Feel like you’ve been lacking some inspiration lately? Well, you can only blame your shelf! That is why I am here to spread some shelf-awareness about the art-landish art-ifacts we have on our shelves here in the Archives & Special Collections! How do you define a “book”? Our artists’ book collection really pushes the bound-ries of definition with the wacky, zany, creative surprises held within.
The Smithsonian Libraries define an artists’ book as “a medium of artistic expression that uses the form or function of ‘book’ as inspiration,” and boy will these books make you an author you can’t refuse!
From books that look like lunch to books that can really ruffle your feathers, you’ll find everything from pop-ups to poetry, peek-a-boos to boxes, even glitter and glamour, colors and cut-outs! So lettuce celebrate while you ketchup on what’s inside “Bread and Butter” by Minali Chatani, or it’s sure to be a pheasant surprise if you decide to take “Birds Everyday” by Dorothy McCuistion under your wing!
These artists certainly draw a crowd, so please come take a sneak peek, or take it to the next level and come see any of the other exciting materials we have here in our collections.
The Archives & Special Collections is open on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays from 12:00-3:00 p.m. or by appointment.
By Monica Patterson