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SHAAN SYED

Catalogue

Oliver Kielmayer (Ed.)

In his first extensive solo exhibition at the Kunsthalle Winterthur (2015), titled 1:1, London-based Canadian artist Shaan Syed (b. 1977) pictorializes the concept of the empty stage. Produced by the artist in conversation to the exhibition, Catalogue is a combination artist book / survey of Syed’s large-scale wall paintings and drawings referencing minimalist greats such as Sol LeWitt and Ellsworth Kelly and the word- based works of the outrageous London-based artist David Shrigley. Small-scale color reproductions of over one hundred works presented in catalog format are accom- panied by an insightful essay on the artist’s work by curator Oliver Kielmayer. It is no coincidence that Syed’s formal compositions sometimes resemble abstract versions of Indian tantric paintings, serving neither as instruction nor decoration but as a stimulus for entry into the spiritual sphere—a concept that corresponds to early 19th-century ideas of artistic autonomy and emphasizing the intrinsic value of the image as aesthetic experience.

SNOECK, GERMANY
KUNSTHALLE WINTERTHUR, SWITZERLAND
February 2016 / English & German Exhibition catalog / Softcover
9 x 11 ½ inches / 128 pp / 318 color
ISBN: 978-3-86442-144-0 · Retail Price: $42.00

THE SYMBOLIC COMMISSIONER

The early 20th-century avant-gardes in art, dance and architecture were enamored of the utopia of the New Man, who they proclaimed their idealized “client“ and the aim of their artistic production. The client is a symbolic one, because his actual identity remains unknown. Houses and carpets, wallpapers and suits, new cities and chairs were designed for him (or her), yet the figure has remained a utopian one, flaring-up only for a brief moment in time, to inspire works of art. This book combines images and essays from the two group exhibitions “Idealismusstudio” and “Die Blaue Blume,” at the Art Association Graz, Austria. Featured artists range from Anni Albers and George Nelson to Luca Frei and Hilary Lloyd.

STERNBERG PRESS, BERLIN / NEW YORK
GRAZER KUNSTVEREIN, AUSTRIA
2011 / Exhibition catalog / Hardcover
6.5 x 9.5 inches / 224 pp / 2 b&w and 66 color
ISBN: 978-1-934105-35-1 · Retail Price: $34.00

SYNTAX AND SOCIETY

The Abraaj Group Art Prize 2016

Nav Haq (Ed.)

Presenting the work of recipients and shortlisted artists of the 9th Abraaj Group Art Prize, this double publication is the second award catalog from Abraaj Group focusing on contemporary artists of Middle Eastern descent. In the first volume, Syntax and Society, the structure and meaning of language and the role it plays in society is investigated in the work of the three shortlisted artists—Dina Danish, Mahmoud Khaled and Basir Mahmood. The second volume, Oh Shining Star Testify, focuses on the work of award winning artist duo Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme. Their video work commissioned for the prize, Only the beloved keeps our secrets, examines how modern-day technologies enable a continued existence for the deceased. Found material, including images, texts and testimonies, are collaged together to suggest a Palestinian narrative of collective history. Along with curator Nav Haq’s insightful essay is a glossary of quotations from philosophical and literary writers who inform the duo’s process. Contributions by Basel Abbas, Ruanne Abou-Rahme, Dina Danish, Clare Davies, Nav Haq and Rabeya Jalil.

STERNBERG PRESS, BERLIN
ABRAAJ GROUP, DUBAI
October 2016 / Exhibition catalog / 2-volume set
Softcover / 7 ½ x 9 ½ in. / 264 pp / 101 color
ISBN: 978-3-956792-30-4 · Retail Price: $32.00

T. SHANAATHANAN

The Incomplete Thombu

An unexpected yet poignant artist’s book, commenting on the tragic civil war in Sri Lanka from 1983-2009. A “thombu” is a Dutch term for a public land registry. This beautifully designed project records the displacement of Tamil people in an achingly personal way: each entry is a simple floor plan, drawn from memory by a displaced Tamil-speaking citizen. A vellum overlay with an architect’s crisp drawing makes the lost home “real” in yet another way. Drawings are accompanied by the name of the person who lost their home, their profession, and a brief interview, telling the story of the upheaval and the memories they took with them. The maps vividly reveal what was lost in a conflict that lasted more than 30 years. A moving example of how art and politics can intersect.

RAKING LEAVES, LONDON
April 2012 / Softcover / 9 x 11.75 inches
320 pp / 80 b/w and 160 color
ISBN: 978-0-9556674-5-9 · Retail Price: $65.00

Naoko Takahashi

Not So Too Much of Much of Everything

Book Works, United Kingdom
September 2007, Softcover, 41/4 x 7 inches
72 pp, Text only
ISBN: 978-1-870699-97-6 · Retail Price: $18.00

