Wednesday, 7 September 2016

A conversation with Robert Janz


interview and images by Chiara Ambrosio

I was heading for dinner in downtown NYC last June, and as I rushed past the ever-changing streets of TriBeCa, I caught a glimpse of paper and words colonising defiantly the torn pieces of posters and other scattered debris on a hoarding board. It was the day after the Brexit referendum, and the EXIT sign pasted on the wall called to my eye even before I noticed the tiny, handwritten letter S inserted in between the I and the T, turning EXIT into EXIsT. Behind me, an elegant man in a white linen suit and a Panama hat looked at me looking at the work on the wall. He introduced himself as Robert (Roberto after 6pm) and handed me a xeroxed piece of paper with his instagram account on it. When I followed his lead, I discovered a luminous and powerful body of work, at once poetic and defiant: bisons and mountain peaks scrawled across the hoarding boards of downtown NYC, ephemeral water graffitis, and above all a committed lifetime of poetic subversion mapped on the bones of the city. I arranged to meet Robert again so that he could take me on a tour around the neighbourhood, where most of his work can be found by careful eyes. This is the conversation that followed...


Chiara: Could you introduce yourself?

Robert: As a child I would hear my mother exclaiming: "Bobby!!! You have been drawing on the walls and sofa again!".  In my late teens and early 20s I drew obsessively with a stick on the wet sand between erasing surf on Venice Beach, LA.  A wavy line erased by the incoming waves.  As they pulled back I drew again and again.  These became a project, "Waves Between Waves", which got me into a gallery.  The gallery got me into the Museum.  This eventually led to a Fulbright Scholarship to Spain.  Living in villages in the arid heights of Andalucia I drew with water on the mountain rocks.  My drawings were glyphic, echoes of the most ancient Origin arts.

C: How did you start making work that intervenes into the actual fabric of the world?

R: Humans began drawing on their surroundings, on rocks and cave walls.  So at first, going back to the Origins, I drew on beaches and rocks, out in the non-urban.  I was always trying to get away, a lone ranger on the Journey.  After living in the City for years I decided that the alleys and torn poster walls were my ravines and cavewalls.  Currently my favorite images reflect the ancient myths, the Minotaur in particular.  I had seen in Spain the Toros, the reenactment of the animal/human confrontation, a ritual that portrays our dilemma.  We are both Beast Instinct and Human Intelligence.  Our intuitions switch back and forth.  My Way Words and my Bisoman images explore this reality.


C: You open your book "Post no bills Poems" with a Zen proverb: can you tell us about your relationship to Zen and how it has shaped and poured into your way of looking at the world and making work within it?

R: On Venice Beach my very small circle of friends and I were in Zen Zone.  We tried to study meditation, we went to Gamelan concerts, and collected Ravi Shankar discs.  I carried around "Journey into the Interior" by Basho. "Interior"  meaning the remote mountains of Old Japan, but also the interior of the Spirit, the Soul.  I carried around my Six Sticks which I arranged in different ways here and there in streets, in galleries.  Why six?  Because of the Book of Changes, the Tao.  What  influence remains of all this amateur Zen?  The conviction that simple spontaneous direct is Grace, that Brief is Best.  The Creative expands, crosses boundaries and categories, embraces the Universal, the Totality.

C: What is the relationship between you and New York City? How does your work transform with the changing of the urban landscape?

R: I started working in the streets of downtown NYC because, for personal reasons, I would end up living here.  I would prefer to live in the country but I am here and try to make the best of it.  Drawing mountains and Biso figures (my Minotaurs) on wall covered with torn posters certainly has a visual effect.  But to have a transformative effect requires that people notice.  They don't.


C: How and why did you start making water paintings?

R: As a youth I spent a lot of time roaming the deserts of the Southwest.  I saw glyphic drawings of the Ancients.  I felt their voices echoing thru me, from out of my interior.  For many years I drew with water only in the country.  It was a long time before I realized that it also made sense in the city.  Water drawing are truly immediately ephemeral, and the city is equally transient.

C: What is the role of the ephemeral in the work that you make and how does it affect the world around you?

R: Nothing is permanent, everything is passing on.  Expressing and celebrating this truth is the function of art.


