimes come to us from the world of entertainment, sometimes from the world of news. All are fascinating.

The need of our communications media for a continual stream of new material assures that we will have no end of colorful people who go quickly, where celebrity is concerned, from zero to hero (or villain) and back to zero. Now you see 'em, now you don't. What a crazy world, eh?

Temporary celebrities coming from the world of entertainment include one-hit recording artists; TV and movie icons who, although they might have had a great many accomplishments in their career, are remembered for one big role; standouts of reality TV; sports figures remembered for one remarkable accomplishment; and people whose celebrity came from one big role in a commercial or print ad.

News-based temporary celebrities come in many forms: mass/serial killers, other murderers of special note, sex-crime offenders, disgraced figures of government/military/business/media/religion, spies/traitors, hoaxers, femmes/hommes fatale, heroes, whistle blowers, inventors/innovators, and victims.

Celebrity Blogsburg will consider each category in turn.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Inventor/Innovator Buckminster Fuller

Visionary inventor, architect, engineer and more, R. Buckminster Fuller achieved considerable celebrity with his innovative geodesic dome structures.

Fuller, called Bucky by those who knew him, wrote 28 books and lectured all over the world about what amounts to "green living." He himself is credited with coining the terms synergistics, ephemeralization, and spaceship earth.

Many of his inventions, such as his Dymaxion car, were commercially unsuccessful, but his futuristic dome buildings and houses captured the public's imagination.

Fuller came from a line of non-conformists in Massachusetts and twice was kicked out of Harvard. He served in the Navy during World War I and worked a variety of jobs before moving to the North Carolina mountains and working at Black Mountain College. There he created his first domed structure made from lightweight plastics. Construction of his very large geodesic domes in America and elsewhere began in the 1950s and made his name a household word.

Fuller died of a heart attack in 1983 at age 88.

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