Sunday, August 16, 2015

Richard Kraft, Here Comes Kitty Art Edition (1 of 25 copies from Siglio Press with original collage)

Siglio Press is a great publisher of art books from Los Angeles that have put out some essential volumes on folks like Joe Brainard, Ray Johnson, and Jess. Following in the footsteps of publishers like Black Sparrow Press, they offer a number of their titles in a very limited run that include an editioned or original artwork. I strongly encourage collectors to keep an eye on their list - they always offer these at a modest opening price and incrementally bump the price as the book sells out. A few years ago, I was lucky enough to get an order in of Karen Green's Bough Down with an original stamp collage, and was eager to try my luck with something new.

I hadn't heard of the artist Richard Kraft before Siglio announced they'd be publishing Here Comes Kitty: A Comic Opera but I was excited by what I'd seen: his work is absolutely crazy, like a cross between Jess's paste-ups and Monty Python's most hallucinatory animations. For only $70 more than the retail price of the book, I placed an order for 1 of 25 signed and numbered copies that would come with a randomly selected 4 x 6 inch collage.

I wasn't 100% confident I'd love what I ended up with, but it's a delightful, silly little piece; I just got it back from the framer and it looks wonderful (although it's really hard to photograph in my current evening lighting):

What's particularly fun about this collage is that it includes some of the original cut-up pieces that Kraft used in Here Comes Kitty. Here, the blue bird in my collage flies by a spaced-out soldier, only to stay in his thoughts pages later:

The leaning man, meanwhile, seems to cause some ominous stress as a soldier should "Abandon Ship!" below him:

Fun stuff. The collage looks great on our wall and is currently the most colorful thing there (it's next to some etchings, pencil drawings, and black and white photographs). Siglio's made another great book and another collector very happy - I can't wait to see what else they come up with.

***There are three copies left of Here Comes Kitty with an original collage. I am very pleased with mine, and although a bit more expensive now that when I ordered mine, I still think it's a very good buy.***

Currently reading:
Andrew O'Hagan, The Illuminations

Currently listening to:
An optimistic half-marathon training mix

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