The ABYB is a biennial reference publication focusing on international activity in the field of book arts. It serves as a resource for artists, academics, students, collectors, librarians, dealers, publishers and researchers, in fact anyone interested in artists’ books!
The 2020-2021 issue has essays, articles, and lots of useful information on: Artist’s Book Publishers & Presses; Bookshops for artists’ books; Artist’s Book Dealers; Artist’s Book Galleries & Centres; Collections, Libraries & Archives; Artist’s Book Fairs and Events; Book Arts Courses and Workshops; Design, Print & Bind; Print Studios; Journals and Magazines; New Reference Publications; Organisations, People, Projects and Societies. In the Artists’ Books Listings section, you can also discover hundreds of examples of new books made by artists in: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland,
Russia, Sweden, the UK and the USA. Cover design: Tom Sowden.
Order your copy online here
This year we have a selection of books and poetry nominated by Csilla Biro, Sarah Bodman, Nancy Campbell and Linda Parr. The exhibition, video and publication for 2020 will be coordinated by Sarah Bodman and Linda Parr.
In light of Nancy Campbell’s book The Library of Ice: Readings from a Cold Climate (Scribner, 2018) we have decided not to travel. Instead we will be travelling virtually through fiction and libraries. Our set texts for WBN 2020 are: W. G. Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn (New Directions Books, 1998), Olga Tokarczuk’s Flights (Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2018), and the poem ‘Questions of Travel’ by Elizabeth Bishop (1911 –1979). Please choose one or read them all.
In an interview with Tim Youngs (2018) Nancy Campbell talks about the ethical, environmental, cultural and financial considerations of travel, and quotes a line from Elizabeth Bishop’s ‘Questions of Travel’: “Should we have stayed at home and thought of here?”. Nancy then goes on to say of writing The Library of Ice: “A lot of what lies behind my book is sitting in libraries and imagining other places.”. Intertwining ideas of travel with personal reflection and historical facts as an inspiration for WBN had placed Sebald and Tokarczuk on the ‘to do’ list in 2018. But now we need to also consider whether it is necessary for us to travel at all. Can we sit in libraries with books and travel through our imaginations?
WBN 2020: the brief for participation.
We invite you to sit in a library (real or imagined), then send us a postcard describing where you are (text or image). The postcard you send can be an existing postcard, old or new, or homemade, you can write/draw/collage/type/print on one side or both, it’s up to you. If you can’t afford to post us a physical postcard then email Sarah the text or image you would have written or drawn on it and she will stick it onto a blank postcard (Sarah.Bodman@uwe.ac.uk please put WBN2020 in the subject line).
WBN United artists will exhibit all the postcards together over the month of April 2020 at Bower Ashton Library, UWE Bristol, UK. We’ll make a pdf download catalogue of all the entries. We will also print a little folded keepsake/folio which will contain one copy of an editioned postcard produced by us, WBN United artists on 23/04/20 (typewriters, collage, rubber stamps etc.) and one of the submitted postcards. Each contributor will receive a little album/keepsake with our postcard and a postcard from someone else as a mail art exchange.
Send your postcard to: Sarah Bodman, CFPR, UWE, Bristol, Kennel Lodge Road, Bristol BS3 2JT, United Kingdom.
Three important things to note: 1) Please write your name and where you are posting it from clearly on the postcard. 2) Maximum postcard size is 15 x 10.5 cm. (3) Please email Sarah your name and postal address so we can send your copy of the mail art exchange keepsake: Sarah.Bodman@uwe.ac.uk
Nobody will travel except in their imagination, but we will all be collectively in the library. The deadline for receipt of postcards is Tuesday 31st March 2020.
The feature image here is from a postcard sent for World Book Night 2020 by Claire Marcus (USA).
Articles in this issue: Ella Morrison, Hand to page: touch, performance, and the artist’s book; Altered Images: An interview with David Ferry by Stephen Clarke; Documenting Craft: A Discussion of Recordness in Book Art by Robert Riter; DAYPAGES – Paris by Daniel Lehan; The Book Tree Press – an accidental imprint by Lucy Roscoe.
Vol 14 No. 1, Autumn – Winter 2019 is now available. Cover, badge and sticker design by Chrystal Cherniwchan. Artists’ pages by: Jane Cradock-Watson, Leonard McDermid, Sylvia Waltering and Maria White.
Subscription info for all issues can be found here.
Sarah’s artist’s book, Read to Me is the result of a collaboration with a psychometric reader, telling stories to objects which were then ‘read’ back. The book and a selection of the objects read to (and from) are now touring in an exhibition that is visiting venues in the UK and USA. The project began by accident in winter 2002 at Visual Studies Workshop, Rochester, NY, USA, when Sarah undertook an Artist’s Publishing Residency to produce a limited edition artist’s book The Marsh Test. It was here that someone mentioned the Fox Sisters, Margaret and Kate who launched their careers (aged 16 and 13) as spirit mediums (170 years ago) with a public performance on 14th November 1849, at the Corinthian Hall in Rochester, NY. Their performances played a part in the huge rise of interest in spirit rappings and in turn the founding of the Spiritualist Movement in 1850s America.
