If you steal away for afternoon* in the exhibition Text/Messages: Books by Artists you’ll encounter a wide array of fascinating objects that relate in one form or another to the notion of the “book.” Among the things you’ll see are: a kite, a cake, a pistol, hand-made paper, mass-printed magazines, gas stations, comics, and cardboard. Together, these works are an imaginative wonderland that manage quite well to illustrate the vast styles, procedures and philosophies that make up the field of book arts.
A panel discussion this Thursday attempts a similar feat by gathering book makers and thinkers for an all-over conversation about the current state of artist book production. Here is a mini-introduction to the panelists:
Buzz Spector: artist and critical writer whose work makes frequent use of the book, both as subject and object. He is concerned with relationships between public history, individual memory, and perception. Spector has issued a number of artists’ books and editions since the mid-1970s, including, most recently, Time Square, a limited edition book whose text is taken from a sequence of Google searches on the nature of time.
Harriet Bart: maker of installations, large-scale sculpture, objects and books from her studio here in Minneapolis. All of Bart’s work is inspired by her deep interest and engagement with books and the written word. Her piece, In the Presence of Absence is featured in Text/Messages. She has also completed more than ten public art commissions around the world.
Sally Alatalo: artist, writer and performer based in Chicago. Her written, printed and performative work intersects with popular-cultural forms and activities such as genre fiction, hairdressing and household tasks. She is a force behind Sara Ranchouse Publishing, a xxx that deals in artist’s books, printed multiples and “art-at-large.” Read her publishing manifesto here.
James Hoff: artist and co-founder/editor of Primary Information, a non-profit publisher devoted to printing artists’ books and multiples by artists both young and old including John Cage, the Art Workers Coalition, Disband, Robert Filliou, Dick Higgins, Allan Kaprow, and Dieter Roth, among many others. He is currently co-editing a facsimile edition of the seminal Avalanche Magazine.
David Plaztker, moderator: curator, book dealer/scholar, former director of Printed Matter, Inc., and purveyor of Specific Object, a personal venture dedicated gathering and presenting interesting objects in any artistic medium. Material shown range from artists’ publications, ephemera, prints, multiples and other editions to literature, music / audio works and unique artworks of the contemporary world. His most recent project is a film screening and exhibition of Belgian Conceptual artist, Marcel Broodthaers’ unusual hybrid of book and film, A Voyage on the North Sea (1973 – 1974).
Please join these folks for a stimulating conversation this Thursday, February 5 at 7 pm. Bring your questions and ideas on all things bookish and get inspired!
*A sunny day is recommended. The windows onto the terrace make for lovely sun bath in the reading area of the exhibition.