Book of the Day Posted May 18, 2019

Book of the Day > Sunseekers: The Cure of California

Book of the Day > Sunseekers: The Cure of California by Lyra Kilston. Published by Atelier Editions. "Sunlight was once considered medicinal, a substance that doctors prescribed and architects summoned indoors with bold new designs. Around the turn of the 20th century, sun-drenched locales like Southern California proved an ideal testing ground for unorthodox thinking about healthy living, from diet to fitness to housing. The region’s celebrated climate and untamed nature lured waves of newcomers—health-seekers, iconoclasts, dropouts—all seeking antidotes to physical and civilizational ailments. Their search led to remarkable curiosities like the “Health House,” a helio-therapeutic modern home; the world’s first raw vegan cafeteria; and a group of eccentric barefoot men who camped out in the hills and canyons, getting back to nature long before the 1960s. Lyra Kilston revisits these lesser-known histories and unusual characters, tracing the colorful and surprising origins of how the region became a famed magnet for healthy living."

Book of the Day Posted May 16, 2019

Book of the Day > Trevor Paglen: From the Archives of Peter Merlin, Aviation Archaelogist

Book of the Day > Trevor Paglen: From the Archives of Peter Merlin, Aviation Archaelogist. Published by Primary Information."Commemorative coins, patches, mugs and other ephemera from the shadowy world of US military aviation and aerospace. In From the Archives of Peter Merlin, Aviation Archaeologist, multidisciplinary artist Trevor Paglen (born 1974) collaborates with Peter Merlin, a former NASA archivist, on this new artist’s book featuring a photographic inventory of objects from the aerospace historian’s archive of research culled from military bases such as Area 51. Featuring images of challenge coins, patches and commemorative mugs from within these bases, as well as debris recovered from the surrounding crash sites, the book presents both a social and technological investigation into the US government’s secret aviation history from the atomic age to today's drone wreckage. The symbols and texts featured on these objects that celebrate covert missions range in character from goofy to sinister, though their actual meaning may never be fully explained to the public. In addition to photographic images, the book includes an essay by Paglen as well as in-depth captions of the archive’s inventory, offering context for this history and addressing the present-day ramifications of these military advancements across the realms of communication, surveillance and warfare."

Book of the Day Posted May 15, 2019

Book of the day > Basquiat Before Basquiat: East 12th Street, 1979-1980

Book of the day > Basquiat Before Basquiat: East 12th Street, 1979-1980. Published by @ mca_denver. "In 1979 a young Jean-Michel Basquiat was tagging Lower Manhattan and roaming the nightclubs and bars of the East Village. When he moved into a sixth-floor walkup on East 12th Street with Alexis Adler, a young scientist and amateur photographer, the apartment became a site of artistic experimentation: Basquiat painted every surface, made sculpture from discarded objects dragged in from the street, filled notebook pages, and staged performances, all captured by Adler’s camera and preserved in her archive. Basquiat Before Basquiat: East 12th Street, 1979-1980 observes a period in the artistic life of Jean-Michel Basquiat as he emerged as a pioneering and virtuosic painter and performer. Published in conjunction with the MCA Denver exhibition of the same title, this book tells the story of what unfolded in apartment F8 and how the creative impulses evident in Basquiat’s home spilled into the streets of the neighborhood and vice versa. Basquiat Before Basquiat features Adler’s photographs, as well as an essay by MCA Denver curator Nora Burnett Abrams and critical texts and personal remembrances by friends of the artist, including Adler, Luc Sante, Darryl Pinckney, Sara Driver, jennifer jazz, Malu Halasa, Michael Holman, Bud Kliment, Sur Rodney Sur, and Felice Rosser. The book provides an intimate glimpse into the creative life of the artist at a moment that incontrovertibly shaped his artistic practice."
Book of the Day Posted May 14, 2019

Book of the Day > Lee Friedlander: Signs

Book of the Day > Lee Friedlander: Signs. Published by Fraenkel Gallery.
"For more than five decades, Lee Friedlander has repeatedly been drawn to the signs that inscribe the American landscape, from hand-lettered ads to storefront windows to massive billboards. Incorporating these markings with precision and sly humor, Friedlander’s photographs record a kind of found poetry of desire and commerce.Focusing on one of the artist’s key motifs, Lee Friedlander: Signs presents a cacophony of wheat-paste posters, Coca-Cola ads, prices for milk, road signs, stop signs, neon lights, movie marquees and graffiti. The book collects 144 photographs made in New York and other places across the US, and features self-portraits, street photographs and work from series including The American Monument and America by Car, among others. Illegible or plainspoken, crude or whimsical, Friedlander’s signs are an unselfconscious portrait of modern life."
Book of the Day Posted May 11, 2019

Book of the Day > Herman Miller: A Way of Living

Book of the Day > Herman Miller: A Way of Living. Published by Phaidon. A chronicle of the rich history of this innovative furniture company, from its founding in the early twentieth century to today. For more than 100 years, Michigan-based Herman Miller has played a central role in the evolution of modern and contemporary design, producing timeless classics while creating a culture that has had a remarkable impact on the development of the design world. Ten chapters and thousands of illustrations tell the Herman Miller story, documenting its defining moments and key leaders - making Herman Miller: A Way of Living an indispensable addition to the bookshelves of design-lovers around the globe.
Book of the Day Posted May 10, 2019

