Book Arts

Archived Book Arts News February 2016

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Artists’ BookMarket at The Fruitmarket Gallery

Artists’ BookMarket at The Fruitmarket Gallery  

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Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here DC, 2016

Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here DC, 2016  

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Absence and Presence, Exeter Library

Absence and Presence, Exeter Library, UK  

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200 artists' books by Andi McGarry

Advance notice for World Book Night 2016

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Artist’s Book Yearbook

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The Blue Notebook:
Volume 10, No 1

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Bookmarks XIII

Bookmarks XIII online now!

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An Inventory of Al-Mutanabbi Street / Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here

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Artists’ BookMarket
The Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh
27th – 28th February 2016

Angie Butler will be running our Impact Press stand over the two-days of the Artists’ BookMarket, an annual celebration of artists’ books and artist-led publishing held at The Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh. Browse the stalls of work available for sale and enjoy the weekend’s programme of talks and workshops.

Sat 27th February, 11am–6pm and Sun 28th February, 12–5pm. The Fruitmarket Gallery, 45 Market Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1DF.  

Anita Klein, Reading Under the Covers, linocut print for al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here.

Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here DC 2016

A book arts and cultural festival running until 31st March 2016, throughout the Washington, DC, area, USA. Exhibitions, programmes, and events will commemorate the 2007 bombing of Baghdad’s historic bookselling street, celebrate the free exchange of ideas and knowledge, and stand in solidarity with the people of Iraq. The centrepiece of the festival is a poetry reading, with music, on the anniversary of the bombing, March 5, 2016, at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery McEvoy Auditorium.

Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here DC 2016, has multiple components: Exhibitions and Artists’ Talks; Literary Programmes; Artist Workshops; a Street Festival and a Film Festival. The project takes its name from and examines al-Mutanabbi Street in Baghdad, a winding street about one thousand feet long, a great humanitarian centre noted for its many bookstores and outdoor bookstalls where people gathered in intellectual pursuit. Named after the famous classical Arab poet Abu at-Tayyib al-Mutanabbi (915-965 CE), it has been a thriving centre of Baghdad’s bookselling and publishing worlds for many years.

On March 5th, 2007, a car bomb exploded on Al-Mutanabbi Street, killing 30 and injuring 100 and destroying many bookselling businesses as well as the historic Shabandar Café, where intellectuals had met for generations.

Through the efforts of Beau Beausoleil, a poet and San Francisco bookseller, a coalition of poets, artists, writers, printers, booksellers, and readers was created within a short time of the bombing; broadsides of their writings and artwork about this tragic event were printed, and recitations were made in many cities. An anthology was published to honour the cultural achievements of a society that has been forever damaged and to acknowledge that art and visual literacy could support the Iraqi population and others where free expression is threatened.

Partners: George Mason University’s School of Art and George Mason University Libraries, Split This Rock, Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, McLean Project for the Arts, Corcoran School of the Arts and Design at The George Washington University, Busboys and Poets, Georgetown University, Cultural DC, Smithsonian Libraries, Brentwood Arts Exchange, Northern Virginia Community College, George Mason University Student Media and Fourth Estate Newspaper.

Further information on all of the exhibitions and events for Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here DC 2016 can be found at:

Stuart Cannell, screenprint for Absence and Presence (Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here)

Absence and Presence, Central Library and Kaleider, Exeter, UK

Organised by Catherine Cartwright, the Absence and Presence (Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here) exhibition is running over multiple venues in Exeter from February 2016. The main exhibition is at Exeter Library 1st Feb – 30th March. An installation and poetry marathon, with free bookmaking and bookmarks workshops will take place on Friday 4th March 2016 at Kaleider and the Central Library in Exeter, for details visit:

Catherine Cartwright is the UK Coordinator of Absence and Presence a printmaking response by 260 artists from around the world to the bombing of Al Mutanabbi Street, Baghdad on 5th March 2007.

