by Renée Riese Hubert, Judd D. Hubert
This splendid volume expands upon and extends the work initiated by Renée Riese Hubert in Surrealism and the Book (University of California Press, 1987) by focusing acute critical attention on recent and contemporary artists' books. In The Cutting Edge of Reading, the Huberts develop a discourse which starts where discussion of the livre d'artiste leaves off. The study begins with a chapter on "Transitions" which examines the work of Pierre Alechinsky and Paolo Boni, among others, before developing and discussing, through close readings, such themes as "Visual Deviants and Typographical Departures" (Telfer Stokes & Helen Douglas, Sixtus, Walter Hamady); "Various Ways of Frustrating our Reading Habits" (Susan King, Janet Zweig and Dieter Roth among others); "Altering Books—The Cutting Edge of Editing" (Tom Phillips, Harry Reese, Buzz Spector, Jean Le Gac, Scott McCarney among others); "Variations on the Accordion" (Bertrand Dorny, Julie Cheng, Clifton Meador, and Philip Zimmermann, among others); "The Book, The Museum, and Public Art" (Jochen Gerz, Margot Lovejoy, Joan Lyons, Christian Boltanski, and Annette Messager, among others); "Satire" (Marcel Broodthaers, Terry Braunstein, Warren Lehrer & Dennis Bernstein, and Ruth Laxson); "Concretions of Memory" (Ligorano/Reese, Ed Epping, among others); "Narratives and Verbal Manipulations" (Johanna Drucker, Paul Zelevansky, Henri Chopin, Keith Smith, John Crombie, and Barbara Fahrner, among others); "Metamorphosis of Childish Games" (Erica Van Horn and Clarissa Sligh, among others); and, "Fashioners of Books" (John Eric Broaddus and Timothy Ely).
The Cutting Edge of Reading is a welcome addition to the growing body of serious critical work now being done on artist' s books. Providing in-depth readings and analysis of many individual artists' books while establishing a useful international 20th century overview, it stands as a useful compliment to Johanna Drucker's The Century of Artists' Books (Granary Books, 1995) and is a necessary reference tool for scholars, critics, collectors, and librarians.
Illustrated throughout in color and black & white. Designed by Philip Gallo. Printed offset. Bound in cloth over boards with printed dustjacket.