The weekend of September 25-28th art enthusiasts, bibliophiles, the simply curious made their way to the annual NY Art Book Fair. Held at MoMA’s PS1 in Long Island City, Queens; this year’s event featured more than 350 artists, booksellers, and independent publishers hailing from 28 countries. Last year’s fair attracted a crowd of 27,000.
More than just a vast selection of artist books, the fair also hosts the Contemporary Artists’ Book Conference (CABC). The two-day event featured speakers on topics ranging from print as performance to photo meets text, as well as a keynote conversation with artist R. H. Quaytman and her mother, the poet, Susan Howe, about their collaborative artists’ book project Tom Tit Tot. The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Library’s librarian Anna Brooke attended this year’s conference and Fair. She was introduced to the event through the CABC conference.
“In 2012 I was invited to participate in Tony White’s Pecha Kucha session and presented images of artists’ books from our collection. This was the first public talk on our ‘hidden’ special collection. A recent MLS graduate, Alexandra Small, commented that she was surprised by how many contemporary artists make artists’ books. Since then I have been interested in the Book Fair as the best opportunity to look at many international art books and attend the Contemporary Artists Books Conference (CABC) to hear panel discussions and talks on book art culture.”
The Art Book Fair is put together by Printed Matter Inc.; they describe themselves as: “…the world’s leading non-profit organization dedicated to the dissemination, understanding and appreciation of artists’ books.” All of the NY Art Book Fair events are free, and open to the public.