report from the other side

report from the other side
report from the other side (2013) by Phil Zimmermann is the most recent title from Spaceheater Editions

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Blue Notebook, Volume 8, No. 2

A couple of days ago I received in the mail the April 2014 issue of The Blue Notebook. The Blue Notebook is the book arts journal (one of the very few international periodicals) with news and criticism on artists books. Sarah Bodman (Editor) and Tom Sowden (Art Editor) put out this important journal from The Centre for Fine Print Research at UWE Bristol in Bristol UK.

I was honored to have the first article in this issue be an insightful piece by Alison Gibbons on my book High Tension. The eight page essay has many photos and the complete text of the book. Alison Gibbons is an interesting professor of at Montfort University in Leicester UK and a well known critic and theoretician who has written on the the work of Mark Z Danielewski and many others on her intriguing blog . Gibbons has also co-edited The Routledge Companion to Experimental Literature (2012).

My thanks go out to both Alison Gibbons for writing the article and to Sarah Bodman for publishing it.

Nature Abhors Becomes a 3D Animation.


Through the efforts of Steve Woodall, of Columbia College Chicago, the very talented photographer and CGI artist, Radek Skrivanek of Axis Point Studios in San Francisco turned my book Nature Abhors (2003) into a 3D animation. Radek was commissioned by Steve to create a number of animated books for a series of lectures he was giving about photo book works that are not monographs. I really like what Radek did with it, it almost seems like the book has come alive.

If you would like to see a larger, higher resolution version of it click here.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

The show Binding Desire opens today at Otis College of Art & Design in LA.

The very large show Binding Desire: Unfolding Artists Book opens with a reception this evening in LA at the Ben Maltz Gallery at Otis. The show runs from January 25th through March 30th and has many related events happening during the length of the show. If you would like to see the website for details about the show and the related events, please click here.

Binding Desire: Unfolding Artists Books is a group exhibition featuring approximately 120 works from OTIS Millard Sheets Library’s Special Collection of 2,100 artists books dating from the 1960s to the present.  The Otis Artists‘ Book Collection is one of the largest in Southern California. It houses a wide range of works representing every genre of artists‘ books by such luminaries as Vito Acconci, Joseph Beuys, and Ed Ruscha, as well as significant works from major centers of production like Beau Geste Press, Paradise Press, Printed Matter, Red Fox Press, and Woman‘s Studio Workshop. A foundational strength of the collection is its holdings of artists books made in the 1960s and 1970s—a time when this material was often not collected by libraries because so much of it was hard to define, catalog and house. The exhibition also includes a reading room showcasing new work produced by OTIS students in the Fall 2013 semester.

Work by: Kim Abeles, Sally Alatalo, Booklyn Artists Alliance, Ant Farm, Emily Artinian, Molly Barker, Michael Bartalos, Carol June Barton, Larry Bell, Barbara Bloom, Sarah Bryant, David Bunn, Chris Burden, Macy Chadwick, Rebecca Chamlee, Julie Chen, Laurie Whitehill Chong, C&C Press/Matt Cohen and Sher Zabaszkiewicz, Billy Collins, Critical Art Ensemble, Joyce Cutler-Shaw, Johanna Drucker, Mary Beth Edelson, Sam Erenberg, Carol Es, Daniel Essig, Eugene Feldman, Fly, Charles Henri Ford, Annette Gates, Cheri Gaulke, Amy Gerstler, Conrad Gleber, Fred Hagstrom, Karen Hanmer, Romano Hänni, George Herms, Dick Higgins, Tatana Kellner, Ronald King, Susan E. King, Ellen Knudson, Karen S. Kunc, Cynthia Lollis, Ken Leslie, Paul Etienne Lincoln, Margot Lovejoy, Sue Maberry, Barbara Maloutas, Cynthia Marsh, Scott McCarney, Paul McCarthy, Marshall McLuhan, Clifton Meador, Bruce Nauman, Katherine Ng, Bonnie Thompson Norman, Robert Oberhand, Dain Olsen, Lisa Onstad, Dennis Oppenheim, Laura Owens, Gary Panter, Werner Pfeiffer, Amy Pirkle, Arnoldo Pomodoro, Rachel Rosenthal, Sue Ann Robinson, Dieter Roth, Edward Ruscha, Niki de Saint Phalle, David Sandlin, Wilbur H. Schilling, Carolee Schneemann, Anat Shalev, Buzz Spector, Annie Sprinkle, Jana Sim, Alexis Smith, Jessica Spring, David Stairs, Gary Sweeney, Jennifer Tee, Barbara Tetenbaum, Beth Thielen, Fred Tomaselli, Rae Trujillo, Jeffrey Vallance, Paul Vangelisti, Kara Walker, Pamela S. Wood, J. Meejin Yoon, Philip Zimmermann, Marilyn Zornado.