C: How do you work with language to challenge and transform its way of constructing the real world? Is there a specific process behind your distilled and powerful form of poetry? What do you think about the power of words?

R: Language is the most dangerous of all human inventions, the source of sexism, racism, nationalism.  Poetry is a crucial craft because working with words reveals and refreshes them.  I use alliteration to give my work a structure.  I was always interested in alliteration from childhood, noting  Jack and Jill,  Stars and Stripes.  Daring Devils and Demons.  When I started to focus on my own writing alliteration seemed to strengthen short poems.  Also seemed original, as in all my reading I have never come across a poet who uses alliteration as a basic structure.


C: What do you think is the real and poetic impact of your work on a world that is reaching an absolute breaking point with greed, consumerism and selfishness?

R: I tend to write about poetry and poets.  My definition of Poetry is: words warp. language limits/ poetry pierces/ boundaries: breaking out   As far as impact goes, bonne chance!  I know of no artist that has reduced the self destructive self delusion of the world.

C: Do you think art can change the world around you?

R: Art is mind medicine.  But has the same limitations medicines have.  People must follow the instructions.  Think fresh, avoid cliche's: expansion, open, honest.  Even artists resist the truths their works express.  Selfishness shrinks the spirit, art expands the soul.


C: What is your view of the future of society and of this planet?

R: The future looks very dangerous.  There are many tyrants and tyrannies, all armed  The world is One, so every war increases the chances of a wider war.  Missteps are likely.  Humankind believes in Independence, in Sovereignty, meaningless words.  We are all interdependent.  The World needs a World Court to rule on conflicts of Interest and on Universal Rights.  I see no hope of that.

C: Can you identify other artists, both living or dead, that you would consider share your way of thinking and making work?

R: I like Basho and the Zen poets.  What is the sound of one hand clapping?  (Maybe it is art).

Robert Janz lives and works in NYC.

Website
Instagram

Current and upcoming exhibitions and events at Bookartbookshop, London, UK:
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UPCOMING EVENTS AND EXHIBITIONS:

TEATIME THURSDAYS SERIES 
Thursday 20th October, 3-8pm
"EXI(s)T"
an exhibition of work by Robert Janz



at
BOOKARTBOOKSHOP
17 Pitfield St
London
Join us next week for our Teatime Thursday , 20th October 3- 8pm, for an exhibition of work and live water painting/readings by the one and only Robert Janz , straight from NYC! 
This will be a super rare chance to meet the man in the flesh and hear his readings. 
A special afternoon , not to be missed! 


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PAST EVENTS



TEATIME THURSDAYS SERIES 
Thursday 15th September, 6:30- 8:30 pm
"A round about approach to painting"
by Sally Child, AKA Eggar Tist

at
BOOKARTBOOKSHOP
17 Pitfield St
London


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Please join us for an exhibition of books by 

YAEL DAVID COHEN

Private View Thurs 14 July 6-8pm



A collection of victorian family albums that have been altered by Yael David Cohen in a manner that could be described as irreverential. The books are unsettling and potent. The existing photos of family members have been at times defaced - graffitied over or else replaced with Yael's own characters etched or drawn. Her books question the nostalgia and sentimentality of that period, whilst also recycling it with titles like: "As Time Passes" and "Half the Picture".

Yael's books are in a number of Artist Book Collections most recently bought by London College of the Arts, LCC at Elephant & Castle.


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"My Life Unfolds"

An exhibition of autobiographical artist's books and boxes 

by Natalie d'Arbeloff




12th May -2nd June

Private View Thursday 12th May 6 - 8:30pm


Augustine's True Confession, an illustrated handwritten journal by Natalie d'Arbeloff, first published in 1989, jointly re-published by bookartbookshop and NdA Press, will be launched on 12th May at bookartbookshop, Hoxton, as part of My Life Unfolds, an exhibition of autobiographical artist's books and boxes by Natalie d'Arbeloff. 
Painter, printmaker, cartoonist, writer, multi-lingual world citizen born in Paris of French and Russian parents, Natalie lived in France, Paraguay, Brazil, the United States, Mexico and Italy before coming to London in the mid 1960s, eventually settling in Kentish Town. The work which gives the exhibition its title is a unique 2 metre long accordion book, My Life Unfolds. In 52 brightly coloured panels it takes you on a wordless tour of episodes in Natalie's life in which art and love affairs played equally important roles.

