Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Holiday Recommendations Guest Post: Maxine Proctor

Sergej Vutuc and We Make It, Berlin
Čista zona, Sergej Vutuc
Berlin, Germany: We Make It, 2016
48 pp., 28 x 20 cm., slip silkscreen glow in the dark cover
Edition of 400

"Čista zona, Sergej Vutuc is a collaborative book by Berlin-based artist Sergej Vutuc and We Make It, Berlin. Its thick inky black and white risograph pages and glow-in-the-dark silkscreen cover pay homage to Vutuc’s transient lifestyle and the decay of contemporary Europe. Vutuc has spent his artistic career skateboarding around crumbling cities including Detroit, Israel, Palestine, and Fukushima in an attempt to capture the mistakes of modern society.

Sergej Vutuc grew up Zagreb, Croatia during a time of violent political unrest. As a young man in the 90s, Vutuc took to wearing a beard, joined the punk and skateboarding community, and asserted himself as a modern nomad. Through these visual acts of social defiance, Vutuc utilized his position as an outsider to bear witness to the development of oppressive government regimes and specter of institutional powers. Skateboarding culture infiltrates the privatization of public spaces, encourages corporeal awareness, and creates subversive communities, all of which allow Vutuc a unique photographic vantage point. Čista zona, Sergej Vutuc illustrates the intrinsic relationship between Vutuc’s subtle observations and his skateboarding lifestyle - unhindered, transient, and collaborative. Vutuc’s ‘zines and artists’ books are comprised of analog photographs that document his many journeys. The photographs are then warped with broken glass, overexposure and his signature writing style. Many of the pages fold out into provocative landscapes that expands the visual narrative into a multitude of possible readings. "

Available here for 35 EUR/ $50 CAD

Maxine Proctor is the Creative Director and Co-founder of the Toronto Art Book Fair. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Saskatchewan and Master of Arts from York University.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Holiday Recommendation Guest Post: Carlos Yep

Jonathan Monk
Finger Food
Toronto, Canada: Art Metropole, 2014
10.5" diameter
Edition of 10

Ten unique plates each hand painted a different color by the artist with two glazed thumbs on top and 8 fingers on the bottom side. Each plate comes with signed certificate. Produced as a fundraising edition to celebrate Art Metropole’s 40th anniversary
Art metropole has 2 still available – Grey and Green - they're available here for $800 CDN.

Carlos Yep is a Toronto based collector of artist books and multiples.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Sam Durant | End White Supremacy

Last week Sam Durant's End White Supremacy sign from 2008 was presented at Basel Miami and hung on the facade of Paula Cooper Gallery in New York. It was originally installed in the same spot 8 years ago, during the election campaign between Obama and John McCain. It remained in place until July of 2009, six months into Obama's first term.

The sign, which recreates an anonymous civil rights protest sign, hastily scrawled, is said to now remain in place indefinitely. Gallery director Steve Henry contacted Durant a few days after the election ended and asked if they could rehang the sign.

“I said yes,” Durant told “In the words of the immortal Eduardo Galeano, ‘History never ends, I hate to remind you.'”

Helen Marten | Parrot Problems

Helen Marten
Parrot Problems 
Cologne, Germany: Koenig Books, 2016
236 pp., 12.4 x 0.9 x 9.6", softcover
Edition size unknown

Released last month, this publication accompanies Marten’s first institutional solo exhibition in Germany. The volume is edited by Susanne Pfeffer and features writings from Diedrich Diederichsen, and Johanna Burton. Marten's contribution includes a 40-page sequence of collages that address "the density and complexity of our material lives."

It was announced today that Martin won the Turner Prize, beating Michael Dean, Anthea Hamilton, and Josephine Pryde. The jury - which consisted of Alex Farquharson, Michelle Cotton, Tamsin Dillon, Beatrix Ruf and Simon Wallis - called her work "outstanding for its extraordinary range of materials and form" and added that Marten is "making an exceptional contribution to the continuing development of contemporary visual art".

Only a few weeks ago Marten was awarded the £30,000 Hepworth Prize, which she reportedly split between herself and the other finalists, Phyllida Barlow, Steven Claydon and David Medalla. At the time she pledged that if she won the Turner Prize she would do the same.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Holiday Recommendation Guest Post: Cully Sommers

Chris Turner  
LA from Detroit                                                                                                                      
Detroit, United States: DittoDitto, 2012                                                                                                
51 pp., 8 x 16", perfect bound. ​                                                                      
Edition of 200          

LA from Detroit is an artist book by Chris Turner. The work featured was completed during a winter retreat to Los Angeles.  ​Christopher Turner, sculptor, painter and mixed media artist, is a Detroit resident who learned his welding skills as a journeyman in Iron Workers Local #25. Turner’s most well-known work, a collaboration with sculptor Mathew Blake, is the massive stainless steel ‘Millennium Bell’, located in Grand Circus Park in Detroit, 26 feet in height with a total weight of ten tons. It is a working public sculpture, albeit one that is sounded just once a year at midnight on December 31/January 1.  Turner’s works have been shown throughout Ontario and Michigan.

LA from Detroit is available from from DittoDitto and the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) store, for $25.00.


Cully Sommers is a librarian in the Music, Arts and Literature Department at the Detroit Public Library (DPL). Son of Detroit counterculture artist Robin Sommers, Cully has been immersed in the Detroit art scene from birth. Having dabbled in local art and experimental music projects in the past, Mr. Sommers now devotes his efforts to the music and art collection at DPL as well as curating the department’s Tumblr page @detroitlib.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Holiday Recommendation Guest Post: Sarah Bodman

Ocaso / Twilight

"I noticed this book on Martha Hellion’s stand at the Small Publishers Fair at the Conway Hall in London last month. When I say noticed, it actually stopped me in my tracks, being so incredibly beautiful. I just knew that I wanted it, and then as I looked down I saw the rest of her new books and blew the rest of my money on one from her new series Field Work. Hellion has a long and respected history of artists’ books research, curation, writing, teaching and practice. 

This book, screenprinted over silver leafed paper in an edition of 30 at Taller Pablo Torrealba (tpt) in Mexico can be read in many ways. First of all, it is captivating, depicting the onset of dusk, a shimmering twilight with a detail of pink and orange tinged sky on the last page. But, typically of Hellion this book is about much more than landscape. On the reverse is a poem, translated from Spanish, originating from the Arhuaco people of Colombia.  In their spiritual beliefs, this mountain of Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is the heart of the world, and all the wellbeing, health, harmony and happiness of the rest of the world depends on it. So here is Hellion, at twilight, looking to the heavens from earth, thinking, asking, reflecting in her travels, and this immense beauty of the mountain at dusk is responsible for everything, for all of us." 

Sarah Bodman is Senior Research Fellow for Artists' Books at the Centre for Fine Print Research (CFPR), and Programme Leader for MA Multidisciplinary Printmaking at the Bower Ashton Campus, UWE Bristol, UK.

Friends with Books: Art Book Fair Berlin 2016

The Friends with Books: Art Book Fair Berlin 2016 opens next Friday, December 9th, at the Hamburger Bahnhof.

Billed as "Berlin as Europe’s premier event for contemporary artists’ books and periodicals by artists and art publishers", the event features over 160 international participants and a series of public programmes: discussions, readings, presentations, performances, and art works that "explore the perimeters of today’s art publishing."

The fair runs from the 9th to the 11th and admission is free. For more information, please visit the website, here: