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Guide to the Redtape Archive
ca. 1972-1992
(Bulk 1982-1992)
 MSS.088

Fales Library and Special Collections
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
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New York, NY 10012
Phone: (212) 998-2596
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Fales Library and Special Collections

Collection processed by Jane Gorzhevskaya, January-April 1998. Updated 2011 by Laura Newsome.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on July 20, 2017
Description is in English.

Historical/Biographical Note:

Redtape, one of the East Village "zines", employing a magazine form to communicate innovative artistic ideas, divided its pages between literature and graphics, encouraging an interplay between writers and visual artists. According to the editor and publisher of Redtape Michael Carter the purpose of the magazine was "to explore new possibilities and forms of expression, to develop craft and technique without becoming sequestered in an intellectual or academic ivory tower". The magazine, featuring comics, poetry, fiction, graphic art, and photography, provided a venue for both established and emerging writers and artists of the downtown scene.

Intended initially as a quarterly publication, Redtape released seven issues in 10 years, each having a unique format and organized around specific theme: 'For the Left Side of Your Brain' (1982), 'Assemblage' (1982), 'Redtape: Double Summer Issue' (1983) , 'ArtDamaged' (1984), 'White Lies' ( 1984), 'The Cracked Mirror' (1986) and 'Tragicomix' (1992). Issue No. 3 was the first time Carter consciously reached out to the art community. Since then, every issue expanded the list of contributors and the scope of the publication, making the magazine a part and product of the Lower East Side scene. From the fourth issue onwards, the magazine was published on glossy paper, capable of high-quality graphic reproduction.

Contributors to the magazine included Kathy Acker, Peter Chereches, Constance De Jong, John Farris, Richard Hambleton, Greer Lankton, Patrick McGrath, Lynne Tillman and David Wojnarowicz among many others.