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Annette Messager: Word For Word Texts, Writings, and Interviews

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Texts and words are of crucial importance to Annette Messager's work--for her, "words are images." And so words--at once autonomous from, parallel to, and the sources of her visual creativity--are woven throughout her production. She has looked directly at our diverse relationships to language in forms ranging from the early scrapbooks of the 1970s to the large sculpted words of the late 1990s, and others including personal diaries, letters, calligraphy, alphabets and primers. She works with the repeated, drawn, ...
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2006 Hard cover New in new dust jacket. Perfectly brand new book (still in publisher's shrinkwrap)! ! -No international, No expedited shipping available Sewn binding. Paper over ... boards. With dust jacket. 460 p. Contains: Illustrations. Audience: General/trade. Read more Show Less

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2006 Hard cover BRAND NEW! -Publisher Sealed-USPS Track Shipping! ! !

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1995 Cloth New in Fine Condition jacket 460 pp., 300 illustrations 280 in color. Still in the publisher's shrinkwrap. Edited by Marie-Laure Bernadac. Interviews with Harald ... Szeemann, Robert Storr, Bernard Marcad? and Suzanne Pag?. Includes numerous texts published in magazines or catalogues, as well as unpublished notes on her work and personal reflections on art and life. All of her interviews from 1974 to the present are also included. Published on the occasion of the exhibition from The Museum of Modern Art, New York NY from October 12, 1995-January 16, 1996 and at the Art Institute of Chicago from February 17-May 19, 1996. Read more Show Less

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Overview

Texts and words are of crucial importance to Annette Messager's work--for her, "words are images." And so words--at once autonomous from, parallel to, and the sources of her visual creativity--are woven throughout her production. She has looked directly at our diverse relationships to language in forms ranging from the early scrapbooks of the 1970s to the large sculpted words of the late 1990s, and others including personal diaries, letters, calligraphy, alphabets and primers. She works with the repeated, drawn, framed and sculpted word; newsprint, collage and montage of texts and photographs; and handwritten texts. Plays on words and palindromes turn up in her exhibition titles and, more recently, in her children's books. All of these uses of language stem as much from Dada and Surrealism as from the aesthetics of the banal and the everyday, and they give rise to unclassifiable texts, which call somewhere between a literature of the news item or photo-essay and poetic maxims for personal use. Messager's frequent recourse to copying down and to repetition then serves as a kind of exorcism: in those cases, writing is something like sewing, with a soothing function. The first section of Word for Word focuses on writing in Annette Messager's artworks. The second includes numerous texts published in magazines or catalogues, as well as unpublished notes on her work and personal reflections on art and life. All of her interviews from 1974 to the present are also included.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

For French conceptual artist Annette Messager (b. 1943), words are central, and writing is akin to sewing, albeit with many pricks of the needle. Editor Bernadac's book reflects this busy metaphor. The intimate and the public, the playful and the critical are stitched together, their boundaries sometimes indistinguishable and always a little surreal. This is, of course, the point—not only of Messager's art, which has made her one of France's best-known living artists, but also of any project that sets out to archive it. Messager's oeuvre is framed here through nearly 300 mostly color illustrations and text, including 17 interviews with esteemed art historians and critics (e.g., Robert Storr, Suzanne Pagé), previously unpublished artist's notes, and more than 30 years of diverse work. Her painting, writing, collage, installations, and film turn typically "feminine" hobbies on their head, compulsively repurposing diary writing, needlework, cooking, scrapbooking, and more. Getting a sense of autonomous projects is as tricky as navigating Messager's notes. This may be a boon for both preserving Messager's cryptic allure and encouraging multiple readings of the book. For its bibliographical compendium and sheer exposure to Messager's world, this is an important resource for contemporary art collections.
—Prudence Peiffer

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933045351
  • Publisher: Les Presses du Reel
  • Publication date: 6/1/2006
  • Pages: 416
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.40 (h) x 1.50 (d)

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