Shedding Light on My Dark Room

The second volume in HM's occasional series of Artists' Pamphlets has been completed. David George's My Dark Room is a concise discourse on photograms - their (as yet unexplored) creative potential, and his approach to creating them.

The pamphlet closely follows the format established with the series' debut title, Harold Budd's "4." It is 6 x 9 inches, printed on dampened Arches Wove, and issued in two states: the first ten copies are for Patrons of the series, while the remaining 40 copies are split between HM and the artist for hors-de-commerce distribution.

Part of the intent of the series is to create opportunities to experiment with materials, formats, etc etc. With My Dark Room, the experimenting focused primarily on how to reproduce David's original photograms, retaining their wide spectrum of tones; all of that was down to the gang at New Leaf Editions. At HM, we started thinking of a color scheme that reflected the photogram's tones, which ultimately led us to playing with silver ink (see previous post). David's text actually is two separate pieces: one a series of short process-related statements, the other a longer meditation on the photogram. The short statements were set at the head of each page in black, while the running text occupies the lower part of the pages, printed in silver. The four-page essay is contained on a single folio sheet, which meant four runs (two per side), which meant two per day. Those were pretty long days. 

We chose two of David's photograms to experiment with. The Patron copies contain both (one at the front, the other at the back), while the HC copies contain one or the other.

The wrap for the Patron copies is black Arches Cover, which is a lovely sheet but it marks very easily. So, we covered it with a jacket of kozo made years ago by our friend Ann Vicente. The doorway is printed in silver on both the Arches and kozo, in the same position.

The wrap for the HC copies is grayish-blue Guarro laid, a shade that goes well with the silver ink inside.