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Book Art vs. Book Arts



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Richard Minsky asks:
"1. Does the term "Book Arts" provincialize our work?
> 2. Does it limit the recognition or consideration of the work?
> 3. Does it impose a low financial value on the work, compared to other
art forms?"

To my mind, the term "Book Arts" signifies that there are many
(traditionally separate) crafts that go in to a book-work, and
acknowledges that the creation of a book is often a collaborative
venture.  I don't see why both terms shouldn't co-exist, since it seems
there are those who still specialize and choose to collaborate, and
those who like to do it all.

Both terms may impose a low financial value on the work, since all art
forms are considered lesser than painting and sculpture in the art
market.  So why worry about it?  I identify more with the plural,
because part of what draws me to the book-as-object is the energy that
comes of collaboration.  Or the dialog that is embodied when a binder
responds to a text; I love that kind of thing.  But I love potlucks,
too.

Collaborative work, I might add, is discriminated against, financially,
in the art market, because the Great Lie of Art is that of the Artist
Working in a Vacuum.  The lonely genius toiling in his/her garret.  The
monetary value of a work suffers when experts can't tell if it is a
Bracques or a Picasso.

To paraphrase a bumper sticker I read recently, "you can't be
provincialized without your consent."  Or maybe I should put it,
"provincial is as provincial does"?

 =20

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