Book: Crotty, Light, O'Reilly, Porter, Callan, Di Mare, Dopp, Felzmann, Hunt, Lewitt, Suarez Londono, Ruscha, Sikander, Spector, Tiscornia
The history of books and bookmaking is extensive, from sacred objects of veneration to downloadable printouts, but artists’ books are a special circumstance. This exhibition explores what the book can mean to an artist — as the site for introspection and exploration — as well as how an artist’s book may function for an audience, where the essentially timeless products of visual art enter the narrative stream of time. The show presents a variety of contemporary artists’ books — most often one-of-a-kind — and focuses on the book as a very private form of public expression.
Personal drawing journals by Russell Crotty and Jose Antonio Suarez Londono are included, as well as 365 small-scale hand-made books (one made every day) by Susan Marie Dopp. Studio-produced books by Michael Light and Lukas Felzmann, and limited edition books by Ed Ruscha and Sol Lewitt use photographic imagery. Dominic Di Mare has created books of sequential drawings that lead the viewer on a journey into alternate worlds. Crystal Liu extends her musing narrative drawings into open-ended tales in book form.
The book as object is addressed in works by Jonathan Callan, whose physically transformed books have a sculptural presence with their own form of stored content. John O’Reilly, known for his photo collages, works with found books; a sense of transgression is felt in his internal reorganization of old volumes and his insertion of autobiography into history. Works by Buzz Spector and Ana Tiscornia reconfigure the form of the traditional book, thus changing the way conceptual or political content is delivered. The play between a book’s actual and virtual reality, and between word and image is explored in flat art by Liliana Porter. Other artists represented in the show include Bryan Hunt and Shahzia Sikander.