Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hello Rare Autumn.

Hello Rare Autumn. By Sara Elgerot / Rare Autumn, 2012. 1 original print copy retained by the artist, digital copy for the cover of the Book Arts Newsletter (download the issue here).

Very happy to be the cover artist for this month's Book Arts Newsletter!


"This piece, ‘Hello Rare Autumn’, was made for the Book Arts Newsletter.

It’s, in a way, an amalgam of the starting point for a book I’m in the process of making, probably called ‘little book of hellos’, and a photograph I took of this year’s first proper autumn day.

No filters or Photoshop were used, instead the image was created by experimenting with different printers, emptying and filling up the different printer cartridges until this effect emerged (a one-time deal that can’t really be done again).

The text was printed on tracing paper, reversed and layered on top of the image, which was then scanned."

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Stormy Weather

Lena Horne performing the song Stormy Weather in the film of the same name (1943). 

Stay safe East Costers! (you're in my thoughts)

Monday, October 29, 2012

6:30 A.M.

6:30 A.M. By Robert Weingarten. Hatje Cantz, 2005. 120 pp., illustrated throughout, 30x29,6cm. Images from here.

Book description:

"This amazing series of photographs by Robert Weingarten was taken over one year, at the same time - 6:30 AM - from the same viewpoint from his home in Malibu, looking south over Santa Monica Bay toward Los Angeles airport.

Each image was shot with a 350mm lens using slow-speed, fine-resolution, color-saturated transparency film. The only variables were shutter speed, depending on the quantity of light available, and, most important, the changing Los Angeles sky.

'The result of this disciplined process', writes Getty Museum curator Weston Naef, 'was that camera, lens, and film were able to record chromatic effects that elude human perception'."

Sunday, October 28, 2012


OK OK OK. By Mike Slack. The Ice Plant, 2006 (originally published by J&L Books in 2002). 80 pp., illustrated throughout, 7x9". Images from here.

Book description:

" 'Chance favors the prepared mind'. - Louis Pasteur

'....a series of beautifully composed Polaroids taken by Mike Slack into a wordless trip around the country.

Sequenced like a dream, the nameless places and close-up abstractions are anchored to no narrative, but relate to each other through their use of color.

They belong to a different time, or maybe a different world...' - Printed Matter"

Friday, October 26, 2012

A Portrait of Ice.

A Portrait of Ice. By Caleb Cain Marcus. Damiani Editore, 2012. 72 pp., illustrated throughout, 12x14,5". Images from here.

Goodbye autumn / the first snow has fallen...

Book description:

" 'A Portrait of Ice' is the second monograph by Caleb Cain Marcus. His first monograph included a foreword by Robert Frank.

These new photographs are daringly sparse images of glaciers from Patagonia, Iceland, Norway, New Zealand and Alaska. On these vast open expanses of ice he has found beautiful worlds of color that open up an unmapped space.

The work acts as a bridge from land to ice. Once crossed the transformation is instantaneous. It is only you and the ice. A shard of something that may have accidentally entered into this world.

Glaciers, like people, are unique and can become intimately known by exterior features such as form and color, but also by their inner resonance. The photographs share with us a conversation between man and ice.

Caleb’s work is included in the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, the Museum of the City of New York, and the High Museum of Art."

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Cyanide and Sin.

Cyanide and Sin. Visualizing Crime in 50's America. Text by Will Straw, book design by Alexander Gelman and Andrew Roth. PPP Editions, 2006. 192 pp., illustrated throughout, 9x12". Edition of 3000 copies. Images from here.

I'm a massive fan of pulp fiction books and true crime magazines from the 50s so I can't quite believe I haven't found this book until now, really is a pretty great selection.

Book description:

" 'Cyanide and Sin' offers a broad history of the true crime magazine in America with an emphasis on its visual content, during the 1950s.
There have been numerous publications on the history of pulp and crime fiction. 'Cyanide and Sin' is the first book to look at the impact of the visuals used to accompany these stories.

As Straw writes: 'Crime lent itself readily to some of the most powerful impulses within modern image-making. It gave photographers drawn to social marginality subjects with which to avoid the sentimentality that too easily clings to images of the poor or downtrodden. Crime photography has served as the basis for transgressive violations of good taste, and for romantic glorifications of the doomed life. The images assembled in true crime magazines over their 80 year history have moved ceaselessly between what photographic historian Allan Sekula calls the honorific and repressive functions of photography. Images celebrating an extravagant individuality, for instance, have sat alongside others calling for citizen complicity in the enforcement of state power'. "

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Finger aus Licht.

Finger aus Licht. By Sabina Baumann. Nieves, 2012. 24pp., illustrated throughout, 14x20cm.

Book description:

"Sabina Baumann’s large pencil drawings are detailed, richly laden with symbols. There is a formal continuation from one drawing to the next, making them part of an endless story.

In dreamlike, surreal contexts, they not only raise questions about the social and the political, but also about the physical and the emotional.

The peace sign appears again and again: in the work Road Map for Peace on Wheels at Night, it is explained in an almost textbook-like way in flag semaphore, surfacing as graffiti on a brick wall, appearing in the abstract spokes of a bicycle wheel, and in a further element of the drawing the individual lines of the symbol irregularly oscillate around the center point and form the transition to window cross bars.

This in turn opens views of the private and treats in the broadest sense borders between inside and outside, the private and the political. Against the brick wall a wagonwheel loses its spokes and thus also becomes a peace symbol, but more than that, this wheel in its old-fashioned appearance contributes to an anachronism that stands for the parallel worlds that are combined in Baumann’s images."

Friday, October 19, 2012

Awkward Surfaces.

Awkward Surfaces. By Barriobajero. 16pp., illustrated throughout. Edition of 50 copies. Images from here.

