GERALD LAING (1936-2011)
DMT 42
the complete set of 23 screenprints in colors, on wove paper, 1969, each signed and numbered 43/210 in pencil on the reverse, and inscribed with the plate number in pencil, from the deluxe edition of 80 (there was also a bound standard edition of 130), with text by Galina Valentina Golikova, printed and published by Edition Domberger, Stuttgart, the sheets loose and folded in half (as issued), the full sheets, within the original silver wrappers and claret corduroy-covered box and Plexiglas slipcase
Each Sheet (folded): 1634 x 1314 in. (426 x 337 mm.)
Ingram & Halliwell 048
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Lot Essay

Gerald Laing was one of the leading British Pop Artists. Born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, he was admitted to Sandhurst Military Academy and briefly served in the British Army before enrolling at Saint Martin's School of Arts in London (later known as Central Saint Martin's College of Art and Design). While still at college, Laing had the opportunity to travel to New York, where in the early 1960s he experienced the emergence of Pop Art and was introduced to it's foremost proponents, including Andy Warhol, Robert Indiana, Roy Lichtenstein and James Rosenquist, all barely known at the time. He moved to New York shortly after his graduation from Saint Martin's, where he career quickly took off.
DMT 42 is arguably the most important book publication of the Pop Art Movement. It is a highly eccentric collaboration between Gerald Laing, who designed the font and the decorations of the pages, and his second wife, Galina Golikova, who supplied the text, which Laing himself described as a 'hallucinatory vision'.
The title refers to the active substance dimethyltryptamine (DMT) in the South-American plant-based drug Yagé or Ayahuasca, which first came to prominence in the US through the writings of the beat poets. The number 42 refers to a tea pot which Laing remembered from his childhood: it was formed in the shape of a motor car and had 42 written on the license plate.
The artist had developed the peculiar font based on circles for the titles of his paintings. It was deliberately designed to be difficult to decipher, as Laing thought it would heighten the attention of the reader.

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