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Out and about with Special Collections

L ( Elizabeth ) Lawes29 February 2016

An item from our Little Magazines collection is soon to feature as part of a new BBC Arts documentary on the avant-garde, ‘anti-art’ Dada movement. This morning I couriered our June 1917 (in facsimile) copy of Neue Jugend magazine to Neville Brody Associates graphic design studio in Islington for it to form the focus of a conversation between Neville Brody and Jim Moir (aka surrealist comic Vic Reeves), who is presenting the documentary. Neville Brody is famous for his design of culturally iconic publications from the 1980s such as The Face and Arena and for designing record covers for the likes of Cabaret Voltaire and Depeche Mode. His work is hugely influenced by the experimental typography of the Dadaists.

Neue Jugend magazine was produced in Berlin in 1916-17 by the brothers Wieland and Helmut Herzfeld (who later changed his name to John Heartfield, now remembered as a pioneer of twentieth century graphic design) and is a prime example of radical Dadaist design with its geometric layout and bold type. It also features important text works by the painter and caricaturist George Grosz. Original copies of this magazine are extremely rare: given its anti-authoritarian stance, most were destroyed by the authorities in wartime Berlin. Facsimile editions such as ours are also uncommon and this title is just one example of many radical artists’ magazines from the early part of the century in our amazing collection.

neue jugendNeue Jugend front cover (George Grosz)

The Small Press Project Event

L ( Elizabeth ) Lawes18 February 2016

Small Press ProjectThe Small Press Project is a two-term project and collaboration between the UCL Slade School of Fine Art and UCL Library Services, culminating in an event at the Institute of Advanced Study’s Common Ground on Thursday 25th February.

The Project uses as its basis The Small Press Collections of Little Magazines and Poetry Store, held in UCL Special Collections. Staff and students have been afforded hands-on access to items from the collections, followed by a series of tutorials, workshops (e.g. in the Slade Bindery), and visits to independent booksellers and publishers.

Thursday’s event will include speakers, discussions, a live Risograph publishing workshop, and an exhibition by students and staff from the Slade School of Fine Art of work inspired by the Library’s Small Press Collections.

The event runs from 13:00 – 18:00, followed by a private view of the exhibition in the North Lodge, 18:00 – 20:00. More details can be found on the Slade School of Fine Art website.

Please do come along.