The first title in a series of Notebooks, published by the Ruya Foundation, making seminal art writing accessible to as many Arabic speakers as possible. The book includes an introductory essay by Watkins entitled ‘Art and its Objects’ and the following five texts:
John Berger, Ways of Seeing, ‘Chapter 1’ (1972)
Alfred Gell, ‘Vogel’s Net: Traps as Artworks and Artworks as Traps’, first published in Journal of Material Culture (1996)
Michel Houellebecq, The Map and the Territory, ‘Preface’ (2010)
Will Self, ‘Are the hyper-rich ruining the new Tate Modern?’, first published in The Guardian (2014)
Gavin Brown and Daniel Baumann, ‘The Demise of the Future’, first published in Spike (2014)
Japanese-born, New York-based On Kawara (1932-2014) is one of the world's best-known Conceptual artists, a major international figure since the 1960s. Kawara's existence is documented solely through his daily art-making practice. Best known are his Date Paintings (1965-ongoing), in which he methodically creates a single painting a day, with simply the date written on it.
This book is a rare chance for his followers to unravel more of the mystery of this cult figure, and for less familiar readers to be introduced to his fascinating life and work. A unique feature of this book is the Tribute section, which reflects the artist's lifelong commitment never to be personally documented in his own words. A collection of short statements by 30 individuals selected personally by Kawara - among them artists Lawrence Weiner and Dan Graham, and cultural theorist Homi Bhabha - create an indirect 'portrait of the artist'.
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