Monday, March 28, 2016
Joe Brainard and John Ashbery, The Vermont Notebook broadside (signed and numbered by Ashbery, 2001)
This broadside by John Ashbery and Joe Brainard is currently hanging in our kitchen (which recently got decked out with some new cabinets!). I bought this for my wife (then-girlfriend) back in 2006; it was our first year in New York. I remember going out to an old church on St. Mark's Place in Manhattan to the offices of the Poetry Project to pick it up -- this was the last broadside they had for sale, and is number 115/125. Before I left the apartment, the girl who helped me on the phone described the Brainard illustration as "kinda like a landscape, but kinda like a salad" and I was absolutely sold -- it was a great gift and, looking back, somewhat of a beacon previewing the collectors we'd become (we've since acquired a lettered copy of The Vermont Notebook with an original ink drawing inside).
The broadside was made to commemorate the Granary Books / Z Press edition of The Vermont Notebook and was printed by Soho Letterpress (whom I coincidentally work with now at my office). The poem is fantastic (and appropriately kitchen-y) and I'm very pleased to share it with you. Be of good cheer.