NEW and RECENT TITLES
"Artwork as Social Model" by Stephen Willats
Stephen Willats’ art practice addresses contemporary social and cultural issues. His polemic takes ideas beyond the norms and conventions of the object-based art world, to explore possibilities inherent within communal groups.
In many of his projects he has collaborated with members of diverse communities in a variety of everyday settings, initiating interventions that build on the richness and complexity of self-organisation to determine and reinforce a sense of identity.The result is a body of artworks with a dynamic, interactive, social function.
This manual, which includes texts, interviews and artwork from five decades of practice, is intended as a tool for any artist or practitioner looking to find a meaningful relationship with contemporary society. It proclaims, and argues for, a culture that promotes the fluid, transient, relative and complex society from which it stems. click here to order
For more than 35 years, Coracle has produced artists’ books, critical works, editions and ephemera. Printed in Norfolk tells the story of this key contemporary small press in all its manifestations as printer, publisher, bookshop and gallery.
The emphasis here is on the years 1989 – 2012, when, under the direction of Simon Cutts and Erica Van Horn, a symbiotic working relationship between in-house production, the commercial practices of Norfolk printers Crome and Akers, and Norfolk binder Stuart Settle, signalled a new standard for the small press.
‘Neither a movement nor a formal artistic group, Coracle’s works are characteristically collaborative, reliably accomplishing nonpareil works that change one’s perspective.’— Marcia Reed, Head of Collection Development, Getty Research Institute
‘The activities of Coracle have been important for over 30 years because it has encouraged the book—both in terms of manufacture and reception (printing and stitching as much as turning a page and reading)—to be understood to issue forth and stand as a tangible space, a platform, for critical activity.’— Andrew Wilson, Curator of Modern & Contemporary British Art, Tate Britain
Essays by John Bevis, Simon Cutts, and a foreword by Andrew Wilson
22 colour plates
Dimensions 140mm x 150mm --Price: £9.00
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DRAWING - IN AND OUTSIDE - WRITING
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Sian Bowen and Nova Zembla: Suspending the Ephemeral
This special edition contextualizes the new body of drawings, artist books and video works made by Sian Bowen over a two-year period working as Guest Artist in Drawing at Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. The Nova Zembla collection of prints, which were carried as merchandise on Willem Barents’ expedition seeking a northern route to China in 1596, had lain frozen, transformed to papier-mâché blocks, in the Arctic for nearly three centuries. Reconstructed from hundreds of fragments by the Rijksmuseum, the prints provided opportunities for Bowen to develop work which explores the materiality of drawing and the ephemeral nature of museum objects on paper.
Through artworks, accompanying essays, documentary photographs, video stills and texts by the artist, this book traces Bowen’s own ‘journey’ through the project, emphasizing the tactilequalities of her artworks which at the same time employ light, transparency, perforation, reflection and fragility, and consolidate the often fugitive nature of the materials used in their making. The artist realized the project working with Rijksmuseum’s Paper Conservation Studio to employ 16th century methods and materials to new ends, and also with archaeologists, curators, historians, papermakers, printmakers and filmmakers. In addition she retraced part of the route of original expedition and filmed this journey through the fragmented icepack as it was reflected in a replica ‘Claude glass’.
152 pages with full-colour plates, it includes an introduction by Rijksmuseum Director Wim Pijbes; and further commentaries by Jan de Hond, Curator of the Nova Zembla Collection; Jan-Philipp Fruehsorge; Joel Fisher and Chris Dorsett. You can see more about the project at -http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/sian-bowen-at-rijksmuseum http://bowenatrijksmuseum.wordpress.com
£16 - click to order
'Anthony Earnshaw: The Imp of Surrealism'
Edited by Les Coleman
With its many voices, views, and opinions, this collective volume offers a comprehensive overview of the work of artist and autodidact, Anthony Earnshaw (1924 – 2001).
As a free-thinking maverick, Earnshaw preferred to plough the marginalised furrows of the art world, to which he maintained a distinct ambivalence. Influenced by jazz, surrealism, and poetry in postwar Britain, it is no surprise that his restless and rebellious temperament would find spiritual reassurance in the principles and philosophy of the Anarchist movement.
