Never Judge A Book ...
Book related artworks by Rachel Whiteread, Bill Woodrow, Anselm Kiefer, Fiona Banner, Harland Miller, Michael Craig-Martin, John Latham and others go on show at Richard Booth's Bookshop for this year's Hay Festival.
Meadow Arts is curating an exhibition by leading artists on the book in art at Richard Booth's iconic secondhand bookshop, opening for the launch of this year's Festival.
Many influential artists have made work that uses the book as an object, questioning its function and form, often rendering it unreadable; what is a book that can't be read?
The works in this exhibition range from the poignant to the celebratory. Harland Miller's playful re-mastering of the classic Penguin cover offers a Pop Art, sardonic and sometimes nostalgic take on literary themes, as does Michael Craig-Martin's deceptively simple 'Untitled (book)', which succinctly embodies the universal understanding of book-ness. Four vitrines by Anselm Kiefer reference the history of ideas, recalling Archimedes' discoveries with geometry. Jonathan Callan bends, cuts and wraps books so they become sculptural forms; here he creates an enthralling site specific reimagining of his large installation, Idiot Compression. Rachel Whiteread is a master in the art of showing the reverse, the ghost of objects large and small. Here a row of black books glow mysteriously, like shadows on a black shelf.
Curator Anne de Charmant says 'For me it is a great testament to the continued power of the printed, versus the digital, word, that so many artists still see the book as an incredibly potent symbol, not just to be revered, but questioned and endlessly explored. This exhibition is an eye- opener from that point of view.'
An artwork comprised of many and various elements of miscellaneous materials (see mixed media), light and sound, which is conceived for and occupies an entire space, gallery or site. The viewer can often enter or walk around the installation. Installations may only exist as long as they are installed, but can be re-created in different sites. Installation art emerged in the 1960s out of Environmental Art (works of art which are three-dimensional environments), but it was not until the 1970s that the term came into common use and not until the late 1980s that artists started to specialise in this kind of work, creating a genre of ‘Installation Art’. The term can also be applied to the arrangement of selected art works in an exhibition.