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Ekta: 160 Faces by Lundgren+Lindqvist

Text by Richard Baird

Art book by generatively designed by Lundgren+Lindqvist for Swedish contemporary artist Ekta

160 Faces is a new publication from Swedish artist Daniel Götesson working under the name Ekta, designed by Lundgren+Lindqvist and distributed under the studio’s publishing arm ll’Editions. The book collates 160 drawings made by the artist in 2019, and sequenced, rather than in logical pairs and with a curated rhythm, but by using an algorithm developed by the studio. Applied using modern print technologies, each book becomes a unique experience of unexpected outcomes. The viewer is thus involved in formulating meaning between human faces that were algorithmically paired, and outside of the hands of the artist. This intersection of machine generated results, a very human image and artistic expression, continues in the typesetting of title pages and colophon. Here, Lundgren+Lindqvist designed a basic framework for the artist, who wrote all the necessary text with the same crayon he used when creating the drawings.

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Tyler Mitchell ICMYFG by Studio Lin

Text by Richard Baird.

I Can Make You Feel Good. A book by photographer Tyler Mitchell with design by Studio Lin and an opinion from Richard Baird

“I often think about what white fun looks like and this notion that Black people can’t have the same. Growing up with Tumblr I would often come across images of sensual, young, attractive white models running around being free and having so much fun – the kind of stuff Larry Clark and Ryan McGinley would make. I seldom saw the same for Black people in images – or at least in the photography I knew. My work comes from a place of wanting to push back against this lack. I feel an urgency to create a body of images where Black people are visualized as free, expressive, effortless, and sensitive.

I aim to visualize what a Black utopia looks like or could look like. People say utopia is never achievable but I love photography’s possibility of allowing me to dream and make that dream become very real.

In my work I use the tools of documentary reportage, portraiture, fashion photography, art photography, and filmmaking. I view fashion as a space and opportunity to have clothes enhance my message about the Black body. I make very little distinction between my commissioned and my personal works, using them both as an opportunity to create this utopian universe – whether that’s photographing Beyoncé, Spike Lee, skaters in Cuba, or my very close friends.

Documented and real, or fictitious and staged, my images are characterized by an interest in purity and intimacy. In them, models recline, embrace each other closely and peer into the lens, leaving evidence of a public display of affirmation in Blackness and a unifying visual text of hope. I also occasionally weave symbols into my portraits such as water guns and plastic resin chains – symbols of repression as a subtle reminder of the ways in which the Black body is still politicized, and sometimes unable to move through the real world as freely as I would like.

I Can Make You Feel Good is simply a declaration. And one that I feel is gut punching in its optimism. It feels important at a time like this to declare such a thing.” — Tyler Mitchell

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White Rabbit Collection by Toko

Text by Richard Baird.

Packaging, book and editorial design by Australian design studio Toko for The White Rabbit Gallery

The White Rabbit Collection is a contemporary arts publication showcasing the work of 99 artists drawn from the White Rabbit, a contemporary art museum, gallery and archive in Sydney. The museum has become one of the world’s most significant collections of Chinese contemporary art, with over 2000 works from 700 artists. Through this new publication, designed by Australia design studio Toko and commissioned by Judith Neilson, the museum seeks to represent the breadth and depth of its collection.

Inspired by the Little Red Book (Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung) the publication is marked by a bright red clamshell box with a unique typographical gesture, and three books of 33 artists each with its own unique cover art. Together, box and books form a print run of 2475 individual variations, with each boxset being a unique piece and a invitation to discover the social and artistic changes of twenty-first century China.

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