Opening hours:  Thurs. Fri. Sat. 12-6 pm
Wednesday by appointment only:  tanyapeixoto@icloud.com
The exhibition ends on 2 June 2016

bookartbookshop
17 Pitfield Street, Hoxton
London N1 6HB
nearest tube: Old Street (Northern Line)

Contacts: 
Tanya Peixoto; bookartbookshop   tanyapeixoto@icloud.com
Natalie d'Arbeloff; endapress@blueyonder.co.uk Tel: 020 7267 1719


 www.nataliedarbeloff.com

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"Optimism / End-times"
A self-published collection of drawing 
by Dimitri Antorka-Pieri
15th April - 1st May
Private View Friday 15th April 6 - 8:30pm





Dimitri has been self publishing comix, poetry and art books in many forms since 2007. Founder member of alternative press, instigator of the south east london zine fair and collaborator of many artist's collectives and individuals. This collection of abstract drawings are an exploration of ideas, unaware meditations on modern eschatology and the inevitable end of civilisation and the beauty that will follow. Maybe. Printed with Hato Press using four colour Risograph technology. Original drawings will be exhibited and copies of the limited (100 copies ) first print run will be available for the first time.


D/A/P
Illustratedself.com
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EXHIBITION OF ALTERED BOOK OBJECTS BY
ANDREA HILL
17th March- 1st April
Private View:
Thursday 17th March, 6-8:00pm




Andrea Hill has been making altered artists' books since 1989. Her work deals with memory & loss, she uses found objects & old photographs, text is torn or cut from found hardback books by obscure authors. Silk, scrim, plaster & wax to seal old letters. Andrea exhibits her books at various artists book fairs, galleries & libraries in the UK & abroad. Her work is also found in artists books collections in the UK and Italy.
From "In Praise of beautiful books"
Compiled by Caroline Mornement.




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Mylène Besson and Pierre Leloup
Artists' Books
19th February- 4th March
Private View:
 Friday 19th February, 6-8:30pm




Mylène has collaborated with many poets and artists, including Michel Butor and Fernando Arrabal. Many of her books are handmade, experimental and explore a wide range of intimate themes. 
The private view on Friday 19 February from 6-8.30pm is a great opportunity to meet Mylène and find out more about her work.
We really hope you will join us. 







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We warmly welcome you to join us on 
Friday 29 January 
6- 8.30pm
for a very special evening to celebrate the launch of

"Trashy's London Statuary"



A book of 23 miniatures painted on sugar packets by Ayjay Trashy, 
of some of London's most iconic sculptures and some surprising discoveries.

"Trashy's London Statuary"
is published by bookartbookshop 
in an edition of 100 signed and numbered by the artist (£10).

The book accompanies an exhibition of Ayjay Trashy's miniature paintings. 
Bring your magnifying glass! 
All works are for sale.

We look forward to seeing you.


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‘Tis Pity She’s a Hoarder 2
An Exhibition of Original Drawings by Judy Purbeck
4th December- 10th December
Private Views:
 Friday 4th December 2015, 6-8pm
Saturday 5th December 2015, 3- 6pm




Following on from ‘Tis Pity She’s a Hoarder (June 2014), I’d like to present my new exhibition ‘TIS PITY SHE’S A HOARDER 2, featuring drawings from my hoard of books.
I am a magpie - I’ve been collecting and drawing things that catch my eye for years. Most of these items have little intrinsic value but are hugely prized by me for their (subjective) beauty.
I think you probably can judge a book by its cover, thus ‘TIS PITY SHE’S A HOARDER 2 focusses on the books I have picked up over the years, solely for the pleasure of looking at their wonderful cover illustrations and their often bizarre titles.
For this exhibition each drawing features two book covers together, chosen so that the titles form a secondary story in themselves. For example, by placing ‘A Promise is Forever’ with ‘Pretence’, a rather more cynical narrative is produced.
My intentions are to share the affection I have for these book covers and the pride I feel at having winkled out these fantastic titles from the huge amount of ‘pre-loved’ stuff that exists, waiting to be re-loved in numerous car boot sales, charity shops, junk shops and markets. 

Judy Purbeck, December 2015.

