Unrelated image courtesy of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
The first recipient of a Knight Arts Partnership grant to be featured on ARTLURKER is [NAME] Publications. Founded in 2008 by Gean Moreno, [NAME] Publications is a non-profit publishing house that through working with local institutions will produce and distribute its own collection of high quality books focused on Miami artists and cultural topics relevant to the local community. Moreno, who received $30,000 to support this new initiative, is an artist and writer based in Miami. He has exhibited his work internationally since the late 1990s and his texts have appeared in various magazines and exhibition catalogs.
“[NAME] Publications aims to create a new space for local artists to work in, and an opportunity to take their projects to new and unexpected audiences.” said Gean Moreno.
Beginning next year, [NAME] Publications will work with four Miami based artists and produce a book with each of them, with the first appearing in March. The artists invited, which are stated to reflect the diversity of the local art’s community, will be announced after Christmas. We interviewed [NAME] Publications’ founder, Gean Moreno to find out more:
At this juncture can you give us any hints about which artists you will be working with other than that they reflect the diversity of the local arts community?
The list is almost ready. Hopefully, it will have people scratching their heads with the lack of similarities between the artists, with the way it risks inconsistency, a lack of univocality, and all those other things that good marketing practices stay away from.
What will the volume of the books be, will the length differ from book to book?
The identity of the project is based on a kind of economy of design. Each artist will get the same size book—a generic container. They will have absolute freedom in terms of what goes inside. The way things look right now as we are negotiating with printers is that all the books will be 6 inches by 9 inches, 80 pages, color, and hardcover, produced in runs of 1000.
What will the intent of the books be? Will they function as artists monographs or will the focus be less individual?
The intent behind the project is to open a space for artists to work in. They concept is this “undefined” or flexible. Artists can decide what this flexibility affords them. Things can run the gamut from artists’ books to monographs to strange collaborations, but this is ultimately up to the artists.
What is the distribution planned for these books?
[NAME] will have a website going up soon. We’ll have a subscription plan. We’re hoping to get the books in specialized book stores everywhere, from the local museum shops to places like Printed Matter in New York and Bookie Wookie in Amsterdam. We’re also planning to participate in art book fairs, and maybe we can convince folks to give us space in some of the December fairs. Finally, we plan to have launch parties for each of the books.
After the 4 books, what plans in regard to the format, distribution and scope of the publishing house do you have in mind?
Ideally, this series of Miami artist books can be kept going for at least five years, so that 20 books exist in the end. [NAME], in time, may also work on other book series that, while still specific to issues relevant to the local cultural sphere, take another shape.
Will you publish your own work through [NAME] Publications?
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation promotes excellence in journalism worldwide and invests in the vitality of the U.S. communities where the Knight brothers owned newspapers. The Knight Foundation Arts Partnership is a five-year, $40 million initiative to transform the South Florida arts. The effort includes endowment grants to leading arts institutions, plus a community-wide contest to fund the best arts ideas.
For more information please visit www.knightfoundation.org