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Artist Book

Wht is a n Occupation?

by Paul Chan

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"An approach [to bookmaking] that imagines various apparent oppositions—deliberation and desire, the poetic and the political, the lighthearted and the deadly serious—as generative dialectics; vectors that, when coaxed into strategic intersection, can be made to produce the friction necessary to wear away revelatory holes in the fabric of the settled."

—Jeffrey Kastner, Artist Who Make Books

Is an occupation a job or a calling? If it is a job, why does it feel like petrified unrest? If it is a calling, why does it take so long to achieve?

This unique handmade artist book documents the visual and textual elements that echoed throughout the occupy protest movement. The layering of visual and textual information creates a singular reading experience that evokes what it must be like inside the mind of such a complicated social movement. The text of Wht is a n Occupation? was "written" by a font designed by Chan that rewrites words into short provocative phrases, which makes reading this book that much more complicated and pleasurable.

The Wht is? series of artist books that premiered at the 2011 NY Art Book Fair. Each handmade book exists as a unique physical work and an unlimited e-book edition, available on Apple ibooks and Amazon kindle.

2011

Unique

8" x 6.5" / 20.32cm x 16.51cm

78 pages


ABOUT THE ARTIST

Paul Chan

Paul Chan is a New York-based artist. A survey entitled Selected Works was mounted by Schaulager in Basel, Switzerland (April 11-October 19, 2014). His work has been exhibited widely in many international shows including: Documenta 13, Kassel, 2012; Before The Law, Ludwig Museum, Cologne, 2011-12; Making Worlds, 53rd Venice Biennale, Venice, 2009; Medium Religion, ZKM, Karlsruhe, 2008; Traces du sacrê, Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2008; 16th Biennale of Sydney, Sydney, 2008; 10th International Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul, 2007; and the Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of Art, New York, 2006. Solo exhibitions include: My Laws are My Whores, The Renaissance Society and the University of Chicago, Chicago, 2009; Paul Chan: Three Easy Pieces, Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Harvard University, Cambridge, 2008; Paul Chan: The 7 Lights, Serpentine Gallery, London and New Museum, New 2007–2008; Paul Chan, Para/Site art space, Hong Kong, 2006. Chan founded Badlands Unlimited in 2010.

2011

Unique

8" x 6.5" / 20.32cm x 16.51cm

78 pages