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Artists’ books, which once allowed artists to avoid meddlesome institutions and galleries in producing and distributing artistic work, today have a paradoxical existence. On the one hand, there are the extremely rare founding books, termed “first edition” or “original”, and, on the other hand, there are “facsimile” editions, which entered the artist’s book realm to counteract the scarcity of the originals by offering re-enactments and reinterpretations of famous titles. This essay underlines a curiosity for practices of appropriation by artists and publishers, and aims to expose methods and discourses in the production of facsimile artists’ books.
Rob van Leijsen – Copy, Tweak, Paste
Éditions Clinamen, 2020
14 x 20 cm, 224 pages