All of this week’s Things are publications of various shapes and sizes _ but don’t let that fool you; they contain a huge range of subject material from modernist architectural photography to Raspberry Ripples, and pretty much everything in between. Everybody ready? Then we’ll begin…
South East Zine
First up is South East Zine, which we received in the post a few days ago and have been delving into ever since. It’s a very solid, excellently laid-out publication and has a lovely logo and considered, arresting images, and the quality of writing is extremely high. There are interviews, a variety of photo spreads, and an article by Esme Fieldhouse’s, entitled Heygate Estate: Goodbye Streets in the Sky – which engagingly discusses the originally optimistic ideology and subsequent negligence that has been the downfall of such developments. It’s the first issue of the publication, which aims to highlight the “hidden gems” of South-East London, and I’m already very much looking forward to the next one.
Jon Burgerman: My American Summer
Next is Jon Burgerman’s My American Summer – a bright blue book bouncing with lively and brightly-coloured illustrations of the author’s travels in the land of adventure, air-conditioning, and fast food. The Nottingham artist’s written and drawn depictions are fun and witty; much of the text reads like wry poetic observations of his surroundings: " In Brooklyn everyone is in a band. It’s HIPST-ER law. 50% of people have to be vegans too." Each page is well-composed and could stand alone as a postcard or poster, but bound together make for an interesting documentation of his travels. Anyone who’s had the exciting and at times scary experience of venturing off through alternately familiar and alien environments, this will totally take you back and the illustrations of all the food consumed are delightful!
Gemma Robinson: An Illustrated Guide to Cockney rhyming Slang
Another super-fun publication from another Nottingham illustrator came through the letterbox this week – we opened the tiny, bright-yellow envelope to find Gemma Robinson’s Illustrated Guide to Cockney Rhyming Slang – very useful for a foreigner (Irish) like me! It’s a very well-made, accordion-structured booklet, with different phrases humorously illustrated on one side and then the phrases themselves printed on the reverse of each image. The pictures are very clever amalgamations of the words themselves and their meaning; for “dog and bone” a dog is shown talking on a bone as if it’s a phone, while “bacon and eggs” make up a pair of legs. Feast yer Mince Pies on that!
John Comazzi: Balthazar Korab: Architect of Photography
This lovely-looking book provides another very interesting insight into “place.” The architectural photographer is regarded as one of the most prolific and celebrated photographers of mid-20th Century American modernism, and is seen to have made his own mark on the visual culture of the last 60 years. Leaf through the beautiful black-and-white plates and immerse yourself in the right angles and cantilevered roofs of the modernist movement while getting lost in the wondrously curving structures of the TWA Flight Centre at JFK Airport.
Port: The Food Issue
Lastly is the most recent issue of Port, and the first one ever to have a theme… which is food! Beautifully designed and produced, it dishes out a feast of written and visual content – there are articles on apples, global food-pricing concerns and Creole cuisine, along with interviews with chefs and an absolutely beautiful series of architectural photographs of Peder Vilhelm Jensen-Klimt’s Grundtvigskirken in Copenhagen, taken by Kim Høltermand. Bon appetite!