Exhibit of Artists’ Books Opens at Seager/Gray Gallery in February

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Four Proposals for Reading: An Exhibition at the Seager/Gray Gallery opens Saturday, February 7, 2015. 

Four Proposals For Reading is an exhibition that challenges and highlights the experience of reading as it is experienced through a range of methodologies, processes, materials and formats. The four artists in this exhibition: Julie Chen, Clifton Meador, Barbara Tetenbaum, and Philip Zimmermann, all have long-standing commitments to the book as a central part of their artistic practice. In this exhibition they each make compelling arguments that the book, in its many forms, still has enormous power and validity in the hands of the reader.

Artists' books are a genre that uniquely positions reading as an essential part of the practice: a text—or series of meaning-laden signs—can appear anywhere, in any work. The book holds texts and supports experiencing those texts in a profoundly grounded manner through design, layout, pacing, materials, structure, and media. These four artists have created new work that addresses this dynamic through book forms, wall and installation art including one collaborative project.

Julie Chen is an internationally known book artist who has been publishing limited edition artists’ books under the Flying Fish Press imprint for over 25 years. Her work combines text and image with book forms, presenting reading experiences that often involve complex interactions with the physical book. She is an associate professor of book art at Mills College.

Clifton Meador’s work combines writing, photography, printmaking, and design to make books that explore culture, history, and place. His work is in many major collections and has been supported by grants from the Rubin Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, The Soros Foundation for Open Society, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. He is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Art at Appalachian State University.

Barbara Tetenbaum is a book, print and installation artist interested in the relationship between text and reader. She founded her artist book imprint Triangular Press in 1979 while an undergraduate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently she is Professor and Department Head of Book Art at Oregon College of Art and Craft in Portland, Oregon.

Philip Zimmermann is an artist who has been making photo-based bookworks since 1975. He publishes his own and others’ work under the imprint Spaceheater Editions. He has received a National Endowment of the Arts Individual Fellowship, A Mid-Atlantic Arts Fellowship and two New York Foundation of the Arts Fellowships among other awards. His work is in many museum, private, and library Special Collections. He is currently at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

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