If you are in the Los Angeles area during the time the show is up, I hope you will go by and check it out.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Heading to University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg, Missouri on January 29th.

I will be heading to the frozen wilds of the Midwest on January 29th. The University of Central Missouri has asked me to give a lecture and do some crits with students as a Visiting Artist in conjunction with a show of Spaceheater Editions books at the Gallery of Art and Design there. They are located in Warrensburg, MO, near Kansas City. I will be there between January 29th and February 1st, 2014.

If you would like to see installation shots of the show, please go to:

My thanks to Christian Cutler, Director of the Gallery, who has been really helpful.

CBAA Lecture on Ideation Inspiration

In January Karen and I attended the College Book Art Association (CBAA) National Conference at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. The lecture/panel was on Ideation Strategies with Julie Chen and Barb Tetenbaum, and I my lecture was called : Too Many or Too Few Limitations, Where is the Balance for Ideation Inspiration? Embracing limitations is known to be an aid in making better work and sparks the creative process. Having no limitations can lead to creative block. Once there are limitations imposed, artists are more creative–and the muse returns. However, too many limitations can make a creative straight jacket. What is the right amount of limitation?"
The panel was very interesting, I thought. If anyone is interested in seeing my part of it, please go to:

Friday, November 1, 2013

Ojalá collaborator, León de la Rosa, is creating an ongoing glitch website.

Leon de la Rosa, my collaborator on (and creator of the text in our book) Ojalá has created an amazing on-going glitch media website based on the book. Go here to see the current page. He is proceeding through the entire book, creating a new glitch two-page spread with audio, and posting a new webpage every Monday until the entire book is complete. He explains it here.

Be sure to listen to his weekly reading and re-interpretation of the text, it is brilliant. The whole project will take 57 weeks to finish and Leon plans to also present it as a media performance piece nationally and internationally.

Lecture at APHA conference, NYC, October 2013

I gave a lecture at the 38th national conference of the American Printing History Association on October 19th, 2013. It took place at The Grolier Club on 60th Street in Manhattan. The conference was great with many really interesting talks. The theme for this year's conference was Seeing Color, Printing Color. If you would like to see some information on many of the talks, please go here.

The Subject of my talk was Four-color Letterpress Printing of the National Geographic Magazine in the Nineteen Fifties and Sixties. Up until 1978, the National Geographic Magazine printed millions of copies every month of their famous yellow-bordered magazine by four-color process letterpress. The distinctive look of the color photo reproductions in the fifties and sixties was partly due to the medium of four-color letterpress and partly due to the state of separation technology at that time. Modern practitioners of letterpress find it hard to believe today that those millions of copies of the National Geographic Magazine were printed by letterpress.

It was not until the late seventies, when most people thought that letterpress had already been long dead as a printing medium, did changes in technology and ever increasing circulation numbers force the Society to switch to web rotogravure. After the switch to rotogravure, only the covers and regional advertising sections in the front and back of each issue of the magazine were printed by web offset –and as they still are today.

Unfortunately, there were some technical glitches during the original lecture and this video link will allow the presentation to be viewed without interruption. Please go here to see it.

Monday, September 2, 2013

APHA National Conference at the Grolier Club in New York City

I will be giving a lecture as part of the the American Printing HistoryAssociation's 38th National Conference. This year's theme is Seeing Color/Printing Color. It takes place in Manhattan on October 18th and 19th, 2013 at the fabulous Grolier Club.

The web blurb from APHA on the conference website states the following about the conference theme "Color in printing has a rich and complex history. The American Printing History Association’s 38th annual conference, Seeing Color/Printing Color, will examine the history of color and color printing. Since the invention of printing from movable type, printers have sought to perfect technologies that capture and reproduce the visible world. Reflecting on this historic legacy and its rapidly evolving future, the conference will present papers on topics ranging from color in early German graphic art to the art and technology of modern letterpress."