On Thursday 14th November 2019, an experiment will take place at Arnolfini’s bookshop at 6.30pm. In tribute to the Fox Sisters and the artist Susan Hiller’s Sisters of Menon publication, you are invited to come along and attempt to capture a reading that Sarah will transmit to you. A4 paper and pens will be provided to create automatic drawings of the transmitted image. The results will be displayed in the exhibition Read With Me, at Bower Ashton Library throughout December 2019.
If you aren’t based in Bristol, you can join in remotely. The image will be transmitted at 6.45pm on Thursday 14th November, if you can capture the image in your mind in the timezone you are in anywhere in the world, please close your eyes and do an automatic drawing of it for 10 seconds. Please write your name on the sheet of paper, and post to Sarah by 25th November, or photograph it and email the image to Sarah.Bodman@uwe.ac.uk by 25th November 2019. Contact Sarah for the postal address or if you have any questions.
Leonard McDermid is an artist, poet, printer and award-winning publisher. He has lived in the Scottish Borders for over fifty years and he has exhibited widely, with work held in many private collections and some public collections.
His exhibition at UWE, Bristol’s Bower Ashton library throughout October celebrates work made at the Stichill Marigold Press over the past twenty-five years: a captivating assortment of pamphlets, poems, cards, pieces and objects that ‘provoke smiles or quiet pondering’. The work presents itself quite minimally, in limited colour palettes, formed in sizes that are human which ask to be held. Read more about his exhibition here
Leonard McDermid will be talking in person about his work, poetry, printing and creative practice (and we hope, also reading some of his poems) at UWE, Bristol, Bower Ashton Library on Thursday 31st October 2019 between 12-1pm. This is a free (unmissable) event and all are invited to attend.
How to find Bower Ashton Library
Sarah Bodman – I Made This For You is an exhibition for the 15th AMACI – Giornata del Contemporaneo. Curated by Antonio Freiles, it is on display at the Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea L. Barbera, Messina, Italy from 12th – 30th October 2019
The 15th Day of Giornata del Contemporaneo – Italian Contemporary Art, an event organised annually by AMACI to bring contemporary art to the general public will be held on Saturday, 12 October 2019. Now in its fifteenth year, once again the Giornata del Contemporaneo – Italian Contemporary Art will open the doors of 24 AMACI museums free of charge, along with about a thousand institutions throughout Italy and abroad to present artists and new ideas through exhibitions, workshops, events and conferences. Read more about the exhibition here
To celebrate the event, a new artist’s book Lago Cremisi Permanente by Sarah Bodman & Chrystal Cherniwchan will be published by Antonio Freiles in October, and will be available at the exhibition.
Kate Holland of Designer Bookbinders will be running free sessions for UWE students and staff in the library from November. Book a place through Shaun Oaten in the library, max 12 places per session. Thurs 21st November – Japanese binding, Thurs 30th January – decorative techniques, Thurs 27th February – box making, 10.30 – 3.30 each session. These sessions are sponsored by Designer Bookbinders and the Printing Charity. Designer Bookbinders is one of the foremost societies devoted to the craft of fine bookbinding. Its membership includes some of the most highly regarded makers in the fields of fine bookbinding, book arts and artists’ books, each with a passion for presenting the bound text as a unique art object.
Kate Holland is a multi award winning bookbinder, specialising in contemporary fine bindings to commission or for exhibition. She uses traditional materials and techniques to produce a unique, modern binding that reflects the text, illustrations and typeface of the book.
ABC is a cross-disciplinary forum for makers of artists’ books and ephemera, founded by MA alumna Lilla Duignan in 2009 for students and interested parties based at Bower Ashton. It provides an opportunity to get together for critical and constructive dialogue, to contextualise work, explore ideas and to develop creative practice and theory. ABC meets and works as a group towards exhibitions, projects and participation in regional and national artist’s book fairs and events.
ABC coordinators for the academic year 2019-2020 are Csilla Biro, Sarah Bradicich and Gin Saunders. The first meeting of the 10th anniversary year of ABC will be on Thursday 16th October 2019.
This exhibition is on tour as part of the ongoing al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here Coalition projects. 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 held 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; Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here DC 2016 a partnership between 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, Smithsonian American Art Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Northern Virginia Community College, George Mason University Student Media and Fourth Estate Newspaper; Rosenberg Library at the City College of San Francisco, USA; Konstlitografiska museet, Helliden, Sweden.
The image shown here is a detail from Al-Mutanabbi, Once Again, August 2012 by Wuon-Gean Ho.