Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Publisher Graham Keen planned British 'Underground' comic starring paperback writer William Burroughs collaboration for comic character "Mr Hart". London St Martin's School of Art student Malcolm McNeill was selected for job.

It was known among publishers and editors Bill didn't do "lunch". Innocence and Experience were also to learn Bill didn't like comics. This was 1969-1970 when US underground comix seemed appropriate milieu for radical counterculture artwork. A compromise was reached between publisher, writer and illustrator. McNeill produced work in narrative-caption style of Flash Gordon and Prince Valiant 'Sunday Funnies' adventure strips Burroughs remembered from 1930s.

On return USA Burroughs acquainted himself with Kansas beat generation and work of S Clay Wilson.

When Burroughs lived in London early 1970s paperback writer enjoyed "snack" with Mottram. All photographs apart from cover snap apparently failed to process successfully.

Aloes Books, London 1975.

Allen Fisher writes about other contexts for Burroughs' visual-text production here.

disbanded after issue 4. American underground comix found UK audience early 70s within pages of Mick Farren's and Edward Barker's Nasty Tales and Felix Dennis's cOZmic comics.

from beat generation ballads sequence

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