Building on other works.
February 17, 2003 7:01 PM   Subscribe

Altered books use old books as the basis for new collage works. More infamously Ukranian-American artist Natalka Husar has been served a cease and desist letter by Harlequin for her oil paintings built on romance paperback book covers. (Currently part of the "illegal art" exhibition. The illegal art website has perhaps the funniest EULA ever written.) This is not all that new, the Salvador Dali museum has a couple of great examples of his work transforming cheesy prints of shepherds and sheep into surrealist drawing rooms (sorry, could not find an image online.)
posted by KirkJobSluder (4 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
These folks in Seattle make old book covers into notebooks and this guy makes them into bookshelves. I am always happy seeing old books made into useful stuff, though it can be hard to know where to draw the line between a book that is still useable/readable and one destined for the scrap heap.
posted by jessamyn at 7:11 PM on February 17, 2003

Tom Phillips has been doing this for years—to the same book (a Victorian novel). Check out this site devoted to the various editions of his masterwork, A Humument.
posted by languagehat at 7:38 PM on February 17, 2003

This made me think of two things: "The Exorcism of Page Thirteen" which chronicles Caryl Burtner's obsession with the number 13 and who cut "the page number with its surrounding text from page thirteen in every book in her library" (link via Reality Carnival) and the lawsuit against Damian Loeb by photographer Lauren Greenfield for his appropriation of one of her photographs for his 1998 painting Summer Mildness.
posted by snez at 8:21 PM on February 17, 2003

In similar vein, check out Jeanne Martinet's Truer than True Romance, DC romance comics recaptioned with subversive and surreal effect (for instance, a postal worker's romance in a small seaside town is turned into a quite a scary Doomwatch scenario where the whole community suffers from amnesia).
posted by raygirvan at 9:37 AM on February 18, 2003

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