The artists’ book as a distinctive art
medium has been a constant part of the art
scene since the second half of the 20th century.
However, the forerunner to this art
form had already appeared in individual
works during the late 19th century and
ever more frequently with the onset of
avant-garde art, shifting the boundaries of
traditional book production. The artists’
book was intensively explored particularly
during the 1960s and 1970s, asserting itself
in trends and movements prevalent at the
time, such as object art, visual poetry, and
Conceptual and Action Art. The artists’
book thus acquired many different forms
and functions – from independent art objects
to items comprised in various events,
to documentaries of those events. This art
medium has become a means of synthesizing
the artistic expression that integrates
visual and haptic impressions in a structured
manner of communication.
The Artists’ Book on Tour project has
been intended to introduce this specific
genre to the broad public, and above all to
examine its current status and possible
transformations in the era of digital media.
The present exhibition features fifty
works that were selected and awarded by
an international jury in a competition by
the same name, organized by the Museum
of Applied Arts in Vienna (MAK), in partnership
with the Museum of Decorative
Arts in Prague and the International Centre
of Graphic Arts in Ljubljana. A total of
925 works from 35 countries of Europe
were evaluated in the competition open to
artists from European countries and to
their works created in the past two years.
With a few exceptions, most entries
sent in reflected types of works traditionally
associated with this genre, and their
topicality did not rest so much in their
form as in their content. The content often
has the character of a social appeal, a probe
into gender issues, or is an expression of
the crisis of personal and collective identity.
On the opposite pole are works focused
on the structural quality of the material
used, as well as Conceptual Art pieces referring
to the function of books, frequently
emphasized through metaphor and requiring
the viewer’s active perception.
This travelling exhibition that features
artworks awarded in the competition offers
interesting comparisons; Czech art
holds a place of its own in the overview
owing to the success scored by Julie Kacerovská,
who received one of the five best
works’ awards for her Paper Landscape.
Claire Andlauer/Tristan Perreton (Francie), Georgina Aspa/Javiera Pintocanales (Španělsko), Aïdée Bernard (Francie), Manuel Blázquez (Španělsko), Valérie Buess (Německo), Lien Buysens (Belgie), Vuk Cuk (Srbsko), Susan Deakin (Velká Británie), Amélie Dubois (Francie), Sandra Đurović (Černá Hora), Gerhild Ebel, Rainer Fest (Německo), Marie-Noë le Fontan (Francie), Irena Frantal (Velká Británie), Sabine Golde (Německo), Laure Grimal (Francie), Lyn Hagan (Velká Británie), Katrin Herzner, Gerlinde Hofmann (Německo), Julie Kačerovská (ČR), Ilona Kiss (Maďarsko), Mario Kolarić (Chorvatsko), Edith Kollath (Německo), Agata Kosmacz (Polsko), Matthias Krinzinger (Rakousko), Lucas Kunz (Německo), Beatrix Malpalagama (Rakousko), Max Marek (Německo), Livia Mateiaş (Rumunsko), Michail Molochnikov (Německo), Igor Mudronja (Chorvatsko), Sky Nash, Kate Owens (Velká Británie), Elena Peytchinska (Rakousko), Andrea Pézman (Slovensko), Rachèle Rivière (Francie), José Rosinhas (Portugalsko), Christoph Rothmeier (Německo), Josipa Šarić (Chorvatsko), Patrick Sauze (Francie), Libby Scarlett (Velká Británie), Veronika Schäppers (Německo), Karin Sulimma (Rakousko), Maria Szczodrowska (Polsko), Carolyn Thompson (Velká Británie), Filip Tofil (Polsko), umraum artcollective (Rakousko), Celestina Vičević (Chorvatsko), Consuelo Vinchira (Španělsko), Katarzyna Wolny (Polsko)
Main Hall of the National Technical Library
No. 6, Technická Street / Prague 6
Open from Monday to Friday, 8 am – 12 pm / Saturday 9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Closed on April 9 and May 1, 2012
Supported by the European Union’s “Culture 2007–2013” programme.