lip/Stamp/Fold: The Radical Architecture of Little Magazines 196X – 197X is an exhibition of seventy little magazines that incited great change in architectural culture. I wish I could take a peek inside the magazines, but unless you’ve actually made it to the exhibition (which ended last January), you’re left to feast your eyes on some of the covers above. Many mouth-watering photos from the exhibition can also be found on the Clip/Stamp/Fold Flickr feed.
(Also, check out the rare Nueva Forma magazine directly above, circa 1967 – 1975 — this was the very cover that inspired the name for our record label.)
An explosion of architectural little magazines in the 1960s and 1970s instigated a radical transformation in architectural culture with the architecture of the magazines acting as the site of innovation and debate. Clip/Stamp/Fold: The Radical Architecture of Little Magazines 196X – 197X takes stock of seventy little magazines from this period, which were published in over a dozen cities. Coined in the early twentieth century to designate progressive literary journals, the term “little magazine” was remobilized during the 1960s to grapple with the contemporary proliferation of independent architectural periodicals. The terms “little” and “magazine” are not taken at face value. In addition to short-lived radical magazines, Clip/Stamp/Fold includes pamphlets and building instruction manuals along with professional magazines that experienced “moments of littleness,” influenced by the graphics and intellectual concerns of their self-published contemporaries.
The exhibition’s annotated timeline serves as a cross-section, tracking the progression, upheavals, and transformations of the magazines. A selection of original magazines surveys the variety of unique formats, re-introducing rare examples from private collections, and is supplemented by complete facsimiles for visitors to browse. Audio interviews with editors and designers of these publications punctuate the room, with transcriptions appearing in the Storefront’s newsletter. In addition, many of these editors and designers have been invited to respond to the exhibition through the series Little Magazines / Small Talks held at the gallery. An implicit aim of the exhibition is to invite reflection on contemporary uses of media in architecture. Assembling all these remarkable documents for the first time offers a unique view of a key period of architectural innovation and challenges today’s architects to provoke a similar intensity.