Kora in Hell: Improvisations [with separate woodblock print, "Coupling"]

San Francisco: The Arion Press, 1998. Kendrick,Mel. Hardcover. 10 inches square, 106 pages, including 42 unnumbered pages for the 21 leaves bearing the prints. The types are Stymie Bold for the text and Franklin Gothic for display, in Monotype and hand composition. The paper is German mouldmade Zerkall. Proofs of the woodblock prints were photographically reduced to approximately 62% and made into photopolymer plates. The type and plates were printed by letterpress in black ink. Red ink is used on the title page. The binding is a black goatskin spine with title stamped in red, with boards covered with laser-cut veneer replicas of woodblocks by Kendrick, inked in black. Numbered and signed by the artist. Edition of 300. This item includes the woodblock "Coupling" which was limited an edition of 20 copies (plus 5 artist's proofs and 5 publisher's proofs) and is accompanied by a copy of the book. New. Item #CNAP056d

Williams, one of the most important poets of this century, wrote this book of prose-poetry in 1917. He reflects on daily events over the course of a year, his readings, thoughts, observations. To these statements, made in language plain-spoken yet rising to the beauty and imagination of his poetry, he appended further comments or interpretations to make them more intelligible to others. An essay in which Williams explains himself as a figure within the modern movement was added as a prologue. The critic Lawrence Kart claims that the great poetry Williams achieved "would not have been possible without the eruptive prose of 'Kora in Hell'."

The book includes prints by contemporary artist Mel Kendrick whose own work is in the modernist lineage. Twenty-one images from three series of woodblock prints, each involving seven separate blocks in the form of long vertical sheets that can be rolled up like scrolls, have been separated and each occupy the recto page of a leaf in the book, with pages of text in between.

"Coupling", the long woodblock print as originally conceived by Kendrick in the scroll format, measures 99 1/2 by 27 1/2 inches, and was printed by hand by Stacy Petty and Robert Fisher at the artist's studio in New York City, using black ink on Kozo natural, a Japanese paper. The print is in a tube covered in oak veneer inked in black, with a black goatskin cap stamped with titling in red.

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Price: $5,400.00