The Art of Books

November 9, 2010 |

The Printed Matter Stand @ The NY Art Book Fair

MacGregor Harp is a graphic designer for SaatchiNY (who did some awesome work on the most recent 7×7). Last weekend, he had the chance to attend Printed Matter’s Fifth Annual Art Book Fair at MOMA PS1. Below are some of his thoughts on the experience, as well as some pictures of his favorite work.

Printed Matter’s Art Book Fair at PS1 was well attended this weekend. With publishers and artists from around the world selling their wares, getting to all the stands was quite a feat and is something I was only able to do in two visits.


All of my favorite publishers had tables in the fair and of course I discovered several new ones. I made sure to use the opportunity to pick up some foreign pubs (without paying the usual exorbitant international shipping fees) as well as check out some new American publishers. The booths that really stood out this year were Motto Distribution, True True True, The Book TrustRoma Publications, and Swill Children, to name a few.

It’s clear that more and more young artists and designers are reshaping the independent publishing world and this was reflected in the experimental nature of the books displayed at the fair. It’s also clear that, with the proper promotion, there’s a healthy section of the public that’s eager to consume these materials. This realization, being a micro publisher myself, tickles my tummy.  While no one is getting rich publishing these cultural documents, events like the New York Art Book Fair will continue to help keep such endeavors alive.

Following is a sample of some of the books I bought with links to their respective publishers’ websites.

Investment Futures Strategy

The Book Trust

“The Trust and the accompanying Book Trust Prospectus speak to matters of micro-economies and distribution, as well as prescribed and perceived value. ”

Wish You Were Here


Eric Elms

A collection of household logos and cultural symbols being “violated” by the artists trade mark.

Two Short Plays

Liam Gillick

East Side Projects

A catalog for an exhibition for artist Liam Gillick in which he proposes scripts for two plays.

The Thoughtful American

Julian C. Duron

Jesse Hlebo editor

A beautiful short run publication produced by Brooklyn based Swill Children. This issue features the art of Julian Duron and is printed in three colors on a risograph.

Silk Handkerchiefs (Paul Haworth)

True True True

Silk Handkerchiefs is the first in a trilogy of short comedy novels by writer and painter Paul Haworth.

On the Self-Reflexive Page

Louis Lüthi

Roma Publications

The subject of this book is the page, and the pages reproduced in it are taken from works of literature (or, in some cases, art books that derive specifically from literature). Lüthi presents them thematically, resulting in a typology of self-reflexive pages: Black Pages, Blank Pages, Drawing Pages, Photography Pages, Text Pages, Number Pages, and Punctuation Pages. In literature, such devises are often used as a counterpoint to what has preceded or what will follow in the narrative.

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