Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Featured: Two from Siglio

Joe Brainard, The Nancy Book

From 1963 to 1978 Joe Brainard created more than one hundred works of art that appropriated the classic comic strip character Nancy and sent her into an astonishing variety of spaces, all electrified and complicated by the incongruity of her presence.

The Nancy Book is the first collection of Brainard's Nancy texts, drawings, collages and paintings, with full page reproductions of over fifty works, several of which have never been exhibited or published before.

In The Nancy Book, Joe Brainard's Nancy traverses high art and low, the poetic and pornographic, the surreal and the absurd. Whether inserted into hypothetical situations, dispatched on erotic adventures, or seemingly rendered by the hands of artists as varied as Leonardo da Vinci, R. Crumb, Larry Rivers, and Willem de Kooning, Brainard's Nancy revels in as well as transcends her two-dimensionality.

These works exude a beguiling balance of mischief and innocence, irreverence and wonder, spontaneity and calculation. Together they accumulate into a sophisticated and complex work of great wit and joy, rich with metaphor, and equal parts surprise and subtlety.

The Nancy Book also includes original essays by Ann Lauterbach and Ron Padgett as well as collaborations with luminary poets Bill Berkson, Ted Berrigan, Robert Creeley, Frank Lima, Frank O'Hara, Ron Padgett and James Schuyler. 

It Is Almost That

It Is Almost That collects twenty-six visionary image+text works by women artists and writers. Supremely imaginative in their use of word and image, these hybrid works are steeped in narrative play and subversion, inviting readers to engage in multiple modes of reading. The first in a series that embodies Siglio’s unique editorial mission, It Is Almost That features substantial excerpts or the works in their entirety—many previously unpublished, difficult to find, or long out-of-print—by renown, little known, forgotten, and emerging artists.

The works include a painted autobiographical novel by a young artist who died in the Holocaust (Charlotte Salomon); the transformation of the front pages of newspapers into alchemical drawings (Suzanne Treister); a computer-generated chance operation that “imagines” houses and their inhabitants (Alison Knowles); the pseudo-scientific examination of mother-daughter conversations (Eleanor Antin); and drawings called “body maps,” inscribed with stories of HIV-positive South African women (Bambanani Women’s Group), among almost two dozen others.

Edited by Lisa Pearson, this collection is not organized like a traditional anthology; rather, it creates a constellation of works that exceed categorical boundaries. While many works may be recognized by their various connections (such as to Fluxus, Conceptual, Feminist, and Outsider art as well as to experimental literature, etc.), the collection aims to engage both literary and art audiences, reorienting the reader so that these works may be seen and read anew.

These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday


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