Artist's Book Yearbook 2016 - 2017

Artist’s Book Yearbook 2016 – 2017

268 pages of artist’s book goodness.

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Contents include:
bookartbookshop, Tanya Peixoto celebrates Magnus Irvin; A Parliament of Children by John Bently, asks if now might be the time to establish a publishing house – run by and for children; The material folio by Tim Mosely looks at the material in relation to haptic in artists’ books; Making Space: London Centre for Book Arts reports on all the wonderful developments at LCBA since it launched in 2012, written by its founders Simon Goode and Ira Yonemura; in Fragile Metaphors, John Mulloy considers the complexities of artists’ books by Sioban Piercy; looking back over 39 years of his life ‘with books, among books, for books’, Radosław Nowakowski makes the numbers add up in his essay 3-6-9;  it is with sadness that we publish the essay Systems for the page in the work of Maria Lucia Cattani by Paulo Silveira, who writes about the work of his colleague and friend Maria Lucia Cattani (1958-2015), reflecting on her contribution to the field of artists’ books; Collective Investigations  – Egidija Čiricaitė, George Cullen and Chris Gibson – have produced a special feature for this edition of the ABYB reflecting on their performative, interactive work in Reading the Book as an Object; Susan Johanknecht & Katharine Meynell have written up a version of their dinner speech presentation from the PAGES Leeds | 18th International Contemporary Artist Book Fair in March 2015. Johanknecht & Meynell’s essay on their collaborative project Poetry of Unknown Words is a particularly absorbing feminising response to Iliadz’s Poesie de mots inconnus; Gustavo Grandal Montero’s extended interview with Stephen Bann – From Cambridge to Brighton: Concrete poetry in Britain, discusses some seminal moments in the history of Concrete poetry in the UK and abroad from 1964, and Bann’s role within it as an organiser, practitioner, critic and editor.

Artists’ pages by: Ian Andrews, Mireille Fauchon, Martha Hellion, Candace Hicks, Danqing Huang, Paul Laidler, Sophie Loss, Angie Waller and Mark Wingrave.

An ever-growing listings section of artists’ books activity, collections, courses, dealers, publishers, galleries, centres, bookshops, libraries, artist-led projects and print studios, fairs, festivals and competitions.

In the Artists’ Books Listings section you can also find 537 examples of new artists’ books, with information about their work sent in by 182 artists in the following countries: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Norway, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, the UK and the USA.

Artist’s Book Yearbook 2016-2017. Published by Impact Press at the Centre for Fine Print Research, UWE Bristol, UK.  20th September 2015. 21 x 29.7 cm, 268 pp, b&w litho print throughout, colour cover. Cover design: Tom Sowden.

The Blue Notebook: Volume 10, No 1

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Essays and articles by: Mark Waugh (UK) on Eric Lesdema‘s Drowning the Moon; Lucy May Schofield (UK/Japan) reports on her book arts residency at Mokuhanga Innovation Laboratory; Radoslaw Nowakowski (Poland) on How to write a worst seller; Csilla Farkas (UK) explores Liberature: At the Border of Literature and Book Arts; Mary Cowley-Takaoka (Japan) on artist Kumiko Shindo’s book works responding to the Tōhoku Earthquake and Tsunami; Danny Aldred (UK): Drifting Through the Looking Glass [a road less travelled], Making living books with old and new tools.

Artists’ pages by: Charlotte Biszewski, Egidija Čiricaitė and Deborah Stevenson

Cover, badge and sticker design: Jessica Williams (Norway).

ABYB 2016 - 2017

The Blue Notebook for artists's books

Bookmarks XIII: online and at 10 venues until February 2016

Bookmarks XIII  

Bookmarks XIII includes 38 artists from: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Hawaii, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, the UK, and the USA. All of the bookmarks have been archived in the gallery section here on the website, with each artist’s contact details, so you can visit their websites and see more of their book works.

