The Loves of the Poets.
Photographs by Joseph Mills.
Nazraeli Press, Tucson, 2005. 32 pp., 26 four-color illustrations, 9x12".
This jewel-like book brings the troubling visions of
Joseph Mills into a trade edition with elegance and
unsettling efficiency. Mills creates photocollages from
found ephemera, mounts them on objects or pastes
them into existing books, and heavily coats them with
furniture varnish. The collages are then photographed,
which constitutes the base material for subsequent limited
editions of the work, as well as this trade edition. The
yellowed images of two-headed lovers, violently disfigured
bodies, alien-eyed babies, and revenant Sacco and
Vanzetti possessing the bodies of a dog and a priest are
like dispatches from an old, nightmarish wire service. The
collages are anything but seamless, but their recurrent
imagery and interplay among horror and sick humor
hearken to the masterful surrealist “novels” of Max Ernst
in his collage phase. Their brute impact is even more disquieting
in such a refined and
gorgeous package; an emerald
velveteen casewrap with
beveled edges and bound with
a faux crocodile-skin spine
reveal little of the mutant
images within. The pages are
gilt-edged and in a subtle but
brilliant stroke, the ghosting
effect, which references the
original book object, gives the
impression that one is seeing through thin stock to the
previous page. This only adds another level of disorientation
to an already intense and lovely dip into the dark
side. ALAN RAPP
About the limited edition
This special edition of The Loves of the Poets is limited to 100 copies with an original print (View Print), numbered and signed by the artist and presented in a black velvet clamshell box.
Read Publisher's Description.
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TR186-LTD Limited Edition is no longer available.