Image, Text, Page: Artists & Writers in Collaboration

April 6 – June 17, 2012

Gould Library

In these collaborations, visual artists and writers are paired to create something new: an illustrated book in which words lend new vibrancy to the images, and the images add color and depth to the text. The pages that result are more than the sum of their parts.

The volumes in this exhibition come from publishing projects based in the libraries of two great museums: the books by Doug Aitkin and Beatriz Milhazes were published by the Library Council of the Museum of Modern Art, and the others by the Library Fellows of the Whitney Museum of American Art. They are part of a collection of artist’s books donated to Gould Library Special Collections by Hadassah Brooks Morgan. 

Exhibition Checklist

My Pretty Pony

Designed by Barbara Kruger, Text by Stephen King, Produced and edited by May Castleberry, Lithography by Maurice Sánchez at Derrière L’Etoile Studios, New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1988, Gould Library Special Collections

Barbara Kruger illustrates Stephen King’s story about the relativity of time with 17 striking screenprints, including hyper-pixelated newspaper images of horses that intensify the tensions of King’s story. 


Text by Tina Howe, Illustrated with 9 chromogenic plates by Tina Barney, New York: Library Fellows of the Whitney Museum of American Art, 1991, One of 175 signed copies, Gould Library Special Collections

This book pairs the evocative, sometimes unsettling photographs of Tina Barney with a one-act play by writer Tina Howe. Howe’s play centers on a mother, her two adult children, and a friend on an outing to the beach, and like Barney’s photographs, reveals the inner workings of a family in tension. 


Text by Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, Illustrations by Richard Tuttle, New York:  Library Fellows of the Whitney Museum of American Art, 1987, One of 120 copies, Gould Library Special Collections

The husband-wife team of poet Mei-mei Berssenbrugge and sculptor Richard Tuttle collaborated on this colorful, yet delicate book. Hiddenness makes playful use of a variety of printing and papermaking techniques: some decorations are hand-stamped, some printed, and others were created by incorporating colored pulp into the paper as it was made. 

A Clown, Some Colors, A Doll, Her Stories, A Song, A Moonlit Cove

A collaboration between poet Ann Lauterbach and artist Ellen Phelan, New York:  Library Fellows of the Whitney Museum of American Art, 1996, No. 41 of an edition of 120 copies signed by the poet., Gould Library Special Collections

Poet and MacArthur Foundation Fellow Ann Lauterback has collaborated with a number of visual artists including Joe Brainard, Lucio Pozzi , and Ann Hamilton. Here, Lauterback is paired with artist Ellen Phelan is perhaps best know for her eerie, delicately colored still life paintings of dolls, clowns, and forgotten childhood toys. 

Coisa Linda (Something Beautiful)

Illustrated with 34 silk screen prints and one collage by Beatriz Milhazes, Featuring songs by Arnaldo Antunes, Aves da Floresta Amazônica, Dorival Caymmi, Vinícius de Moraes, Gilberto Gil, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Arto Lindsay, Marisa Monte, Paulo César Pinheiro, Pixinguinha, Edgard Scandurra, Sinhô, Caetano Veloso, and Gastão Vianna, New York : Library Council, Museum of Modern Art, 2002, One of 175 signed copies, Gould Library Special Collections

Coisa Linda (Something Beautiful) is in every way a hand crafted work: it contains thirty-four silk screen prints, an original collage, a hand-printed cover, custom-designed fonts and graphic designs, and hand-written script. Milhazes worked closely with the printmaker Jean-Paul Russell to bring her musically- inspired, abstract designs to the silk screen.

Write in Jerry Brown President

Designed by Doug Aitken in collaboration with Lorraine Wild of Green Dragon Office, Los Angeles., Text by John Bowe, New York:  Library Council of The Museum of Modern Art, 2008, Signed edition of 200, Gould Library Special Collections

Through stock and press photographs of Jerry Brown from the time of his first rise to political power in the 1970s, text from interviews and speeches, and grainy images of the California landscape, artist Doug Aitkin creates a meditative portrait of Jerry Brown, former and current California governor, attorney general, and 1976 presidential candidate. As the viewer unfolds the book, the images and text move between past and present, revealing Brown as a politician, a visionary, and a pop-culture star.