Laurence McGilvery Archives - Rare Book Insider

Laurence McGilvery

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Artforum, volumes 1, numbers 1-12 (June 1962-June 1963), rare complete volume

Irwin, John, ed.; plus John Coplans and Arthur Secunda (from no. 4); and Phil Leider (from no. 5) 12 original issues, unbound as issued, in decorated paper covers. When the first sample copy of the June 1962 issue of Artforum arrived in the mail during the summer of 1962, with its mostly exclusive emphasis on California exhibitions, I thought it doomed. How wrong can one be? Even that issue, however, featured an article on Jean Tinguely and George Rickey and a review of Edward Kienholz, both by Arthur Secunda, plus Alfred Frankenstein on Mark Tobey. By the end of the year, the magazine already was spreading its horizon, with Kate Steinitz on fantastic architecture and John Coplans on the first US museum show of Pop Art, "The New Paintings of Common Objects," at the Pasadena Art Museum, with works by Warhol, Lichtenstein, Ruscha, and others. Artforum quickly developed into the world's most influential publication for new art and its leading advocate. Indeed, the enthusiasms of its editors and writers shaped much of the course of contemporary art in those and later years. In her anthology, Looking critically: 21 years of Artforum magazine (1984), Associate Publisher Amy Baker Sandback wrote: ".what would later be tagged as Pop, Minimal, Earthwork, Neo-Expressionism, and New Wave was introduced while the artworks were as yet unknown to the general public and before they had been defined by a body of criticism." These early issues are virtually impossible to assemble today because of the scarcity and fragility of many of the issues. This is the last complete volume one I can supply, though I do have a very few single copies of many of them. The set overall is in good to fine condition; obvious defects are as follows: no.1, June 1962, has a rough spine, some cover wear, and a few small, marginal cover tears; no. 2, July 1962, has an irregular line down the front cover caused, I think, by the original packaging from the printer, plus a partial bulk rate postal label; no. 3 has a bad spine, substantial handling wear, and a large corner torn out of the back cover; it and no. 2 were by far the smallest printings of any issue; no. 4 has the volume and number plus the artist-suscriber's name written on the front cover, plus his name on first leaf; no. 7 is a bit worn on the cover and has the volume and number written on the front cover by the same artist; no.8 has a little fading at the spine and some handling wear; no. 12 has minor handling wear. The others are near-fine to fine. The murky scan on no. 1 is one of Jean Tinguely's self-destroying sculptures in action. The other two fully visible scans are no. 5, a sketch by Joan Miró, and no. 9, a portrait by Egon Schiele. All the Artforum covers are visible in their archive, for which I cannot provide a link or address. For further detailed information, please see my free, on-line Artforum Index, 1962-1968.
  • $1,250
  • $1,250