Sunday, 29 November 2009

Book Art Show This Tuesday

It was a close call but I've just managed finish my latest sculpture, Book Tower II (Nostalgia For a Childhood That Wasn't Mine), and deliver it to KALEID Editions gallery before the hand-in deadline expired. Although there are some similarities to my original Book Tower sculpture, this one has a more open structure and I decided to make the top section entirely out of interlocking books. None of them are glued together. As with a lot of my work, this one relates to my interest in nostalgia. Only this time it is a constructed or fake nostalgia - a nostalgia for a childhood that wasn't mine. The books that I chose to use mostly originate from the 50's or 60's and suggest a comfortable middle-class (and naively racist, judging from the Gollywog book) white family life - with titles like Enid Blyton's Famous Five Have a Smashing Time Doing Whatever They Do (or something like that) and some dusty old text books.

Anyway, below is the info that I lifted from the press release. Hopefully I'll catch up with a few familiar faces at the opening this Tuesday.

Unique Artists' Books
2-24 December 2009
Private View: Tuesday 1st December, 6-9pm

KALEID is proud to announce an exhibition first: a group show dedicated to unique artists’ books.
The exhibition will bring to life ‘the aftermath of an accident between a trolley car and a newspaper kiosk', recalling Maud Lavin’s description of Johannes Baader’s original exhibition Das Grosse Plasto-Dio-Dada-Drama. Drawing inspiration from Baader’s original architectural feat, fifty pieces have been selected for their originality and conceptual response to the traditional book form.

KALEID curator Deeqa Ismail challenges the viewer to consider not what a book is but what a book can be. Reaching out to an international network of artists, exhibition highlights include:

Samantha Huang’s deformation of the found book is a rejection of the literal reading. Neglected by past owners, the book is conscientiously destroyed in order to disseminate its physical potential back into the public domain. Liz Jackson’s minimalist interventions draw attention to the physicality of the paper. Her demarcation of the edges transforms the book into a sculptural form, opening it to new ways of reading whilst hiding the true content of its pages. Finlay Taylor’s buried, decomposed and subsequently exhumed books that are transformed into unique pieces by worms and mollusks whose digestive journey offers a personal account of subterranean history. With his Dictionary Story, Sam Winston seeks to transcend the visual limit of language. His wild transformation of words into abstract form creates a style that pushes the boundaries of typography and the letterpress. Pete Williams’ 12ft Tower, made from rescued scrap wood and woodcuts, has been assembled in defiance of the material’s destruction. The installation as a focal point in the gallery, offers its ledges, nooks and crannies for the imminent arrival of fifty unique books.

For more information and images contact Deeqa Ismail at the gallery: deeqa(at) - KALEID editions (artists who do books). Unit 2, 23-25 Redchurch St, London E2 7DJ. 07852134825


Eni said...

You mention Enid Blyton's Famous Five series. well, I am glad to inform you that I have just published a book on Enid Blyton titled, The Famous Five: A Personal Anecdotage ( in which I cover some of the issues you have raised about the books.
Stephen Isabirye

Holly Howe said...

Good luck with the show opening tonight. Would love to have been there but you know me - never have been one to make it to your pvs!

Wayne Chisnall said...

Hi there Stephen - thanks for the comment - I'll check out your site.

And Holly, when you get back from Hong Kong I'll force you come to my next show.