We’re looking forward to being able to visit in person again soon but for now tag our books in your reopening photos and we’ll repost and share the good news!
Paul & Louisa
As a thank you for the support of all our favourite independent bookshops we’re offering an extra 10% discount on trade orders of new and backlist titles throughout May to help get you back up and running!
Praneet Soi’s new book, Anamorphosis, is reviewed in the May issue of Art Monthly, read an extract below:
Soi, a student of the pioneering essay filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin, brings some of the genre’s sensibilities to the artist’s book form by way of gesture and montage…Outlines of one image hosting the details of another make apparent the connections between the struggles of the Kashmiri and Palestinian peoples. The ‘freeze frame’ aesthetic that converts the cinematographic into the photographic imparts a degree of certainty often missing in the story of conflict zones. Seeing has in many cultures been conflated with knowing, vision a method of substantiating belief. In Anamorphosis, iconicity becomes proof of presence in embattled regions, the visit itself a political act, as curator Reem Fadda has pointed out. The book provides an elegant coda to an artwork seeking to understand fundamentally unknowable pain by looking closely. – Kamayani Sharma, Art Monthly, May 2021.
Sarah Tripp’s book, Guitar!, was selected as a WHITE REVIEW Book of the Year 2020:
The book that meant most to me this year was Sarah Tripp’s GUITAR! (BookWorks). It begins with a writer making small illuminated notes in the dark, her record of living alongside a child learning to speak. She marvels at the way he names the world, managing somehow to catch all of it in the vast nets of his first two words: Guitar! and Ba! (What if these were all the words a person needed? the writer wonders). But then it turns, and becomes a different kind of offering: an effort to share a non-prescriptive method for opening yourself up to the energy and resistance and mystery of someone else. It is a quiet manifesto for wonderment, for generosity, for cultivating a responsiveness to whatever comes. It arrived at exactly the moment I needed it. -Kate Briggs, The White Review, December 2020.
Sarah Tripp is an artist, writer and lecturer based in Glasgow. Her writing can also be found in F.R. DAVID (Berlin), 2HB (Glasgow), and Space Poetry (Denmark).
The Stuart Brisley Interviews: Performance and its Afterlives (2020)
Brisley, Stuart; Tawadros, Gilane
This series of interviews, held by curator and writer Gilane Tawadros are focussed entirely on Stuart Brisley’s practice and directed by him. The artist’s narration of his practice demonstrates an unswerving resistance to controlling the narrative or fixing the meaning of his works. Citing the Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector, Brisley emphasises the critical importance of error to the creation of his performances: ‘You can say what you’re going to do, you can think about it, you can prepare it, and then when you start, it’s all disappeared because it’s actually meaningless… errors make for where the key value lies.’ The enduring resonance of Brisley’s work lies in its formless and slippery characteristics that resonate so poignantly with our shared human condition.
A second edition of The Night with a new postface by Michèle Bernstein.
Avant-gardism is in short supply these days, not least in the literary domain, where nothing is shocking any more and soporific storytelling has vanquished the taste for the back-to-front and inside-out. It was with pleasure, therefore, that we encountered TheNight / After the Night, two slim volumes published as one by Book Works of east London. The Night is a translation of La Nuit by the Situationist author Michèle Bernstein, wife of Guy Debord, the movement’s principal. First published in 1961, it is a Parisian perambulation, set in and around the Latin Quarter, with tints and highlights superimposed from the nouveau roman, Les Liaisons dangereuses, and the lives of the author and her husband. – Twin Cities, TLS, 14 June 2013
Translated from La Nuit, 1961, into English for the first time by Clodagh Kinsella, this is the second novel of Michèle Bernstein, a founding member of the Situationist International.
UR… A Practical Guide to Unconscious Reasoning (2008, 2020)
This book comes with a few warnings:
It’s not mystical.
Reading it won’t help you see into the future or talk to the dead.
And it isn’t therapy, although it might have beneficial side effects.
What it will do is help you access your imagination and use it, in ways that you might never have imagined possible.
Using a series of exercises and increasingly in depth ‘trips’, the book sets out clear and concise steps to enable individuals and groups to access their imagination and unconscious reason, to work on behalf of others. Using a series of exercises such as ‘Becoming a Bat’, ‘Crawling’, ‘Draw a Sound’ and ‘Impersonating a Human’, Marcus Coates has developed his own practical techniques to solve problems that we might otherwise remain dumbfounded by.
Shy Radicals: The Antisystemic Politics of the Militant Introvert (2017, Fourth Edition, 2020)
A beautiful startling book. Subversively funny and very, very smart. – A. L. Kennedy
A work of speculative activism that might actually change the way you think, also way more imaginative and actionable than any of that so-called theory that you read. Sick of extroverts controlling the agenda? Educate yourself about extrovert supremacy. – Sam Riviere (Books of the Year 2018 in the White Review)
Drawing together communiqués, covert interviews, oral and underground history of introvert struggles (Introfada), here for the first time is a detailed documentation of the political demands of shy people.
Shy Radicals are the Black Panther Party of the introvert class, and this anti-systemic manifesto is a quiet and thoughtful polemic, a satire that uses anti-colonial theory to build a critique of dominant culture and the rising tide of Islamophobia.
The book is now in its fourth edition and a new film of Shy Radicals by Black Dog Films is currently on release.
Book Works is a leading contemporary arts organisation with a unique role as makers and publishers of books.
Established in 1984, we are dedicated to supporting new work by emerging artists. Our projects are initiated by invitation, open submission, and through guest-curated projects. Book Works consists of a publishing and commissioning department; and a studio specialising in binding, box-making and multiples.
The Book Works Studio offers a specialist bespoke service for range of clients, from artists, designers, galleries, and businesses. We provide binding solutions, develop prototypes and specialise in unique book artworks, boxes, and portfolios. We have an extensive archive, and offer tailored educational events, and bookbinding courses. The Studio generates income from clients and is self-sufficient.
Book Works Publishing is dedicated to supporting new work by emerging artists. Our projects are initiated by invitation, open submission, and through guest-curated projects and include publishing, a lecture and seminar programme, exhibitions, the development of an online archive, and artists’ surgeries and workshops.
Our audience is vital to our work. The process of engaging and developing our audience is initiated with our commissioning programme, and driven through all aspects of our activities, particularly our public programme of events, our workshops, artists’ surgeries and education activities, and through our interest in collaborating with other organisations and libraries. Our programme of commissions is diverse, and reflects our commitment not just to work with cultural workers from all backgrounds, but to invest in networks and programmes that engage, and develop and create new artistic voices.
Include new projects with: Phyllis Christopher; Francesco Pedraglio; Sarah Tripp; Praneet Soi; Stuart Brisley; Nina Wakeford and Art on the Underground; Erica Scourti; Sophia Al-Maria; Bouchra Khalili; Laure Prouvost; Stephen Sutcliffe; Joanne Tatham and Tom O’Sullivan; Contact – a series guest edited by Hannah Black with Hamishi Farah, Momtaza Mehri and Derica Shields; and Interstices, a fiction series edited by Bridget Penney with Harun Morrison, Diana Georgiou and Licorice by Bridget Penney.
By supporting Book Works you will help support artists and writers at the emerging stage of their careers through our diverse commissioning programme of open submissions, guest editorships, public events, exhibitions and publications.