San Francisco, CA: 1965. Original Artwork. Original Collage Artwork on Stiff Board. Original Collage Artwork by Charles Plymell. By 1965, Charles Plymell was at the forefront of avant-garde printing & publishing, and like other legendary Beat authors and artists, had lived at 1403 Gough St. in San Francisco. Contextualizing the larger literary scene at the time, what is nebulously referred to as “The Mimeograph Revolution” was well under way. Ed Sanders, Ted Berrigan & others in New York City were publishing magazines like “Fuck You/A Magazine of the Arts” and “C,” gathering poems from “the best minds” of their generation in iconic yet shoddily-produced staple-bound literary magazines. On the West Coast, a similar wave was occurring, but not every small-press publisher that is historically-referenced under the “Mimeo Rev” grouping had to work within the limitations of a mimeograph machine. Such is the case with Charles Plymell, a poet, collage artist and publisher with an illustrious history as a printer. Among the many now-legendary publications printed by Plymell was “Bulletin from Nothing,” a DADA-inspired magazine which featured contributions by William S. Burroughs, Ed Sanders, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Bob Kaufman, and editors Claude Pelieu and Mary Beach, distant cousin of famed proprietor of Shakespeare & Company, Sylvia Beach. Charles Plymell’s association with Beach & Pelieu began when Lawrence Ferlinghetti suggested they come to San Francisco in late 1963. They accepted Ferlinghetti’s invitation, arriving soon after and bringing with them Beach’s daughter (and later Plymell’s wife), Pamela. The family of three came to 1403 Gough St. to visit Allen Ginsberg, who had just returned from his well-documented sojourn in India represented in his now-classic publication "Indian Journals." Ginsberg told Plymell he came to San Francisco to help Neal Cassady work on a novel he intended to complete, and he was looking for a place to stay. Plymell offered Ginsberg a room in his flat, and before long both Ginsberg & Cassady had moved into the home. Earlier that same year, Plymell inaugurated his public career as a collage artist when he exhibited a show of collages at Billy Jharmark’s infamous Batman Gallery. Plymell had become increasingly interested in the collage format after discovering the work of William S. Burroughs. He had just published the first issue of NOW magazine, which Burroughs personally commended him on through letters, later sending him two pages of cut-up text to be incorporated into an upcoming issue (See TMB Item #2908). Contemporaneous with the publication of the second issue of NOW (“NOW NOW,” 1965), Plymell contributed an original collage-artwork to the first issue of “Bulletin from Nothing,” a similarly-produced magazine, this time edited by Mary Beach & Claude Pelieu. Offered here for the first time ever is the original collage Plymell contributed to “Bulletin from Nothing,” an artwork which he finished while sharing a home at the legendary Gough St. residence with Allen Ginsberg and Neal Cassady. The piece is what Plymell refers to as a “Pic Story” collage with original poem, and exemplifies his biting wit and stalwart, controversial nature. For 50 years the collage was in possession of its creator-- the legendary poet, publisher, and printer Charles Plymell--until it was obtained directly from the artist by Third Mind Books. The discerning scholar and collector can rest assured that this artifact was certainly once held & examined by Ginsberg and Cassady themselves in the same home where Ginsberg first saw Robert LaVigne’s portrait of Peter Orlovsky, where legendary literary soirees were for a time routine, where Ginsberg helped Cassady eek out pages of what was to become “The First Third,” where the hippie counter-culture was incarnated in embryonic stages through pioneering small-group experiments with original LSD from Albert Hoffman’s Sandoz Pharmaceuticals & Mescaline from Light Laboratories in England. Now, for the first time ever, a piece of Beat History from this most important literary crossroads is here offered for sale. Collage in near fine condition with moderate rubbing, bumps, chipping & creases throughout; glue smears dating back over 50 years to collage creation; small section of collage at bottom left-hand corner coming unglued from stiff backing board; a few original pictures within collage coming slightly unglued with age but still firmly affixed to board.
Note: Additional shipping and handling charges will be required. Near Fine. [Item #2909]
Price: $750.00 save 30% $525.00