Tag Archives: Philip Lamantia

Philip Lamantia

lamantia
photo by Harry Redl

 

Philip Lamantia was born to Sicilian immigrants in San Francisco in 1927. His father was a produce broker in the old Embarcadero. He began writing poetry in elementary school and was later inspired by the paintings of Miro and Dali at the San Francisco Museum of Art. After being expelled for “intellectual delinquency” at age sixteen, he dropped out of high school and moved to New York City, where he lived for several years and where he was associated with Andre Breton and other exiled European artists such as Max Ernst and Yves Tanguy. During these years he worked as an assistant editor of View magazine and his poems were published in View as well as in publications like Hemispheres, which was being published by another French ex-patriot Yvan Goll.

In 1943, when Lamantia was only fifteen years old, Breton heralded him as being “a voice that rises once in a hundred years.” In 1946, at the age of nineteen, his first book of poems Erotic Poems was published by Bern Porter Books in Berkeley, California, followed by two collections (Narcotica and Ekstasis) published in 1959 by Auerhahn Press. A literary prodigy whose poems delved into the worlds of the subconscious and dreams, his love of Surrealism had a major influence on the Beats and other American poets. On March 7, 2005 he died of heart failure in his North Beach, San Francisco apartment at age seventy-seven.

–Thomas Rain Crowe


Section A: Books and Broadsides

1. Lamantia, Philip. EROTIC POEMS
First edition:
(Berkeley): Bern Porter, 1946
Hardcover issued without dust jacket, 42 pages.

2. Lamantia, Philip. EKSTASIS
lamantia_ekstasisFirst edition:
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
Perfect-bound in printed wrappers, 5.75″ x 7″, 48 pages, (circa 950 copies). Titling by Robert La Vigne.
(Auerhahn 3)

Note: Printed announcement issued.

3. Lamantia, Philip. NARCOTICA
lamantia_narcoticaFirst edition:
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
Saddle-stapled in printed and photo-illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 8.5″, 16 pages, (750 copies). Cover photographs by Wallace Berman. Published as Auerhahn Pamphlet No. 1.
(Auerhahn 5)

Note: Printed announcement issued.

4. Lamantia, Philip. DESTROYED WORKS
lamantia_destroyeda. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
Perfect-bound in photo-illustrated wrappers, 7″ x 8.75″, 48 pages, 1250 copies.
(Auerhahn 18)

b. First edition, hardcover, signed copies:
Hardcover in cloth-bound boards, 7″ x 8.75″, 48 pages, 50 numbered and signed copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery.
(Auerhahn 18)

5. Lamantia, Philip. TOUCH OF THE MARVELOUS
a. First edition, regular copies:
(Berkeley): Oyez, 1966
Perfect-bound in printed and photo-illustrated wrappers, 65 pages, 1450 copies.

b. First edition, hardcover, signed copies:
(Berkeley): Oyez, 1966
Hardcover in cloth-bound boards with gilt-stamped spine, 65 pages, 50 copies on handmade Tovil paper, numbered, signed by the author, bound by Dorothy Hawley.

6. Lamantia, Philip. SELCETED POEMS 1943-1966
First edition:
(San Francisco): City Lights Books, (1967)
Perfect-bound in printed wrappers, 100 pages, published as Pocket Poets Series Number 20.
(Cook 61)

7. Lamantia, Philip. THE BLOOD OF THE AIR
lamantia_blooda. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: Four Seasons Foundation, 1970
Perfect-bound in printed and photo-illustrated wrappers, 45 pages, published as Writing 25.

b. First edition, hardcover, signed copies:
San Francisco: Four Seasons Foundation, 1970
Hardcover in paper-bound boards with gilt-stamped cloth spine, 45 pages, 50 copies, numbered, signed by the author, published as Writing 25. (pictured)

8. Lamantia, Philip. TOUCH OF THE MARVELOUS
Second, expanded edition:
Bolinas: Four Seasons Foundation, 1974
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated wrappers, 47 pages, includes three poems not in the original edition: “Celestial Estrangement”, “Submarine Languor”, and “To You Henry Miller”. Published as Writing 32.

9. Lamantia, Philip. BECOMING VISIBLE
a. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1981
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated wrappers, 96 pages, published as Pocket Poet Series No. 39.
(Cook 146)

b. First edition, hardcover, signed copies:
San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1981
Hardcover in cloth-bound boards in printed and illustrated dust jacket, 96 pages, published as Pocket Poet Series No. 39.
(Cook 146)

10. Lamantia, Philip. MEADOWLARK WEST
First edition:
San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1986
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated wrappers, 73 pages.
(Cook 171)

11. Lamantia, Philip. BED OF SPHINXES: NEW AND SELECTED POEMS, 1943-1993
First edition:
San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1997
Perfect-bound in printed and illustrated wrappers, 141 pages.

