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Re: [BKARTS] BOOK_ARTS-L Digest - 6 Feb 2007 to 7 Feb 2007 (#2007-38)

Dear Lee,

You hit the nail on the head. It all has to do with the premises we bring
and the context of what it is we are expressing. I've a ceramist friend
who has stopped firing his ceramic pieces and allows his works to
simply sit out in the woods or his back yard (wherever) and allows
the to disintegrate. His thinking that there is enough refuse and
garbage in the world without his having to add to it. Striving for the
Archival is sheer vanity. And to that I'd add "The Emperor has no

My own premises and contexts as to my initially making my books
'sans archivalness' was a rather silly meme as to the notion that
this art I made was pornographic. And from there what could be
more appropriate than it retaining some sleaze as to the materials
I'd choose to use. I was after all making copier art, ostensibly
planning to send my thingees as mail art. Much of what I did was
to take 'zerox' my drawings and use my memory typewriter for
making limited edition multiples.  I would make them 'as needed'.

Why print up editions that would take up valuable storage space
and cost me more to print (say by letterpress or whatever) when
I knew that they'd sit around gather dust unless I threw them out
or donated them to whomever would cart them off?

This was my reasoning back in the 1970s when I had my first
glimmer of functioning as an artist who was decidedly no longer
saw himself as an easel painter.

If you were to see the one of a kinds books I made and
bore witness to how few archives would allow me to donate
and or buy a book or two, you'd understand my pragmatism.

Norman Shapiro

330 W 28 ST. Apt 7A
New York, NY, 10001

http://ufemisms.com/ (If you choose to visit me here, you will
see a list of those archives. I keep them updated as to the
work that I still am doing.)


Date:    Wed, 7 Feb 2007 11:07:14 -0700
From:    Lee Churchill <leec@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: Re: BOOK_ARTS-L Digest - 5 Feb 2007 to 6 Feb 2007 (#2007-37)

Dear Norman,=20

I'd rather choose making it art than 'ARCHIVAL' Have you noted my
comments ant BOOK_ART on this issue? I'm saying that the talk of
and recipes is too predominating. The "Emperor has no clothes'. It
all to do with artists making art. Book art is nothing without the
books being to begin with saying something, expressing something of
lasting and universal relevance. The craftsy stuff is nothing
it being expressive of something beyond 'preservation'.

I do agree that "Book art" should be half about the "art", but I
consider the physical construction of the book to be an important half
of the idea of "book-art".=20
I am very biased on this issue, I will freely admit. It stems from my
training, for good or ill. Beyond conservation, when I studied sculpture
the professor always told us to be aware of every aspect of the
materials we used and to make sure those materials reflected the meaning
of the piece. Using 'un-archival' materials is valid - if they are there
for a reason and support what I am doing. They shouldn't be there by
default because I couldn't be bothered to find out what I am working
with. =20

In the spirit of amiable disagreement,

The Bonefolder, Vol. 3, No. 1, Fall 2006 Now Online at
Guild of Book Workers' 100th Anniversary Exhibition Online - Catalog Available
For all your subscription questions, go to the
Book_Arts-L FAQ and Archive.
See <http://www.philobiblon.com> for full information

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