Many thanks to Tanya and the lovely staff at Bookartbookshop.
Artist Contact:
judy@lifedraw.co.uk
judy@purbeck.me.uk
020 8348 1737

Bookartbookshop Contact:
www.bookartbookshop.com
t.pei@btinternet.com

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"British Wives of Aliens"
by Daniel Lehan
7th November- 20th November
Private View Friday 13th November 2015
6—8:30pm





 Prize for Best Dressed Alien And Wife!

Alien stories and songs with Daren Callow!

Wedding Cake!

British Wives Of Aliens - a headline from a stack of World War 2 newspapers found on Deptford Market inspired the title for this series of collages.

Aliens and Brides began then to appear in secondhand books, supermarket magazines, photo albums and photos found in the bottom of cardboard boxes on street markets. It seemed they were all I found, so anxious were they to meet one another. I simply acted as Match Maker - my role - to ‘marry them’ on the page. It was clear that for some the attraction was immediate and mutual, others required a lengthier period of courtship to accept their differences, or to find another partner. Words and phrases cut out from sci-fi books, those on space travel, and the planets formed the basis for the collages with texts.

The British Wives Of Aliens follows Lehan’s exhibition of collages - Animallages - a joint show with Jude Cowan Montague at The Poetry Society Cafe earlier this year.

His visual texts have been published in Ditch, *82 Review, The Delinquent, Experiential / Experimental, Kumquat, Poetry & Paint, Foame:, Diagram, Postcard Shorts, Ink Sweat and Tears, Shuf, Small Po(r)tions, M58, Indefinite Space, The Stardust Gazette and SPUR. His 'Book Pages Destroyed By Typewriter' are included in The New Concrete, published by Hayward Publishing, London 2015, and a book of drawings - Cahier de Catéchèse - is published by Dark Windows Press.

From June 2014 to July 2015 Lehan curated the Kitchen Window Gallery - a gallery in his kitchen window in South London. The gallery exhibiting work by London based and International artists and writers.


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"anthologies"
by Randy Klein
9th October- 22nd October
Private View Friday 9th October 2015
6—8pm





"anthologies" is an overview of Randy Klein's artist books, with previously unseen unique and one off books, as well as loose pages and sculptures fallen from books.

It will also mark the launch of Roadbook, a NEW artist's book

Find out more here.  

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"Travelogue"
by Salt + Shaw
18th September- 1st October
Private View Thursday 18th September 2015
6—8pm



SALT+SHAW find they have now made 57 artists' book titles. 
This will be celebrated with an exhibition at bookartbookshop, launching 3 new books, 
including no. 60: 'Whalebone'.



“Their practice is frequently linked to location, to finding objects, discovering stories and creating narratives in response to a particular place, whether man made or natural. Ideas become concepts through negotiation, which inform the construction of their book works, making inextricable the links between all the elements only made possible by their partnership.”
Linda Newington


 bookartbookshop, 17 Pitfield Street, London N1 6HB
Friday 18th September 2015
6—8pm


SALT+SHAW
About Us

We began making books together via a long route through painting, drawing, writing, installation, land art, sculpture and photography. As SALT+SHAW, working on location underpins our practice, either by responding to or identifying an environment to explore. We have a history of travelling to cities and wild places, rummaging around in junk shops and museums, searching shorelines and following routes or rivers. This has resulted in a reflex action to collect objects and information, gather ideas, create journals, take photographs and make images. These raw materials gradually reveal their content, narrative and structure.
The book is an ideal format for our work, enabling us to combine individual interests and ways of working. We have developed a joined-up approach to making books together, either led by one of us and underpinned by mutual support, or co-produced as a joint piece through a process of negotiation, discussion and sheer bloody mindedness.
The process of construction is vital; uniting the physicality of making with the creative development of the structure and its inextricably linked contents. Experimentation is essential throughout. Our work is tactile and intimate, revealing and enclosing its stories through words, pictures, found objects, collage, drawing and print. We produce artefact books in small editions, which ask the viewer to engage, discover, make connections and take up challenges. Our books combine a sensory and conceptual exploration -  the narrative of words, images and found objects; the sound of a cover opening, the creak of metal hinges and the crispness of pages turning; the smell of polished wood, brass and leather; the discovery of hidden text.

