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GARY FROST exhibit at Center for Book Arts

         Center for Book Arts is pleased to present

       GARY FROST: Explorer of Book Structure & Action

           an exhibition curated by Richard Minsky

             October 23 through December 6, 1997
        Opening Reception Thursday October 23, 6-8 pm

Gary Frost is recognized by the bookbinding community as an artist whose
explorations of the science and philosophy of book forms have led the field
in a significant rethinking of the way books are made. Center for Book Arts,
located on the fifth floor of 626 Broadway in New York City, is pleased to
announce a show of this exceptional man's life work.

This exhibit will present the experience of a young art student who wandered
into a library and became fascinated with making books. Four themes are
followed: craft, art, library science and the future of hand bookbinding. In
addition to presenting works which exposit these themes, it will also
reflect Gary Frost's personal experience as an apprentice, an artist, a
teacher and a working bookbinder.

The artist states that "the physical book is a perennial mechanism for
conveying conceptual works and that this paradox is rooted deeply," and has
conceived this exhibit as the map of an epistemology of bookbinding.
"Bookbinding is littered with opinions and conventions. What is needed is a
map of the knowledge of the subject. The four domains in the exhibit will
identify the sources of this knowledge."

The appeal of this work is beyond the specific interests of the bookbinding
community. The issues relate to all aspects of human endeavor, whether in
the arts, sciences, humanities, or the practical trades of everyday life. We
see an artist who has gone beyond the received conventions and has
synthesized an original conceptual model. This has led to innovative
developments which advance the art of the book.

The four domains of hand bookbinding which the artist presents are
illuminated by examples of his work and texts which are both
autobiographical and expository.

(1) Craft Domain: how the hands prompt the mind: reflecting his
apprenticeship in guitar making (1959-69) and bookbinding (1969-1981). This
includes Frost's first bookbinding, stitched on a sewing machine and bonded
with "Goo" in 1962, and a "glueless" binding on 5 thongs and endstraps with
oak boards, made for a Guild of BookWorkers exhibit in 1973.

(2) Art Domain: when the metaphor of the content is conveyed by the binding:
presenting works created as social, political or aesthetic statements.

(3) Library Science Domain: why physical objects convey conceptual works:
relating his discoveries as a teacher in preservation programs (School of
Library Service, Columbia University 1981-86, Graduate School of Library and
Information Science, University of Texas at Austin 1995 - present).
Included in this section is a series of historical prototypes and models.

(4) Psychic Domain, projecting the future of the traditional book: following his
experiences in innovative, production binderies (BookLab 1988-95, Dry
Frio Bindery 1995 - present). This will include Utopian Ethiopian,
Millennial and Post-Digital bindings

Since 1974 the Center for Book Arts has been committed to advancing the art
of the book in all its forms, including the traditional crafts of bookmaking
and interpretations of the book form by contemporary artists. This exhibit
expands the discussion of the continuing role of the physical book.


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