Tag: Books

The Artful Gift Guide: 5 under $400

As we spend more time in our homes — working, playing, learning —the desire to surround ourselves with artful items that inspire is all the more acute. Here are five unique items from $55 to $400 to delight you or a friend or family member at the holidays and beyond.

The small print: Order for the holidays by December 14th and we’ll ship by the 15th (though due to COVID we can’t guarantee the shippers’ delivery schedule). If you’d like us to gift wrap your purchase, email us at art@browngrotta.com, as soon as you have placed your order. To ensure we know you want gift wrapping, don’t wait to contact us — we generally ship as soon as the orders are received. Quantities are limited.

Volume 50: Chronicling Fiber Art for Three Decades Catalog
Volume 50: Chronicling Fiber Art for Three Decades
Essay by Glenn Adamson, Photography and design by Tom Grotta,
164 full color pages, 9″ x 9″, 221 color images
published by browngrotta arts
Handmade Japanese Silk Shawls by sisters Chiaki and Kori Maki
24km Tesu Shawl, Kaori Maki
malda and tassar silk, dyes/harad, indigo, 86″ x 25”; 1998
1chm Silk Shawl/Check, Chiaki Maki
80% malda and tassar silk, 20% wool, yarn dyed by natural material, 82″ x 31″, 1998
Small Red Basket by Danish basketmaker Birigit Birkkjaer
Birgit Birkkjær
65bb.17 Ode for the Ocean 17
linen and stones, shells, fossils, etc. from the sea
2.5″ x 3″ x 3″, 2019
(other colors available)
Japanese Bamboo Vase by Jiro Yonezawa
70jy Ladybug, Jiro Yonezawa
bamboo, glass, kiribako box
7″ x 5″ x 5″, 2009
Coffee Table Book The Grotta Home by Richard Meier
The Grotta Home by Richard Meier: A Marriage of Architecture and Craft
with contributions by Glenn Adamson, Matthew Drutt, Sheila Hicks,
Joseph Giovannini, Louis Grotta, Jack Lenor Larsen, John McQueen,
Richard Meier, Wendy Ramshaw and David Watkins
336 pp., 28 x 30 cm, approx. 300 ills, hardcover English

Guest Post: Wendy Wahl on Big Beautiful Books

 “Branches Unbound”, Wendy Wahl at the Grand Rapids Art Museum, Photo by: Jim West

Branches Unbound, Wendy Wahl’s work at the Grand Rapids Art Museum, Photo by: Jim West

It’s not news that the world of printed text on paper is challenged in the 21st century by digital media and the reorganization of how information is created, distributed and accessed.  Knowledge saving and sharing continues to be reinvented – 5000 years ago the Incans used a device called a quipu made of string and knots for communication, 3000 years

 “Ed Ruscha” at Gagosian Gallery, Chelsea, photo by: Librado Romero

“Ed Ruscha” at Gagosian Gallery, Chelsea, photo by: Librado Romero

ago the Sumerians had libraries containing clay tablets while the Egyptians used papyrus and parchment scrolls. During the Han Dynasty the Chinese invented paper to write on and in the 15th century Europeans began printing with movable type to create a codex. In the 1970s computers were incorporated into the printing process.

photo #3.ww

Matej Kren’s, Book Cell at Centro de Arte Moderna, Lisbon Portugal. Photo by: Ferran Moreno Lanza

Social and environmental conditions along with technological developments influence the structure of books that are produced. These objects evolve to fit the needs of the cultures that use them. Today there

Erik Olofson’s furniture, courtesy of Big Cozy Books.

Erik Olofson’s furniture, courtesy of Big Cozy Books.

are e-readers with names like kindle, nook and ibook.  For nearly a decade my response to the current transformation has been to use discarded encyclopedias as a material to create art works and large scaled installations as an expression of the significance and potency of the printed word on paper.

Kansas City Public Library, Missouri. photo by Mike Sinclair

Kansas City Public Library, Missouri. photo by Mike Sinclair

The form of the book has been used physically and figuratively in paintings, in architecture, as furniture and as sculpture – in and out of the landscape. The medium is the message and, because of a typesetting error, more accurately, the massage. Thank you Marshall McLuhan.

“book outcropping” at Penistone Hill Country Park. courtesy of Google images.

Book outcropping at Penistone Hill Country Park. courtesy of Google images.

Three Gorges Dam Project, Tanziling Ridge - Yangtze River, China. Photo by  Sharon Wahl

The artist at the Three Gorges Dam Project, Tanziling Ridge – Yangtze River, China.
Photo by Sharon Wahl

Wendy Wahl

Books Make Great Gifts 2013 — Part I

It’s that time of year again. Over the next few weeks, we’ll offer a wrap up of books that the artists, clients and staff of browngrotta arts have been reading and thinking about this year.

Kiyomi Iwata recommends Blood, Bones and Butter by Gabrielle Hamilton. Hamilton is an owner of a restaurant called Prune in New York’s East Village but she is a chef, writer and an artist. This book also comes highly recommended by collectors/family members Sandra and Lou Grotta. Kiyomi’s second choice is Growing, Older, A Chronicle of Death, Life, and Vegetables by Joan Dye Gussow, Chelsea Green Publishing. “Gussow is a pioneer of the ‘Eat Local’ movement,” Kiyomi writes, ” and a very honest and funny writer.”

Dail Behennah admitted it was hard to whittle down her recommendations for books to read, but here goes: “The best book I have read this year is Making by Thomas Heatherwick and Maisie Rowe, published to accompany the exhibition at the V&A.” The 600 pages of drawings and photographs show the work of the designer Thomas Heatherwick and his Studio, with beautifully written explanations of each project. Arranged chronologically, each project is headed with a question “Can a giant sculpture fit through a letterbox?” “Can straight pieces of wood make a curved building?” Heatherwick’s enthusiasm for these problems is infectious, and he always comes up with an unpredictable solution which is elegant and deceptively simple. “I am sure,” she adds, ” that this is a book that I will return to over and over again.” The book that Dail is eagerly awaiting is Making and Drawing by Kyra Cane to be published this month by A & C Black. “It promises to provide inspiration and an insight into the way other makers think.” she writes. “Some of my favorite makers are included and I hope that it might change the way I draw. Some of my plans on graph paper are included in the chapter, “Drawing as Planning & Design.”

A book that Gyöngy Laky predicts could be just the right gift for an art lover is The Art of Rebellion III The book about street art by Christian Hundertmark. “I am intrigued by much of the free wheeling creativity and great skill I see in graffiti but also troubled by it – particularly when it is destructive, unwanted and messy, ” Laky writes. “The front of our house got tagged one night with ugly, awkward, large, purple marks. We were not happy. In this book, however, the works go beyond just graffiti to surprising street art, clever and comic installations, thoughtful environmental art or engaging guerrilla works. There are numerous, creative, inventive, original, playful, funny, crazy and fantastic conceptual works that will delight and inspire the reader. These artistic expressions do present a perplexing problem; if they are wonderful events and brilliantly creative, but made illegally and clandestinely on private property or public areas where they should not be made, can we still love and appreciate them?”

Ane Henricksen wrote us about Dr. Jessica Hemmings new book, Warp & Weft: Woven Textiles in Fashion, Art and Interiors. The book has six chapters: “Threads,” “All Kinds of Light,” “Dynamic Responses,” “Sound,” “Community” and “Emotion.” Described by its publisher as, “[a]n excellent resource for everyone with an interest in modern, woven textiles,” this book features work by Nuno, Ane Henricksen, Grethe Sørensen, Lia Cook and many others.