SALT+SHAW
Artists’ books combining text and image have been exhibited internationally and can be found in collections including The British Library, Tate Britain Library, Winchester School of Art, Glasgow School of Art, University of the West of England, Manchester Metropolitan University and London College of Communication.






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"Shklovsky's Zoo"
by Joanna Walsh 
Book Launch Friday 10 July 2015
6.30—8.30pm



Piece of Paper Press and Joanna Walsh are delighted to invite you to the bookartbookshop to celebrate publication of “Shklovsky’s Zoo” by Joanna Walsh, the 29th title from Piece of Paper Press.

“Shklovsky’s Zoo” is published in a limited, numbered edition of 150 copies, and numbers 51-150 will be given away at the launch event.

bookartbookshop, 17 Pitfield Street, London N1 6HB
Friday 10 July 2015
6.30—8.30pm

No reservations. Strictly one copy per person, while stocks last.

Written on a residency during which the author was unable to find and read a copy of “Zoo” by Viktor Shklovsky—a novel based on real-life letters sent between the Russian critic and the unwilling object of his desire, Elsa Triolet—“Shklovsky’s Zoo” plays with the line between autobiography and fiction. What is the purpose of a letter? Is it a story, or an honest account (or both)? Does it depend on who is sending, who is receiving it? What happens when letters are made into books? Is there any truth in Shklovsky’s “Zoo”, or “Shklovsky’s Zoo” at all?

Find out more about Piece of Paper Press here 


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The Listening Forest 
18th June- 2nd July 2015
Private view Thursday 18th June, 6.30-9pm 


Feel the ferns and smell the deer!

In Sophie Herxheimer's new artists' book she abandons her familiar London streets and takes to a hut in the middle of nowhere. From this intriguing spot she opens a new set of questions and dialogues: with local people, Nature, and of course, herself.
"The Listening Forest" is a record of some of these exchanges, arranged in sections, with its own undergrowth, clearing, path, canopy, floor and shrub layer. Whilst in residence for rural arts organisation Fermynwoods Contemporary Art in Northamptonshire, (August 2014 - February 2015) Sophie collected hundreds of stories, drew prolifically and wrote a small grove of six poems which are planted at the heart of the book.
Come and get lost in the resulting limited edition 30 metre long book, made in collaboration with Henningham Familty Press, the original drawings, a new series of screen prints and a small facsimile book - all coppiced and ready to fuel the imagination, fresh from the forest!

Sophie will read from the book at the private view on Thursday 18th June.



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Fifty Shades of Earl Grey Tea
4th March- 16th June 2015
Private view Thursday 4th June, 6.30-8.30pm 


AyJay Trashy "Makes things out of used and found objects. Found inside and out on the streets. Find that I am shy, my Art helps me speak."
https://www.facebook.com/AyJaytrashy?fref=photo
@AyJayTrashy

I met AyJay at a Secret Postcard Sale organised by Julia Hines for Age UK Barnet. He had collaged one of his miniature paintings onto a postcard. I chose to buy his postcard and was fortunate enough to meet him as he was at the sale too. He carries his work in sketchbooks and paints & brushes in a decorated briefcase. I was very taken by the intensity of his work and invited him to exhibit at bookartbookshop. Almost two years later, the exhibition, a tea party will open on his birthday.

Happy Birthday AyJay!!

All paintings are for sale.
(Be sure to bring a magnifier though I do have one if you don't.) 


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Pharmapoetica
27th March- 9th April
Private view Thursday 2nd April, 6.30-8.30pm

Thursday 2 April, 6.30pm

"Pharmapoetica: a dispensary of poetry" is a collaboration between poet Chris McCabe and artist and medical herbalist Maria Vlotides. It was shortlisted for Ted Hughes Award in 2014. The limited edition book is based on a cabinet of poems that has been briefly displayed at The Royal College of Physicians but has not yet been publicly exhibited: the cabinet's two-week residency at bookartbookshop offers a rare chance to view the work. 
Join us on Thursday 2 April as a belated celebration of the Spring Equinox and in the approach to Easter for herb-infused poetry inspired by nature. 
Wine and a short reading, with an informal discussion between the collaborators, will be served alongside the work. 


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A solo exhibition of collectable BookArtworks by multidisciplinary artist and curator Christina Mitrentse, emerging from her ongoing Add To My Library #ATML project. 