Book of the Day > Phyllis Galembo: Mexico Masks/Rituals

Book of the Day > Phyllis Galembo: Mexico Masks/Rituals. Published by Radius Books.
"Since 1985, photographer Phyllis Galembo has traveled extensively to photograph sites of ritual dress in Africa and the Americas. In her latest body of work, collected in this new publication, Galembo turns to Mexico, where she captures cultural performances with a subterranean political edge. Using a direct, unaffected portrait style, Galembo captures her subjects informally posed but often strikingly attired in traditional or ritualistic dress.
Masking is a complex tradition in which the participants transcend the physical world and enter the spiritual realm. Masks, costumes and body paint transform the human body and encode a rich range of political, artistic, theatrical, social and religious meanings on the body. In her vibrant color photographs, Galembo highlights the artistry of the performers, how they use materials from their immediate environment to morph into a fantastical representation of themselves and an idealized vision of a mythical figure. In a gorgeous, fascinating photographic survey of Mexico’s masking practices, Galembo captures her subjects suspended between past, present and future, with their religious, political and cultural affiliations—their personal and collective identifications—displayed on their bodies."
Book of the Day Posted May 08, 2019

Book of the day > Kwame Brathwaite: Black Is Beautiful

Book of the day > Kwame Brathwaite: Black Is Beautiful. Published by Aperture. "In the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s, Kwame Brathwaite used his photography to popularize the political slogan 'Black Is Beautiful.' This monograph—the first ever dedicated to Brathwaite’s remarkable career—tells the story of a key, but under-recognized, figure of the second Harlem Renaissance.
Inspired by the writings of activist and black nationalist Marcus Garvey, Brathwaite, along with his older brother, Elombe Brath, founded the African Jazz Arts Society and Studios (AJASS) and the Grandassa Models (1962). AJASS was a collective of artists, playwrights, designers, and dancers; Grandassa Models was a modeling agency for black women, founded to challenge white beauty standards. From stunning studio portraits of the Grandassa Models to behind-the-scenes images of Harlem’s artistic community, including Max Roach, Abbey Lincoln, and Miles Davis, this book offers a long-overdue exploration of Brathwaite’s life and work." 

 

Book of the Day Posted May 07, 2019

Book of the Day > Balkrishna Doshi: Architecture for the People

Book of the Day > Balkrishna Doshi: Architecture for the People.  Published by Vitra Design Museum.

"The 2018 Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Balkrishna Doshi is one of India's most influential architects, renowned for his harmonious designs that merge the formal language of classical modernism with Indian building traditions and local craft skills. Always designed with a sensitivity to the social, environmental and economic conditions of a given commission or site, Doshi’s architecture honors the past while at the same time accommodating the rapidly changing conditions and needs of modern India. Doshi has designed more than 100 buildings—educational and cultural institutions, public buildings, private residences and low-income housing projects among them—and has taught scores of students over the course of his 60-year career, a career distinguished by a sense of responsibility and dedication to the country and communities he has served.Balkrishna Doshi: Architecture for the People presents the first comprehensive survey of this groundbreaking architect’s oeuvre in over 20 years. With a complete overview of all of Doshi’s projects, it provides insights into the inspiration behind his work and the background to his projects through essays written by outstanding experts in the field. The richly illustrated book is further supplemented by an interview with the architect, an illustrated biography and new photographs that document the impressive timeliness of the Indian master's buildings."

Book of the Day Posted May 05, 2019

Book of the Day > Camp: Notes on Fashion

Book of the Day > Camp: Notes on Fashion. Published by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in conjuction with the exhibition. "Although an elusive concept, "camp" can be found in most forms of artistic expression, revealing itself to be a complex aesthetic that challenges the status quo. As an expression of the playful dynamics between high art and popular culture, fashion both embraces and flaunts such camp modes as irony, humor, parody, pastiche, artifice, theatricality, and exaggeration. Drawing from Susan Sontag's seminal 1964 essay "Notes on 'Camp'," this multifaceted publication presents the sartorial manifestations of the camp sensibility while contributing new theoretical and conceptual insights to the camp canon through texts and images. Stunning new photography by Johnny Dufort highlights works by exceptional fashion designers including Thom Browne, John Galliano, Jean Paul Gaultier, Marc Jacobs, Karl Lagerfeld, Alessandro Michele, Franco Moschino, Yves Saint Laurent, Jeremy Scott, Anna Sui, Gianni Versace, and Vivienne Westwood."
Book of the Day Posted May 02, 2019

Book of the Day > Charles James: The Couture Secrets of Shape

Book of the Day > Charles James: The Couture Secrets of Shape. "British-American designer Charles James (1906–78), 'America’s First Couturier,' is famed for the extraordinarily elegant evening gowns he created in the 1930s through the 1950s for society ladies on both sides of the Atlantic. From the beginning of his career, James also designed revolutionary unisex styles. The famous eiderdown evening jacket, designed in 1937 for women, was revived as a cult unisex design object in 1970s New York. The eiderdown jacket and James’ other unisex designs share with his ball gowns a sculptural, architectural presence and a rigorously cerebral design process grounded in science and mathematics. James is regarded as a visionary thinker in the world of fashion, introducing lasting innovations in both technique and methodology. Charles James: The Couture Secrets of Shape goes beyond the evening gowns, focusing on some of James’ unisex designs and his life in the artist community at the Chelsea Hotel, where he lived from 1964 until his death in 1978. He remained restlessly creative in this period, his rooms at the Chelsea serving as a studio, workshop, and archive. In 1973 he wrote The Charles James Approach to Structural Design; this allowed a glimpse into his thinking at that time and is included in this publication in facsimile. Edited by Homer Layne, James’ last assistant, and Professor Dorothea Mink, with a preface by fashion designer Rick Owens, this volume reveals a new facet of James’ groundbreaking body of work."
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