TJ Boulting is delighted to present our summer group show, where several leading independent art and photobook publishers have been invited to curate the work of artists and photographers of interest to them. In recent years there has been a prolific amount of activity in the art publishing world, with new fairs and specialist bookshops springing up, and particularly a rise in young publishers, innovating on small budgets and producing exciting and original small-run publications, often a far-cry from the traditional models seen before in art publishing.
To celebrate this renewed focus on publishing as a fertile hotbed of artistic output, a small selection of art and photobook publishers have been invited to present their chosen artists and photographers, who in the majority of cases they have worked with on publications. It is an opportunity to bring together not only the various artists and photographers, but also highlight the publishers responsible for showcasing their work.
The slim economic return of publishing, especially in the general financial downturn, conversely has lead to a passionate and creative output for those who are, against the odds, bringing out new and original publications. The talent often discovered through the selective process of each publisher and the commitment inherent in the process of bringing a project to fruition, can be reflected on in the fact that publishers now are in many ways the new curators.
Often the artist and photographer has directed this innovative attitude into their own work and self-publish, such as Italian photographer Nicolo Degiorgis and his recent acclaimed project ‘Hidden Islam’ of disguised mosques in northern Italy. Bruno Ceschel of Self Publish Be Happy has been a pioneering platform in this area, and presents one of the early photographers he worked with, Lorenzo Vitturi, who is currently opening a solo show of his work at The Photographers’ Gallery ‘Dalston Anatomy’, in no small part thanks to the acclaimed book.
The small and hand-made artist books of a few hundred copies of Akina Books sell out almost immediately, and here they present their forthcoming first offset printed book by Italian photographer Federico Clavarino, which they will release during the Unseen book fair in Amsterdam this September.
Harry Hardy and Ben Weaver of Here Press have released several original and unusual projects in documentary photography, and together with Lewis Chaplin, a photographer and also publisher of his own imprint Fourteen-Nineteen, have collaborated on a new publication, the protagonist of which is the subject here of Chaplin’s 6x7 portraits taken of him within his domestic environment.
Alix Janta of Adad Books’s monochrome collection of works by different artists ‘Traces’, explores the concepts of technicality and texture through various printing processes and techniques, either classical or their own innovation. Hannah Watson of Trolley Books’s presentation in contrast is ‘Protanopiautopia’, where each artist harnesses the aesthetics of colour, and in particular pink, to depict less than aesthetic subjects in a form of ‘colour blindness’ to their content. Ricardo Cases’s brightly coloured pigeons from his acclaimed first book ‘Paloma al Aire’, and artists Boo Saville and Henry Hudson, whose pink hues disguise a more sinister and less than fragrant subject matter. Aron Morel of Morel Books looks back to the original print-making techniques of William Blake, created by Michael Phillips, an academic who studied the process in depth, and is presented alongside a polaroid taken by Patti Smith of Blake’s death mask.
Finally Timothy Prus of the London-based Archive of Modern Conflict presents the work of Deutshe Borse nominated Spanish photographer Cristina de Middel, with whom he has collaborated and produced several projects in recent years, and for this exhibition as well as Cristina’s new publication with AMC on her subversive take on Chairman Mao’s ‘Party’, for the opening there will be a performance where Prus invites the book-loving sadists among us to the active cutting up and subsequent rearrangement and reappropriation through collage of the book itself.
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