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NEWS

EVENTS:

February through May, 2024.

Deidre Lawrence was the Curator and Special Collections Librarian for the Brooklyn Museum for many years until her retirement a short time ago. Aside from collecting for the museum, she owns a very large personal collection of artists' books. She has curated a wonderful show selected from her personal collection at the Grolier Club, 47 East 60th Street in New York City. The theme of the show is Language, Decipherment, and Translation –from Then to Now.

 

I was fortunate to have her include my book Reaper in this show. I was able to attend a keynote lecture at the Grolier Club and see the show when I was in New York for the NYABF (The New York Artists' Book Fair, hosted by Printed Matter) in April. 

Photos above by Clifton Meador.

April 2022.

The esteemed, prolific, talented, and charming artists' bookmaker, Julie Chen, has curated a terrific show at the Environmental Design Library at UC Berkeley. The title is Adaptation | Artists' Books for a Changing Environment. It is meant to be presented in conjunction with the eighth CODEX Symposium and Book Fair in Richmond, CA, across the Bay. The show runs from March 14th until May 15th on the Berkeley Campus. There is a reception on April 9th, the evening before CODEX opens, and it takes place from 3:00 to 6:00pm. All who attend will receive a handsome catalog designed by Julie.

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I was fortunate to be asked to include my book Delirium. Though I have not seen the whole show yet, I have seen photographs of many of the books and the installation, and it looks great. If you live in the Bay Area, or are in town for CODEX VIII, be sure to either attend the reception or make a short trip over to see the show after one of the two Symposium sessions in Berkeley.

March 2022

Spaceheater Editions, my press imprint, will be sharing a table with Clifton Meador of the Studio of Exhaustion at the 2022 CODEX Foundation Symposium and Book Fair. This is the first time it has taken place since 2019. CODEX used to always take place in uneven years, but having missed two years due to COVID-19, it will take place at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, CA. Richmond is part of the San Francisco Bay Area. The event takes place from April 10th through April 13th. CODEX is the premiere selling place for artists' and fine press books in the United States. More information is here.

I will be selling, among other volumes, the last five copies of my book Delirium, which won a 50 Books/50 Covers award from the AIGA, as one of the best-designed books of 2020.

We should have an eye-catching table: Clif Meador has designed some amazing fabric to use as both table cloth for our table and as cover for our table when the book show closes each day. Here is a sneak preview of the fabric:

August  2021

Delirium, my latest book, will be part of the Artists' Books Unshelved video series. Catherine Alice Michaelis of Artist’s Books Unshelved has just uploaded a new episode to Bainbridge Island Museum of Art’s YouTube channel. This one displays my book, Delirium, and Kyoko Matsunaga’s The Skin Square, The Pupil Square; Dreams of Scientists, which were featured in the recent release, “The Stuff of Dreams.”

You can find it here.  

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February 2021

Delirium has been selected as one of the AIGA's 2020 50 Books/50 Covers. In June the AIGA, the professional association for design, announced the results of the 50 Books|50 Covers of 2020 competition. My book, Delirium was one of those selected and one of the best-designed books of 2020. With 696 book and cover design entries from 36 countries, this year’s competition recognizes and showcases design excellence from a year marked by unparalleled change.

Since its inception in 1923 as the Fifty Books of the Year competition, this annual event highlights AIGA’s continued commitment to uplifting powerful and compelling design in a familiar format we know and love. As book jackets became more prevalent, the competition evolved with the field to acknowledge excellence in cover design beginning in 1995 when the competition became known as 50 Books|50 Covers

The 50 Books|50 Covers winners can be viewed in the AIGA winner gallery.

The 2020 winning selections will be archived both in the AIGA Design Archives—a permanent, accessible, and historic collection of notable graphic design—and the AIGA collection at the Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Columbia University’s Butler Library in the city of New York.

AIGA thanks this year’s panel of esteemed jurors: Gail Anderson (chair), Jennifer Morla, Paul Sahre, and Kelly Walters. The jurors evaluated each work’s integrated design approach, including concept, innovation, and visual elements such as typography, illustration, and/or information design. 

I would like to thank the AIGA and the jurors for selecting my book.

September 2020

Swamp Monsters has been published right before the 2020 presidential election. 

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It's been a while since I've posted here. The year 2020 has been quite an earthquake for all of us living on this stressed-out planet. Aside from the terrible COVID-19 pandemic, we have been in the middle of the most unusual and stressful election cycle for president that this country has ever seen. This is thanks to the amoral, narcissistic, criminal conman who inhabits the White House.

