Book Arts

Artists’ Books Exhibitions in the Bower Ashton Library cases, UWE, Bristol, UK

Why Publish?

Tuesday 1st September – Sat 31st October 2020*

Over lockdown many of us have been thinking about past and future exhibitions, projects and books. Books we haven’t made yet, revisiting books we love reading and discovering books we want to read to make us think about or see things a little differently. Some recent arrivals and Tim Mosely’s Correlations series of publications and exhibition inspired the choices for this autumn exhibition. To think about the books we make, but also about some related books that remind us why we want to publish right now.

Dipping into brighten up your writing by Caitlin Akers or Etiquette by Lacey Prpic Hedtke has allowed a sense of play with words, and making of rules and agreements for lockdown living. Being creative with scissors and Pritt Stick, making collages, rubber stamping, anything you can get your hands on that occupies your mind. London-based artist Daniel Lehan has been making massive collage panoramas at home, in Yorkshire, Jean McEwan collaged a month-long series of hand-altered, fundraiser postcards in August and has made a new book – Games of Now “Figuring out how to live in these days”.

Other books concern publishing itself, Some Notes on Books and Printing, A Guide for Authors and Others, Charles T. Jacobi (1892) with new texts by E. McManus and S. S. Whetton (A6 books and Temporal Drag) produced by the brilliant risograph expert Esther McManus at the London Centre for Book Arts (LCBA) has provided great inspiration alongside the wonderful Natural Enemies of Books, A Messy History of Women in Printing and Typography (Maryam Fanni, Matilda Flodmark, Sara Kaaman – MMS, eds. Occasional Papers, 2020) both purchased from the LCBA online shop.

Letraset poems – Michael e. Casteels, Flotsam (VVV3) published by Timglaset in Sweden, one of a series of “small, inexpensive chapbooks which aim to broaden the perspective on contemporary experimental poetry.” We succumbed to Timglaset’s new stock too, from the wonderful psw (Petra Schulze-Wollgast) Pyramids and Copy Transform series, plus the new ToCall Magazine #11 – a special issue dedicated to alphabets and alphabetic works of concrete poetry with contributions by 17 artists and poets. Timglaset also generously produces free pdfs of their out of print titles which you can download here.

Noticing changes in the garden, landscape, and the climate/weather here, lead us to engage with new and old Uniformbooks publications, from An Indifference of Birds (Richard Smyth, 2020) and Suburban Herbarium (William Arnold, 2020) to Spate, (Colin Sackett, 2009) amongst others.

Talking to artists about how they were managing to produce new work allowed us to also find or revisit books and zines such as Art (EAK Press, 2013), Puffin Muzzle (Paul Cooke, dubious books, 2020), Buke Zine 4 (Andres Gatti, 2012) and Omiros Panayides’s OWK zine (2016-).” OWK (Oi Wraioi Kypraioi) is an ironic acronym for “the beautiful Cypriots” in Greek, spelled using Latin characters. OWK is an independent visual library for words and images that create linear or abstract stories providing a structure for publishing and archiving projects.” Correspondence with Roelof Bakker about his new artist’s book Unprocessed (2020) involved thinking about the purpose of the democratic multiple and the idea of the reader / viewer as witness.

Antonio Freiles emerged from lockdown in Sicily to post an artist’s book edition he had kindly published last October Lago Cremisi Permanente (Sarah Bodman & Chrystal Cherniwchan, 2019), David Dellafiora managed to send the new Field Report 2019 (Field Study International, 2020) to contributors around the world from his base in Geelong Australia despite postal delays due to quarantine. Dellafiora is still inviting participation in all Field Study publications, so check out his website. to see what you might contribute to. Some publications also arrived from Hubert Kretschmer’s Archive Artist Publications in Munich which sowed the seeds for this exhibition, was wir glauben (what we believe) by Natascha Afanassjew & Jonny Mühle (, 51, 2020) and Why Publish Noise? by Miekal And (, 66, 2020).

List of books in this exhibition:
All Ways, Leonard McDermid, Stichill Marigold Press, 2008;
An Indifference of Birds, Richard Smyth, Uniformbooks, 2020;
Art, EAK Press, 2013;
brighten up your writing, Caitlin Akers, 2009;
Buke Zine 4, Andrés Gatti, June 2012;
Copy Transform, psw (Petra Schulze-Wollgast), 2019;
Copy Transform – blue version psw (Petra Schulze-Wollgast), 2018;
Copy Transform – spirit version, psw (Petra Schulze-Wollgast), 2019;
Dyslexia and I, Esther Stephenson, ND;
Etiquette, Lacey Prpic Hedtke, 2006;
EXIT, Alison Hardcastle, 2005;
Field Report 2019, Field Study International, curator David Dellafiora, Australia, 2020;
Flotsam (VVV3), Michael e. Casteels, Timglaset Editions, 2020;
Games of Now, Jean McEwan, 2020;
Home Planetarium Survey, Heidi Neilson, 2008;
In the Shadow of Forward Motion, David Wojnarowicz, Primary Information, 2020;
Lago Cremisi Permanente, Sarah Bodman & Chrystal Cherniwchan, Antonio Freiles, 2019;
Lucha por la Vida/Struggle for Life, Ral Veroni, 2001;
Natural Enemies of Books, A Messy History of Women in Printing and Typography, Maryam Fanni, Matilda Flodmark, Sara Kaaman – MMS, eds. Occasional Papers, 2020;
NICE, HERE, Jean McEwan, 2020;
OWK zine, Omiros Panayides, 2016;
Puffin Muzzle, Paul Cooke, dubious books, 2020;
Pyramids, psw (Petra Schulze-Wollgast), 2020;
Some Notes on Books and Printing, A Guide for Authors and Others, Charles T. Jacobi (1892) with new texts by Esther McManus and S. S. Whetton, A6 books and Temporal Drag, produced by Esther McManus at the London Centre for Book Arts, 2019;
Spate, Colin Sackett, Uniformbooks, 2009;
Squad Goals, Ampersand Duck, 2017;
Suburban Herbarium, William Arnold, Uniformbooks, 2020;
The Man Who Knew Nothing, Nathan Walker, 2014;
ToCall Magazine #11, psw, (Petra Schulze-Wollgast), 2020;
Unprocessed, Roelof Bakker, 2020;
was wir glauben (what we believe) Natascha Afanassjew & Jonny Mühle, 51, 2020;
Why Publish Noise?, Miekal And,, 66, 2020

*The books will be displayed in the library cabinets for students to see when they return in October, but due to social distancing measures we will be sharing the books with the public online as we did with the last exhibition via UWE Bristol Library’s Twitter feed.

UWE Bristol, City Campus at Bower Ashton, Kennel Lodge Road, Bristol BS3 2JT.

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