We have a great selection of bookmarks this year created with a wide range of processes, from: etching, woodcut, recycled book pages, linocuts, rubber stamps, letterpress, lithography, screenprint, hand cut, photography, hand painted, stencilled, folded designs, hand drawn, and even from recycled hi-viz jackets…

Many thanks to all the artists who have participated this year. Thanks also to all our venue hosts for participating. Please visit the website to find a venue near you in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Italy, UK or the USA, and to see all of the artists’ bookmarks.

Advance notice for World Book Night 2016

An invitation from WBN United Artists: Advance notice for Saturday 23rd April 2016. Our book this year has been selected by the artist John Bently; Margaret Atwood’s novel The Handmaid’s Tale.

On the day of World Book Night we will be in Halifax (West Yorkshire, UK) for a moors-based musical trip with John Bently, Nancy Campbell, Stephen Fowler and and many others. We will make a collaborative artist’s book in the afternoon, with pre-cut and folded books and rubber stamping production line session, so everyone can go home with a book of everyone’s stamps.

If you would like to join us on the day or join in remotely, here are your instructions:

Read The Handmaid’s Tale, then produce a rubber stamp of something in it or inspired by it (max size 5 x 8 cm). If you are coming to Halifax, bring your rubber stamp and an ink pad with you, if you cannot, send just the rubber stamp to Sarah before 10th April 2016. If you would like to join us, please email Sarah for directions or postal address if sending:

Everyone who makes a stamp will get a copy of the book we make with everyone’s stamps in. If you are sending yours from elsewhere, we will return it to you afterwards with a copy of the collaborative artist’s book. Here is what we did for World Book Night in 2015.

Detail: Ceremony – Illustration by Anna and Elena Balbusso for The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.

An Inventory of Al-Mutanabbi Street online gallery
The image shown here is of Al Mutanabbi Always by Karen Baldner.

An Inventory of Al-Mutanabbi Street / Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here

This project is touring internationally until 2018. The online Inventory gallery was launched to coincide with the fifth anniversary of the bombing of al-Mutanabbi Street on 5th March 2012, for which project partners around the world held commemorative readings and events. Since then the Inventory has grown as artists’ books created for the project have arrived. The gallery pages show images and information for each of the 260 books completed for the project.

Exhibitions since the launch of the tour include:
The Westminster Reference Library, Westminster, UK; The Powell Library Rotunda, UCLA, Los Angeles, California, USA; Salt & Cedar Letterpress Studio, Detroit, Michigan, USA; The Cambridge Arts Council, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA; The Santa Fe University of Art and Design, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA; The John Rylands Library, Manchester, UK; The San Francisco Center for the Book, San Francisco, California, USA; Gallery Route One, Point Reyes, California USA; the Center for Book Arts, New York in association with Alwan for the Arts, Columbia University Libraries Butler Library, International Print Center New, Poets House, New York, USA; Literary & Philosophical Society Library, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK; Collins Memorial Library, University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, Washington, USA; Curry College, Milton, Massachusetts, USA; American University in Cairo, Egypt; Arab – British Centre, London, UK; The Mosaic Rooms, London, UK; Kate Chappell ’83 Center for Book Arts at the University Of Southern Maine, USA; The Hague Public Library, The Netherlands; Queen Elizabeth II Library, Memorial University, St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada; Jaffe Center for Books Arts, Florida Atlantic University, USA; Central Library of Rochester and Monroe County, Rochester, New York, USA; Goddard College, Vermont, USA; Arab American National Museum, Dearborn/Detroit, Michigan, USA; Idaho Center for the Book in partnership with The Arts and Humanities Institute at Boise State University, USA; George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia, USA; Herron School of Art and Design, The Herron Art Library of IUPUI University library, USA; Keats House and the Iraqi Cultural Centre, London; the Arab American National Museum, Dearborn, USA; Idaho Center for the Book in partnership with The Arts and Humanities Institute at Boise State University.