This week we delve into Paul Gorman’s magazine collection. Paul’s collection underpins his role as a writer and commentator on popular culture. Last year he published The Story of The Face and he has recently been busy co-curating Print! Tearing It Up, an exhibition that opens next week at London’s Somerset House. The show celebrates the history of independent magazine publishing in Britain and will be an essential visit for all readers of magCulture.
As ever, we asked Paul to choose a new thing, and old thing, and another thing…
A new issue
I particularly like the first issue of Fuck Brexit, published by the graphic designer Dan “3000” Taylor in September 2017. It’s a 12-page A4 zine and expresses the accelerating and near-delirious anger felt by me and most right-thinking people I know about the absurd and frightening situation facing this country due to the failures of our political leadership and the depredations of the Daily Mail, the Sun etc.
I particularly enjoy the crisp summation of the five-year premiership of David Cameron: “Fucked up and fucked off”. This is a neat as it gets to describe the worst British prime minister not just of modern times - step aside James Callaghan, Anthony Eden, Alec Douglas-Home et al, by comparison you boys did good and the current incumbent may be excused on the grounds that she was only put in place by his cowardice - but, in terms of the disastrous consequences Cameron’s mixture of arrogance and ineptitude will reap, ever.
When I congratulated Dan on his publication, he said he felt that it wasn’t angry enough. I’m inclined to agree and look forward to the next cauldron of seething, righteous invective served up in number two.
An old issue
Issue 33 of Frendz, published in August 1972 is close to my heart because it was my entree into proper magazines. Aged 12 I had already been given a couple of copies of OZ, which was then on the slide, and picked this up at my local newsagents in north London.
Everything about it is perfect, from the newsprint, the golfball-typed text, the amped up colours of the Pennie Smith portrait on the cover, Nick Kent’s review of David Bowie and Roxy Music at north London’s The Rainbow, which I was soon to frequent, and a piece of stream-of-consciousness reportage- again with sterling Smith photography - from that summer’s Ted-heavy Rock N Roll Festival at Wembley Stadium, played by my heroes Little Richard, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, the MC5 and Dr Feelgood backing Heinz
And another thing
…There are so many. The New Brutalist Couple mickey-take written by my wife Caz Facey and I for Mushpit ... the Love Sees No Colour issue of The Face in May 1992... Barney Bubbles’ masthead taken from the sign on a lighting warehouse off Old Street for his redesign of the New Musical Express in the autumn of 1978... Michael Wolff’s Carnaby cover for Design, August 1966… the subscriptions form for Graham Greene’s 1937 magazine Night And Day on the back of which was written “We’d like to have this back”...
‘Printed! Tearing It Up ’ is at Somerset House, 8 June — 22 August 2018