12. Lamantia, Philip. WHAT IS NOT STRANGE?
First edition:
San Francisco: City Lights, 2005
Broadside.


Section B: Contributions to Books and Anthologies, Selected

sequence within years is alphabetical

BEATITUDE ANTHOLOGY. San Francisco: City Lights, 1960

THE BEATS, edited by Seymour Krim. Greenwich: Gold Medal, 1960

THE BEAT SCENE, edited by Elias Wilentz, photographs by Fred McDarrah. New York: Corinth Books, 1960

THE NEW ORLANDO POETRY ANTHOLOGY. New York: New Orlando Publication, 1963

PENGUIN MODERN POETS, 13. London: Penguin, 1969

AERO INTO THE AETHER. Philip Lamantia, Clark Ashton Smith.  Black Swan Press, 1980

FREE SPRITS: ANNALS OF THE INSURGENT IMAGINATION. San Francisco: City Lights, 1980. First edition, wrappers, 223 pages

WHITMAN’S WILD CHILDREN, edited by Neeli Cherkovski. Venice: Lapis Press, 1988

TAU & JOURNEY TO THE END. Philip Lamantia, John Hoffman. San Francisco: City Lights, 2008

CITY LIGHTS POCKET POETS ANTHOLOGY, edited by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. San Francisco: City Lights, 2009


Section C: Contributions to Periodicals, Selected

sequence within years is alphabetical

VIEW, Series III, Number 2. New York, June 1943

VIEW, Series III, Number 3. New York, 1943

VIEW, Series IV, Number 2. New York, Summer 1944

VVV, Number 4. New York, 1944

HEMISPHERES, Number 5. New York, 1945

VIEW, Series V, Number 2. New York, 1945

NEW DIRECTIONS, Number 9. New York, 1946

CONTOUR QUARTERLY, Volume 1, Number 1. Berkeley, 1947

NOW, Number 7. London, February-March 1947

CITY LIGHTS, Number 4. San Francisco, Fall 1953

NEW DIRECTIONS, Number 14. New York, 1953

BEATITUDE, Number 9. San Francisco, September 1959

SEMINA, Number 4. San Francisco, 1959

SEMINA, Number 5. San Francisco, 1959

EVERGREEN REVIEW, Volume 4, Number 11. New York, January-February 1960

THE GALLEY SAIL REVIEW, Number 5. San Francisco, Winter 1960

YUGEN, 6. New York, 1960

DAMASCUS ROAD, Number 1. Allentown, 1961

POEMS FROM THE FLOATING WORLD, Volume 3. New York, 1961

MEASURE, Number 3. Milton, Summer 1962

THE OUTSIDER, Number 2. New Orleans, Summer 1962

TOBAR, Number 4. New York, 1962

EL CORNO EMPLUMADO, Number 9. Mexico City, 1964

FUCK YOU: A MAGAZINE OF THE ARTS, Volume 5, Number 7. New York, September 1964

DAMASCUS ROAD, Number 2. Allentown, 1965

RESIDU, Volume 1, Number 1. Athens, Spring 1965

THE PARIS REVIEW, Number 36. Paris, 1966

THE FLOATING BEAR, Number 33. New York, February 1967

THE FLOATING BEAR, Number 34. New York, 1967

THE FLOATING BEAR, Number 35. New York, April 1968

CATERPILLAR, 10. New York, January 1969

CATERPILLAR, 17. Sherman Oaks, October 1971

INTREPID, Number 20. Buffalo, 1971

ANTAEUS, 6. Tangier, Summer 1972

THE LAMP IN THE SPINE, Number 4. Iowa City, Spring 1972

THE SEVENTIES, Number 1.  Madison, Spring 1972

ARSENAL, Number 2. Chicago, Summer 1973

CULTURAL CORRESPONDENCE, Number 12-14. Providence, Summer 1981

ZYZZYVA, Volume 1, Number 4. San Francisco, Winter 1985

CITY LIGHTS REVIEW, 1. San Francisco, 1987

CALIBAN, 7. Ann Arbor, 1989

CITY LIGHTS REVIEW, 4. San Francisco, 1990


Section D: Ephemera

THE AUERHAHN PRESS CATALOG, 1962
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962. First edition, wrappers

A KIND OF BEATNESS: PHOTOGRAPHS OF A NORTH BEACH ERA 1950-1965
San Francisco: Focus Gallery, 1975. First edition, wrappers


References Consulted:

