At the Miss Read Art Book Fair in Berlin I was lucky to catch up with two artists whose publishing practices I very much admire. They are exhibiting at major upcoming events in the USA but for those unable to visit, do look at their respective websites.
Claudia de la Torre founded Berlin-based backbonebooks in 2011 to formalise her own practice and publish other artists’ books. Her work is inspirational in its text and image interplay, subtly manipulating what we actually see when we read books.
Examples include Look at me, her collaboration with poet Kyle Lincoln, and Books you cannot read on a Kindle, which takes selected comments posted on a subreddit list and uses them positively as a ‘backbonebooks recommends’ publication.
The backbonebooks catalogue is full of books you want to get your hands on – literally in the case of Point break by Maxime Gambus or Elizabeth Lebon’s Test / Answers, a boxed edition of 182 cards from which participants must select separate question and answer cards to create their own links.
Lebon produces concrete poetry and artists’ books, and uses her manual typewriter every day.
Other works by Lebon include Spooool, photocopied from her original 63-metre-long manifesto typewritten on till rolls, and Twelve Tapestries, which weaves language into verbal/visual representations of shores and oceans.
A recent project has published four editions by Ulises Carrión (1941-1989) including rrr, which reproduces typewritten pages from 1972 that play with learning through sounds and poetry. For The drum, Carrión has fragmented the names of musical instruments to express their sounds.
An accomplished artist/designer, Sheshivari pays great attention to the context and materiality of Boabooks publications, which are always beautifully presented.
Boabooks exhibits regularly at fairs, and will be at the NY Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1 New York, 16-18 September 2016.
Claudia de la Torre’s ‘Ten (unknown) Gasoline Stations’ is currently on show in Ed Ruscha Books & Co. at Gagosian Gallery, Beverly Hills, CA until 9 September 2016
1. The drum, Ulises Carrión, published by Boabooks, 2016. 24 pages. Available at Boabooks. Photo: Boabooks
2. Books you cannot read on a Kindle, Claudia de la Torre, published by backbonebooks, 2015. 36 pages, digital print. Photo: Claudia de la Torre
3. Test / Answers, Elizabeth Lebon, published by backbonebooks, 2016.Transparent box, 182 cards. Edition of 100. Photo: Claudia de la Torr
4. Spooool, Elizabeth Lebon, published by Boabooks, 2015. 194 pages, photocopies, first edition. Available at Boabooks. Photo: Boabooks
5. Twelve Tapestries, Elizabeth Lebon, published by Boabooks, 2014. 32 pages, photocopies, first edition. Some copies still available, contact Boabooks. Photo: Boabooks
6. rrr, Ulises Carrión, published by Boabooks, 2016. 24 pages. Available at Boabooks. Photo: Boabooks
7. Ulises Carrión set, published by Boabooks, 2016: The drum, a, b, c, In alphabetical order and rrr. Offset first edition. Available at Boabooks. Photo: Boabooks