Bonjour! Yes indeed, it’s that time of year again. This week we’ve been in Frankfurt exploring the delights of the international Book Fair. Always hoping for good weather (an Indian summer?) and a smooth journey, we attend every year to meet with some of our most prestigious European publishers and to find out what’s fresh and exciting in the world of art book publishing.
Every year, the Frankfurt Book Fair is graced by a country Guest of Honour, and in 2017 it’s France. So, as a nod of respect to our Gallic neighbours we’ve decided to make this week’s iteration of our blog, French themed!
Our friends, the esteemed Paris-based Dis Voir publish, ‘livres de culture contemporaine’ (books on contemporary culture) which are refreshingly experimental and collaborative. From the visual arts to design, from cinema to music, and everything in-between, Dis Voir also produce a fascinating and popular series, Illustrated Fairy Tales For Adults; the most recent volume being, Theory of Multidreams. Undoubtedly a bestseller for us over the past year has been the superb, British Black Art: Debates on Western Art History (which features the work of Lubaina Himid who is shortlisted for this year’s Turner Prize). This French publisher’s backlist is particularly impressive, not least their series of Peter Greenaway’s entire film scripts (to date) which is, arguably, an accolade.
After an intensive session browsing through our holdings of over 4,000 titles (yes, it’s true!) we discovered a plethora of books on a large number of French artists (far too many to list here, of course). But don’t worry, because on this occasion we thought it certainly worth highlighting a few particular ones, just to tempt you…
They may be old school, but these artists are pioneers: whether you love the minimalism of André Cadere, François Morellet or Daniel Buren; relish the uncanny surrealism of Louise Bourgeois and Jean Dubuffet; long for the incomparable genius of Marcel Duchamp; or even need to see the ground-breaking underwater films of Jean Painlevé; we have plenty of lovely books on the truly avant-garde.
We hear you ask – ‘but, what about the new kids on the block?’ (or rather, on the boulevard?!). Well, how about the alumnus of the Venice Biennale, such as Camille Henrot (she won the Silver Lion at the 55th Biennale di Venezia in 2013), or Xavier Veilhan (who occupies the French Pavilion this year). Perhaps you might be interested in French artists who have exhibited over recent years in London? Then check out Isabelle Cornaro (she had show at South London Gallery in 2015), and the master of hybrid art and interior design, Marc Camille Chaimowicz (he was a big deal at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery in London last year). Maybe it’s photography and cinema that’s your passion? In that case, we insist you see the brilliant work of Marine Hugonnier and Bruno Aveillan.
As you can imagine, we could go on… and on… and on. (But it’s likely we would end up writing something in length to rival Victor Hugo’s epic, Les Misérables!).
Until next time, folks… au revoir!