Bohn, Dave. OYEZ: THE AUTHORIZED CHECKLIST
Berkeley: n.p., 1997

Cook, Ralph T. CITY LIGHTS: A DESCRIPTIVE BIBLIOGRAPHY
Metuchen: The Scarecrow Press, 1992

Duncan, Michael and Kristine McKenna. SEMINA CULTURE: WALLACE BERMAN & HIS CIRCLE
New York: Distributed Art Publishers, 2005

Harter, Christopher. AN AUTHOR INDEX TO LITTLE MAGAZINES OF THE MIMEOGRAPH REVOLUTION
Lanham: Scarecrow Press, 2008

Johnston, Alastair. A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE AUERHAHN PRESS & ITS SUCCESSOR DAVE HASELWOOD BOOKS
Berkeley: Poltroon Press, 1976

Lepper, Gary M. A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL INTRODUCTION TO SEVENTY-FIVE MODERN AMERICAN AUTHORS
Berkeley: Serendipity Books, 1976

Marx, Jake. “Index to Fuck You: A Magazine of the Arts” in THE SERIF: QUARTERLY OF THE KENT STATE UNIVERSITY LIBRARIES, Volume VIII, Number 3
Kent: The Kent State University Libraries, September 1971

Wallace Berman

berman_arranged

Wallace Berman was born in 1926 in Staten Island, New York. In the 1930s, his family moved to the Jewish district (Boyle Heights) in Los Angeles. After being expelled from high school for gambling in the early 1940s, Berman immersed himself in the growing West Coast jazz scene. During this period, he briefly attended the Jepson Art School and Chouinard Art School, but departed when he found the training too academic for his needs.

In 1949, while working in a factory finishing antique furniture, he began to make sculptures from unused scraps and reject materials. By the early 1950s, Berman had become a full-time artist and an active figure in the beat community in Los Angeles and San Francisco. Many art historians consider him to be the ‘father’ of the California assemblage movement. Moving between the two cities, Berman devoted himself to his mail art publication SEMINA, which contained a sampling of beat poetry and images selected by Berman.

In 1963, permanently settled in Topanga Canyon in the Los Angeles area, Berman began work on verifax collages (printed images, often from magazines and newspapers, mounted in collage fashion onto a flat surface, sometimes with solid bright areas of acrylic paint). He continued creating these works, as well as rock assemblages, until his death in 1976.


Wallace Berman Checklist:

Section A: Solo and Select Group Exhibitions
Section B: Posters and Prints
Section C: Cover and Book Art
Section D: Semina


Further Reading and Reference:

ART AS A MUSCULAR PRINCIPLE, 10 Artists and San Francisco 1950-1965, edited by Merril Greene and Alix Meier
Mount Holyoke: John and Norah Warbeke Gallery, 1975

ART IN LOS ANGELES: SEVENTEEN ARTISTS IN THE SIXTIES, edited by Maurice Tuchman
Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1981

ASSEMBLAGE IN CALIFORNIA: WORKS FROM THE LATE 50’S AND EARLY 60’S
Irvine: Art Gallery, University of California, 1968

DIFFERENT DRUMMERS, edited by Frank Gettings
Washington DC: Smithsonian Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, 1988

LA POP IN THE SIXTIES, edited by Anne Ayres
Newport Beach: Newport Harbor Art Museum, 1989

SAN FRANCISCO RENAISSANCE PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE ’50S AND ’60S, edited and with an introduction by Merril Greene
New York: Gotham Book Mart Gallery, 1975

SECRET EXHIBITION: SIX CALIFORNIA ARTISTS OF THE COLD WAR ERA, edited by Rebecca Solnit
San Francisco: City Lights, 1990

SUPPORT THE REVOLUTION, edited by Tosh Berman, Michael McClure, David Meltzer, Colin Gardner, Walter Hopps, Christopher Knight, Eduardo Lipschutz-Villa, Charles Brittin
Amsterdam: Institute of Contemporary Art, 1992

THIRD RAIL, Issue 9, edited by Uri Hertz
Los Angeles: Third Rail, 1988

UTOPIA AND DISSENT: ART, POETRY, AND POLITICS IN CALIFORNIA, by Richard Cándida Smith
Berkeley: University of California Press, 1995)


Online Resources:

· Art Net – Wallace Berman
· Kohn Gallery – Wallace Berman
· Ubuweb – Wallace Berman
· University of Delaware – Wallace Berman and Semina


Collaborators:

· Robert Alexander
· Cameron
· Jay De Feo
· Bobby Driscoll
· Dave Haselwood
· Michael McClure
· David Meltzer
· Dean Stockwell ( D.·. )
· Russ Tamblyn