The third annual NY Art Book Fair was held from October 24th – 26th. This year it was at the Phillips de Pury & Co. auction house on 15th St. instead of the old DIA Chelsea building. Although I missed Jorge Pardo’s colorful tiles, it was nice to have the whole fair on only one floor of the building.
I attended the opening on Thursday night and received a nice editioned print by Jonathan Monk. The scene was lively as guests and exhibitors mingled. And I was able to preview the goods so I could go back over the weekend to look at things in greater length and make some purchases.
On Saturday afternoon I returned to check out the periodicals. There were the big-wigs like Artforum and Parkett, as well as smaller but established journals like Cabinet. I skipped over these tables and found some art journals I had never seen before.
My favorite new find is a small publication from London called Paperback. Still in it’s infancy, Paperback has put out two issues featuring some of my favorite artists and publishers: Tal R, Chris Johanson, Harrell Fletcher, The Nieves Library, etc. Each issue is colorful and as small and lightweight as the name suggests. What I like most about Paperback, besides the size and feel of it, is the way the images are separated from the text. In the first issue you can look through the bulk of it at just images: copies of drawings, paintings, collage, photographs, computer graphics, and documents of events. All of the writing is in a small pamphlet attached to the back cover. Each article is numbered so you can flip through the images and read the corresponding text in the booklet to your right. Most of what is written are short descriptions of the artwork seen in the front pages, but there is also a longer interview with BARR/Brendan Fowler. The layout of this first issue is simple and unique. The second issue is unfortunately not organized in the same way, but entire pages are still dedicated to brightly colored images. If you are interested in purchasing Paperback, I saw some copies on the magazine rack at St. Marks Bookshop this past weekend, and it’s a safe bet you could find it at Printed Matter as well.
I also discovered the journal Gagarin: The Artists in their own Words, which has been in publication since 2000. Hailing from Belgium, this biannual periodical contains only writing by artists. All of the text is published in its original language with corresponding English translations. I wasn’t able to read Gagarin at the fair, but I look foreword to receiving the box set of their back issues in the office soon.
Surprisingly, I did not purchase any art magazines at the fair. But I did buy three things:
1. Sean Landers Cartoons published by Regency Arts Press Ltd. – which is hilarious. I saw it sitting on my coworkers desk and started to read it. The first page about Richard Serra made me laugh so hard I almost spit out my coffee.
2. Doug and Mike, a DVD put out by 2nd Cannons of puppet show performances put on by Doug Skinner and Mike Smith. I had no idea Mike Smith did puppet shows!!! So I had to buy it! I am also still crying inside about missing his retrospective at the Philadelphia ICA this past summer and was hoping this would make up for it in some small way.
3. Between Artists: Harrell Fletcher and Michael Rakowitz put out by Art Resources Transfer (A.R.T.) I bought the Amy Sillman and Gregg Bordowitz conversation last year and could not put it down. If you are not familiar with this series or A.R.T. please check them out!
See you at the NY Art Book Fair next year!