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Our hands carry an incredible symbolic power. They stand for creation, but also for conversation, hospitality, strength and protection. They invite and they defend, they show affection and they hurt, they pray and they shape. According to Aristotle, the hand is the "tool of tools". No wonder they are a recurring motif in art.⁠ Jeux de Mains brings together a hundred works of art centred on the hand - from Pablo Picasso to Helena Almeida, from Louise Bourgeois to Alberto Giacometti, from John Baldessari to Francesca Woodman, and a multitude of treasures from the ancient ages. It confronts and mixes famous, emerging and anonymous artists from a wide range of backgrounds, thus foregrounding the symbolic meaning and visual power of the hand.⁠ Buy...

In the age of Trump and Brexit, every crisis is immediately replaced by the next one. The turbulent political weather of the twenty-first century creates anxiety and makes it difficult to look into an uncertain future. How should we react? Olivia Laing provides a brilliant, inspiring argument for why art is more important than ever as a force for resistance and repair. Art, she argues, is changing the way we see the world. It reveals inequalities, exposes, criticises and offers alternative paths.⁠ ⁠ Funny Weather brings together a career’s worth of Laing’s writing about art and culture, and their role in our political and emotional lives. She profiles Jean-Michel Basquiat and Georgia O’Keeffe, interviews Hilary Mantel and Ali Smith, writes love letters to David Bowie and Wolfgang Tillmans, and explores loneliness and technology, women and alcohol, sex and the body. With characteristic originality and compassion, Funny Weather celebrates art as an antidote to a frightening political time. The collection of short essays, articles, and columns that immerse you in an analysis, a stream of thought, or an emotional interpretation makes this book feel like spending an afternoon with one of your brainiest friends.⁠   Buy...

2020 - the year we read about clubbing instead of actually going clubbing.⁠ Club cultures have a rich local history and are at the same time much more differentiated geographically speaking than the story of the North Atlantic axis of Detroit–Chicago–Manchester–Berlin would have us believe. This book expands the focus. It looks at ten club capitals in Africa and Europe, reporting on different scenes from the big name to the supposedly peripheral. The local music stories, the scenes, the subcultures and their global networks are reconstructed in twenty-one essays and photo sequences. The tale they tell is one of clubs as laboratories of otherness, in which people can experiment with new ways of being and assert their claim to the city. Ten Cities is a nocturnal, sound-driven journey through ten social and urban stories from 1960 through to the present.⁠   Buy...

Nest Magazine revolutionised the way we look at interior space and decoration. The brainchild of artist and designer Joe Holtzman, Nest magazine, published from 1997 to 2004, shunned the conventionally beautiful luxury interiors of other magazines and instead featured non-traditional, exceptional, and unusual environments. With their unique style they inspired some of our most favourite nowadays magazines like apartamento.⁠⠀ The Best of Nest includes selections from all 26 issues in a series of portfolios featuring the work of writers and photographers such as Michael Cunningham, Patti Smith, Nan Goldin, and Derry Moore. Holtzman also contributes an essay offering a look behind the scenes of each issue.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ Signed copies available.   Buy...

So Harry says, "You don't like me anymore. Why not?" And he says, "Because you've got so terribly pretentious." And Harry says, "Pretentious, moi?" - Fawlty Towers⁠ ⁠ What is pretentiousness? Why do we despise it? And more controversially: why is it vital to a thriving culture? In this brilliant, passionate essay, Dan Fox argues that it has always been an essential mechanism of the arts, from the most wildly successful pop music and fashion through to the most recondite avenues of literature and the visual arts. Pretentiousness: Why it Matters unpacks the uses and abuses of the term, tracing its connections to theatre, politics and class. From method acting to vogueing balls in Harlem, from Brian Eno to normcore, Fox draws on a wide range of references in advocating critical imagination and open-mindedness over knee-jerk accusations of elitism or simple fear of the new and the different. Drawing on his own experiences growing up and working at the more radical edges of the arts, this book is a timely defence of pretentiousness as a necessity for innovation and diversity in our culture.⁠ ⁠...

The eighth volume of the Latvian Benji Knewman comes in a new format of nine booklets wrapped in a soft 140 * 200 mm cover. Themed “art is hard”, this issue contains an email correspondence between Benji Knewman founder Agnese Kleina, author Oleg Sivun, and Esthere Kajema entitled “Post-Soviet Man. A Year of Understanding.” Also included: “A French Mirror”, a piece critically observing an exhibition at the Musée D’Orsay in Paris called “Savage souls: Symbolism in the art of the Baltic states”, insomuch as “symbolism” is considered the “least satisfactory of the -isms”. Turbo: the chronicles of a teenager’s memoirs growing up in the USSR, told around the then hard to get item of luxury: the chewing gum. A Copenhagen based photographer’s lost walks in the fog. Buy...