British Council

Mike Nelson represented Britain at the 54th Venice Biennale in 2011, this edition was published to accompany his installation in the British Pavillion that year. Commissioned by the percipient Richard Riley, SecMoCo were asked to work with the artist for the second time (see Triple Bluff Canyon, Modern Art Oxford) on devising a publication appropriate to his work.

First published, in an edition of 1,500 copies, by The British Council, London, UK, June 1, 2011; commissioning editor: Richard Riley; coordinating editors: Gemma Latty, Emma Williams; texts: Dan Cameron, with an interview between the artist, Rachael Withers and guests.

135 x 205mm; 146pp; 92 images, including 18pp colour plate section with 74 b&w images in uncoated section; casebound with 1-colour embossed cover (no dust jacket); grey endpapers; 4 colour printed ‘inner covers’; thread sewn; printed by CPI, UK.

Context from the British Council website:
Throughout his career, Nelson has constantly returned to and re-examined territories within his own practice. […] For the British Pavilion in 2011, Nelson elected to take as his starting point another of his own key works from the past decade, Magazin: Büyük Valide Han, originally built for the 8th International Istanbul Biennial in 2003. […] Nelson has referred to the work for Istanbul as being a parasitical installation that had lodged itself into a 17th century building. Based on the photographic memory of the earlier work, with I, Impostor, Nelson not only rebuilt the original darkroom but sections of the caravanserai itself, so that now a building, from another time and place, exists inside the late 19th century British Pavilion in Venice.

The British Council published a fully illustrated book to commemorate Mike Nelson’s exhibition, which includes newly commissioned texts by Dan Cameron and Rachel Withers, and colour plates of the new work in progress.

TATE: exhibition, publication

For the exhibition The Dark Monarch at Tate St Ives, UK, SecMoCo were approached by Martin Clark, Artistic Director, to design the identity and external gallery signage, as well as the poster, preview card, print and digital advertising, and accompanying publication. The exhibition brought together over 160 works, as well as books, manuscripts and other ephemera, and the publication reflected this in its diverse range of material.

Publication: first edition published by Tate, UK, 2009; edited by Michael Bracewell, Martin Clark, and Alun Rowlands; additional texts: various; 230 x 172 mm; 216 pp; 74pp colour plate section (170gsm Maine Gloss), 50 b&w images in uncoated section (115gsm Think White) ; paperback 1-colour cover (Colourplan Vellum White 350gsm, wire embossed in the paper grain and spine orientation) with 8-page 2-colour dust jacket (China White 135gsm); section sewn. Printed by Calverts, London, UK.

From the press release: ‘Taking its title from the controversial 1962 novel based in St Ives by Sven Berlin, The Dark Monarch explores the influence of folklore, mysticism, mythology and the occult on the development of modernism and surrealism in Britain and features the works of both historic and contemporary artists. The book considers the renewed influence of neo-romantic and arcane themes on a significant strand of current British art practice’.

Square Peg, Random House

Comissioned here by the enlightened and inspiring Rowan Yapp at Square Peg, a division of Random House, SecMoCo were happy to go about designing our first cookery title. The challenge here was to match the elegance and taste of the authors’ image styling along with the nonchalant air of David Loftus’ photography. At the same time it required a utile ‘kitchen counter’ look rather than any static ‘coffee table’ feel. The result is a handsome but pragmatic read, a book designed to make life easier for busy people.

Published in January 2014 by Square Peg, Random House; written by Caroline Craig and Sophie Missing; 23 x 16.2 x 2.4 cm; 208 pages, thread sewn; 4-colour images throughout; 4-colour printed paper case cover (no dust jacket) with lamination and spot varnish

‘This book is perfect. Not only that, it is beautifully presented, fun, delightful, and full to capacity of ways to make a packed lunch memorable.’- UK Press Syndication

From the Random House website:
‘Square Peg is an eclectic and commercial nonfiction hardback list, within the prestigious Vintage Division of Random House, publishing around 20 titles per year. Our select list of titles are cherry-picked on the basis of editorial passion. We place huge emphasis on stand-out design and a bespoke publicity campaign for each book we champion, as well as emerging digital formats.  […] Established in 2008, in just six years we have become synonymous with the very best in original, entertaining and quirky non-fiction.’


Simon Periton, First Site

A monograph designed to accompany the solo exhibition of Simon Periton’s work in, and the landscaping of, the grounds of Firstsite, Colchester.

Such are the intricacies of the artist’s work- in which he often employs a stylish cutting, folding, doubling and general complexification of the visual image- that it seemed fitting that any printed representation of it should reflect these themes. After a thoroughly enjoyable process of detailed conversation and close work with the artist, we produced an object both full of historical context and also visually rich, including elegant documentation of the artworks situated in the gallery grounds. The resulting multi-layering design principle- of both images and actual paper folds/trimming- also called for a high level of binding and finishing skills from the printer.

First edition published, by Firstsite, Colchester, UK, 2012; edited by Asana Greenstreet; texts: Katherine Wood, with an interview between the artist and firstsite Associate Curator Jes Fernie; 235mm x 175mm; 24 pp; 35 colour and 9 b&w images; softback plus slipcase.

As detailed by the printer (Calverts of London): ‘The brochure has a gatefolded 8pp cover, printed in one pantone colour on 300gsm Arcoprint Extra White, with all the type and white-out elements cylinder embossed. The texts and images are on a lighter weight Arcoprint and 150gsm Hello Silk, collated as long 8pp spreads and then hand gatefolded to close, with brass wire stitches in the spine’.

Exhibition context: The artist researched the eighteenth-century design of firstsite’s garden to develop a new installation there taking the form of three lanterns and a lampost. There is a long-established mulberry tree on the grounds, and the worms of the silkmoths that appear in his artworks were essential to domestic silk production in nineteenth-century Colchester.

TATE: exhibition, publication

This book was published to accompany a major retrospective exhibition of work by one of the most important artists to emerge in post-war Britain. In addition SecMoCo produced a chronology of the major points in the life and work of the artist, displayed in the spectacular curved sea-facing galleries at Tate St Ives. (Here is a link for a digital re-interpretation of the timeline produced for the exhibition:

Publication: First published by Tate, London, UK, 2010; edited, and with a text by, Chris Stephens; additional texts: Margaret Garlake, Tacita Dean, WS Graham; 250 x 190 mm; 144 pp; 85 4-color and 62 b&w images; flapped softcover

Exhibition context (from TATE website): ‘Despite his early death at the age of forty-six Lanyon achieved a body of work that is amongst the most original and important reappraisals of modernism in painting to be found anywhere. Combining abstract values with radical ideas about landscape and the figure, Lanyon navigated a course from Constructivism through Abstract Expressionism to a style close to Pop. Accompanying the first major survey show of Lanyon’s work for 30 years, this book will introduce him to a new generation.