September 9, 2008

Elizabeth Peyton: Part of the lifestyle

Publisher's Weekly's Charles Dee Mitchell takes a look at recent and upcoming lists from publishers and sees several shared approaches toward producing and distributing books for different niches within the already niche market for contemporary art. "How are the major art book publishers addressing this growing market for contemporary art? How do they choose to commit time and resources to a project where the artist is hardly a household name, as is often the case with contemporary as opposed to classic art? 'The contemporary art world is still finite,' says Charles Miers, publisher of Rizzoli USA. 'An artist's success at auction or in galleries may not translate into [book] sales.” He adds, however, that in the past several years Rizzoli has revitalized its contemporary art program and now does four–five monographs a year for that market. At Harry N. Abrams, editorial director Deborah Aaronson says, 'We have always done well with contemporary art. The secret is to choose wisely, to choose the right artist at the right moment.'

"All the publishers interviewed for this article mentioned that increasing numbers of these contemporary titles are going into nontraditional retail stores. For D.A.P. that can mean placing books in such trendy venues as Giant Robot, the Los Angeles specialty store for Japanese youth culture, or new, hip fashion outlets like Opening Ceremony. Bergdorf's, Neiman Marcus and Stanley Korshak were all mentioned as retailers who will add what they see as the right book to their mix. Phaidon's catalogue for the New Museum's Elizabeth Peyton exhibition will be featured in major markets by Banana Republic, the exhibition's major sponsor. 'These stores are selling a lifestyle,' says Aaronson, 'and art is a part of that lifestyle.'" Read more.

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Elizabeth Peyton's status update

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