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Re: Book Art or Design (was: definitions of graphic design)



Richard Minsky asks:

I'd like to turn the question to the studio practice of book artists, and ask
them and the curators (including collectors and librarians) on this list:

Is the work you create or curate art or design, and to what extent is the work
created/curated based on theory and/or history.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Whoo-ee this discussion is getting complicated. A sound definition of art:
the manipulation of materials by humans for aesthetic purposes. Seeing how
most of us book folks are dealing with content, usually language--real or
invented (which has its own particular meaning, anyway)--then I'd say no,
it's not art. The book arts are defined by their bookness. And though you
can dress a book up, it's still, in the end, a book. Which is good enough
for me. And though I don't know nothing 'bout no theories, I can't think
of  one book that owes no debt to history. History always informs design.
You can't escape it, unless you maybe ask an elephant to do it for you.

For what it's worth,
John Cutrone
Red Wagon Press

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