27 November 2006

Inside Out

Tonight I doscovered this slender volume, Inside Out, a collaboration between painter Stefan Kurten, whose work I do not know, and writer/critic Rebecca Solnit who I think is simply terrific.

The book was just published in San Francisco by ARTSPACE BOOKS (even though it doesn't actually yet appear on their web page - oops!). According to the publishers, they began publishing books in 1992. "To date, nine books have been published. The books are typically collaborations between contemporary artists and writers--their works are not intended to illustrate the other, rather to be creative pieces that complement and challenge each other." Here is the cover description of what Kurten and Solnit are up to:

"A meditation on the dilemmas and desires for home that combines the writings of art critic and cultural historian Rebecca Solnit with painter Stefan K]rten's lush images of domestic interiors, buildings and landscapes. Solnit reflects on emotional privatization, real-estate fetishism, and aesthetic pleasure, while Kurten's paintings of stale bourgeois interiors and suburban homes project a dogged attempt to make life perfect, at least on the surface. His armchairs, teapots and planter boxes suggest that we are living in a peculiar state of safety and bliss. Together, the text and images question the equation of ideal houses with ideal lives, the images that shape our perception of childhood, and our notion of a fulfilled adulthood."

Although the Kurten/Solnit collaboration does not involve photography, several of the other books the publisher already has already released do. So check out their list. This sounds like an extremely provocative publishing endeavor.

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