I have begun to read Booktrek: Selected Essays on Artists’ Books since 1972 Paperback – September 30, 2013
by Clive Phillpot (Author) , Lionel Bovier (Editor) , Christophe Cherix (Introduction). It seems that amazon.com will have it only by end of this month. There is a short introduction on artbook.com . I wonder how that copy got into my “local” bookstore so early.
It is a good read so far as I have an interest in artists’ books and the scene as it developed since 1970. After a couple of essays I learned quite a bit about the difficulties to define the genre and the many ways to categorize artists’ books. The history from prestigious limited editions of books with artists illustrations (the early Picasso books published by Kahnweiler for example) to artists books that were made in larger editions at cheap price to reach a broader audience is explained. Often the author refers to Ed Ruscha’s book 26 gasoline stations, which changed the landscape of “bookworks”. Bookworks is a term created by Phillpot to describe better what could be meant with artists’ books which too often still is confused with books in limited editions and illustrated by artists.
You can see Clive Phillpot talking on the Amsterdam book fair on the matter (link to youtube video).
Readers get also an idea how museums like the MOMA built their collections and what the position of artists’ books are in the art market. Also a lot of names and events are mentioned which open many paths to follow and to expand the fun of reading.
Two links I would like to mention here:
Bookworks.org : Publisher of an on artists’ books Perhaps a good place to start your own artists’ book collection with small budget?
“Waldspaziergang” was my first attempt in the genre of cheap artist’s books in unlimited edition as print on demand works. The concept of that book was to take a photo with my phone camera 24 times after 25 steps made on my usual way into the woods. In addition to that 2 full circle panoramas and some mushroom images are collected in the book, produced with the most simple means. You might want to take a look at some similar humble recordings of moving images.