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• • • Being a journal by artist and designer John Coulthart, cataloguing interests, obsessions and passing enthusiasms.


 

View: The Modern Magazine

charles_henri_ford.jpg

Portrait of Charles Henri Ford in Poppy Field by Pavel Tchelitchew (1933).

View magazine was an American periodical of art and literature, published quarterly from 1940 to 1947 with heavy emphasis on the Surrealist art of the period. The jaw-dropping list of contributors included: Pavel Tchelitchew, Yves Tanguy, Max Ernst, André Masson, Pablo Picasso, Henry Miller, Paul Klee, Albert Camus, Lawrence Durrell, Georgia O’Keefe, Man Ray, Jorge Luis Borges, Joan Miró, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Jean Genet, René Magritte, Joseph Cornell, Jean Dubuffet, and Edouard Roditi.

The editor was Charles Henri Ford, one of those mercurial polymaths who seemed to know everybody of significance in the world of arts and letters which explains how he could summon such an extraordinary roster of contributors. Ford made a splash initially in 1933 when he co-wrote what’s generally regarded as the first gay novel, The Young and Evil, with Parker Tyler. This received guarded praise from Gertrude Stein (Ford’s writing was influenced by Stein and Joyce) who later said it was “the novel that beat the Beat Generation by a generation”, and the book was sufficiently frank about the lives of its Greenwich Village characters to be banned in the US until the 1960s.

The tragedy of all magazines is that they flourish for a period then are quickly forgotten, no matter how much impact they may have made in the general culture. View was published in limited runs which means individual copies now command high prices. At a time when other forms of media are being continually resurrected, magazines fall by the wayside; museums and libraries collect them but they remain out of view of the world at large. The web has been slowly alleviating this problem: editions of Oz are now available for online browsing and there’s a complete copy of the “Americana Fantastica” issue of View here. You can also see the incredible Aspen magazine over at the wonderful Ubuweb. Fingers crossed that somebody eventually gives us the rest of View.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – JANUARY 1943 (SERIES II, NO.4)
Cover by Joseph Cornell.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – OCTOBER 1943 (SERIES III, NO.3)
Cover by Andre Masson.

view_tchelitchew2.jpg

VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – DECEMBER 1943 (SERIES III, NO.4)
Cover by Pavel Tchelitchew.

view_okeefe.jpg

VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – MAY / SUMMER 1944 (SERIES IV, NO.2)
Cover by Georgia O’Keeffe.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – FALL 1944 (SERIES IV, NO.3)
Cover by Fernand Leger.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – FALL 1944 (SERIES IV, No.4)
Cover by Esteban Frances.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – MARCH 1945 (SERIES V, NO.1)
Cover by Marcel Duchamp.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – MAY 1945 (SERIES V, NO.2)
Cover by Wilfredo Lam.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – OCTOBER 1945 (SERIES V, NO.3)
Cover by Morris Hirshfield.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – NOVEMBER 1945 (SERIES V, NO.4)
Cover by Leon Kelly.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – DECEMBER 1945 (SERIES V, NO.5)
Cover by Andre Masson.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – MARCH 1946 (SERIES VI, No. 1)
Cover: Brancussi’s studio.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – DECEMBER 1946 (SERIES VI, No. 2)
Cover by Rene Magritte.

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VIEW: THE MODERN MAGAZINE – MARCH / SPRING 1947 (SERIES VI, NO.3)
Cover by Pavel Tchelitchew.

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3 comments or trackbacks

  1. #1 posted by Eroom Nala

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    Some libraries do keep historically important magazines. We’ve got a complete run of Dickens Household Words and its’ succesor All the Year Round in the library where I work.

    Some pretty famous contributors there too.
    :-)

    http://www.victorianweb.org/periodicals/hw.html

    http://www.kcl.ac.uk/depsta/iss/library/speccoll/littre/hhwrds.html

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_Words

    http://www.victorianweb.org/periodicals/ayr.html

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_the_Year_Round

    http://library.sl.nsw.gov.au/search/XHousehold Words Dickens&searchscope=1&SORT=A/XHousehold Words Dickens&searchscope=1/1,2,2,B/frameset&FF=XHousehold Words Dickens&2,2,

    http://library.sl.nsw.gov.au/search/XHousehold Words Dickens&searchscope=1&SORT=A/XHousehold Words Dickens&searchscope=1/1,2,2,B/frameset&FF=XHousehold Words Dickens&1,1,

    sorry the addresses are so long

  2. #2 posted by Matthew Annis

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    Thank you for this wonderful compilation of covers from View. Charles Henri Ford is such a fascinating figure. There is so much work to be done on him and on this magazine. Again, thanks.

  3. #3 posted by John

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    Hi Matthew, and thanks to you. I agree that too many magazines fall down the memory hole. View had such an astonishing roster of contributors you’d think someone would have made them more widely available by now.

 




 

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