A selection of ‘WOUNDED BOOK’; books that have been shot with Winchester 4.8 Caliber Rifle. Selected penguin Publications on the subjects of Political Ideologies, the history of the labour movement, Art catalogues, i.e. John Latham and Ai Wei-Wei, and history logs from Wiener Library Archive. The injured paper & hard backs have the solemn air of bibliographic relics, codexes that have been laid to rest and fossilised. Here a bullet hole is as telling as an ISBN or shelfmark. Their ‘deaths’ also indicate that the book be it fact or fiction, is a foot soldier in the never ending war of ideas, by means of which humanity evolves.



A window display of Mitrentse’s popular BIBLIOPHILE mushroom sculptures along with a series of Limited edition screen-prints and a new exclusive print release for BookArtBookShop collectors, the ‘WAR & PEACE’ wounded book cover will be available for sale.

Christina Mitrentse is an multidisciplinary artist established in London, a freelance curator and educator. She is known for constructing provocative narratives and poetic ensembles of idiosyncratic institutions through manifold processes of vintage book-sculpture, drawing/collage, screen-printing, and productions of site-specific installations i.e ‘Add To My Library’ & METALIBRARY a major on-going international project and traveling exhibition in Europe and UK.
She has exhibited extensively in solo and group shows in galleries, museums and public spaces including Liverpool Biennial UK, XV Biennale de Mediterranean Thess/niki-Rome, ICA London, NDSM-werf Amsterdam, Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, State Museum of Contemporary Art & CACT Greece, Nadine Feront Gallery Brussels, London Art Fair, Royal Academy, The Stephen Lawrence Gallery, Mitte Barcelona, The Centre for the Book Arts NY and Brussels Art Fair. Mitrentse artworks have been acquired by private & public collections including Fine Art Society London, The Swedenborg Society, Greenwich Council, The Women’s Arts Library Special Collections, Bank Street Arts Centre, Sill Library Bath, Mol’s collection Holland, Tate Archive, Penguin Collectors Society, Zabludowicz collection, Griechische Kultustiftung Berlin, Marriot Hotels USA, M. Altenman NY, National Library Bagdad, Benaki Museum and E.Venizelos Airport Athens, and Karathodoros collection.








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Ann Noël: BOOKS
24th November- 25th December
Private view Monday 24th November, 6-8pm 
 

Ann Noël has been involved in making artists' books since she was a student at Bath Academy of Art in 1967-68 under Hansjoerg Mayer. There she first discovered the books that he was publishing in Stuttgart and London with Richard Hamilton, Dieter Roth, Emmett Williams, Robert Filliou, Andre Thomkins and many more in the world of concrete and visual poetry.  
Hansjoerg Mayer introduced her to Dick Higgins of the Something Else Press who invited her to become his assistant in New York. Emmett Williams was Editor-in-Chief at the press and they were married a year and a half later. They were together until he died in 2007. 
Though initially overwhelming to be in the company of such innovative and well-known (Fluxus) performers and poets, composers and artist, Ann started publishing her own books in Berlin, then West Germany, in 1982. She collaborated with Rainer Pretzell of the Rainer Verlag on 5 books over 5 years before the Berlin Wall fell and he could no longer afford to pay the rent for his loft space.  In this show you can see a couple of these books, as well as what Ann has been doing since then in "Edition Noel."

There is currently an exhibition of print works and drawings in Berlin at the Emerson Gallery, which runs until the end of January.
video

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Friday 7-14 November 2014

For one week only the work of the reclusive artist, Eggar Tist, will be exhibited at 
bookartbookshop 
in association with the Once Foundation. 

Although his art is not for sale, a wide range of specially commissioned merchandise by Sally Child and a full colour limited edition catalogue published by bookartbookshop will be available to purchase. 

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IN THE GUTTER
An Exhibition by Rosie Sherwood 

3rd October to 16th October  2014
Private View 2nd October, 6- 8.30 pm
Hours: Wed-Fri 1-7pm Sat 12-6pm

In the Gutter is a series of conneted pieces inspired by the physical boundary between panels in the comic book: this space, referred to as the gutter, is the device through which creators construct time and space. Intrigued by the idea of this blank strip of paper as the receptacle for the reader's potentially infinite projections, artist Rosie Sherwood creates skeletons of the comic, asking if this projection is still possible without content.


