Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Chelsea Ryoko Wong, Her Eyes Glowed Pink, screenprint, edition of 8, 2009

A smart accordion by this versatile visual artist with a BFA in printmaking from the California College of Art, Oakland. Size: 8" x 26" Check out this conversation in San Francisco's Art Practical, between Wong and the two books artists, Jaye Fishel and Nance O'Banion. Bay Area Book Arts | by Chelsea Wong

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Kou Vang & Tou Saiko Lee, Generation After Generation, Milwaukee: The Fox Company, 2008

Kou Vang's photoworks combined with a text by Tou Saiko Lee creates a moving elegy to Hmong identity and history, as well as the complex balancing act of maintaining one's own culture within the larger context of American culture. Individual pages: 10" x 3.5," extends to 14". Kou Vang has a blog with more information about her and her art, as well as the fascinating life stories of 17 other Hmong women: Kou Vang « Kou Vang

Eric Carle, A Very Long Tail, New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1972


A big thank you for my friend Marc Fischer for giving me a copy of this delightful children's book! I'm assuming that there must a whole genre of accordion children's books but I haven't been coming across them. In a unique collage style, Eric Carle, illustrates the story of assorted animals following a tail until they find its owner - not sure whether this is a happy ending book or something rather more sinister. Individual pages 6 1/2" x 8 1/4", extended its width is 8' 3".

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Robert Rehfeldt, Fliesenwerke Galerie, Boizenburg, Germany (DDR), 1985

An accordion brochure for an exhibition of the former-DDR, Berlin-based artist, Robert Rehfeldt (1931-1993). Operating outside of East Germany's official culture, Rehfeldt developed alternative means and sites for realizing his idea of 'contart,' a word that he created that is a hybrid of 'contact' and 'art.' Contart, was his strategy to foster everybody's creativity which then would lead to " artistic forms and non-established means of communication. It gives help to the formation of creative groups and other initiatives in the field of art." (Rehfeldt, 1978). Sadly, the process of reunification was a difficult time for Rehfeldt and his wife, they lost their studio to a dentist and were forced into a nomadic existence.  One friend wrote, "Quite some networkers blame your untimely death on the social harshness that you had to experience after the end of socialist Germany. They claim, not without reason, that it literally broke your heart." (Netmail, 1994)

What will live on is Rehfeldt's works and actions all of which propagate his desire for the future in which "the creative contact replaces the severe idea of competition among artists by a friendly one...[so that it] can be the basis of a big collective of art workers for the realisation of human aims and ideals." (Rehfeldt, 1978) Cordelia Marten in a 2007 presentation situates Rehfeldt within the larger cultural politics of the period in her article: Conceptual Art in East Germany - Robert Rehfeldt and his network of artists.pdf