JOHNSON, RAY

PUBLISHER
SIGLIO

BOOK FORMAT
Paperback, 8 x 10 in. / 380 pgs / 45 color / 163 bw.

PUBLISHING STATUS
PUB DATE 7/31/2014
Active

DISTRIBUTION
D.A.P. EXCLUSIVE
CATALOG: SPRING 2014 p. 35   

PRODUCT DETAILS
ISBN 9781938221040 TRADE
LIST PRICE: $45.00 CDN $45.00

AVAILABILITY
In stock

ARTBOOK GIFT CERTIFICATES

looking for the perfect gift? send an e-card to artbook.com
shop now

  

SIGLIO

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994

Published by Siglio
Edited by Elizabeth Zuba. Text by Kevin Killian.

Featured image is reproduced from <I>Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994</I>.Ray Johnson (1927–1995) blurred the boundaries of life and art, of authorship and intimacy. Correspondence is the defining character of all of Johnson’s work, particularly his mail art. Intended to be read, to be received, to be corresponded with, his letters (usually both image and textual in character) were folded and delivered to an individual reader, to be opened and read, again and again. Johnson's correspondence includes letter to friends William S. Wilson, Dick Higgins, Richard Lippold, Toby Spiselman, Joseph Cornell, Yoko Ono, Nam June Paik, Robert Motherwell, Eleanor Antin, Germaine Green, Lynda Benglis, Arakawa and Madeline Gins, Christo, Billy Name, Jim Rosenquist and Albert M. Fine, among many others. The subjects of his correspondence ranged from the New York avant-garde (Cage, Johns, de Kooning, Duchamp) to filmmakers such as John Waters, philosophers such as Jacques Derrida and writers such as Gertrude Stein and Marianne Moore. This collection of more than 200 selected letters and writings--most of which are previously unpublished--opens a new view into the sprawling, multiplicitous nature of Johnson’s art, revealing not only how he created relationships, glyphs and puzzles in connecting words, phrases, people and ideas, but also something about the elusive Johnson himself. In a 1995 article in The New York Times, Roberta Smith wrote: "Make room for Ray Johnson, whose place in history has been only vaguely defined. Johnson’s beguiling, challenging art has an exquisite clarity and emotional intensity that makes it much more than simply a remarkable mirror of its time, although it is that, too."

Featured image is reproduced from Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994.

PRAISE AND REVIEWS

BOMB

Trisha Low

Not Nothing is a display of ashes. It is made for looking but, because of its reformulation of the social into a tangible maze, I prefer to torch and snort it. An experimental privacy manifesto invading my nasal passages. The documents it contains corrode things out of things—items more perverse than the baloney out of the sandwich, chomping out the meat upon which our artistic economy sustains itself. A cauterized performance of the direct mail campaign that weighs against our rabidly luxe social field. Corresponding fishing hole gradually dried up. No more nose bleeds.

Kaleidescope Magazine

George Vasey

When Ray Johnson famously committed suicide by swimming out to sea in 1995, he left behind a conflicted legacy. Johnson was a pioneer of Pop, Conceptual and Mail art, yet the artist refuted all of these terms. He was an increasingly reclusive figure who, to paraphrase writer William S. Wilson, “made art that was not about social comment but of sociability,” exploring new interfaces between his work and its audiences (and collaborators). His methods were temporal as much as they were spatial — lacking finality, Johnson’s practice embraced contingency and process over a finished product. These strategies resist the exhibition form, and one can see how the intimacy and transportability of the book might offer the perfect platform for his often diaristic work. This year Siglio Press has brought together over 200 selected letters and writings — most of them unpublished — for Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson, 1954-1994 and re-published The Paper Snake by Ray Johnson, an artist’s book from 1965. Designed by Dick Higgins and envisaged as an experimental solution to compiling and exhibiting Johnson’s works, The Paper Snake offers a selection of elliptical poetry, drawings, collages and rubbings. With introductory essays, and designed with an attuned sensitivity to the original material, the two new publications will introduce a new generation to the restless work of Ray Johnson.

FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 8/13/2014

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994 in The New York Times

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994 in The New York TimesIn the August 11 New York Times, Holland Cotter writes, "With his death in 1995, the American artist Ray Johnson left a vapor trail of interest that has grown and grown, far beyond what might be expected from a career that, from a conventional viewpoint, traveled the byways of art and produced inscrutable, disposable things. Johnson’s most physically substantial works are the collages he made from the 1960s onward, as chunky as mosaics and clotted with visual and verbal information pulled from pop culture, advertising, art history and a personal database of arcane references. He is most widely known, though, as the founder, or at least most avid practitioner and promoter, of mail art, an art movement literally about movement, about the transit of art, in the form of letters, postcards and drawings, through the postal system. Because Johnson’s mail art is epistolary, and likely considered more of a reading than a looking experience, its visibility in museums is fairly low, which makes the arrival of Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson, 1954-1994, from Siglio Press, a real boon. But more than filling a gap, the book crackles with intellectual energy, with enough drawings and mini-collages embedded in its reproduced texts to hold even a nonreader’s attention. Most important, it fills out the picture of what and who Johnson was: a brilliant, uncontainable polymath, an artist-poet, the genuine item." continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 7/10/2014

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994In the current issue of Bookforum, Albert Mobilio begins a major review of Siglio's new Ray Johnson books, "From our current vantage, it's not hard to acknowledge that one of the presiding spirits of early twenty-first-century art is Ray Johnson's. Collagist, painter, poet, and the originator of mail art, Johnson took up the appropriative strategies of Marcel Duchamp and Jasper Johns, infused them with John Cage's ideas about Zen and chance, and energized the mix with his own brand of deadpan Conceptualism. The art he made beginning in the early 1950s until his death in 1995 purposefully merged artist, art making, and art object in ways that were once disquieting but are now considered routine. The strong strain of performativity and self-reflexiveness—qualities that mark the work of artists such as Matt Freedman and Ryan Trecartin—was the animating force behind Johnson's collages and texts and, more pointedly, what he chose to do with them. Rather than show in galleries, he mailed his work (often multiple Xeroxes) to hundreds of people, and encouraged them to embellish it and send it out again. The republication of his artist's book The Paper Snake and the selection from his voluminous letters in Not Nothing are an opportunity to sample one of the most subversively witty intelligences to paste, draw, and type in the last half century." Featured image is reproduced from Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994. continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 7/8/2014

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994

Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994In the current issue of Bookforum, Albert Mobilio begins a major review of Siglio's new Ray Johnson books, "From our current vantage, it's not hard to acknowledge that one of the presiding spirits of early twenty-first-century art is Ray Johnson's. Collagist, painter, poet, and the originator of mail art, Johnson took up the appropriative strategies of Marcel Duchamp and Jasper Johns, infused them with John Cage's ideas about Zen and chance, and energized the mix with his own brand of deadpan Conceptualism. The art he made beginning in the early 1950s until his death in 1995 purposefully merged artist, art making, and art object in ways that were once disquieting but are now considered routine. The strong strain of performativity and self-reflexiveness—qualities that mark the work of artists such as Matt Freedman and Ryan Trecartin—was the animating force behind Johnson's collages and texts and, more pointedly, what he chose to do with them. Rather than show in galleries, he mailed his work (often multiple Xeroxes) to hundreds of people, and encouraged them to embellish it and send it out again. The republication of his artist's book The Paper Snake and the selection from his voluminous letters in Not Nothing are an opportunity to sample one of the most subversively witty intelligences to paste, draw, and type in the last half century." Featured image is reproduced from Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994. continue to blog


Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994

in stock  $45.00


free shipping

UPS GROUND IN THE CONTINENTAL U.S. FOR CONSUMER ONLINE ORDERS

arrow forward

arrow back

print icon


RAY JOHNSON MONOGRAPHS + ARTIST'S BOOKS

Ray Johnson: The Paper Snake

RAY JOHNSON: THE PAPER SNAKE

SIGLIO

ISBN: 9781938221033 | US $34.70

Pub Date: 7/31/2014
Active | In stock


Not Nothing: Selected Writings by Ray Johnson 1954-1994

NOT NOTHING: SELECTED WRITINGS BY RAY JOHNSON 1954-1994

Edited by Elizabeth Zuba. Text by Kevin Killian.

SIGLIO

ISBN: 9781938221040 | US $45.00

Pub Date: 7/31/2014
Active | In stock


ARTBOOK LOGO
 
 

the artworld's favorite source for books on art and culture

  

CUSTOMER SERVICE
orders@artbook.com
212 627 1999
M-F 9-5 EST

TRADE ACCOUNTS

800 338 2665

CONTACT

JOBS + INTERNSHIPS

NEW YORK
Showroom by Appointment Only
155 Sixth Avenue
New York NY 10013
Tel   212 627 1999

LOS ANGELES
Showroom by Appointment Only
818 S. Broadway, Suite 700
Los Angeles, CA 90014
Tel. 323 969 8985

ARTBOOK LLC
D.A.P. | Distributed Art Publishers, Inc.


All site content Copyright C 2000-2013 by Distributed Art Publishers, Inc. and the respective publishers, authors, artists. For reproduction permissions, contact the copyright holders.

ARTBOOK AMPERSAT

The D.A.P. Catalog
www.artbook.com