TAKING A LINE FOR A WALK

A year into his appointment at the Bauhaus, Paul Klee was teaching pictorial configuration as part of the basic course. Following a brief introduction, he immediately got to the heart of the matter: “I’m starting precisely there, where pictorial form begins, with the point that is set in motion.” In a poetic-metaphorical manner Klee laid out a plausible working method for drawing: the artist/ designer takes the line for a walk. This catalog based on the Klee exhibition at the Zentrum in Bern focuses on the significance of handwriting, writing and scriptive signs in artistic practice. In the modern era, script, characters and calligraphy have been areas in which artists have been able to choose between spontaneity and control, and between intuition and rule in their work, exploring the spaces in between. Klee saw letters as well as drawing as based on the line. From abstract expressionist scratchings to mystical symbology, from ancient hieroglyphics to the Art & Language movement, how has the dichotomy of line as decoration and line as communication influenced modern art? This deeply engaging catalog brings together the script works of Paul Klee; the calligraphic-based works of Henri Michaux, Mark Tobey and Brice Marden; the script-like characters of Cy Twombly; the palindromes of Olav Christopher Jenssen; and the spontaneity of Christopher Wool’s graffiti-like works and Jonathan Lasker’s pastose painting style to create an electric snapshot of one of fine art’s most compelling recurring themes. In addition to biographical essays and reproductions of the artists’ relevant works, this playful volume also includes essays by Fabienne Eggelhofer on the art of merging control and spontaneity, Regine Bonnefoit on the relationship between Klee and the poet and painter Henri Michaux, and Martin Dobbe on the possibility of abstract writing.

SNOECK, GERMANY
ZENTRUM PAUL KLEE, BERN
July 2014 / English & German / Exhibition catalog
Hardcover / 10 x 12 3/4 inches / 192 pp / 130 color
ISBN: 978-3-86442-072-6 · Retail Price: $72.00

TAL R

Egyptian Boy

Art critic Kay Heymer, in her excellent essay here, calls the artist TAL R the “devourer of images.” His new group of ceramic sculptures, shown in this catalog, invokes predecessors such as André Derain, Alberto Giacometti, Willem de Kooning, Jean Fautrier, Hans Josephson, Georg Baselitz and Günther Förg. TAL R has devoured this tradition as quickly as he has regurgitated it; he is fascinated and inspired by much older traditions of sculpture firmly rooted in religious and social behavior, such as votive offerings—body parts for healing purposes—which can be found in the hundreds, often stacked in piles, across the world. TAL R’s sculptures, his reformulations, are simultaneously naïve and refined, virtuosic and amateurish, reflective and genuine, artificial and authentic, vulgar and absolute, and full of pure childlike innocence. Full-page illustrations make this catalog an important document of this important new work.

SNOECK, GERMANY
CFA, BERLIN
September 2013 / English & German
Exhibition catalog / Hardcover
9 1/2 x 12 3/4 inches / 56 pp / 70 color
ISBN: 978-3-86442-045-0 · Retail Price: $45.00

TAL R

The Elephant Behind the Clown

An exhibition catalog for Israeli-born painter TAL R shows the latest evolution in the work of this popular artist. TAL R’s signature naïf style, playful and brightly colored, seems to be moving in a less figurative, more abstract direction. The 50 color reproductions in the catalog emphasize the artist’s free yet stylized forms, which make a powerful impression and bring to mind the work of Marc Chagall (minus the religious dimension). Interestingly, the Copenhagen-based painter has renounced his previous techniques. Instead of the application of pastose oils, he applies a mixture of rabbit-skin glue and pigments directly on ungrounded canvas so that a fresco-like tone dominates the surface. Includes an interview with the artist by Florian Waldvogel.

Snoeck, Germany
November 2011 / English & German / Exhibition catalog
Softcover / 8 5/8 x 10 3/8 inches / 88 pp / 45 color
ISBN: 978-3-940953-79-7 · Retail Price: $69.95

Fiona Tan

VOX POPULI: Tokyo

Following Vox Populi, Norway and Vox Populi, Sydney, this Tokyo version is the third of Indonesian-born artist Fiona Tan’s remarkable explorations into the soul of a country through its family albums. The Amsterdam-based Tan presents a social portrait of a people and a nation by choosing images selected from family photo albums, creating a sense of place and identity that is unique in this case to Japan, and also – as her series of work continues in more countries – highlights what human beings have in common across borders. Drawing on the documentary tradition, in combination with contemporary concerns of participation and egalitarianism, Vox Populi, Tokyo, continues this ever-expanding map of the world. Published to coincide with an exhibition in Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, Germany.

Book Works, United Kingdom
April 2008, Softcover, 5 x 7 inches
128 pp, 128 color reproductions
ISBN: 978-1-906012-00-7 · Retail Price: $29.95

FIONA TAN

VOX POPULI: Switzerland

Globe-spanning artist Fiona Tan presents the fourth publication in her continually surprising Vox Populi series: a “snapshot” of Switzerland selected from a random collection of family photo albums. These intimate, private pictures, when presented as a collection, reveal shared intimacies and humor, and shared Swiss traditions such as Christmas holidays and dining tables laden with elaborate cakes and pastries. These may appear, at first glance, culturally specific, but when seen in the context of the whole Vox Populi project, shared and comparable traditions clearly cross borders, nations and cultures. Drawing on the documentary tradition, this book gives an intensely private peek into the psyche of a nation.

BOOK WORKS, UNITED KINGDOM
2011 / Softcover / 5 x 7 inches / 128 pp / 128 color
ISBN: 978-1-906012-28-1 · Retail Price: $29.95