The Book

Julius Friedman (Author) Dianne Aprile (Contribution by)
& 2 more
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Description

Destroying books has traditionally been seen as a brutal, almost inhumane, act. Is it possible that instead, book destruction can be turned into beautiful and inspiring works of art?

That's the premise behind a new book from distinguished designer and photographer, Julius Friedman. Titled simply, The Book, Friedman's latest project is an art book made possible by the sacrifice of several other beautiful books for the pieces within.

"The Book project was inspired by Gail Gilbert, the art librarian at the University of Louisville Library, when she gave me a bag of books she was discarding," Friedman noted. "She thought I could tear them up and make collages or an art project. I told her I was not a collage artist and, being a book designer, I could not tear them up. After months of them sitting in my basement and Gail saying, Do something with them, ' I made my first deconstruction and collage," he added.

Those first collages grew into a body of work, and later, a limited edition of 20 books, all hand-sewn and hand-bound, using hand-set type, letterpress, and tipped-in photographs and a box made of cherry wood to house each copy. The "run" sold out immediately. "After that project, I continued to make collages and decided to do a coffee table book that people from all walks of life could afford, enjoy, and experience," the artist added.

The result is stunning. In 130 beautiful photographs, Friedman gives his torn-apart and twisted books fascinating shapes and structures, some lit from within or without, ranging from the abstract to the concrete, and from the visceral to the intellectual. "I looked at the book from its beginnings to the current and emerging world of the Kindle and other electronic tablets, intuitively keeping in mind the sacred word, censorship, holding an object, its tactile way, even the smell of a book," he stated.

The Book will be loved, ironically, by book lovers who will recognize how the artist has harnessed the tactile power of books and transformed them into new and moving forms for his art.

"

Product Details

Price
$75.00
Publisher
Old Stone Press
Publish Date
April 20, 2016
Pages
132
Dimensions
12.2 X 1.0 X 10.1 inches | 2.75 pounds
Language
English
Type
Hardcover
EAN/UPC
9781938462191

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About the Author

JULIUS FRIEDMAN is a graphic designer, photographer and artist specializing in cultural, nonprofit, and corporate design. His work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York City; The National Gallery of Art, Washington DC; the National Museum of Poster Art, Warsaw, Poland; The Dansk Plakamuseum, Aarhous, Denmark; The Brown-Forman Corporation; 21C Museum; PNC Bank; and NTS Corporation.

PICO IYER is the author of two novels and eight works of nonfiction, including Video Night in Kathmandu, The Lady and the Monk, The Global Soul and, most recently, The Man Within My Head. An essayist for Time since 1986, he publishes regularly in the New York Review of Books and the New York Times.

JILL GAGE is Reference Librarian and Bibliographer of British History and Literature at the Newberry Library, where she has worked since 2004. She holds an M.S. in Library and Information Science (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) and a PhD in English Literature (University of London). She has published on a variety of topics, including the 1470 edition of Eusebius's De Evangelica Praeparatione printed by Nicolas Jenson; eighteenth-century English schoolboy writers; and nineteenth-century extra-illustrated books.

DIANNE APRILE is an editor and writer of essays and books, including The Eye is Not Enough, a collaboration with visual artist Mary Lou Hess. A former journalist and jazz-club owner, she teaches creative nonfiction at Spalding University's brief-residency MFA on Writing Program.

Reviews

"In this gorgeous full-color photo collection, artist Friedman (Images and Ideas) pays tribute to the book as a physical object. After a short foreword by author Pico Iyer and an equally brief introduction by librarian and bibliographer Jill Gage, Friedman leaps into a series of startling images. Friedman's images are surprising perhaps because readers tend to value books for the images they create in our minds, not as a moldable physical material. Friedman's photographs, however, turn that logic on its head by transforming books beyond recognition. He captures pages rippling like ocean waves, books folded into bird shapes that appear to fly, and decaying books that crumble, melt, and collapse into one another. In this detailed exploration of ancient and historical books, Friedman's only real flaw is that he provides little information or context for individual images; bibliophiles would have appreciated knowing about the history behind some of these literary treasures."--Publishers Weekly (04/20/2016)

"In this gorgeous full-color photo collection, artist Friedman (Images and Ideas) pays tribute to the book as a physical object. After a short foreword by author Pico Iyer and an equally brief introduction by librarian and bibliographer Jill Gage, Friedman leaps into a series of startling images. Friedman's images are surprising perhaps because readers tend to value books for the images they create in our minds, not as a moldable physical material. Friedman's photographs, however, turn that logic on its head by transforming books beyond recognition. He captures pages rippling like ocean waves, books folded into bird shapes that appear to fly, and decaying books that crumble, melt, and collapse into one another. In this detailed exploration of ancient and historical books, Friedman's only real flaw is that he provides little information or context for individual images; bibliophiles would have appreciated knowing about the history behind some of these literary treasures."

--Publishers Weekly (04/20/2016)