Artists’ Books as Prompts for Discourse

A selection of books published by Sming Sming Books

To publish is to make public. What do artists’ books make public? How do they engage a public? Where do they travel? Where do they end up? What conversations do they spark? What ideas do they push or pull from a work of art? What do they perform? How do they continue to speak across time and generations? Artists’ Books as Prompts for Discourse considers the life of a book after its making and how through its distribution and circulation, a book is activated. 

This exhibition attempts to trace the discursive reverberations of the books that have been published and produced through Bay Area-based publishing studio, Sming Sming Books. Founded in 2017 by artist-publisher Vivian Sming, Sming Sming Books works in close collaboration with artists whose works and ideas inform design, material, and printing choices. The studio is committed to promoting critical discourse, advancing cultural equity, and creating alternative sites of knowledge production through publications and public programs. 

This exhibition and its catalog are funded by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul 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.


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