As a nonconformist, and at odds with Western capitalism, Earnshaw recognised early on that to explore his imagination was to find a haven. He embarked on a lifetime of creative activity which found form in an extraordinary range of works which included drawings, paintings, poetry and writing, comic strips and illustrated novels, boxed assemblages, and constructed letterforms.This monograph brings together for the first time the many strands that manifest Earnshaw’s thinking about his art and writing. A number of contributions come from the small and loyal band of artist friends and supporters whose lives he touched, and who play their part in his story.
'Bill Culbert:Making Light Work' by Ian Wedde
In this first substantial monograph on celebrated artist Bill Culbert’s work, Ian Wedde explores the ideas, materials and conditions that have formed his art over the past 50 years.
Culbert grew up in New Zealand but moved to the United Kingdom in 1957. Since 1961 he has lived largely in Provence and in London (though he exhibits regularly in New Zealand during the oyster season).
Culbert’s art has always kept ideas – about light, energy, social space, perspective, politics – on the move. They infuse his gently paradoxical photographs, his wall-mounted sculptures made of cool white fluorescent tubes and coloured plastic containers, his installations of cast-off objects, his battered suitcases, wheels, light bulbs, bottles and wine glasses pouring light.
‘Even at its most minimal,’ Wedde writes, ‘Bill Culbert’s art has a characteristically jaunty air; it sometimes comes as a surprise to realise that this jauntiness conveys an ethical challenge: to be alert, to participate, to converse.’
Extensively researched and generously illustrated, Bill Culbert: Making Light Work is an assured participant in this conversation.
Ian Wedde is a poet, fiction writer, curator and critic with a special interest in the visual arts. He was the general editor of the Montana Award-winning Ralph Hotere: Black Light (2000).
Published with Auckland University Press.
Illustration 237 colour, 180 b&w illustrations
Dimensions 248 x 270 mm
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'Unloud' by Duncan Higgins
Set somewhere in North Russia at some point during the last 100 years. Part fact, part fiction, part ghost story and part love story. The book is constructed through an inter-relationship of words and images, and recounts a story within the landscape in which it is inscribed.
Northern Russia has been described as being shrouded in a rare serene stillness and beauty undermined by the decaying presence of evil. Higgins states, ‘As I stepped off the plane on Solovki Island in North Russia in December 2004 I experienced a sudden and significant shift in understanding about my cultural place in the world. For me the Solovki islands are a compelling and unique place of concentrated social and political history that touch not just my own but wider shared histories. In this book I am concerned with exploring ideas of testimony and social memory and to try and find the means to visualise how the personal and the historical meet in our world today.’
Higgins’ practice involves painting, drawing, text, and video, and he has been working on Solovki since 2004 for extended periods throughout each year.
This publication also features an exclusive DVD (30min) of a collaborative film made by Duncan Higgins and Fred Perkins. Produced over the last four years the film connects and moves through the spaces and narratives of the unloud book.
English and Russian text.
Binding softback 3 volume boxset + DVD
Illustration 40 colour illustrations
Dimensions 203 x 158 mm
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'Finnegan's Teeth' by Judith Cowan
A visual journey seen through the eyes of the animal, Finnegan, and situated in the area around Kings Cross in London, as it goes through destruction and construction. Photographs of the happenings and events that Finnegan notices on his travels accompany the voices of the street life around him.
The episodes, based on real encounters, are spoken by different voices on the street. They describe smells, colours, touch, and other senses of this meta-world. Each is a separate moving scene contributing to an overall script.
This book engages centrally with language, tragedy and storytelling. Here the absurd is a point of departure, experienced alongside something rational. Finnegan, the dog, is the only named narrator, as he reveals a bizarre world of erratic images - turning us towards ambient noises, the slightest motion, or variations in light.
Narrative has always been important in Judith Cowan’s work, and this book, with its cover to cover sequence of photographs and interspersed texts, creates a duration that is rarely achievable with still images.
Illustration illustrated in colour and b&w
Dimensions 180 x 135 mm
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'Playing with Words' edited by Cathy Lane
A collection of responses from over 40 leading contemporary composers and artists who have been invited to represent aspects of their creative practice with words, and in particular, the spoken word, for the printed page.
The book concentrates on the kinds of creative play to be found in different sound based genres such as electroacoustic music composition, text sound composition, and sound poetry, while reflecting artistic practices in disciplines such as digital arts, electronic, concrete and experimental poetry, performance art and fine art.
The contributors have chosen to represent their work in a variety of ways which include writing, graphics, poetry, photographs and through interview.
