The Double Elephant Press introduces a new scholarly publication
titled Common Monsters of the United States. Outlandish
fauna are artfully observed & illuminated by Michael
Kuch. From the American Imperialist Moth, Pax americana
to the Fat-Man Stealth Bat, Papilla terror, this
natural history surveys the salient creatures of our current
political landscape. Ten plates, thirteen & a half
by nine & a half inches, are etched with images of
the beasts, their common names & binomial nomenclature.
These etchings are hand-watercolored in the tradition
of natural history books by the artist. A sesquipedalian
description of each anthropic monster is printed letterpress
in a shaped form on translucent paper revealing each limned
teratism on the next page.
Twenty-five books & fifteen boxed suites of etcings
with text will be available for sale March 2004. The book
measures nineteen by fourteen inches. The type is fourteen
point Romulus set & cast by Julia Ferrari & Dan
Carr of Golgonooza Letter Foundry. Arther Larson printed
the letterpress & etchings. The etching paper is Zecchi's
Alcantara made by hand in Firenze. The translucent paper
was made from six-hour beaten abaca fiber by Shannon Brock
at Carriage House Paper in Brooklyn. She also made paper
for a moth collage, pulp painted by Kuch, on the book
cover & the two-flap chemise for the suite of prints.
Lisa Van Pelt bound the volumes, which come housed in
tray cases each with a glass cover as though a specimen
box. This window displays the moth.