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- To: BOOK_ARTS-L@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU
- Subject: Oh dear.
- From: Michael Babcock <mjb@PAMET.COM>
- Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 11:45:56 -0500
- Message-Id: <199803091701.JAA19188@SUL-Server-2.Stanford.EDU>
- Sender: "Book_Arts-L: The list for all the book arts!" <BOOK_ARTS-L@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU>
> From: Jennifer Marie Gorman
> This definition of a artist's book is far off the mark...
> One perfect example of an artist's book which contradicts the =
> you give in every sense is the work entitled "Bound Book"..."bound" by =
> thick rope that has been wrapped and tied around the outside of the =
blah, blah, blah.
What you refer to is a wry commentary on what people commonly believe a =
to be, as well as a visual pun in sculptural form. It is not an "artist's =
in the sense that Peter is attempting to define. Therefore it is =
to what is generally being discussed here. You must have mistaken this =
Conceptual_Art-L. Exceptions mayn't negate definitions, but broaden them.
> I feel what people struggle with when defining what an artist's book =
> is the connotation of the term "book". I have seen many artist's books =
> aren't technically "books". So then here we are again with the question =
> what are artists books?
Yes, so then.
What makes you certain that what you observed were "artist's books"?
Because someone said it was? Who said so? The "Artist"? A curator? =
there can be a certain "elasticity" in the definition of anything (again, =
or erotic?). We have to start with a basic set of characteristics that =
us all in the same realm of thought. Yes, to your point, "bound book",
ha ha, has a number of characteristics that enable you to believe what =
observe is a "book", when in fact it is sculpture about "books". I stand =
my definition of an "Artist's Book" as clear and concise, and =
as inclusive of a few possible forms that they may take. My def, does not =
provide for sculptural works, by design, as they are not books, per se. =
is not the be-all and end-all, (how foolish to believe that it could be!)
That final set will be for Peter to distill through the editorial =
> The question of artist's books is one that thoroughly perplexes me =
> so I will refrain from trying to define it myself.
I'm sorry Jennifer, but one so apt to discount the attempt of another
at a clear, on point, definition, while offering such a lame disclaimer,
well,... you're lame. So flame me.
Again, here's my definition, 100% accurate or not, I made an attempt:
An "artist book" is an assemblage of folios, bound or otherwise, meant
to be observed in a sequential fashion, either arbitrary or =
and comprised of elements both textual, or pictorial. Construction is
often of an importance equal to that of content. Modes of reproduction
are variable, as are methods of construction.
Yeah, maybe it's a bit wishy washy, but there's a lot of gray area out =