Here’s Your Itinerary for the NY Art Book Fair

At Printed Matter’s book fest, you can see works by Nicolas Party at Karma and a ‘choreographic library’ by William Forsythe at Gagosian

This weekend, some 35,000 art-loving, book-collecting, fashion-savvy New Yorkers will journey out to MoMA PS1 for the NY Art Book Fair. Making the trip worth the hike are the event’s 365 exhibitors, including a mix of galleries, artists, and publishers specializing in the production of artist’s books. They’ve all come to the fair prepared to debut an arsenal of new publications, often paired with a pop-up exhibition space, panel discussion, or screening.

Kicking off with a ticketed preview on Thursday night, the fair will run through Sunday, September 23. From prints by Nicolas Party offered at Karma, a booth by artist Emma Kohlmann, and special artist editions released by Printed Matter, here are some of the things we’re looking forward to.


New prints of pastel works by Nicolas Party. Photo: Courtesy of Karma

The bookstore-gallery-publisher Karma, which just this year took over the former East Village site of St. Mark’s Bookshop, is preparing to unveil two new screen print portfolios by ceramicist Shio Kusaka and pastel artist Nicolas Party. Both series, rendered in two dimensions, riff off of three-dimensional artworks like classical busts and ceramic vases.

Work by Emma Kohlmann. Photo: Courtesy of the artist and Jack Hanley Gallery

Emma Kohlmann, whose April exhibition at Jack Hanley Gallery was nothing short of a hit, will be making the trip to New York from her usual outpost in western Massachusetts. An artist who works mainly in watercolor, Kohlmann also publishes her own zines. Between her colorful work and her distinctive persona, Kohlmann, no doubt, will do something interesting at her booth. We’ll be on the lookout.

From William Forsythe’s Lectures from Improvisation Technologies, 2011. Single-channel video. Photo: William Forsythe; courtesy of Gagosian

Gagosian Gallery seeks to connect with the independent publishing scene by channeling the expertise of choreographer William Forsythe. The collaboration has resulted in a specially curated “choreographic” library featuring rare books on dance and notation that will be paired with a projection of Forsythe’s famous Lectures from Improvisation Technologies, an instructional video that uses animated lines he originally produced to train his own dancers. “We thought that the NYABF would provide the perfect opportunity to present Forsythe’s wide-ranging choreographic work to a broader arts audience,” Louise Neri, a director at Gagosian, tells Galerie, “and to open up a conversation about the interaction between printed materials, objects, touch, and movement.”

Richard McGuire, Incident Instantly Becomes Memory (Ixnae Nix #1). 1979. Spray paint and crayon on newsprint. Photo: © Richard McGuire. Courtesy of Alden Projects, New York.

In anticipation of an upcoming exhibition, “Richard McGuire: Art for the Street – New York 1978-82,” Alden Projects is staging a book launch and accompanying pop-up show of works by the acclaimed American illustrator. McGuire will be presenting his early “Ixnae Nix” street drawings, which Keith Haring (who McGuire was close to) avidly promoted in the late 1970s and early ’80s. The drawings will be juxtaposed with works created this year that revisit the series.

Ryan Gander, Accelerated Logic, 2018. Orange acrylic laser die-cut stencil. Edition of 2,000. Photo: Courtesy of the artist and Printed Matter

To celebrate this year’s fair, Printed Matter is presenting three limited-edition artworks by Laylah Ali, Eileen Quinlan, and Ryan Gander, who devised the Jon Berger–inspired stencil seen above. Produced in an edition of 2,000, the Gander work comes with the purchase of a ticket to the fair’s preview; claim yours here.


Barbara Rubin as photographed by Allen Ginsberg in 1965. Photo: Creative Commons

Spector Books invites you to “Film Culture 80: The Legend of Barbara Rubin,” a discussion with Film Culture magazine editor in chief Jonas Mekas, filmmaker Chuck Smith, designer Franziska Bauer, and publisher Anne König on Barbara Rubin, whose legacy includes creating the notoriously provocative 1963 film Christmas on Earth, introducing Bob Dylan to Allen Ginsberg, and connecting Andy Warhol with the Velvet Underground.

Location: The Classroom (second floor)
Friday, September 21, 3–4 p.m.

Syeus Mottel’s CHARAS: The Improbably Dome Builders, Pioneer Works Press and the Song Cave. Photo: Courtesy of Pioneer Works

The Song Cave and Pioneer Works Press have partnered up to release an expanded edition of Syeus Mottel’s CHARAS: The Improbable Dome Builders, the account of CHARAS, which comprised six ex–gang members, and their 1970 meeting with R. Buckminister Fuller, the architect who invented the geodesic dome. The unlikely group endeavored to construct such a dome near the Manhattan Bridge, and their story serves as an investigation into the ways communities reclaim empty spaces—in this case, the Lower East Side—before gentrification. Check out the conversation between Chino Garcia, one of the former members, Loisaida Center director Libertad O. Guerra, and early CHARAS adviser and Sustainability Lab founder Matt Mottel. Moderated by architect Nandini Bagchee.

Location: The Classroom (basement theater) 
Saturday, September 22, 12–1:30 p.m.

David Bayus, Psyman’s Acres (2018), 23 minutes. Photo: Courtesy of the artist and Colpa Press

Lend 58 minutes of your time to Colpa Press for a screening of Civic TV and Psyman’s Acres, the video series and 23-minute film, respectively, which feature video work by Tauba Auerbach, David Bayus, Ivan Iannoli, Alyssa Lempesis, Nasty Nasty, and Tom Richardson. Colpa’s recently published book, also titled Psyman’s Acres, based on Bayus’s film and the press’s fourth collaboration with the artist, will be available at its booth. As with the film, the focus falls on a single red dwarf star at the absolute entropic end of the universe, and a farmer who grows crops to delay its evaporation.

Location: The Classroom (basement theater)
Saturday, September 22, 4:30–6:30 p.m.

What It Means to Write About Art: Interviews with Art Critics, David Zwirner Books. Photo: Courtesy of David Zwirner Gallery

On the occasion of the launch of What It Means to Write About Art: Interviews with Art Critics from David Zwirner Books, contributor Jarrett Earnest will host a discussion with Lynne Tillman on the nuances of holding art-world interviews. Tillman is a longtime art critic who reflects in the book, “I realized by the mid-eighties that the ideas you impose on art, ideas of what you think should be there, are not smart or meaningful. Maybe it assures one of one’s own identity or sets up limits, makes life and looking easier, gives one a sense of knowingness.”

Location: The Classroom (second floor)
Sunday, September 23, 1–2 p.m.


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