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[BKARTS] Exhibition in the Arts of the Book Collection at Yale University
Poison America: Sharon Gilbert Bookworks
An Exhibition in the Arts of the Book Collection
Sterling Memorial Library, Yale University
June 4 - September 27, 2007
Guest Curated by Courtney J. Martin
An exhibition examining Sharon Gilbert?s career
as an artist is on display in the Arts of the
Book Collection in Yale University?s Sterling
Memorial Library. Born in 1944, Gilbert has
engaged many of the most pressing social and
cultural currents of her time. As a child of both
the Cold War and the civic upheavals of the 1960s
in America, she has used the medium of artists?
books to tackle national anxieties ranging from
nuclear waste to sexism to the American workday.
Often executed with textual wit and visual puns,
her productions engage a variety of aesthetic
strategies, most notably repetition and collage.
Gilbert?s frequent use of the photocopy machine
was both innovative and effective, a
demonstration of her interest in mechanization
and her skill in moving between forms of graphic
media. Poison America, a title taken from one of
her works, presents a selection of Gilbert?s
books from the late 1970s to the present.
Included with Gilbert?s work are other artists?
books that are in aesthetic, media, or contextual
dialogue with hers. These include Dona Ann
McAdams, her contemporary colleague in the
political art collective Political Art
Documentation & Distribution Archive (PAD/D), and
other copy-art artists Mariona Barkus, Louise
Neaderland, and John Wood. In addition to the
bookworks on display, the exhibition features an
essay by guest curator Courtney J. Martin
available on the Arts of the Book Collection web site:
Courtney J. Martin is an art historian and a
curator. Most recently she curated an exhibition
of artists? books, the C-Series: Artists? Books
and Collective Action, at the Nathan Cummings
Foundation in New York. The C-Series traveled to
the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art,
Gateshead, England (2005); Neon Campobase in
Milan (2006); and the Liverpool Biennial (2006).
In 2004 she co-curated an exhibition of abstract
art, Sunrise/Sunset, at Smack Mellon in Brooklyn.
Her writings include ?The Twentieth-Century Dandy
as Cultural Provocateur: Yinka Shonibare, MBE and
the Diary of A Victorian Dandy,? included in the
edited volume Black British Aesthetics Today
(2007); ??Sight Was Regulated, Shapes Were
Continually Re-fashioned?: Alia Syed?s Eating
Grass? at the Biennale of Sydney (2006); and ?The
Re-selection of Ancestors: Abstraction in the
Second Generation,? in Energy/Experimentation:
Black Artists and Abstraction, 1964?1980,
published by the Studio Museum in Harlem (2006).
She has collaborated on several artists? projects
including I Wish it Were True (2006) at the
Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning. She is
currently completing a doctorate on late
twentieth-century British art at Yale University.
Prior to her arrival at Yale, Martin was the
Interim Head Curator at the Cold Spring Harbor
Whaling Museum and worked in the media, arts, and
culture unit of the Ford Foundation in New York.
She has written for several publications,
including Artforum, Flashart, Frieze, and NKA.
The exhibition will run until September 27, 2007.
Please join us in September 2007 for a lecture by
Courtney J. Martin. Consult the Arts of the Book
Collection website in the coming weeks for the date and time.
Contacts: Geoffrey Little,
203-432-8061 | Arts of the Book Collection, 203-432-1712
Location: Arts of the Book
Collection, First Floor, Sterling Memorial Library
120 High Street, New Haven, CT
Admission: Free and open to the public
Hours: Now through September 5, 2007: Monday-Friday 1-4pm
September 6-27, 2007:
Monday-Thursday 10am-12pm & 1pm-4pm
Yale University Library
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