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"Sand in the Vaseline: Artist Books 1980-2002"
2003-12-19 until 2004-02-29
Neues Museum - Staatliches Museum für Kunst und Design in Nürnberg
Nuremberg, , DE Germany

This exhibition, Sand in the Vaseline, is devoted to an artistic medium new to the Neues Museums - the artist's book. Since 1977, when it was first presented to a broader audience through a special section at documenta 6, explorations of the artist's book have frequently been part of the exhibition programs of various institutions. The artist's book can be roughly divided into three types: book-objects; painter's books; and graphic cycles. Since the 1960s a fourth form has also developed, one superficially almost indistinguishable from the 'normal' book: the printed, duplicated publication conceived and designed by an artist. The exhibition will focus on a selection of such works from the 1980s and 90s.

It perhaps comes as a surprise that the artist's book managed to survive the extraordinarily rapid development of new technologies in this period, but in fact artistís publications are now more diverse than ever, whether as independent pieces or as an integral part of an overall artistic strategy incorporating many expressive forms in a variety of media. Divided into six thematic 'chapters' and including more than 500 works, the exhibition will present 30 artists who since 1980 have repeatedly and in novel and often startling ways explored the book as an artistic medium. Among them are Martin Kippenberger, Georg Herold, Damien Hirst, Mike Kelley, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Peter Fischli / David Weiss, Barbara Bloom, Sophie Calle, Roni Horn, and Matthew Barney.

Each 'chapter' takes its title from one of the books on display, touching on the theme of the section without forcing the various works into narrow categories. The title of the exhibition is itself drawn from an artist's book: Sand in the Vaseline was the name given by Martin Kippenberger in 1989 to one of his many publications.

The exhibition will give the visitor various means of accessing parts or all of the artistís books on view: monitors will be available and a computer program will permit some of the works to be paged through digitally; others will be presented in a slide show; and a reference library will be set up where books can be borrowed and examined on location. In addition, several of the books will be described in the 164-page catalogue (24,- Euro).

The exhibition is organized by the Kaiser Wilhelm Museum in Krefeld.

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