Monday, April 12, 2010

artist books

I was invited to write something for the audio component of the "Fit to be Bound" exhibition at the Everson Museum, which opens later this week. They asked me to answer the question of what artist books are for me - what do they look like, what comprises an artist book, etc. My response will be included as part of the cell phone audio tour system, so that any visitor who comes into the exhibition can dial in and listen to my thoughts. Here's what I submitted:

"For me, the artist book emphasizes the process of viewing rather than the product of making. The book represents a personal encounter - the importance of seeing, discovering, and understanding a work of art on your own terms, in your own time. The book is not an object that's meant to be understood from a distance. It is meant to be studied; it requires investigation. Contained within its volume is a story, an experience, which has been physically recorded by its maker. You are meant to sit with it, relate to it, to let the story unfold. This cannot be accomplished in an instant or at first glance, but slowly, over the course of time, with patience and persistence. Its form, its thickness and weight, can tell you how much of your time it will demand. A story can be one story tall, or one mile long, or as thick as one strand of hair. Nevertheless, it is up to you, the viewer, to read it."

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