Artists’ books

Screen Shot 2015-05-21 at 09.40.27Some readers and friends will know that since 1994 I have edited and published an artists’ book imprint called Piece of Paper Press (from which this website gets its name). I am delighted therefore that Piece of Paper Press is included in a new and updated edition of one of the definitive texts on the subject, Stephen Bury’s  Artists’ books: the book as a work of art, 1963-2000, which is published in May 2015 by Bernard Quaritch Ltd. More than that, it is in the blurb!

Michael Moorcock, ‘A Twist in the Lines’, POPP.027Piece of Paper Press was designed as a commissioning space and a platform for collaboration, a means by which I could publish and distribute limited editions of new works by artists and writers. Piece of Paper Press was also designed to be sustainable, by which at the time I meant lo-fi and cheap to produce; a format that would need little or no administration or infrastructure. The books are printed on a photocopier or domestic printer, and assembled and trimmed by hand. Titles are never for sale and they have no ISBN numbers. Editions are simply made (and made simply) and then given away. 58674_440968627016_7190055_nThe project would—I thought at the time—never need any funding or financial support in order to continue. Each book is made from a single sheet of A4 paper, which is folded, stapled and trimmed to give a roughly A7 format and sixteen pages including front and back covers. If the project were any more complex in either production or distribution I would probably have given up years ago.

Lionel_Hours_coverSince 1994 I’ve collaborated with and published works by artists and writers including Michael Moorcock, Liliane Lijn, Pavel Büchler, Peter Bunting, Barbara Campbell, Tim Etchells, Bruce Gilchrist, Halford+Beard, Elizabeth Magill, Penny McCarthy, James Pyman, Borivoj Radaković, Gordana Stanišić, Suzanne Treister, Alison Turnbull, Mikey Cuddihy, Stevie Deas, and others. The twenty-ninth title in the series will be by Joanna Walsh, then Paul Sakoilsky.

It is a great thrill that Piece of Paper Press is included in Stephen Bury’s book, and doubly thrilling that it is mentioned in the blurb:

The history of artists’ involvement with the book format between 1963 and 2000 includes a fascinating range of artists and movements from Mallarmé to the Piece of Paper Press via Cubism, Futurism, Dada, Fluxus and conceptual art. This second edition includes updated text with new bibliographic descriptions of 600 key artists’ books and over 130 new, full-page, colour illustrations taken from the internationally renowned Chelsea College of Art & Design Library collection. It is an indispensable resource for the definition and classification of artists’ books by a renowned scholar in the field.

Dr Stephen Bury is the Andrew W. Mellon Chief Librarian, Frick Art Reference Library, New York. Previous publications include ‘Artists’ Multiples’ (2001) and ‘Breaking the Rules’ (2007).

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BURY, Stephen. Artists’ books: the book as a work of art, 1963-2000.
London, Bernard Quaritch Ltd, 2015.
Small 4to, (232 x 228 mm), pp. 258 (including over 130 illustrations); cloth-bound.
ISBN 978-0-9563012-9-1
Offered at the introductory price of £50 until 30 June 2015. The full price is £60.

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