Book description:

" 'Awkward Surfaces' is a collection of digital textures.

Barriobajero is a project by Silvia Bianchi and Ricardo Juárez based in Madrid [now in Stockholm]."

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Chinese Whispers.

Chinese Whispers. Contributions by Neil Chapman, Jill Magi, Sissu Tarka, Uriel Orlow, Brendan Fernandes and Jaanika Peerna. In Edit Mode Press, 2011.

Book description:

"(broken) telephone, grapevine, whisper down the lane, gossip, secret message, le téléphone arabe, stille post, gioco del telefono, telefono senza fili, telefone sem fio, głuchy telefon, pass the message, viskleken / The word was entirely nonsensical, composed from fragments of words extracted from the damaged label of a beer bottle, whispered and recorded as a digital file, run through a distorting filter, and passed on to our first contributor. / The sinophobic [British] name points to the centuries-old tradition in Europe of representing spoken Chinese as an incomprehensible and unpronounceable combination of sounds. / Here’s how it’s done: A first participant whispers a phrase or sentence to a subsequent participant. Each participant then proceeds to successively whisper what he or she believes him- or herself to have heard to the next participant. At the end of each round of the game, the last participant announces the statement to the entire group. / The sound recording was passed on to our initial contributor, who was asked to work with the recording – the sound itself as well as its transcription – to produce a sound- and text based contribution to the volume and, additionally, to solicit a subsequent participant to the series, make another sound recording of the whispered word, and pass this on to the chosen participant. / Errors often accumulate in the process, so that the statement announced by the last participant differs significantly from the one originally whispered by the first participant. / The resulting volume contains six separate contributions interlinked by the gradual mutation and disintegration of the original word recorded. / Contributors to the Chinese Whispers volume include Neil Chapman, Jill Magi, Sissu Tarka, Uriel Orlow, Brendan Fernandes and Jaanika Peerna. / There is no winner to the game. Amusement is derived by the comparison of the original and the final messages."

Friday, October 12, 2012

Red, green, blue and you.

Red, green, blue and you. By Andreas Samuelsson. Nieves and Rollo Press, 2012. 24pp., illustrated throughout, 19,5x25,5cm. Edition of 200 copies.

Book description:

"This is a very simple book based on a few colors and shapes.

It contains no text and some empty space. You're free to fill in the rest based on your imagination.

The book is made with a pencil, ruler and watercolor and printed on a risograph machine in 4 colors."

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Assemblies of Magic.

Assemblies of Magic. By John O'Reilly. Twin Palms Publishers, 2002. 184 pp., illustrated throughout, 10x12". Images from here.

Book description:

" 'Meditations on space, art, war, death and religion merge with the homoerotic in John O’Reilly’s intensely personal photo transformations.

For this artist, montage has proved the richest medium for personal allegory, and the formal and symbolic evolution of O’Reilly’s work corresponds to his own awakening self discovery.

His working methods of cutting and pasting mirror the energy inherent in de-constructing and reconstructing the psyche. Alternately, the physical merging of iconic Others enables their psychic incorporation into the Self.

Over twenty-five years of part-time employment as an art therapist have rendered O’Reilly equally interested in art and psychology and willing to use his deepest obsessions, fetishes, and fears as source material for his tiny assemblies of magic'. - Francine Koslow Miller"

Monday, October 08, 2012

I Believe You, Liar.

I Believe You, Liar. By Lucas Blalock. iceberg, iceberg, iceberg, 2009. 36 pp., illustrated throughout, 8x8".

Book description:

"Dear Ms. Patty Pacifica or Current Resident,

I like to think of cooing. it is among the warmer thoughts. especially nice in French which seems a warmer language except when it's not. Isn't it funny how cold warm things used badly become. I would accept your TV if you had it, but seem truly and earnestly (to my own embarrassment) more interested in truth than fact and all that uninterrupted information would bring us back to the palimpsest (a screen) and a possible becoming tedious because the volume controls of strangers - even friends and lovers - are always different from the ones internal. It's probably better if I listen to your speakers instead of getting greedy for headphones, or serialized programming.

As to. . . all of this is more lonely than sad but I am starting to relish this energy of impossible languages and unbridgeable gaps. The failures are all we have and I am no nihilist! I BELIEVE YOU, LIAR!! Light, sad? 'luc' is particle and wave both at the same time. I am torn. can you explain?

Thank you kindly,

Lucas Blalock"

Friday, October 05, 2012

Accidental Paintings.

Accidental Paintings. By Carol Stein. Robin Hill Studios, 2005. 88p., illustrated throughout, 9x9".

Lovely example of the beauty in the everyday, and what a different eye can yield...

Book description:

" 'Accidental Paintings' is a striking selection of 36 abstract color photographs taken in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, in 2004 and 2005 by photographer Carol Stein.

Its subject is surface color and form: its source, the colored edges of built structures and their visual interaction. The result is what can be seen as 'accidental' paintings. This is is a gem-like book, beautifully printed and assembled, whose rich color images suggest a meditation."

Tuesday, October 02, 2012


Blackout. By Dan Holdsworth. Essay by Oliver Morton, book design by Dan Holdsworth and Simon Earith. SteidlBG, 2012. 80 pp., illustrated throughout, 28,6cmx33cm. Images from here.

Book description:

"Occupying a space between the documentary and the make-believe, Dan Holdsworth’s photographs transform Icelandic glaciers into a strange and futuristic landscape.

In 'Blackout' the landscape is present only as a brooding, eerie image of itself: the blue of the sky has become the deep black of space, while the earth appears in pale negative.

This lunar-like terrain humbles the viewer before a foreign, awe-inspiring nature and repositions the notion of the romantic sublime."