In order to try to attempt to fight against his reëlection campaign and the morally bankrupt Republican Party, I decided to try to do something that would use their own 2020 Republican National Convention against these forces of evil and anti-democracy.

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Here is the result: The Ice Plant (Los Angeles) and Spaceheater Editions (Tucson) announced the co-publication of Swamp Monsters on September 21, 2020, just three and a half weeks after these photographs from the 2020 Republican National Convention were taken. 

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Swamp Monsters is a limited newsprint edition of 666 copies and commemorates that historically frightful 2020 Republican National Convention (August 24-27, 2020) with a series of photographs made by me (Philip Zimmermann) as the spectacle unfolded on the television screen. This rogue's gallery of hideous video portraits was printed in Paris, France by printnewspaper.com in full color in an unbound tabloid newspaper format. 

Many thanks to Clif Meador of the Studio of Exhaustion for suggesting the title.

Thanks also go to Mike Slack of The Ice Plant for editing the 120 images into this commemorative 56-page newspaper, massaging the color-separated images for newsprint, and for designing it. A crazy collaboration that felt necessary somehow.
A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Arizona Democratic Party and other Arizona Democratic Candidates in the fall 2020 election cycle. Let’s turn AZ blue!

If you would like to see a video of the book, plus all of the two-page spreads, go to the Spaceheater Editions web page here

To purchase, send $12.95 to the PayPal account which is pzim@spaceheat.com . The price includes postage. Please be sure to include a shipping address.

April 2019

The week before last I attended the Los Angeles Art Book Fair for the first time. It has been operated by Printed Matter Inc. in NYC since 2013 but was not held last year due to the untimely death of the primary fair organizer, Shannon Michael Cane.
 

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I had read that the fair had grown a great deal since it's beginnings and was starting to rival the New York MoMA-PS1 fair in terms of the number of vendors and attendance. Max Schumann, the Director of Printed Matter told me that this year's fair in LA had the greatest number of vendor table of any fair so far, over 390.

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On the backside of the building was a very large mural by Barbara Kruger that had just been installed recently.

Here are some images from the book fair itself:

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It turned out to be a really fun four-day trip. It’s so nice to have a cheap hour-and-a-half direct flight rather than the usual hassle of travelling to NYC. The main expense was the hotel for three nights and the very good meals that we had, not to mention the large number of books that we got, but worth it. We stayed at a Japanese chain hotel in Little Tokyo called Miyako Hotel, and we were among the very few non-Japanese tourists staying there. The best thing was that the hotel was literally one short block away from the Geffen Contemporary at MoCA where the fair was held. It was so nice to be able to walk back in less than five minutes and dump book loot in our hotel room. 

We had some truly amazing meals while there. LA is clearly a foodie town. Some of the restaurants we went to were: Sushi Enya (supposedly the best sushi in Little Tokyo), a couple of really great Ramen places, Daikokuya and Mr Ramen, weird Japanese breakfast stuff at Café Dulce, and some really great lunch food at the food trucks outside the book fair including the best shrimp and fish tacos I have ever had. Finally, around the Hauser & Wirth complex in the Arts Warehouse district, we ate at an expensive but fantastic restaurant called Manuela,  and a terrific German wurst and beer place called Wurstküche Restaurant.

It was nice seeing Skuta (below), who was at the LAABF making sure that the Artbook/Steidl bookshop area at the fair was running smoothly. When we were at the Hauser + Wirth complex we were impressed with the Artbook Bookshop there. It was only a short ten-minute walk from the Geffen Contemporary and Little Tokyo. He also told us to be sure to stop by an ice cream shop right next to Hauser + Wirth building. It is called Salt and Straw, and he claimed it was the best ice cream in the US. Of course, we had to try it, and it was extremely delicious.
 

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The book fair itself is in a much nicer locale than the NYABF and MoMA-PS1: really large rooms with super warehouse style high ceilings. Everything seemed so much less hot and claustrophobic, with none of the little warren-like rooms of PS1. It was so much easier to navigate and find ones’ way back to areas or specific tables. In short a much much nicer experience. However, most of the book vendors and publishers that I talked to said that they sold far better in NYC than LA. Some people made the mistake of getting a table in the equivalent of the PS1 ‘Zine area of the fair where tables were $160. They don’t call it the ‘Zine area in LA, but it was the same sort of vendors on the whole, though not quite as flea-market-y as at PS1. One of the things that I noticed there was that EVERY table in that section of the book fair was full of Rizo-printed crap. The Rizo phenomenon has clearly peaked. I would say that 80% of it was pretty bad. Of course, I shouldn't generalize, there are some phenomenal Rizo book pieces out there like those done by Tricia Tracy, Bridget Elmer, Emily Larned, Clif Meador and some others, but a great deal of it is pretty bad. [ Full disclosure, I am not a huge 'zine fan. ]

Another printing effect which has reached cliché level, I am afraid: metallic or white ink on black paper. I saw dozens of examples. I think that Clif Meador started something with the Tbilisi hotel piece that he did as an enclosure in the CAA Journal years ago. The Richard Mosse books probably help too. Anyway, there are lots and lots of them. Some were done on the HP Indigo 5000 which allows white ink, but most of the ones that I saw were metallic silver ink printed by offset.

