Sunday, 6 May 2012

Neil Mabbs

Another book artist employing the newspaper format as well as the A5 Zine format is Neil Mabbs.
We recently acquired from Neil a fascinating portfolio of 7 different publications that weave together themes of archive, index, sociology, design, and a melancholic sense of loss and the imprint it leaves (I mean this last one in a very literal sense as in the case of Field Studies, a photographic survey of the imprints left by tents in fields). Neil Mabbs is a cultural forager in the vein of Jeremy Deller or Tony Hayward*.

Many of the books draw on the bizarre universe of the charity shop – such as Missing, a survey of jigsaw puzzles, or Loss of Order, in which Mabbs scrupulously documented the contents of bargain bins. The province is his playground in his survey of village notice boards, Ordinary Language Typography, in which he trawls up gems of British society at work with notices such as “Too much grass? Why not use our sheep, they’re perfect Lawnmowers” and “How to detect a cannabis factory”.

Neil Mabbs books range in price from £5 to £10 and are available in the book shop now. 
Missing  was a co-winner in our 10th anniversary book art competition .

*Hayward’s books such as Loving Couples and Indian Rat Traps have been a long-term proud occupant of our shelves.

- Jon Lander

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