Annette Gilbert on “Poor Media” Print-on-Demand as Subversive Publishing Practice
When: Tuesday, May 7, 2019 5:00 pm
Where: Kaplan Hall 193
Contemporary experimental artists and writers who have adopted print-on-demand publishing praise the method’s low financial risk, creative autonomy, and independence from trade publishers. They embrace it as a means of self-empowerment and democratization—although (or, maybe, precisely because) it has been discredited by the literary establishment as a vanity enterprise and by book lovers and designers irritated by its low production values. Drawing on some of the most notable examples of the genre, this lecture will show how POD facilitates an astonishing variety of forms and aesthetic approaches and how it functions as a critical media practice that continues avant-garde, underground, and counterculture traditions and also responds to our post-digital age and compels us to re-conceptualize our understanding of the book and publishing.
Dr. Annette Gilbert’s research and teaching focus on the literary avant-garde, the history of the book, self- publishing, piracy/samizdat publishing, Moscow conceptualism, digital poetry, concrete poetry, and the materiality and mediality of literature. Recent book publications in English include Under the Radar. Underground Zines and Self-Publications 1965–1975 (Leipzig: Spector Books, 2017), Publishing as Artistic Practice (Berlin: Sternberg Press, 2016), and Re-Print. Appropriation (&) Literature (luxbooks: Wiesbaden, 2014). Dr. Gilbert studied comparative literature and Eastern European Studies in Berlin, Paris, and Kazan. From 2001 to 2005, she was a DAAD Lecturer at universities in Tomsk, Novosibirsk, and Moscow. Dr. Gilbert currently teaches at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg.