Books Unbound

December 2016
Megan Fizell

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In 2011, American academic Garrett Stewart surveyed artists using books as a sculptural medium in Bookwork: Medium to Object to Concept to Art. In this text, he identifies 'bookworkers' as a group of artists who 'set about reworking a found volume rather than fashioning a new one for publication or display'. This essay will sample four contemporary 'bookworkers' engaging with bound books in involved, process- heavy methods. Whether it is through deconstruction and collage, tangible language mapping, physical alterations of the actual pages, or painstaking duplication, these artists ask us to reconsider the boundaries of the printed and bound book.