Where artists' books and the book arts meet online...
surely the great thing about artists' books now is that artists can use such a variety of techniques and structures to make their book; if artists do not have the money to produce large editions of professionally printed books then they find another way and make use of what skills they can learn and materials at hand. this shouldn't stop when it comes to artists' ebooks either. its an emerging landscape but already artists have a choice of different softwares (some free and some you pay for) to build an ebook with, or as before, there is the choice of publishers to work with. Publishers, writers and artists are wading through this ever changing sea that is the way we look and read. Reading isn't just simply reading anymore; and an ebook doesn't have to have the format of a physical book anymore - this is something that is changing now and would be interesting to engage with. You ask what is an artists' ebook? and thats exactly the question I want to explore and that I think artists can explore now as a type of book to make rather than another way of marketing the same thing. Writing and creating art ebooks as ebooks rather than digitizing ones that already exist.
Great stuff, Abigail. Exactly what I meant. Reconceptualizing what we do in a new medium (rather than imitate manuscripts as Gutenberg did, as an example) is the big issue facing (luring, tempting, puzzling) e-artists.
exactly; its hard to conceive of an ebook not being book-like in every sense that a book has meant to us westerners for the past hundreds of years - but its something to be tried, and something that is occurring.
I've discovered the Calibre shareware which converts among e-book formats and will turn a prepared html file into anything. I'm offering e-book versions of those of my books which can be turned into text-only. Since I have only a Kindle I haven't tested the others. (If you want to, the books so far are As Told To and the first volume of E, Last and First Men at http://ocotilloarts.com ). The thing is, these aren't artists books, they've been reduced to novels. Calibre supports the new Kindle Fire, but this is no different from the pdf versions I've been offering for a long time, so I haven't bothered to figure out the Fire. But are these really artists books? More like pictures of artists books. So I thought about installations -- project the book on four walls and the ceiling (a progression of page images in my case) with the text snaking through like a crawler and also audio. If you're unlucky enough not to have a venue for this, flatten it on a DVD. But I don't have the expertise for this. At this point I'm out of ideas and frankly, discouraged.
I had a look at the links at the head of this group. It strikes me that video for i-pads offers some possibilities. If it could somehow be not Le Chien Andalou over again. Who is the wizard who does this rather than spend twenty years learning book arts skills?
Has anyone ever made a case for a video game being an artists book? What about the possibilities of the new joystickless gaming environment? Is there some way to scale this stuff down to the size of a cottage industry so that book artists don't have to seek venture capital?
I made some new experiments by adapting epub book artist book artist for Kindle (see http://tinyurl.com/bp8mat7 ): you have to think differently because then the Kindle is limited (color, hypertext , layout ...). Another worry: I can not make free books! I still think that the epub format is best suited to artists. Sorry for my English. Nicolas Frespech