The London Art Book Fair at The Whitechapel Gallery is one of my favourite book fairs and I’m glad I actually managed to book some lectures before they sold out this year. I attended ‘Artists Reimagine the Classics’ with John Morgan and other designers and artists discussing their work for Four Corners and a conversation between James Brett, founder of The Museum of Everything, and Achim Borchardt-Hume, Chief curator of the Whitechapel Gallery about outsider art and the role played by the independent museums. I also managed to catch the Publish and be Damned pop-up stall the following day.

I actually went twice and came home with a pile of books and catalogues:

Had a brief chat with the nice people at the Hatje-Cantz stall who told me about the 100 Notes – 100 Thoughts notebooks for the dOCUMENTA (13) exhibition. A series of 100 bilingual booklets in 3 different formats mainly facsimiles of existing notebooks, commissioned essays, collaborations, and conversations with very different topics and lengths.

I bought these two:

Kluge’s book is only 2 pages long:

Finally got hold of the Book of war, mortification and love by Ruud Linssen published by design collective Underware.nl Essays on voluntary suffering printed in the author’s own blood (really):

They showed me a special edition bound in goatskin and not for sale:

’99p: 99 things you could buy instead of this book’ really is what it says on the cover: a collection of 99 things priced at 99p that I could have bought instead of the book. Genius. I still chose to buy the book, of course:

The best thing about book fairs is discovering publishers you didn’t know before and for me this year it was all about Eindhoven based Onomatopee:

They told me they curate exhibitions that inspire their books and publications, never meant as actual catalogues of the show but a discussion around the ideas triggered by it:

I flipped through every single one of their books and had a very hard time picking up these two:

Design Mass is a conversation about technology, beauty and design:

The layout works as a grid system in which every speaker is assigned a column:

It’s a very effective way of following a 4-way conversation. The resulting blocks of text are absolutely fascinating to look at, a visual representation of the flow of the dialogue:

Btw, sorry about the quality, really need a new camera!

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