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CHRIS KENNY : 50 BOOKS  
A series of handmade books with found titles.

12th September to 4th October  2014
Hours: Wed-Fri 1-7pm Sat 12-6pm





BOOKARTBOOKSHOP
17 Pitfield Street
LONDON N1 6HB
www.bookartbookshop.com


in conjunction with England & Co Gallery
England & Co :: Gallery
 


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"Echoes of Pearls"
By Kenny Ozier-Lafontaine

Friday 18 July - 31st July





I have been working on children's drawings which I have either found or been given. Little by little I have tried to adapt my own practice to find a new way of transcending the act of Seeing thanks to these works by children, these "echoes of pearls".
This approach was motivated by a desire to uncover alternative forms of expression, free from being kept under lock and key by ways of looking at things that can readily be understood as being bogged down in something all too often nailed to a cross, or revisiting familiar tropes.
My goal instead was to capture the original substrate and by extending and expanding it to feel the "echo of the pearl", to open up a dialogue and to let reactions fly freely, in order to demonstrate a possible connection with this layer of Seeing which time has obscured.

Preface by Gaston Bachelard to Juliette Boutonnier's book, Les dessins des enfants (1959):

"A child's drawing, in all its bursting into being, is clear evidence of a freedom to draw inscribed in the very nature of the human hand. Adults have disowned this freedom, and renounced all the hand's glory. They have tightened their own censoring which stops this inherent ability. Art critics - so informed in abstract ways, so dogmatic, always systematically harsh and mocking - dissuade us from returning to "our box of colours". Would we not find our voices liberated by trying, amidst the flashes of youth luckily still lighting up our adulthood, to sit down again and make some "children's drawings"?

Translated with help from Chris Allen


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POW- poetry/oppose/war
Thursday 26th June, 7pm 


Exhibition and poetry reading, featuring poets Chrissy Williams, Richard Price, Steven Fowler, Victoria Bean, Robert Vas Dias, Chris McCabe, Mel Gooding, Edward Lucie Smith and Sophie Herxheimer.
Join us at Bookartbookshop at 7pm, then wander round the block to The Juggler Cafe, 5 Hoxton Market, N1 6HG for the readings at 7.30.
The Juggler serves lovely food and drink and is an airy big space, so plenty more room to listen to our fantastic line up of poets!

The whole series of 26 POW broadsides, created as collaborations between invited poets and Brazilian poet/artist Antonio Carvalho, and published by unit4art between 2012 and 2014, will be on view and for sale at the Bookartbookshop.

Carvalho was inspired by the futura series published by edition Hansjorg Mayer in the 1960s.


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'Tis Pity She's a Hoarder
An Exhibition of Drawings by Judy Purbeck


5th- 25th June 2014
Private View Thursday 5th June, 6.30-8.30pm 



Featuring items drawn (literally) from my assorted collections.
It is time to admit that I’m a bit of a hoarder; I’ve been collecting things that catch my eye for years - knitting patterns, ceramics, kitsch packaging, jelly moulds, postcards, tins. Most of these items have little intrinsic value but are hugely prized by me – and like a favourite film or book, I enjoy looking at them again and again. Like all good hoarders, every time I say there’s no room for anything else I chance upon a little something that is so beautiful (subjectively) that it has to be shoe-horned onto my kitchen dresser.
Much of my collection has been bought, cheaply, at boot fairs and charity shops and like the hoarding huntress I am, I can recall where I ‘bagged’ most of this domestic ephemera – thus even the most humble scrap is imbued with a pleasurable memory. Other pieces have been in the family for decades and still more have been given to me by friends and family who know what I’m like and do nothing to discourage it!
In my earliest art school days, I often made drawings of my (tiny-compared-to-now) hoard and in ‘Tis Pity She’s a Hoarder I’m revisiting this subject matter. I have also returned to using coloured crayons which were a favourite medium back then. My intention with these drawings is two-fold – firstly to share the huge affection I have for my collection and secondly to express the pride I feel for having winkled these particular things out of the vast amount of ‘stuff’ that exists.

