Looking for a one-stop shop for all your zine and small-press book needs? Search no further than Famicon Express, which deserves permanent status on the ole’ bookmarks list.
The shop provides a vast selection of comics, special projects books, travel adventures, ghost stories, prints inspired by Grand Theft Auto imagery, and more, all of which are immaculately designed and many of which feature special crafty bonuses (like hand-pulled silkscreen covers or neat stitching).
Let’s digitally flip through the hot-off-the-press Beautiful/Decay Book 2! Subtitled “What A Mess!” in salute to the issue’s plethora of rough, rococo work, the second in their series of limited run, ad-free surveys of contemporary art is printed beautifully, includes fun bonuses like a hand-signed silkscreen by Cody Hoyt, and best of all– it’s stock full of dazzling artwork by a litany of rad people.
Amongst the aforementioned rad people are luminaries like David Altmejd, with his glorious larger than life hyper-physiological bodily distortions, and Julien Ducourthial, whose “bitmap symphonies adjoin Mondrian with Macintosh to create a kind of abstract expressionist pixel push that noisily echoes today’s digitally-induced spastic synthetic sensibility”– to borrow a spot-on description from the B/D blog. Renaissance woman Melanie Bonajo also appears, delightfully dragging along an assortment of horrific household objects. Snatch up a copy while you can (only 1,500 exist) and stop by the always-fabulous Synchronicity Space in Los Angeles this Saturday for the book release party!
The Selvedge Yard is a rare bird in the image-based world of our current beloved internet. With so many awesome places to see and so many awesome things to look at we are often left wanting more information from our bookmarks – the story behind the picture – yet find ourselves with nothing to go on but a google search and a hollow Wikipedia entry. Over the past year JP and a host of guest editors have been attempting to remedy that. With a merger of pictures and stories that utilize the best parts of the internet and improve upon the worst parts of magazines, The Selvedge Yard has been letting the world in on its own private style journal. And there are some very classic things inside. Short essays and photo compilations on Bob Marley’s soccer habit, the peculiar behavior of Howard Hughes, the private life of wrestler turned cult hero Andre the Giant are just a few of entries that have piqued our interest in recent months but there are so many great shots, and stories to go with them, that it is hard to capture the scope of the site in just one post. We suggest reading for yourself, getting hooked, and getting back to us with your favorites. You’ll thank us for it.
Getting the new Believer each month supplies the exact excitement of ripping open a freshly-developed pack of film. It is always surprising and there are always good things (and new things) waiting inside.
The November/December issue (the magazine’s sixty-seventh) is the annual Art Issue, featuring interviews with Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Peter Blegvad and Andrea Zittel plus a conversation betwixt Jerry Moriarty and Chris Ware. Comics and an essay on “The Disappearance of Ford Beckman” round out the table of contents. Bonus: a giant fold-out poster by Moriarty comes free with every issue.
Though the magazine normally feels like a throwback luxury—that thick paper! those brilliant colors! that cartoony typeface!—is, in this case, more like a collectible than just another issue. Sure, parts are available online to whet your appetite, but this issue is best experienced in person.
In 2009, what makes a music magazine worth buying? The plethora of quality cyber sources dedicated to discovering just-breaking bands (and instantly downloading their music) have claim jumped the traditional music press’ function as vanguards of the cutting edge. Buying a mainstream music mag for their big interviews seems futile, because they all get transcribed online anyway. So what’s left?
Yeti magazine. Forgoing the faulty forced eclecticism of too many crowd-pleasing glossies, Yeti is lovingly curated by Seattle-based editor Mike McGonigal, whose impeccable taste serves as the living soul for this unique publication. Featuring a collection of unhurried, engrossing writings on obscure music, interviews with comic book artists, short stories, and stunning outsider art, Yeti is a handsome black and white book-sized zine that also boasts a highly listenable mix CD in every issue.
Musicians featured include everyone from Will Oldham to Abner Jay, Terry Riley to Vivian Girls and Tara Jane O’Neil. Jeff Magnum has published his illustrations as well as exclusive Neutral Milk Hotel rarities in Yeti. Carson Ellis, Brian Chippendale and Mingering Mike are just a few of the rad visual artists who have contributed illustrations, and their first issue, way back in the early 00’s, featured the official debut of indie folk stalwarts Iron & Wine. The eighth and latest issue of Yeti hits mailboxes on November 23rd, with a CD containing 80 minutes of rare music from rad artists like Ty Segall, Zola Jesus and Vaselines, along with 200 pages of excellent writing.
Illustrator John Paul Thurlow’s blissful blog, Covers, is a repository for radical reinventions of beloved magazine covers– an ode to the art of the printed publication’s visage. With magazines dropping left and right in the past few years, Thurlow’s work feels like a eulogy to a struggling medium, reminding us how dazzlingly impactful the front page alone can be. In Thurlow’s words:
This is an homage, an attempt to create cover art for every great magazine I own (+ a few I wish I owned). It’s never a straight crib and it’s not about perfection, the source magazines are simply a playground for my imagination…
Covering covers lets me combine some of my favourite things; portraiture, pencil sketching, typography, graphic design, and ideas – there’s usually one in there somewhere.