Action at a Distance

“The pamphlet is a one-man show. One has complete freedom of expression, including, if one chooses, the freedom to be scurrilous, abusive, and seditious; or, on the other hand, to be more detailed, serious and ‘high-brow’ than is ever possible in a newspaper or in most kinds of periodicals. At the same time, since the pamphlet is always short and unbound, it can be produced much more quickly than a book, and in principle, at any rate, can reach a bigger public. Above all, the pamphlet does not have to follow any prescribed pattern. It can be in prose or in verse, it can consist largely of maps or statistics or quotations, it can take the form of a story, a fable, a letter, an essay, a dialogue, or a piece of ‘reportage.’ All that is required of it is that it shall be topical, polemical, and short.”

-George Orwell, in an introduction to the British Pamphleteer

Brain Washing From Phone Towers is a series of informative and entertaining Informational Pamphlets produced by hand on a seasonal basis.

These small-scale publications combine text (handset in metal type) and image (carved in wood or linoleum) produced via obsolete technology in editioned works which are distributed at will to a chosen audience. The content of the series aims for historical interest, commemorative intent and a healthy dose of humor, and the distribution methods are based on the values of the gift economy.

Our publishing model reflects the print tradition of the tract, small pamphlets used for religious and political purposes, which are often either left for someone to find or handed out. The majority of each edition is sent out to a mailing list. The list changes for each pamphlet and includes people who have subscribed to the series, people who are friends of the subscribers who have been added to the list as a surprise free gift, and people who I just want to send pamphlets to. Some of these people I know, some of these people are strangers. The remaining copies are sold through book fairs and events. Subscriptions subsidize the cost of production, along with grants, and sales at book fairs.

Have you received a pamphlet and have some questions? Welcome! See our Frequently Asked Questions page for answers.

Subscriptions are now available here for 2017.  If you’ve received a pamphlet in the past, and would like to continue to do so, please consider subscribing. This coming year’s series will be focused on the history, ecology, and community of Jamaica Bay. We have received support for this year from the Brooklyn Arts Council and I have a few events planned as well, including a tour of Floyd Bennett Airfield, a reading, a workshop in the fall, and maybe some birdwatching? So sign up and you’ll hear all about all of the above.

If you’re looking for my main portfolio site, you can find it here.

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