Five essential art books

Francesca Gavin’s essential reads for mental time travellers

Dreamscapes & Artificial Architecture brings together digital art images of impossible interior design and fantasy architectural landscapes
Dreamscapes & Artificial Architecture brings together digital art images of impossible interior design and fantasy architectural landscapes

Chronesthesia describes the ability to mentally travel in time to the past and potential future. While movement itself is restricted, visual books are providing a vital portal for cognitive escape. These five art and photography tomes highlight that, when it comes to the expansion of the mind, it’s all in print. 

Dreamscapes & Artificial Architecture

If you want to daydream what the world would look like if you lived in pink psychedelic cloudscapes or were surrounded by Memphis-inspired future furniture, this is your book. It brings together digital art images of impossible interior design and fantasy architectural landscapes uninhabited by physical bodies, which has a surprisingly zen-like effect on the reader. May 2020, £30, gestalten.com

Yoshitomo Nara by Yeewan Koon focuses on the artist’s melancholic approach to kawaii and graphic paintings
Yoshitomo Nara by Yeewan Koon focuses on the artist’s melancholic approach to kawaii and graphic paintings
Advertisement

Yoshitomo Nara 

Next to Yayoi Kusama and Takashi Murakami, Yoshitomo Nara is the biggest Japanese artist working today. This beautiful hardback monograph by Yeewan Koon is the most comprehensive on his work, with a focus on his melancholic approach to kawaii (the cuteness culture of Japan) and graphic paintings, as well as installations, sculptures, ceramics and collaborations. £79.95, phaidon.com

Rita Ackermann: Mama 

Hauser & Wirth has been developing its publishing arm with great aplomb – notably with its art magazine Ursula. This month it offers the book Mama, an insight into New York’s Rita Ackermann – the painter who emerged as part of the downtown scene in the 1990s and has since proven her skill. Based around a show at the gallery’s NYC space, it notably includes a fake interview by American director-writer-artist Harmony Korine. £31, hauserwirth.com

Mama, for the Left Hand, 2019
Mama, for the Left Hand, 2019 | Image: Photo: Thomas Barratt. © Rita Ackermann, courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth
The 650 photographs – and 150 drawings and plans – in The Art of Earth Architecture took author Jean Dethier half a century to collate
The 650 photographs – and 150 drawings and plans – in The Art of Earth Architecture took author Jean Dethier half a century to collate | Image: Andre Stevens

The Art of Earth Architecture

This is a physically enormous and comprehensive book on structures formed by the earth itself – and a hop, skip and a jump across the world’s Unesco heritage sights. There are 650 photographs – and 150 drawings and plans – in this book, which took author Jean Dethier half a century to collate – including temples of Mesopotamia, markets in Koudougou and the city of Tenochtitlan in Mexico. A beautiful, informative ode to the earth itself. £98, thamesandhudson.com

Picture Summer on Kodak Film, published by photography specialists Mack, is infused with the warm colours of 1970s and 1980s photographs
Picture Summer on Kodak Film, published by photography specialists Mack, is infused with the warm colours of 1970s and 1980s photographs
Advertisement

Picture Summer on Kodak Film

Remember what the warm colours of 1970s and 1980s photographs looked like? This new book, published by photography specialists Mack, is infused with that sense of memory and motif, with vibrant and kaleidoscopic images by Jason Fulford. The photographer is also due to have a solo show at Amsterdam’s respected Foam Museum, and a special edition of the book with a choice of one of four signed inkjet prints is available for smart collectors. £35 to £200, mackbooks.co.uk

See also

Advertisement
Loading