Initiated in 2015 by Print and Photography staff at the Slade School of Fine Art and the UCL Art Librarian, the Small Press Project is an annual event inspired by the Little Magazines, Alternative Press & Poetry Store Collections held in UCL Library Services Special Collections, and encompasses a one-day symposium, a publication project, an exhibition and a mini artists’ book fair.
The UCL Special Collections hold one of the most significant collections of independently published magazines, newspapers and pamphlets in the world. It contains influential artists’ publications dating from the mid 19th century to the present day, many of which reflect the social, political, and cultural context of printing and publishing as well as the evolution and development of the artists’ book as a method of making.
Utilising the collection as a teaching tool, the Small Press Project provides an open forum to examine and re-examine printed matter, specifically experimental literature, visual art and countercultural topics, the status of contemporary independent publications and how the innovative practices of print, photography and publishing can influence the ways in which me make or re-make them today.
The mechanical act of copying lies at the heart of print and publishing and this year the project looks towards this as a means through which to discuss the wider issues of ‘the copy’; reproduction, the reprint, the economics of production, translation, language, collaboration, appropriation, transformation, imitation, camouflage, repetition and difference, forgery, piracy and plagiarism, copyright, xerography, cut and paste cultures, commodity fetishism, mimicry and collecting.
The event brings together educational institutions, small press artists, publishers, distributors and researchers in London to discuss ‘the copy’ within the independent publishing movement and the mini artists’ book fair provides a unique opportunity to buy some artists’ publications within the context of the history of the medium. A selection of works from the Small Press Collections held by UCL Special Collections will also be on display during the event.
Clive Phillpot; RCA students; Camberwell School of Art students; Tamsin Clark, Tenderbooks; Elizabeth Lawes, UCL Small Press Collections; Eleanor Von Browne; Sharon Morris, UCL; Morel Books; Banner Repeater; Central Saint Martin students; Arnaud Desjardin, The Everyday Press, Bunker Basement; Hannah Dargavel-Leafe.
09.30 Set up for exhibitors
10.30 Doors open
11.00 Clive Phillpot in conversation with UCL Art Librarian, Elizabeth Lawes
12.00 Sharon Morris
13.00 Refrain by Hannah Dargavel-Leafe will be on show during lunch
14.00 Arnaud Desjardin
15.00 Eleanor Von Browne
17.00-19.00 Private View - Small Press Project Exhibition.
The Small Press Project coincides with an exhibition of publications inspired by the UCL Collection made by students and staff at the Slade School of Fine Art. The exhibition will run from 26th April – 28th April in the North Lodge, Main Entrance of UCL on Gower Street, and will be open between 11.00am - 5.00pm daily.