In Edition: Books, Prints & Multiples from the 1960s & 1970s

  • Apr 9, 2006 – Jul 9, 2006
Installation view: Weatherspoon Art Museum, 2006.

The exhibition, In Edition, examines artists who in the 1960s and 70s began to generate editioned work or “multiples” and revitalized and legitimized the practice of using economical reproduction methods to create artwork. Although printmaking and casting have long been standard art practices, the 1960s brought an exciting and discernible increase in the purposeful exploration of the use of various techniques such as machine casting, printed books, silkscreen, and lithography. These techniques often complemented or were an important component of artists' formal studio practice. The exhibition at the Weatherspoon includes books, prints and multiples by Josef Albers, Eleanor Antin, Christo, Robert Gerhhart, Red Grooms, Paul Hammond and Patrick Hughes, Michael Kidner, Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg, Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, Adrian Piper, Robert Rauschenberg, Dieter Roth, Ed Ruscha, Charles Simonds and Andy Warhol. Also on view are two important series of multiples published by Tanglewood Press, New York in 1966 and 1969 that include works by Jim Dine, Eva Hesse and Richard Serra, among others.

Many of the editions in the exhibition operate as hybrids of artwork and commodity. Leaving the idea of the “original” behind, the works emulate methods of production characteristic of the industrial age, and just like commercial products produced on the factory floor, each work from an artist's edition has the same appearance and value as the next. The end product is an editioned artwork that is easy to reproduce and distribute, and more readily accessible to a broader public. Today the multiple remains a vital force in the artworld, not only creatively for artists, but also economically, with many artist's multiples increasing in value on the art market at the same pace as traditional art forms such as painting and sculpture.

All of the works in In Edition are from the collection of the Weatherspoon Art Museum except for Josef Albers' Interaction of Color (1963) and Andy Warhol's Index (Book) (1967), both on loan from Special Collections, Jackson Library, and Ed Ruscha's self-published books, on loan from Jackson Library


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