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Re: Book Art vs. Book Arts

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>Franklin Furnace Archive, which was created by Martha Wilson, and --
>I believe -- donated to MoMA.

Bought by Clive Phillpot, then MOMA librarian, for the MOMA library.
Very shortly after that he left MOMA and the USA for England.  Martha
is smart, besides being savvy and a good performance artist. Clive was
on the Franklin Furnace Board of Directors.

This was not a "curatorial" department purchase. It's sort of like the
Watson Library and the Met that I mentioned yesterday. The 10,000
artists in the artist book collection are in the Library, not the
Museum. They were put there by a librarian, not a curator. In the art
world that's not the same thing.  It's regarded as research material,
not art. Books are still marginalized in the art world.

If you go to the MOMA website you will see that The Abby Aldrich
Rockefeller Print Room is listed in the category "Prints and
Illustrated Books." Neither the library nor artists' books as a
category are listed under "Curatorial Departments."   To find The
Museum of Modern Art/Franklin Furnace Artist Book Collection you have
to really want to see it and know about it. Go to
then click on "Educational Resources." When you get that page, click
on "Research Resources." When you get to that page click on
"Library."  Then scroll down the page and in the middle of a paragraph
on the library's holdings the artist book collection is mentioned.
Then click on the Research FAQ's and Library FAQ's at the bottom of
the page to find out how to get permission to access the collection.

Franklin Furnace still exists, though not in the same way. Martha has
has webified and updated it:


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