Many thanks to Tanya and Sally and the Once Foundation.

www.lifedraw.co.uk        

judy@purbeck.me.uk      



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Kitty Finer's Lobby Star
Thursday 15 May from 6.30 - 8.30pm


 

Lobby Star is Kitty Finer’s debut EP which is being released on a limited run of 500 vinyls. She will be playing one of these 500 records and singing along to both sides as well as telling stories that revolve around the record. I first saw Kitty perform "Lobby Star A side/B side" at the Horse Hospital and loved it, she's so warm and talented. We're very lucky to have her!

So in addition, for those that can't make Thursday eve, on Friday 16th May between 1-6pm Kitty Finer will be in the bookshop singing along on demand.  




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Chiara Ambrosio - New works on paper 

25th April - 15th May 2014- 
Private View Saturday 26th April, 4-7pm 
 (www.acuriousroom.com)


Chiara is a filmmaker working with animation, experimental film, documentary and sound to explore the ways in which we perceive, remember, articulate and preserve personal and collective histories and place through the filter of memory and the imagination. Her work has included collaborations with performance artists, composers, musicians and writers, and has been shown in a number of venues including national and international film festivals, galleries and site specific events.
Her work is informed greatly by an attentive and dedicated observation of the real, the process of looking being at the core of her process.

For this exhibition at Bookartbookshop Chiara will be showing an extensive selection of her works on paper- drawings, watercolours, collages, photographs, puppets and everything that is often the invisible scaffolding to her work on film. 

This will also be the official launch of "The Girl With The Sea For A Dress and other tales" a very limited edition book of fairytales written by Bird Radio and illustrated by Chiara. 

Chiara is also the founder and curator of The Light & Shadow Salon, a monthly film night at The Horse Hospital in Bloomsbury.

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Bol Marjoram & Ash Fitzgerald - Dyslexia not Dezlexia 
4th April – 24th April 2014
 
Pages are assembled into books and books are assembled into libraries and libraries are assembled into the Internet. Even the most eager reader is aware that they will only ever read or encounter some small part of what is out there. Only when we take hold of what is there, can we transform it and be transformed by it. Confronted by a vast library, we see a fact which precedes the individual. This fact will present itself to the outsider, the ‘savage’, the illiterate, the dyslexic, the child as inaccessible to them. They cannot begin to assimilate this stock of books. Written language may appear to such individuals only as marks. They may understand that these marks are a code which has meaning for others but they are humiliated by their own lack of comprehension. In his book ‘Humiliation’ Wayne Koestenbaum writes of the painter Basquiat; “he treats words as visual objects, and he converts a painting into a poetic text, reverberating with unparaphrasable significance. Basquiat seems to be humiliating the system of language... Language is a system that has punished me; and so I as reciprocation, will punish language.”

To cancel, to cut up or to otherwise rework is to actively take possession of the books and of the cultural material within those books. It is a concrete way of creating
new meaning.
In this collaborative display for the window of bookartbookshop, Ash Fitzgerald will show a group of related books. Using collaged notebooks and other material he subjects these works to a series of material transformations which compromise their legibility and threaten their integrity.
Bol Marjoram’s books follow a design he has developed which allow him to add and subtract pages without rebinding the whole thing. For this display he will show books with photographs, taken on the day that demolition began on the Tricorn Shopping Centre in Portsmouth.
An iconic brutalist structure, it was attacked for its uncompromising 1960s aesthetic and by the time of its demolition had been subjected to years of neglect and vandalism.

Ash Fitzgerald is included in a pan-European exhibition of artists’ books which is currently touring Croatia and his work is in a number of private collections in the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

Bol Marjoram has previously shown work from his series, ‘The Price of Admission’ at bookartbookshop. Another book from the same series was subsequently exhibited at The Tel Aviv Museum of Art in an international survey of artists who use collage. His book works are included in many museum and library collections, these include The National Art Library at the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Library of Tate Britain, as well as Museum and Library collections in The Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Norway and the USA.

 
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Dear friends of Bookartbookshop,

please join us tomorrow, Friday 7th, 6pm-8pm, for our first private view of the year, the opening of Nicholas McArthur's exhibition of new drawings.
As always you will have the chance to have a glass of wine with us and meet the artist in person, as well as explore our wonderful collection of artist books.


We hope to see you there!