Bold Red Art for Your Home
This livre d'artiste has twenty-eight poems by Bill Berkson and twenty-five etchings by Alex Katz. About the poet, Bernadette Mayer has written: "Berkson's poetry emerges with an elegant reticence from the rooms of the traditionally sublime to greet the present moment with unexpected splendor, ease of observation, metaphysic wit." Alex Katz is a world-renowned artist who is adept at every scale, as is evident from the works that appear in this book, etchings on plates measuring just four inches square. The imagery for Gloria spans the subject matter of his entire career, from people to landscapes, to bobbing boats, to a munching cow. The figures, be they fauna or flora, seem to exist in a sophisticated environment, as urbane and glamorous as the poems they face. The etchings are varied in technique and effect: black on white or grey, white on black or grey, grey on black or white or grey.
The book is printed on one side of the sheet only, in the French-fold manner, where the folds at the top edge of the book remain uncut. The paper is thin white Ingres, a mouldmade paper from the Zerkall mill in Germany. Thus, the inner pages are blank and hide the impression of the etching plate. The format is 12 by 9 inches, 56 pages, not counting the inner blanks. The etchings appear on the left-hand pages, the poetry on the right-hand pages. The intaglio plates were prepared by Simmelink/ Sukimoto in Kingston, New York, and were editioned by Robert Townsend and Kate Hanlon of R. E. Townsend, Inc. in Georgetown, Massachusetts. The type is Futura, also known as Twentieth Century. It was cast by Mackenzie & Harris and printed by letterpress at Arion Press, where the book and suite were also bound. The binding is hand-sewn over tapes. The cover has a grey goatskin spine with a wider area on the front with the title letters stamped alternately in red, green, and blue metallic foil and the names of author and artist on the spine stamped in black foil. The sides are covered with lighter grey cloth.
Signature: All books are signed by the author and the artist
Publisher: Arion Press
New York School painter Alex Katz developed his highly stylized aesthetic in reaction to 1950s Abstract Expressionism, finding his own distinctive resolution between formalism and representation. His brightly colored figurative and landscape paintings are rendered in a flat style that takes cues from everyday visual culture like advertising and cinema, in many ways anticipating both the formal and conceptual concerns of Pop Art. Well known for his many portraits of his wife and muse, Ada, Katz has also dedicated himself to printmaking and freestanding sculptures of cutout figures painted on wood or aluminum.
American, b. 1927, New York, New York, based in New York, New York
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