The Artistry of Loujon Press: Part 2

Event: Mar 17, 2011

HM-books-Web

Pelican Bomb, an online comrade, has posted Part 2 of the two-part series I wrote about the publications of Loujon Press, a fine-press publisher based in the French Quarter in the 1960s. Loujon published two of Bukowski’s first books, four issues of its literary magazine, The Outsider, and two of Henry Miller’s books, which are discussed in Part 2 of the series:

Unlike Charles Bukowski, Henry Miller was a world-renowned author and countercultural icon by the time he began working with Jon and Lou Webb. The sophisticated European intellectualism of Miller’s prose, which contrasted to sublime effect the raunchy descriptions of sex that permeate his novels, cohered with the refinement of Loujon’s book craftsmanship. Order and Chaos Chez Hans Reichel—which Loujon printed in a variety of editions including lettered copies, leather-bound copies, and orange-stained cork slipcased editions—is a meandering series of letters from the author to his 1920s Paris compatriot Hans Reichel, an artist who taught Miller to paint with watercolors. English translations are printed on one side of the page in type, with excerpts from their original letters handwritten in French on the opposite side. Prints and hand-drawn figures of crude diagrams outlining the trajectory of the men’s lives, along with drawings of humans and animals, intersperse the text, intensifying the reader’s understanding that the book is in fact a collection of intimate notes and ephemera that were once shoved into envelopes.

Read the complete article and see more photos at Pelican Bomb.

Part 1 of the series discusses the two Bukowski books and The Outsider.