‘In Camera’ London launch, 10 May 2016 at the Soho Collective

What a great evening the London launch of In Camera was.

Many thanks to everyone who attended.

The event took place at the Soho Collective on Moor Street on 10 May 2016, with German author and publisher Meike Ziervogel contributing by leading a discussion about the book, focusing on its setting in East Germany during the Cold War, David’s Gledhill approach to art and why two men from Manchester are fixated about Germany.

Warm thanks to photographer Jo Mieszowski for taking these photographs.

David Gledhill at the In Camera London launch Negative Press London

David Gledhill at the In Camera London launch

Nicholas Royle reading

Nicholas Royle reading from In Camera

Nicholas Royle, David Gledhill and Meike Ziervogel at the In Camera London launch Negative Press London

Meike Ziervogel leading a discussion

Meike Ziervogel at the In Camera London launch Negative Press London

Author and publisher Meike Ziervogel

Roelof Bakker at the In Camera London launch Negative Press London

Roelof Bakker from Negative Press London

Nicholas Royle (author) and Robin Jones (Unthank Books) at the In Camera London launch Negative Press London

Nicholas Royle signing a copy for Robin Jones from Unthank Books

Moray Laing at the In Camera London launch Negative Press London

Moray Laing at the launch

David Gledhill signing In Camera

David Gledhill signing

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‘In Camera’ Manchester launch at Anthony Burgess Foundation

In Camera had its Manchester pre-publication launch on Tuesday 3 May at the Anthony Burgess Foundation in Manchester. Andrew Biswell, director of the Foundation, chaired this entertaining evening, with Nick reading two texts from the book and David explaining his approach to painting. Three paintings featured in the book were exhibited on the night.

Big thanks from Roelof Bakker at Negative Press London to everyone who attended and many thanks to the Anthony Burgess Foundation for their hospitality and for making this event a resounding success.


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A new book: In Camera by Nicholas Royle and David Gledhill

In Camera by author Nicholas Royle and artist David Gledhill, is published 10 May 2016.

New texts by Nicholas Royle are mixed up with paintings by David Gledhill adapted from snapshots of a family photo album discovered in a flea market in Frankfurt.

This fourth book to come from Negative Press London is set in East Germany during the Cold War. A doctor’s daughter experiments with her father’s camera and eavesdrops on his consultations.

Roelof Bakker of Negative Press London says:“When I was putting together the anthology Still in 2012, Nicholas Royle told me about their project and when he sent me some of the writing in progress alongside related imagery I was immediately hooked. Almost four years later, I’m thrilled to publish the result of this collaboration.”


Cover of In Camera David Gledhill Nicholas Royle

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Placing Stones reviewed by Adrian Slatcher for Sabotage Reviews

Artist Adrian Slatcher has reviewed Placing Stones by Martin Crawley for Sabotage Reviews. He writes:

“This small press, expertly helmed by photographer/writer Roelof Bakker, specialises in beautifully produced and conceived books that mix the visual and the literary, and this latest work, presented elegantly in a plastic wrapping, has a delightful simplicity to it. I’m no geologist, but the drawings evoke that sense of discovery you might get from finding an unusual stone on a distant beach or a mountain walk, and in tandem with the elegant verses which seem to be personal memorials, Crawley has created a highly satisfying object that though personal to the artist/poet is surely also intriguing to the accidental reader; a bit like the wanderer who comes across a dedication in an overgrown churchyard.”

Read the full review at Sabotage Reviews

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Q&A | Martin Crawley talks about his book ‘Placing Stones’

Martin Crawley Placing Stones

Martin Crawley. Photograph by Roelof Bakker

MARTIN CRAWLEY was born in London in 1955 and has lived in the city all his life. After attending art school at Middlesex Poly, he supported his practice for many years working in animation. His work has been included in group shows at Angela Flowers (London), Manchester Art Gallery and Spacex in Exeter. He was based at Space Studios in Hackney for over thirty years; he now works from his home studio in Bow.

Roelof Bakker talks to him about his art and writing in relation to Placing Stones, an artist book that mixes sparse evocative texts with gentle pencil drawing of stones. The book is his first publication.

Placing Stones marks your return to being a practicing artist. How does it feel to be back?
I had a severe brain injury in 2003 after which it took me some time to get started again. I initially concentrated on small commissions, until I was ready to focus on new bodies of work, of which Placing Stones is the first one to see the light of day.

The stones in the book are reproduced at their actual size. You collected them during walks in the Great Britain, Spain and France. When did you start collecting stones and why and when did you begin to draw them?
I’ve been collecting stones ever since I was a child. I’ve always been drawn to their unique individuality, the difference in texture and shape and the surprising dissimilarity between stones when they are in a dry or wet state.

Between Charmouth and Golden Cap, Dorset

Between Charmouth and Golden Cap, Dorset

One of the stones (‘Between Charmouth and Golden Cap, Dorset’) was found during a family holiday in Dorset when I was eleven years old. It’s the one I treasure most. It’s actually a fossilised starfish rather than a stone.

Some years ago I was moving house and I put all the stones I collected in a shoebox. When I looked at them again a couple of years later, it dawned on me that there are many stories attached to some of these stones, like the circumstances in which I found them or the people they were connected to. The process of writing and drawing happened simultaneously, it was a new experience.

