For Immediate Release

Arcades Project
The Poem of Display
art books + book arts + small presses + editions + multiples
Friday, May 6, 5pm-9pm
135 The Commons, Ithaca

Ithaca, NY – On Friday, May 6, an empty storefront on The Commons will be transformed into an experimental marketplace of literature, art, and design, when several local and regional independent presses, makers of art books and editions, conceptual artists, video installation artists, and indie craft vendors will convene to offer visitors an alternative and thought-provoking shopping experience.

The vendors of Arcades Project will include A-Jump, Essay Press, Essays & Fictions, Garlic Press, Harpur Palate, Split Oak Press, Stockport Flats, and the Wells College Book Arts Center. Visual artists, Elizabeth Whitehouse, Kaleb Hunkele, Scott McCarney, Kathy Morris, Josh Sperling, and Steve Poleskie, will ‘vend’ their editions, multiples and other indie crafts in the marketplace.

Arcades Project will also host a curated series of works by selected visual artists who creatively explore the relationship between literary and visual arts, text and image, or art and shopping. Works include a performative installation by Buffalo-based artist Jamie O’Neil, who will peddle his ‘skippisox’ product to gallery visitors, and a pirate printing press by Thomas Gokey, whose participatory work deals with ‘the overthrow of global capitalism and the protection of democracy through non-violent methods and the purity of true love.’ Local artist Werner Sun will invert the notion of the artist’s book by turning sculptures into books, rather than books into sculptures, in a large-scale kinetic mobile made from strips of paper printed with digital images.

“Arcades Project participants are reconsidering the idea of text, writing, and the book,” says Danielle Winterton, one of the project’s founders and co-founding editor of Ithaca-based Essays & Fictions Press. “The rise of the e-reader has coincided with special attention paid to the printed book. On one end of the spectrum you have the book as art object, with poets hand-sewing their own limited edition chapbooks. On the other end, you have mass-produced standardized titles from big publishing houses. All sorts of exciting independent publishing projects are happening in between, but matters of visibility and distribution are problematic. A public marketplace such as Arcades Project can connect these book artists with buyers in a fun and dynamic way.”

“Because of the crossover between literature and visual arts that happens when an independent press designs and makes a title,” Karen Brummund says, “it is only logical to extend this kind of marketplace to makers of editions and multiples, such as prints, T-shirts, and broadsides. Going forward, we hope to encourage more local artists to create limited edition projects specifically to sell at future Arcades Project events.”

The event will take place on Friday, May 6 from 5 to 9 pm as part of the Spring Writes annual literary festival in Ithaca, coinciding with Gallery Night, and supported in part by funding from the Community Arts Partnership. Arcades Project is founded by Danielle Winterton and David Pollock, founding editors of Essays & Fictions Press, artist Karen Brummund, and local art critic Wylie Schwartz. The event will take place at 135 The Commons at the former Night and Day location.


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