Ten Years of Artists Books
Seager Gray Gallery is a contemporary fine art gallery in the town of Mill Valley, nestled in the redwoods just north of the Golden Gate Bridge in the San Francisco Bay Area. For ten years we have taken the lead in presenting art related to books and recently celebrated the tenth anniversary of our now widely acclaimed “Art of the Book” exhibition which takes place every year in May.
The journey has been a rich one, connecting us to fine presses, book artists, binders, printmakers, sculptors and special collections libraries throughout the world. It began with a visit to collector and book artist, Charles Hobson at his home in San Francisco in 2004. When he showed me his collection of book-related arts, I was struck by what I call a “museum” feeling – that wonderful sense of having seen something rich and gratifying and most definitely classifiable as “Fine Art.” I was determined to create an exhibition completely dedicated to the book as its focus.
Ten years later, I have come to believe that the form of the book is difficult to surpass as the most relevant symbol and richest material available to artists everywhere. Books inspire multiple associations - - to meaning, shape and memory. In no other medium is content so inextricably bound to form and the 2-dimensional world finds itself contained in a 3-dimensional object. When form and content are in perfect agreement, I have found that a harmonic chord is struck, deepening the experience and finding the place where visual enrichment and meaning converge. Each exhibition explores as many approaches as possible, from unique artists’ books and altered books to even broader conceptual uses of books that explore our relationship to their form, content and physical presence.
The works selected in this Brooklyn Public Library exhibition bring back some of the highlights from the last ten years and some new works as well, hopefully expanding ideas of what a book can be and its rich potential both as content and material for amazing works of fine art.
Donna Seager, 2015