This panel aims to extend criticism beyond the individual book and address the interconnected institutions and power structures that form the field of contemporary artists’ books. From distinct disciplinary backgrounds and institutional positions, we will speak to the state of scholarship within and beyond the academy, and the place of artists’ books in the larger art world. As more artists’ books are exhibited, it is increasingly important to understand how the institutional context in which they are shown, from bookstore spaces to museum vitrines, helps and hinders criticism in the field. We will also address the development of artists’ book criticism over time, drawing on our many perspectives from emerging to established writers. As we take the temperature of criticism and scholarship, we do so with the understanding that these activities impact present and future practitioners. By addressing the institutions that entangle a book from inception and production to reception and survival, this young field can mature with greater equity among its diverse players.
Founded in 2008, CABC has been a long time programing partner of Printed Matter’s Art Book Fairs. This year CABC will be presented as part of Printed Matter’s Virtual Art Book Fair.