27 May 2016 - The Grolier Club is pleased to be the sole US venue for a presentation of French artists’ books from the remarkable Koopman Collection at the National Library of the Netherlands. The exhibition is on view from June 1 - July 30, 2016. Focusing on work designed and produced in the past 15 years, the 70 books have been selected by curator Paul van Capelleveen.
Organized in six themes, the exhibition emphasizes various aspects of modernity that can be seen in books created by contemporary French artists, underscoring the extent to which the modern world is represented in their books.
Aspects of modernity are discernible in books created by artists, but to what extent is the modern world represented in the books of contemporary French artists? Six relevant themes have been selected. The 'globalism' theme is discernible in the way artists’ books are published. Through today’s international networks, publishers can consciously forge links between cultures in different continents. With the rise of the internet, themes such as privacy have come to play a part in artists’ books. Certain artists have explored the blurring of the borders between their personal and commercial worlds. Political subjects like war and peace, but also ecology and environmental conservation, enter into the picture. Even the debate on craft, originality and appropriation is reflected in some of these modern books.
Technically we are seeing the upshot of a fluidity of traditions since, in artists’ books, interest is simultaneously being shown in analogue and digital techniques. Stylistically, the combining of genres has become commonplace: conventions taken from conceptual art appear alongside methods drawn from the world of the private press, but the traditions of the French 'livre d’artiste' and of graphic design are also incorporated.
Visiting The Grolier Club
47 East 60th Street
New York, NY 10022
Hours: Monday – Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm
Admission: Exhibitions are open to the public free of charge
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