New York: Heroin Productions, 1980 - 1983. 10 photocopied zines (5 side stapled & 5 saddle stapled), with one holograph letter in the hand of Richard Kern written on verso of a pink xeroxed leaf. 5 ½ x 8 ½ in. - 8 ½ x 11 in. Very good to near fine. Item #6860
Collection of 10 zines published by Richard Kern’s Heroin Productions, with a letter explicating bibliographical history and artistic philosophy in the hand of Kern.
The collection includes volumes 6 and 7 of Heroin Addict, volumes 1 - 3 of Valium Addict, and volumes 4 - 6 of Dumb Fucker, which continued the Valium Addict serie; Car and Truck: The Pinup And/or Coloring Poster Book for the Motor Vehicle Fan, a photo zine with parodic captions by Kern; How Magic Works, an exceptionally rare collaboration of Kern with M. Houston [Montana Hewson] in concrete poetry; and a 1981 handwritten letter from Kern to Valium Addict contributor Alissa Clough.
Contributors to these publications include David Wojnarowicz, Warren Rickenbacker, S. Wilson, S. Breer, Waylan Tucker, Tommy Turner (who edited the influential No Wave zine Redrum), Stewart Wilson, Ronnie Burk, Sally Daily, Mike Gibbons, Mary Otto, Chris Sanders, d. Bennett, Richard Kern, Julie Hair, Doug Bressler, Ruby Ray, Willy Hayes, Madoka, Amanda Church, Tom Quinn, Russell Drake, Nick Martakis, Mazeratti Fey, Al Acker, M. [Montana] Houston, J.H. Waite, Mary Ruthovsky-Ruskin, John McCormac and Holly George, among others.
Kern gathered a wide community of artists and writers who shared preoccupations and affinities with frank and discomforting aestheticization of violence, sex, and drug use amongst the growing cohort of those living at the margins of American society.
In the 1981 handwritten letter to Valium Addict contributor Alissa Clough, Kern details the publication history and aesthetic mandate of Heroin Addict and his plans to slightly shift the editorial focus, announcing that “theoretically the Heroin Addict is going on methadone,” and then getting into valium. He writes,
“If you have anything for the V.A., send it in, our only requirements are 1. no mention of ART & 2. The attitude presented by you is “sarcastic” and full of downed-out hate.”
An exceptional set of documents of the early No Wave scene, with work by David Wojnarowicz, Julie Hair, Montana Houston, and others.