I AM YOUR WORST FEAR I AM YOUR BEST FANTASY / FIRST GAY AMERICANS by Be Oakley
12.9 x 18.8 cm, 28 pages, Black & blue risograph printing, Saddle stitch, Card cover, Ed. of 100, 2020
“i am your worst fear i am your best fantasy / FIRST GAY AMERICANS is a publication based on a typeset sourced from two protest signs from the gay liberation movement. The publication features an essay talking to the Oakley's protest sign typesets. In the publication designer Kelsey Elder states "Leveraging the authority afforded to language by typographic form, oakley’s typefaces pull dissenting letterform's and narratives from queer history into contemporary context. Through the act of digitization, the work simultaneously functions as an archive as well as a platform of visibility for voices largely excluded from the field in which the work is positioned. Formally ‘nice,’ the letter forms transcend static interpretation when in context of the language present on their specimens and Oakley's open source distribution model. The letter forms become a site of significance. The typeface a metaphor. The publishing model and access to the typefaces, an act of dissent. The work is unapologetic to its trespasses, and pushes against hegemonic aesthetics and values. By employing aspects of lived experience and culture which are external to the typographic field itself, Oakley importantly exposes the lack of divergent narratives currently present while simultaneously providing a platform for them."