Auckland’s Pania Press is one of the most unusual—quirky, individualistic, feminine—presses out here in the antipodes. And I’m pleased to report that “printer” Bronwyn Lloyd has not been inactive since I described her work exactly one year ago in The Pania Press (The shadow-land, 30 (2011), p. [14-17]). Pania’s latest work continues with Lloyd’s unique style of mixing nicely produced volumes of poetry with an aesthetic of women’s magazines, home dressmaking pattern books, fabric scraps and paper crafts!
Ross, Jack. Britain’s missing top model. Auckland : Pania Press, 2011. 18 p. ; 15 cm. (Pania artist’s books ; 3). N: Description based on website; “gift edition of 10 [numbered] copies”; “digitally printed text on Popset paper (Ivory) 120gsm.”; “each cover is unique and decorated with a handmade collage using Canson card in assorted colours”; “each book comes in a handmade calico bookcloth envelope with a collaged detail”; NZ$30; “unavailable”; further details not known.
The work publishes husband Ross’ poem about this BBC Three’s reality television programme of the same name first shown in 2008. Fashion is all about the creation of the artificial and highly crafted fashion model. “The idea (presumably) was to show the cruel discrimination practised by the fashion industry in rejecting all but the most mainstream styles of beauty”—Jack Ross on Pania’s blog. The models/contestants, though slightly disabled, still seem to have been not too unattractive. Further details—and a large number of illustrations—are provided by Lloyd on her Mosehouse Studio blog: http://mosehouse.blogspot.com/
“In an understated way, I think Jack’s poem perfectly captures the monstrosity of the programme, and I wanted to enhance the idea further by making a small edition of ten collaged poems. The design uses more images from the supply of 1950s Ladies Home Journals that I used for the picto-poem Silhouette, also inspired by a reality TV show”.
“I deliberately selected younger models for this series. I cut off one arm from each girl, and then I added a couple of disembodied hands to each composition, cut from an old 1940s book, How to Draw Hands. This Dada-inspired detail was designed to signal the manipulation and exploitation of the women by the producers of the show, as well as the naivety of the contestants. It's not subtle, that’s for sure! ...”.
Two other publications were produced in 2011:
Ross, Jack. Pale star: K.M. [i.e. Katherine Mansfield], 1923. [Auckland : Pania Press, 2011]. 1 diorama : col. N: Description based on website; “picto-poem”; unique copy of a book art project; “Materials: 300 gsm acid free water-colour paper, wallpaper, Canson cardstock, acid free tissue tape, PVA glue. Dimensions: 30.5cm (w) x 21.5cm (h) x 4cm (d).The text is printed on calico bookcloth using an HP printer”; further details on her blog at: http://paniapress.blogspot.com/2011/01/pale-star.html; more images of its design and construction can be seen at her Mosehouse Studio website: http://mosehouse.blogspot.com/2011/01/pale-star.html; a picture of the item is also available on the Katherine Mansfield Society’s website: http://www.katherinemansfieldsociety.org/pale-star-bronwyn-lloyd/
Crawford, Jen. Pop riveter / Jen Crawford. Auckland : Pania Press, 2011. 1 v. (Pania chapbooks ; 5). N: Description based on website; A6; limited, numbered edition of 30 copies; out of print; further details not known; see: paniapress.blogspot.com/2011/06/pop-riveter.html
There are some problems with displaying the pages of this website (maybe you’ll have more luck). A comprehensive set of images of Lloyd’s work can be seen on Jack Ross’ blog Works & days: http://hesiodic.blogspot.com/2007/10/pamphlets.html#_ftn26
My original article from The shadow-land has been reproduced on the Pania Press site at: http://paniapress.blogspot.com/2011/01/brandywine-bookmans-repository.html
J. Wegner, Librarian
POB 419. Eastwood NSW 2122, Australia
16 February, 2010