Black Mask. Black Mask 1-6, 8-9. New York: Black Mask, 11/1966-04/1968. 4 p.; ill.; 25 x 33 cm. Offset-printed in black & white. First edition.

8 of 10 issues of the journal of the Black Mask group. “Founded in New York City in the mid-1960s by self-educated ghetto kid and painter Ben Morea, the Black Mask group melded the ideas and inspiration of Dada and the Surrealists, with the anarchism of the Durruti Column from the Spanish Revolution. With a theory and practice that had much in common with their contemporaries the San Francisco Diggers, Dutch Provos, and the French Situationists—who famously excommunicated 3 of the 4 members of the British section of the Situationist International for associating too closely with Black Mask—the group intervened spectacularly in the art, politics and culture of their times. From shutting down the Museum of Modern Art to protesting Wall Street’s bankrolling of war, from battling with Maoists at SDS conferences to defending the Valerie Solanas shooting of Andy Warhol, Black Mask successfully straddled the counterculture and politics of the 60s, and remained the Joker in the pack of both sides of “The Movement.”‘ (PM Press)

To understand the relationship between Black Mask and the Situationists, one can refer to Debord’s correspondence with Morea and members of both the British and American sections of the Internationale Situationniste (available in translation here: http://www.notbored.org/debord.html). The exclusion of Clark, Gray and Smith from the SI is documented in Internationale Situationniste #12 (in translation here: http://www.cddc.vt.edu/sionline/si/latest.html), though this is very much written from the “orthodox” perspective and should not be construed as objective truth. Lastly, the astute scholar may choose to consult Morea’s papers at New York University, with a focus on Series V (http://dlib.nyu.edu/findingaids/html/tamwag/tam_530/dscref17.html)

A reprint of all 10 issues is available from PM press (http://secure.pmpress.org/index.php?l=product_detail&p=255)

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