x 10", 350 pp.
No Longer Innocent:
Book Art in America, 1960–1980 is the first history to trace
the emergence of the artist’s book in the U.S. during the 1960s
and 1970s. Author Betty Bright helped to start Minnesota
Center for Book Arts in 1984, and in her nine years there curated over
50 exhibitions, several of which toured nationally, with catalogues. That
work experience was followed by 10 years of research for this book, conducted
in collections in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, and supplemented
by interviews with leaders in the field.
begins by identifying three distinct kinds of the artist’s book,
at least in its
early manifestations: the fine press book, the deluxe book, and the bookwork.
The book identifies European precursors of these kinds of artists’
books, then quickly moves to America with the development of artists and
books and non-profit organizations. New York plays a central role as the
home of key artists and of organizations such as (in New York City) the
Center for Book Arts, Franklin Furnace, Printed Matter, and the libraries
at the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum, as well as (outside
of the City) Visual Studies Workshop Press
in Rochester. No Longer Innocent encompasses all corners of America, however,
including Chicago and Iowa City, Atlanta and Miami, San Francisco and
history demonstrates how the book form affected art movements sympathetic
to its properties and potential, as a site and source of art-making.