Between 1993 and 1998, Matthew Higgs, artist, writer and current Director of White Columns, produced and distributed more than fifty works through his publishing project Imprint 93. An administrator at an advertising agency by day and influential curator by night, Higgs invited artists to create works of art that could fit inside an envelope to be distributed, unsolicited, by mail to an informal group of friends, artists, and curators. Financed by himself and printed on an office photocopier, Imprint 93 served as an ongoing curatorial project which did not necessitate a space, circumvented traditional art world structures, and offered a unique platform and network for artists to distribute their work.
The artists involved in Imprint 93 were often at the beginnings of their careers, working on the periphery of the then emerging 'YBA' movement. The exhibition features the work of Fiona Banner, Billy Childish, Martin Creed, Jeremy Deller, Peter Doig, Ceal Floyer, Stewart Home, Alan Kane, Hilary Lloyd, Paul Noble, Chris Ofili, Elizabeth Peyton, Bob and Roberta Smith, Jessica Voorsanger and Stephen Willats, among others. Imprint 93 was also closely linked to influential and emerging artist-centered initiatives such as London’s City Racing and Cabinet Gallery.
Highlights from Imprint 93 include Elizabeth Peyton’s Untitled (1995), made from a sequence of video-stills of Nirvana's Kurt Cobain performing in 1993, and Martin Creed’s Work no. 88 (1994), a crumpled ball of A4 paper that Higgs and Creed sent to the Tate Gallery but was returned to them, flattened inside an envelope, 'rejected' as an unsolicited donation.