PhotoStatic 27: November 1987
The call for submissions that preceded this issue, written by Tom Hibbard, has in mind a commemorative purpose:
The dead return to life. What are we in someone else’s world? What features do we acquire when we forget to wear our masks of iron? What personæ step into the empty space of our marred and unexplained relation to the world in order to fix and explain it? Where do our hearts reside? This is the concept of “compensation” as conceived by Dadaism and Marcel Duchamp and especially explored in “Compensation Portraits”. Send us your evidence of the compensation process as you find it taking place in your life today. Give us news of that side of life about which information is normally suppressed. In honor of Duchamp’s 100th birthday.
And so the bulk of the issue consists of portraiture, of a sort. This is to be understood an appraised as portraiture in a metaphorical sense: how the purposely chosen face (or mask) represents the subject perhaps more meaningfully than the literal, incident light that might bounce off of the subject’s “real” face at any given moment. It probably goes without saying that the design for the cover should be understood as a “compensation portrait” of the publication itself.
At this point in our history, certain personalities had “joined the club,” so to speak, and had become “usual suspects” in the sense that they contributed early and often. These include the likes of John E, Crag Hill, John R, Tom Hibbard, Chris Winkler, Ivan Sládek, Serse Luigetti, and many more.