Why did you use a pencil?
I wanted a single line to define the shape of each stone, I did not feel the need to add shading or delineation. By just using a pencil line the drawings become mysterious and can be interpreted in a number of ways. I’ve been told some look like maps or brains or other body parts.

Was drawing and writing a way of accepting loss you have experienced?
Loss is an experience everyone has. It’s a part of life. To move forward in life, acceptance is important. Just because people are not here anymore, doesn’t mean you don’t think about them. I wanted to have a deeper understanding of some of the people from my past, to make sense of the lives they led. They became alive again inside my head; thinking about their circumstances on hindsight allowed me to be more understanding and perhaps less judgemental, it helped me reflect on how they impacted on my life.

I wanted to have a deeper understanding of some of the people from my past, to make sense of the lives they led.

Placing Stones Martin CrawleyWhich text means most to you?
The most sparse of the texts in the book, ‘Alistair’, one of the later texts I wrote; its approach is helping shape my current writing.

Thinking of lost plants,
imagined gardens,
then, the night,
when he finally died.
— excerpt from ‘Alistair’

It took me a while to convince you to embarks on the book project with Negative Press. The aim of the press is to make each book we publish a different proposition, a unique project. Like all thoughtful artists, you explored a number of alternative ways of presenting your work. In the end we worked closely putting the book together. Are  you contemplating presenting the art work in exhibition format at some point in the future?
I think the project works especially well in printed form, it’s a simple design that offers space for reflection. As the book derives from an original set of drawings, I wouldn’t rule out exhibiting the work; there are a number of creative options that I would consider.

Are you continuing mixing up writing and drawing as part of your practice?
I’m presently making a series of ink-based drawings. I’m writing text to go with these, but I may well end up not using the words, it may be too much.

If you could pick one person, who has most influenced your work as an artist?
Joseph Beuys: he’s inspired me since I was a young man. I’ve always embraced his unique view of the world, mixing humour, storytelling and politics with a great profundity. I respect his political commitment and his unwillingness to go for easy options, either in art or politics. Apart from being an artist, he was one of the founders of the Green Party in Germany (1980), as well as co-founding the Free International University. >Wikipedia He was a performer too and made an anti-Reagan pop video in 1982, Sonne statt Reagan. >Youtube

What is your favourite book of poems?
William Carlos Williams, Collected Poems. Williams manages to say everything about life in a very pure style, with a sense of humour too, he’s greatly influenced my writing. I love his poem ‘Landscape with the Fall of Icarus’, inspired by the Greek tragedy of Icarus and a 1558 painting by Pieter Brueghel, which hangs in the National Gallery, London.

Placing Stones by Martin Crawley, available in an edition of 200, £14 from the Negative Press Shop, in-store at the Tate Modern Bookshop and Bookartbookshop, 17 Pitfield Street, London N1 6HB.

Placing Stones Martin Crawley

Placing Stones


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‘Placing Stones’ at Tate Modern Bookshop

Placing Stones Tate Modern bookshop

Placing Stones at Tate Modern bookshop

Happy to see Placing Stones by Martin Crawley in the Artists Monographs section at the Tate Modern Bookshop in London, standing tall next to the likes of Louise Bourgeois. Thank you, Tate Modern for supporting our press and stocking our books.

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‘Placing Stones’ | launch

Negative Press London returned to the Soho Collective in Moor Street, London W1, on Tuesday 24 February, for the launch of Placing Stones by Martin Crawley. The event included a moving recital by Martin of his text ‘Alistair’ and Stephen Wrench contributed a haunting reading of ‘Mercedes’ and talked about the book’s quality as a calm, meditative work, a non-shouting voice in a world drowning in noise and marketing slogans.

Martin Crawley, Placing Stones, Soho Collective

Martin Crawley (centre) at the launch of Placing Stones at the Soho Collective, Tuesday 24 February 2015

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Placing Stones | Pre-order now

Happy Friday! Placing Stones by Martin Crawley is available to pre-order now from the Negative Press online shop. Visit Negative Press Big Cartel Shop

UK postage is free. Paypal and credit cards accepted.

Placing Stones Martin Crawley

Placing Stones Martin Crawley


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Placing Stones by Martin Crawley | cover artwork

Delighted to reveal the cover artwork for Placing Stones by Martin Crawley, out early 2015. This will be the third book by Negative Press London. Placing Stones mixes delicate pencil drawings with haunting writing and includes an afterword by writer/poet John Douglas Millar.

Placing Stones Martin Crawley

Placing Stones, Martin Crawley


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‘Strong Room’ goes to Paris

Victoria Browne and the wonderfully energetic team at Kaleid Editions http://www.kaleideditions.com/eshop/ are taking Strong Room to Paris during Paris Photo. Kaleid are part of the Polycopies Photobook Fair, where books by thirty-five independent international photo book publishers and distributors will be available to view and buy on a beautiful boat, the Concorde-Atlantique, which is positioned just below the Musée D’Orsay. The boat is open from Wednesday 12 November to Saturday 15 November. See http://polycopies.tumblr.com

Strong Room has recently been acquired by Chelsea College of Arts Library, London, and is part of the collection of the Library Project, Photo Ireland.


Get ready to board the Concorde-Atlantique, Paris for the  Polycopies Photobook Fair



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