Some of the many other people that we ran into were these: I talked for a long time to Paul Zelevansky, who is back living in NYC. I had never seen 24 Pictures About Pictures.  Also, Aaron Cohick had a table in that 'zine area. It was great seeing Kate Albers, our former colleague at the University of Arizona, who is now teaching at Whittier College in LA. Also Tricia Tracey and on the last day, right before we left, we ran into Inge Bruggeman, which was a very nice surprise since we thought we were going to miss her since she was going to be there only on Sunday, the last day of the fair.

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The crowds were large but not sure if they were the same as last year. Supposedly in 2017, they had 35,000 people in LA, very similar to NY, but it seemed like far fewer. I think that that might be due to the much larger spaces that the book fair occupied. Many vendors were the same as in NYC. It was nice to be there Friday morning, before the general public, the hours set aside for buyers and collectors only, just like the NYABF.

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The books we bought were a combination of design and photo/artists' books. We finally got a few smaller books from AnticHam since I always feel bad that I can’t afford their screen-printed books.

This is the full haul, minus a few books that we ended up ordering online since we couldn't carry them back on the airplane back to Tucson.
 

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There are also a couple of books that I really like from Gato Negro in Mexico City. The Aperture book in the second photo, Feast for the Eyes, about food in photography, sounds like a crappy book, but it’s actually really great. A wonderful read with all sorts of amazing food photos from the 19th century through today. It’s a great read.

January 2014

I will be attending the CBAA (College Book Art Association) National Conference in Salt Lake City, hosted by the University of Utah. I will be on a panel with Julie Chen and Barb Tetenbaum on the subject of Ideation Strategies in the Process and Production of Artists' Books. The conference takes place from January 2-5.

I (Spaceheater Editions that is) will also have a "solo" show in January at the University of Central Missouri Gallery of Art & Design. Christian Cutler, the Gallery Director, has curated work from the past 34 years of work from Spaceheater Editions. The show will run from January 13th through February 6, 2014.

October 2013:

On Saturday, October 19th, 2013, I will be giving a lecture/paper at APHA Conference, (American Printing History Association) at the Grolier Club at 47 East 60th Street in New York City. My presentation will be between 3:30 and 4:45 pm. The title of the presentation is "The Apex (and Subsequent Demise) of Process Color Letterpress as Shown in the Printing of the National Geographic Magazine in the Nineteen-Fifties" After graduating with an MFA from Visual Studies Workshop, I trained doing color separations with Harry Christen of Christen Litho Laboratories of Rochester NY, one of the first users of the Vario-Klischograph and of Hell drum scanners in the United States.

You can see a short description at <http://printinghistory.org/demise-process-color-letterpress-national-geo... or just got to <https://vimeo.com/78230375> to see the whole presentation as a QuickTime movie.

September 2013:

Panelist (with lecture) on a criticism panel on the subject of Michael Snow's Cover to Cover at the 2013 ARLIS Book Conference which runs concurrently at the New York Book Fair (NYABF) at MoMA PS1 in Long Island City, Queens on September 19, 20 and 21, 2013. Clifton Meador and I will share a table at the NYABF with some of our latest work. Look for us in Area Q on the second floor of PS1. We would love to have you stop by and visit with us.

I am also included (with two books Ojalá, 2012, and Report from the Other Side, 2013.) in a show that opens on September 18th, 2013. The exhibition is called DIY (Visits Chicago): Photographers and Books and it runs until December 7. The show consists of a selection of contemporary photo artists' books that are all printed by print-on-demand. The website explains the show: "The Center for Book and Paper Arts will mount a second iteration of an exhibition exploring print-on-demand photo books.  Originally curated by Barbara Tannenbaum for the Cleveland Museum of Art, DIY: Photographers and Books (2012) was the first museum show to focus on the impact of print-on-demand publishing on contemporary photographic practice. This is a juried exhibition focused on photobooks that move beyond the monograph. How do photographers engage the book form in ways that are experimentally visual and conceptual, while pushing the possibilities of print-on-demand publishing?" If you are in the Chicago area this Fall, please drop by the show.

In dev