Page One Collectibles
So the day after the election there was not a newspaper to be found in my neighborhood. Or anywhere in town, it turned out. So I went up to the New York Times on a slightly earlier than usual mail run (no wonder not-for-profits make no profit; they never stop sending out press releases, even to dead people -- my father, who died in 1999, still gets releases sent from San Francisco to my home -- or people who have been retired way more than my two years).
There were no NYT's to be found at the NYT, although I ran into John Geddes, the no. 2 editor in charge of all things involving production and mechanics, and he cheerfully told me they were printing 50,000 more for street sales. I finally did find one on a table, already pawed through but complete, and, to use a delicate term, ripped it off.
When I got down to the street, there was a line of people stretching all the way from Eighth Avenue back towards Seventh, waiting for trucks to arrive. When one did, a load was hurled onto the sidewalk and a guy sold them for upwards of $10 a pop. The scene was shown on television and replicated all over the country.
What this suggests is that in our age of dawning Internet superiority, people still value print, at least for commemorative purposes. First man on the moon, Kennedy shot, their own children born, Obama elected; people want the front pages to frame on their walls. I heard people in the line saying, sure, I could look at it on the Internet, but...
And yet, as a nice coda, an online art journal has completed the circle, making a fabulous-looking, quilt-like grid of more than 200 Nov. 5 front pages from all over the world. As a whole, it's art. But move your cursor to any one little stamp-sized page and it balloons up to legibility. So now you can collect your print page ones online!
Here's the link. But it keeps going dead. If it doesn't work, go to artdaily.org and look/search for obama: