Imprints of the New Modernist Editing

Art Editing Modernism

Welcome to Imprints of the New Modernist Editing (INME). The INME project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, and follows on from the New Modernist Editing Network. It provided a range of opportunities for writers, artists, editors and proofreaders, designers, publishers and interested members of the general public to come together, to share their insights and approaches to relationships between text, image and editing, and to put these into practical application.

This publication presents a range of new writing emerging from the five workshopsYapping with Cutbush
A one-day practical workshop on letterpress typography and print, led by Edwin Pickstone (project Co-Investigator)
Glasgow School of Art, 5 December 2019.

What does it mean to be the fellow worker and accomplice of a modernist writer?*
A workshop-day exploring the work of the New Modernist Editing network, led by MyBookcase
National Library of Scotland (NLS) and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art (SNGMA), 7 February 2020.

Blue & Green
A one-day practical workshop in pochoir printing, led by Jane Hyslop (project Co-Investigator)
Edinburgh College of Art, 21 February 2020.

Languages of Editing
A one-day workshop run in collaboration with Corridor8 and co-delivered by Professor Andrew Thacker, Sarah Laing, Chris McCormack and Nick Thurston
The Bluecoat Centre for the Contemporary Arts, Liverpool, 6 March 2020.

Shandy Hall: Responding to an Exhibition
A one-day workshop run in collaboration with the Laurence Sterne Trust and co-delivered by Patrick Wildgust and Jane Hyslop
Shandy Hall, the Laurence Sterne Trust, Coxwold, 29 August 2021.
held by the INME, alongside images of the artworks commissioned for the final output of the INME project, the Imprints: Art Editing Modernism exhibition, which took place at Shandy Hall in Yorkshire in August and September 2021, and creative responses to those artworks.

Questions explored by the project events included:

  • What is the significance of the frequent cross-fertilisation of the visual and the literary in the art of the modernist period?
  • How do we take account of the particular technological and economic context in which modernist texts were written? Issues include increased authorial revision made possible by technologies of textual reproduction (cheaper printing, the typewriter); the economics (and aesthetics) of the little magazine/journal/periodical; the economics of larger publishing houses, etc.
  • What is the particular status of the typescript as manuscript? What challenges are posed by working with typescripts? – such as how to identify and treat ‘obvious typos’; how to respond to the physical qualities of the typescript (visual, tactile), etc.
  • How do we respond to the notion of authorial intention? For example: do we assume that obvious spelling errors ought to be corrected? Do we treat a ‘juvenile’ text differently from a mature work? – etc.
  • Given their experimental quality, do some modernist texts project an ideal future reader; that somewhere, one day, there will be a reader who will have a perfect understanding of the text? And if so, does that then suggest a model of the ideal editorial and reading practice?
  • Are there different sets of editorial rules for treating poetry, prose, playscripts, letters, diaries…?
  • How exhaustive can, or ought, annotation (explanatory notes) be?
  • What are the risks and rewards of new digital technologies in responding to modernist texts?
  • How do readers (born digital or otherwise) relate to iconic twentieth-century texts?

Project Team

Bryony Randall, Project Principal Investigator, is Professor of Modernist Literature at the University of Glasgow, where she is a co-Director of the Textual Editing Lab. She is a co-General Editor of the Cambridge Edition of the Works of Virginia Woolf, and co-editor of Woolf’s short fiction, forthcoming for that edition. She is a volume editor for the Oxford University Press edition of the work of Dorothy Richardson. She recently edited a special issue of Modernist Cultures on the New Modernist Editing (2020), is co-editor with Jane Goldman of Virginia Woolf in Context (Cambridge University Press 2013), and author of Modernism, Daily Time and Everyday Life (Cambridge University Press 2007).

Edwin Pickstone, Project Co-Investigator, is Lecturer, Typography Technician and Designer in Residence at The Glasgow School of Art, where since 2005 he has cared for the school’s collection of letterpress printing equipment. Focusing on the material nature of print Pickstone uses letterpress technology, collaborating with artists and designers on a wide range of projects. His work spans academic, artistic and design worlds, with particular interest in the history of typography, graphic design, the physical nature of print and the book.

Jane Hyslop, Project Co-Investigator, is a Lecturer in Painting and Illustration at Edinburgh College of Art, The University of Edinburgh. Her work is centred upon print and the artists’ book where she extends the potential of the book form and the relationship between text and image. Currently she is developing a body of research using pochoir printing that investigates its history and application in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century and its potential through contemporary practice. Her work is held in numerous collections including Yale Center for British Art, Tate Library Special Collections, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Special Books Collection and the National Library of Scotland.​

Pip Osmond-Williams, Project Administrator, is a Scottish Literature academic and poet based in Glasgow. She was awarded a doctorate from the University of Glasgow in 2019 for her thesis ‘Changing Scotland: A Social History of Love in the Life and Work of Edwin Morgan’. Her poetry has been included in numerous anthologies and magazines, and she was shortlisted for the Alastair Reid Pamphlet Prize at Wigtown Poetry Festival in 2020.


The project team would like to thank its project partners MyBookcase, Corridor8 and The Laurence Sterne Trust at Shandy Hall. We are also extremely grateful for the generosity of the staff at the National Library of Scotland and Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art for their hosting of one of our workshops.

Imprints of the New Modernist Editing
Art Editing Modernism