from feral to urban

from codex to artists book

Exhibition of Atists Books Prints and Multiples as Installation catalogued in site specific interiors from the feral to the urban.

Co-curated by David Faithfull and Sophia Hao (curator Exhibitions DOJCAD, Visual Research Centre, DCA, Dundee, Scotland

Through highlighting the work created by a variety of contemporary international artists, Cabin:codex aimed to broadened exposure and accessibility of Artists Books, while satisfying one of the fundamental challenges associated with the ‘printed’ artefact. What particular gallery environment or space can best represent the intentions of the artist and disseminate the particular conceptual and emotive qualities of their artwork, particularly in relation to the often misunderstood from of the Artists Book?

With some of the key elements of these ‘editioned’ art-objects being accessibility and tactility, how can the artist/maker justify the normal curatorial practice of encapsulating these pieces behind glass, in a display case or at best handled with sterile white gloves under the watching eye of an invigilator?

The Centre for Artists Books

The concept behind Cabin:codex was to classify the selected works from the CAB collection into two distinct but opposing inter-related ‘landscape’ themes – the Urban and the Feral - presented on open display and available to be handled by the gallery visitors. This allowed a refreshingly direct, hands-on experience and thereby maintain the intentions of the artists in adopting these non-hierarchal visual format of the Artists Book..

The actual experience of the viewers immersing themselves within these designated 'installed' spaces was further heightened by using elements such as specially created screen-printed wallpapers and floor-coverings, and appropriately themed/textured seating and display shelving. This allowed the gallery space to be structured thematically and provided a backdrop of rich but subversive visual interest, allowing the books on display to be perused as though the gallery had been transformed into a personal rather than institutional space.

The viewer sat comfortably in each space, surrounded and influenced by its particular visual ambience and interacts with the artworks at their fingertips. And through this actual engagement, the viewer inadvertently becomes the curator - rearranging the exhibits, whether subtly through replacing or misplacing the pieces back on the shelves or through leaving particular works conspicuously placed or unfolded on top, involuntarily influencing the response and experience of the next viewer.



Collaborators including:

Dave Fyans

Zoe Irvine + Pernille Spence

Catherine Street

Paul Noble

Yuk’n Yum

Nick Chua