The Word Returned.

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Ken Campbell.


The Word Returned.


London: Ken Campbell,




Edition of 35.

The Word Returned is Ken’s masterpiece and arguably the most important artist’s book produced in Britain since the 1930s.

Ken described the facture as “polychrome letterpress and handwork deploying a raised mounting board, lead type, wood-letter, zinc and polymer plates and zinc stencils.” The stencils were never meant to be printed this way and each letter had to be printed individually—66,000 crankings of the press!

This book was a turning point for me. I bought it in America and only then realized that I could have driven to Bristol and acquired it directly from its creator. Meeting Ken and discussing his work made me feel closer to the other visionary artist-printers that I had begun to collect, from Cobden-Sanderson to Hammer to Iliazd. All these ”outsiders” barely register in the broad histories of art and design in the twentieth century.


Mark Storey