Contributors include:Trevor Wishart, Paul Lansky, Lars-Gunner Bodin, Sten Hanson, Barry Truax, Katharine Norman, Joan La Barbara, Brandon LaBelle, David Toop, Jaap Blonk, Jorg Piringer, Imogen Stidworthy, Tomomi Adachi, Sue Tompkins, Pamela Z, Laurie Anderson, Paul Burwell, Bob Cobbing, and Michael Vincent.
Edited by Cathy Lane and co-published with CRiSAP (Creative Research into Sound Arts Practice).
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Other recent titles:
'Broken and Breaking Ground' by John Harper
Taking his thoughts into, and from the landscape resulted in both the title and content of this book. Throughout 2007 photographic artist and sculptor John Harper took ideas generated from earlier land related projects across Britain to what he calls ‘ the ordinary landscape’ of Fermyn Wood in Northamptonshire. The result of the project is a set of visual notations and resolved large scale photographic works all taken from this area of woodland, which show the artist’s concerns with visual perception and the questioning of conventional pictorialism.
The group of photoworks comprise hundreds of montaged individual black and white photographs taken in the landscape, and subsequently assembled in the studio.
Supported by text transcribed from discussions with Nancy Stedman of the Landscape Research Group, the book also uncovers Harper’s motivation and personal engagement with the land, and what he regards as the associated alchemy of photography.
Standard edition (hardback) now available from Cornerhouse click here to order - price £25
Illustration: 200 b&w illustrations
Dimensions: 221 x 278 mm
Special limited edition (pictured above) comes with a set of 8 photo prints in folder, in rigid slipcase with the hardback book - price £45 - contact RGAP to order
'Some Forms of Availability' by Simon Cutts
This volume assembles speculative essays, reviews, interviews, and collected statements and texts by Simon Cutts, long-time publisher of Coracle Press. Its concern is with the recent history of the book and the idea of publication arising from its occurrence in modernism, the small presses and the developing artists book. At the same time it introduces some of the ephemera produced by Coracle over the years, the Polemical Postcards, and a facsimile case history of the distribution of such understated work. These may all contribute to a new optimism for the availability of the small publication and for its sense of achievement within a finite means.
The book also deals with the relationship of printed to public space, the catalogue to the exhibition, the invitation and announcement to the work itself - and its reproduction.
This follows the long history of Coracle as curator and commissioning editor, from the gallery space in London and the early exhibitions of artists like Anish Kapoor, Antony Gormley, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Hamish Fulton, Richard Long and Roger Ackling, to books, catalogues and other printings in support of such work. Co-published with Granary Books, New York.
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‘Awayday to Paradise’ by Ian Breakwell
As well as his famous diaries, Ian Breakwell wrote an amount of text material which he denoted as ‘fiction’, much of which has remained unpublished. This book brings together such material into a single publication, and, as with our previous publication with Ian - ‘Derby Days’, incorporates some new writing.
The book comprises twenty or more text pieces, dating from 1981 to 2004, together with reproductions of 16 art/textworks by Ian Breakwell which he selected to accompany these texts. It was his proposal to develop and edit this volume in collaboration with RGAP and the format and content was agreed with Ian via a series of editorial meetings and correspondence in 2004/5.
‘Awayday to Paradise’ is significant in that it is probably the last book that Ian Breakwell actively worked on before he died in 2005. It also represents an unusual side of his extensive and varied output, in that it is not autobiographical, but demonstrates, nevertheless, his continuing observational wit combined with some poignant and sometimes dark reflections on living and dying in contemporary Britain
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'Irfaran' by Brigitte Jurack
The narrative of Irfaran emerges from the author’s travels across the Baltic States, northern Germany and Italy, as well as in the UK. Tracing a lineage of Wanderschaft back to the Middle Ages, this travelling artist passes through the Baltic States down to Odessa, from West Germany to the former East, from Swansea across to The Mumbles and then on to northern England, seeking to find meaning in the act of arriving, as both tourist and worker. From these journeys, impressions of the places visited are initially recorded in photographs and writings, and subsequently developed into Souvenir Sculptures.
Brigitte Jurack’s sculptural works, travel writings and monochrome photographs provide moments of revelation triggered by the peripheral and neglected architecture of modern cities pressured by tourism. This book is illustrated with over 30 black and white plates, together with photographic documentation of the sculptures.
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