Paul Chan. Courtesy of the artist.
Paul Chan. Courtesy of the artist.

Badlands Unlimited, the artist Paul Chan’s upstart indie press, has published interviews with the artist Marcel Duchamp and speeches on democracy by Saddam Hussein. “We have a protean sensibility,” Chan, 41, admits. Still, New Lovers, its erotica series, is a departure. “I didn’t want to put out an esoteric art book,” Chan says. “I wanted something people would read.” So he adapted the Olympia Press model from the 1950s—when the French publisher sold smut to subsidize work by writers like Henry Miller and Vladimir Nabokov—for a hip readership. The first three books come from virgins to the genre—Wednesday Black, Lilith Wes, and Andrea McGinty—who are all clearly having fun with it (sample title: God, I Don’t Even Know Your Name). “We’re complete amateurs who put out questionable things. And these books are completely questionable.”

New Lovers books. Photograph by Gorman Studio.