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J&L Books/Anthology Film Archives

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Paperback, 6 x 9 in. / 240 pgs / 300 color.

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Catalog: FALL 2015 p. 70   

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ISBN 9780989531139 TRADE
List Price: $35.00 CDN $40.00

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J&L BOOKS/ANTHOLOGY FILM ARCHIVES

Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith

Catalogue Raisonné, Volume I

Edited by John Klacsmann, Andrew Lampert. Photographs by Jason Fulford.

Featured image is reproduced from <i>Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith</i>.

250 paper airplanes, ranging from whimsical to mysterious, all collected by Harry Smith

Filmmaker, painter, anthropologist, musicologist and occultist--Harry Smith (1923-1991) was an incomparable polymath and seminal figure in the realms of beat culture and avant-garde art. Smith's kaleidoscopic experimental films have influenced generations of artists and cinephiles, while his landmark three-volume compilation, the Anthology of American Folk Music (1952), laid the foundation for the folk music revival of the 1950s and 1960s. In addition to his ecstatic artwork, Smith is renowned for his vast collections of curious objects. The Collections of Harry Smith, Catalogue Raisonné series spotlights and indexes his eclectic research obsessions.
Volume one features richly detailed photographic documentation of 251 paper airplanes gathered by Smith from the streets of New York City over an approximately 20-year period. Whimsical and weird, the paper airplanes rank among Smith's most mysterious collecting pursuits. This extensive compendium presents the fruits of his extraordinary aeronautic pursuit and highlights the tangled history and myths that accompany them.

Featured image is reproduced from Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith.

PRAISE AND REVIEWS

The New Yorker

Andrea Denhoed

These pieces of sculptural ephemera are artifacts of childhoods, and also of the eccentric and eager collector who sought to preserve them.

Bookforum

Albert Mobilio

The extant collection numbers more than 250 specimens that [Smith] found on street, fished out of wastebaskets, or even, as one friend recalls, ran into traffic to retrieve... Many of the planes are annotated with the location and date of their discovery: "Prince nr Wooster 4-5-79"; "Bet 9th &10th Aves on 49th 4-24-79 In Playground."

Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith

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FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

MADELINE WEISBURG | DATE 12/4/2015

John Klacsmann & Andrew Lampert on Harry Smith, 'Paper Airplanes' & 'String Figures'

John Klacsmann & Andrew Lampert on Harry Smith, 'Paper Airplanes' & 'String Figures'

Experimental filmmaker, musicologist, artist, ethnographer and occultist Harry Smith (1923-1991) was a key member of the Beat avant-garde. He was also a lifelong collector who gathered idiosyncratic objects as varied as paper airplanes, string figures, tarot cards and Ukrainian Easter eggs, many of which are housed at the Anthology Film Archives, where John Klacsmann & Andrew Lampert are currently editing a remarkable series of catalogue raisonnés co-published by Anthology and J & L Books. Madeline Weisburg sat down to speak with them about the two new volumes, documenting Smith's Paper Airplane and String Figure collections.
continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 12/22/2015

Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith

Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith

"A charming yet cantankerous pauper in life, in death Harry Smith has become nothing less than a subterranean superstar," Paper Airplanes: The Collections of Harry Smith editors John Klacsmann and Andrew Lampert write in their introduction to this charming yet fascinating new title from J & L Books and Anthology Film Archives—one of our favorite Holiday Gift Books of 2015. "His myriad accomplishments as a filmmaker, artist, musicologist, anthropologist, and occultist are celebrated by a range of disparate communities, most of which are invested in him for entirely different reasons. Since his death, a slew of retrospective music releases, film preservations, books, screenings, and gallery exhibitions have firmly established him as a key figure of the 20th-century American underground. While Smith’s entire body of work is incomparable and justly celebrated, he is in many ways equally infamous for the many abandoned and abolished projects left in his wake, including those that were lost thanks to unpaid bills, irate landlords, numerous moves, bad moods, and self-destructive outbursts." To read more on Smith and his collections of Paper Airplanes and String Figures, continue to their recent interview with Madeline Weisburg. continue to blog


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