I have plans for about 50 buks, well 20 then, but none of em will sell. I’m unconcerned about that. Yep, I do get pithd-orf now and den but that’s really to no avail. I have always believed. Believed, that I can appeal to a world-wide audience. Lennon did, Dylan too, now it’s my turn to Dance Better Than Jagger
an very early zen happy apulhed sketch, note the nose is vertical not orie-zen-tell
before I leave this party. Some may tink me vainglorious just for my belief in my own ability, but that belief gotta start sumwur. Mine started 39 years ago with Apul-One.
1975 Chompsferd Weakly Bluespaper- the first and last review i ever had, so far
I had enough belief then to publish it and carry it all around England from Newcasle to Bournemuth, from Leads to Liverburd. I found out the hard way that it don’t come easy. My first discovery, you know when you pop into a big bookshop and they have loads of books by say Pullman on display, say about 20 of his latest release. Then the national papers and magasines and TV and nowadays all the ‘social’ media talk about it and its merits and maybe de-merits. Well that doesn’t happen to you when you publish your first book, nor yer second nor yer therd. In fact it doesn’t happen, ever, so far maybe never maybe probli, (don’t care) [dat’s why I keep going on about it abart eet].
So, (I told you ‘so’ is the new way to start a sentence, so there it is agen) I went into each bookshop expecting that if they accepted my book on sale or return (that reminds me, some bookshops like the one at the bottom of that long hill by the bridge in Durham never paid up nor returned my A1’s nor did I ever return to pick them up, well, I wonder if they still keep the money from the sales or the returns, I tink I shall pop up and see them) but they all said yes or no and those wat sed yeah said we’ll av 2 copies or maybe tree. What? I say in return, there’s a lot of returns here, but as yu know it’s cheaper to get a return, anyway I say, whatabout the big display what makes andi warhols create his repeated images and makes the punters buy the books? And they say, sorry mate we only take 2. One shop in the Kink’s road Chelsea said who are you then, I sed am PK (nuts) and they say but who are you I said it says on the cover, they say never heard of you no we don’t want any. And talking abart Warholla I went to the old Tate shoppe, twas around the corner then from the Tate (Brit now) and I aksed them will you display my book, they said who are yu (we bin ere before) No they say we don’t have unknowns. I say but I’m Britisht and you only got foreigners in your window, that bloke Warawhoola. They say but he’s nearly famous (this wer 1976) and you’re NOT (ever gonna be). I say well of course cos twits like ye never gie’s a job (tanks Yosser, I am still looking! Did yu ever gerra job whacker?) So I learned the hard way it’s best not to try at all but as you are well aware I am a stubborn cuss. I never gave up, yet, but it’s a card up my sleeve and it would be so easy to use it. Where is it now, oops I must have washed it in the washing machine (have you heard Kate Bush’s ‘washing machine’? she’s madder than I am. So, no big displays. That is until about 1977 when I brought out ‘Applehead Lives’ then Martins in Maldon did a display for about a month as a local artist ting, sold nowt. Well not much. Anyway, I thought I was on an upward curve but you discover no matter what you do, no matter how successful it be the next ting you do you start again, from the beginning. Cos so much goes on everybody firgits.
I keep producing stuff in the hope of some form of remuneration one day but I don’t allow those hopes to alter my vision of what I want to create nor its content. Its contents are fixed in my ever-moving on mind altho, the fact tings remain in there, on paper, in plans and eventually do arrive, in a form be it book, ‘paintin’ print artefact, whatever means in some ways my mind is not forever changing*, well, at least some tings remain pretty constant. *have you ever heard the album by Arthur lee and Love called ‘Forever Changes’, it’s a classic. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIuiD6eRMCw
I was real lucky way back in the early 70’s I was up in London for a college rugby match and Love were playing at Goldsmith’s college. He rarely ever played England, but I saw him then. Arthur lee was one of the real greats in rock music who sadly never got ‘recognised’ as widely as say the Stones or the Dead. His influence was widespread. Jimi Hendrix played on some of Love’s recordings as he made his own transition from big band to rock. I saw Love around the same time as I read Kerouac’s small book, The Subterraneans, and they both dug deep into my consciousness. In many respecs it wer that buk bi Kerouac wat med me wanna rite. Wenni say rite I may by sum be taken to meen rong cos I don’t put a double-you in it innit. (I was watchin a Michael Wood programme of late and saw some anglo saxon (hand)writing and they actually did write a word with 2 u’s in it, a double u.)
So I have these ‘buks’ I intend to do/make, codenamed/working title, ‘Genius’ and ‘Squids Crawls’, these are the two next biggies. They’ll both be much fatter than G Batch was. I have a series of relatively small books plus some what I call ‘Littul Buks’, which are ideas I have had and think ‘oh, one day I must make an edition of them’. Whatever comes out of the sausage machine called Pete’s hands (they once blew up just like Cumberland sosiges, they just BLEW UP!) will only arrive on tables at artist book fairs etc when I get my needle out and start making. Now my Red Lion bookshop show is over, it’s like being released, from some kind of bottle or bind, I can now start to wonder which direction to move next. Then of course I must put my money where my art is and create the digital gallery. I tink doing Genius and SquidsCrawls will in fact ease my passage into the digigall because those two ‘buks’ have a lot in them from the rooms that’ll eventually become the gallery in the clouds.
I have just had a breakthrough, in my mind, and that’s wur all breakthroughs start, in the mind. This is it! Mark my words, watch did space THIS is ‘it’.