Limited edition and unique bookworks
Norman B. Colp, Director of Exhibits, said of the exhibit, “The name for this exhibit was borrowed from the design idea that grew out of the Bauhaus at Dessau, Germany. This art school, founded in 1919 by Walter Gropius, became famous for its melding of technologies with the arts and with its reductivist viewpoint. Their principle of Less is More, of an object reduced to its essentials to enhance its aesthetic worth, is as valid today it was then, more than six decades ago. We can see it in such diverse forms as minimalist art (which began in the 1960’s), automobile design, clothing styles and even in cosmetic packaging.
This concept is also true for the artists whose books and book-objects constitute this exhibition. The notion of a limited edition book is centuries old but there we do not see that traditional leather-bound volume of poetry or prose. Instead we are presented with bookworks that use some very unbooklike materials such as: plexiglass, a hairnet, spray enamel paint, brown paper bags, wire safety glass and even copper-coated steel.
It is now time for the viewer to set aside his/her traditional view of the limited edition and to examine how these artists have re-interpreted the idea; how they have borrowed some of the oldest techniques and materials and have married them to some of the newest ideas and technologies.”
Support for the Center for Book Arts’ visual arts programming is provided, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.