In addition to some very interesting tours of printing facilities throughout Manhattan, there are a series of related lectures. My presentation will be on Saturday at 3:30 pm. The title is The Apex (and Subsequent Demise) of Process Color Letterpress as Shown in the Printing of the National Geographic Magazine in the Nineteen-Fifties.
Here is what they have listed as my bio, a little different than the one that I normally have when I am wearing my artists' book maker's hat:

Philip Zimmermann is an artist, printer and a professor of Visual Commu­nications at the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ. He taught offset lithography and pre-press (among other subjects) for many years at Purchase College, SUNY. He has operated his press, Spaceheater Editions, since 1979. In 1980 he edited and published the book Options for Color Separation for the Visual Studies Workshop Press in Rochester NY. After graduating with an MFA from VSW, he trained doing color separations with Harry Christen of Christen Litho Laboratories of Rochester, one of the first users of the Vario-Klischograph and of Hell drum scanners in the United States.

Click here to see info on the conference.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

New York Art Book Fair coming up in September.

The 2013 NYABF is rapidly approaching. This year it takes place (again at MoMA PS1) on September 19th through 22nd. Clifton Meador, fresh off of winning the 2013 MCBA Prize will share a table with me. We will be in the Q Area of the Book Fair and will both be showing new books at our table. Please come see us.

In addition to having a table at the book fair I will be doing a panel presentation on Michael Snow's canonic Cover to Cover at the ARLIS (Art Libraries Society of North America) book fair Conference. I will be on a criticism panel that Tony White is organizing as part of the ARLIS/Contemporary Artist's Book Fair Conference that he helps to organize each fall there at MoMA-PS1. 

Each year he invites three people to each provide a critique, analysis, etc., of the same single book: providing different and sometimes overlapping presentations. None of the panelists know who the other two people are who are presenting on that same book. Should be interesting.

Report from the other side and Ojalá to be included in the show DIY (Visits Chicago): Photographers and Books

Two of my border issues books, report from the other side and Ojalá (co-authored with Leon de la Rosa) will be included in the curated show DIY(Visits Chicago): Photographers and Books which will be exhibited from September 18 to December 7, 2013 at Columbia College Chicago's Center for Book and Paper.

The opening reception takes place on September 18, from 5-7pm.

This is a second iteration of an exhibition exploring print-on-demand photo books. Originally curated by Barbara Tannenbaum for the Cleveland Museum of Art, DIY: Photographers and Books (2012) was the first museum show to focus on the impact of print-on-demand publishing on contemporary photographic practice. This is a juried exhibition focused on photobooks that move beyond the monograph. The show asks the question: How do photographers engage the book form in ways that are experimentally visual and conceptual, while pushing the possibilities of print on demand publishing?

The jury was Greg Harris, Associate Curator, DePaul Art Museum; Karen Irvine, Curator & Associate Director, Museum of Contemporary Photography; Jessica Cochran, Curator of Exhibitions and Programs, Center for Book and Paper Arts; and Steve Woodall, Director, Center for Book and Paper Arts. 

Click here to see the show info at The Center for Book and Paper.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

New print-on-demand title finished this past week: "report from the other side".

This past week I finished another title in my border issues book series. This one is about border walls. The title of the book is report from the other side. It uses the walls and fences of the small Texas town of Westway to explore the psychology and cultural significance of the great border fence that has been under construction just south of where I live in Tucson. Although all of the interior images are from Westway, the cover photograph is of the 21 foot high border fence/wall in Nogales.

The book is available directly from MagCloud at a cost of $24.95 in an open-edition soft-cover trade version. The link to the website is here.

These are three page spreads from the 120 page book. The entire book is visible on the MagCloud site and a digital version is available for $6.00.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Review of show at Purchase College in the NYT.

In yesterday's Sunday New York Times' Metro section there was a very nice review of curator Tennae Maki's show "P is for Performance" which is at the Purchase College Library gallery. Ms. Maki is a Neuberger Museum curatorial fellow and a student in Purchase’s master’s program in modern and contemporary art, criticism and theory. The show is up until April if you are in the New York area.

The link is here. The main, first image of the article is one from my book High Tension. There is also mention at the end of the article of my book Sanctus Sonorensis.

Although the review was posted on the NYT website on Saturday, February 23rd, it appeared in the Sunday edition and took up a large part of the front page of that section. Alas, we don't get that section out here in Arizona, so I haven't seen the hard copy version.