World Food Books is a book shop in Melbourne, Australia.
Founded in 2010, World Food Books is a book service dedicated to the presentation of a rotating, hand-selection of quality international art and design journals, artists’ monographs, exhibition catalogues, artists’ editions, collected writings and printed ephemera.
Presenting new titles alongside rare and out-of-print publications spanning the fields of contemporary art, modern art, cultural theory, photography, film, poetry, fiction, fashion, architecture, interior design, typography, illustration, politics and much between, World Food Books wishes to encourage active and thoughtful reading, looking, writing, publishing, and exchanging of art and design press, both contemporary and historical.
As well as our book shop, located in Melbourne's historical Nicholas Building, all of our inventory is available internationally via our online mail-order service. We also have outposts at MUMA (Monash University Museum of Art) and Westspace, both also in Melbourne.
World Food Books semi-regularly co-ordinates "Occasions", a program of exhibits and events at the bookshop and in partnership with other hosts (such as museums and art galleries) that develop out of the activities, relationships and content of the bookshop itself.
World Food Books
The Nicholas Building
Studio 19, Level 3
37 Swanston Street
FRI 12-7 PM
SAT 12-4 PM
& OPEN BY APPOINTMENT
MAIL ORDER RUNS EVERY DAY
World Food Books
PO Box 435
Theory / Essay
Architecture / Interior
Design / Typography
Fiction / Poetry
Film / Video
Sculpture / Installation
Performance / Dance / Theater
Sound / Music
Group Shows / Collections
Illustration / Graphic Art
Ceramics / Glass
Italian Radical Design / Postmodernism
"Various Works 1986 - 1999"
02 February 16 - September 10, 2016
Various works 1986 - 1999, from two houses, from the collections of John Nixon, Sue Cramer, Kerrie Poliness, Peter Haffenden and Phoebe Haffenden.
Including: Geometry of Cakes (various shelves), 1993; Poor People’s Law (black and white plate), 1993; White Absence (glasses, ruler, set square, silver spoon, silver ladel with skin photograph and wooden cubes), 1990-1996; Exploitation of the Dead (grey and red star painting, wooden painting, black spoon with red table, red plate), 1984-1990; Money and Zeros (zero tie, paintings made for friends in Australia (Sue, John, Kerrie), numbers painting), 1991-1992; Words - Slogans (various t-shirts) - “they talk about the death of art...help! someone is trying to kill me”, “my sweet little lamb”, “work is a disease - Karl Marx”; Various artist books, catalogues, monographs, videos; Poster from exhibition Insulting Anarchy; "Circular" Croatian - Australian edition; Artist book by Vlado Martek (Dostoyevsky); more.
Thanks to Mladen Stilinović and Branka Stipančić.
Curated by Nic Tammens
March 26 - April 4, 2015
B.Wurtz works from a basement studio in his home on Manhattan’s Lower East Side.
This local fact is attested to by the plastic shopping bags and newsprint circulars that appear in his work. As formal objects, they don’t make loud claims about their origins but nonetheless transmit street addresses and places of business from the bottom of this long thin island. Like plenty of artists, Wurtz is affected by what is local and what is consumed. His work is underpinned by this ethic. It often speaks from a neighborhood or reads like the contents of a hamper:
“BLACK PLUMS $1.29 lb.”
“USDA Whole Pork Shoulder Picnic 99c lb.”
“RITE AID Pharmacy, with us it’s personal.”
“H. Brickman & Sons.”
“Sweet Yams 59c lb."
Most of the work in this exhibition was made while the artist was in residence at Dieu Donne, a workshop dedicated to paper craft in Midtown. Here Wurtz fabricated assemblages with paper and objects that are relatively lightweight, with the intention that they would be easily transportable to Australia. This consideration isn’t absolute in Wurtz’s work, but was prescriptive for making the current exhibition light and cheap. Packed in two boxes, these works were sent from a USPS post office on the Lower East Side and delivered to North Melbourne by Australia Post.
Wurtz appears courtesy of Metro Pictures, New York.
Thanks to Rob Halverson, Joshua Petherick, Sari de Mallory, Matt Hinkley, Helen Johnson, Fayen d'Evie, Ask Kilmartin, Lisa Radon, Ellena Savage, Yale Union, and "Elizabeth".
December 15 - January 20, 2014
The presentation of John Nixon's archive offered a rare showcase of this extensive collection of the artist's own publications, catalogues, posters, ephemera, editions and more, from the mid 1980s onwards, alongside a selection of his artworks.
Organized by John Nixon, Joshua Petherick and Matt Hinkley.
at Minerva, Sydney (curated by Joshua Petherick and Matt Hinkley)
November 15 - December 20, 2014
Lupo Borgonovo, Janet Burchill & Jennifer McCamley,
Lewis Fidock, HR Giger, Piero Gilardi, Veit Laurent Kurz,
Cinzia Ruggeri, Michael E. Smith, Lucie Stahl, Daniel Weil, Wols
“...It contained seven objects. The slender fluted bone, surely formed for flight, surely from the wing of some large bird. Three archaic circuitboards, faced with mazes of gold. A smooth white sphere of baked clay. An age-blackened fragment of lace. A fingerlength segment of what she assumed was bone from a human wrist, grayish white, inset smoothly with the silicon shaft of a small instrument that must once have ridden flush with the surface of the skin - but the thing’s face was seared and blackened.”
William Gibson, “Count Zero”, 1986
"Autumn Projects Archive"
Curated by Liza Vasiliou
March 6 - March 15, 2014
World Food Books, in conjunction with the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival 2014, presented the Autumn Projects archive, consisting of a selection of early examples in Australian fashion with a particular interest in collecting designers and labels from the period beginning in the 1980’s, who significantly influenced the discourse of Australian Fashion.
Curated by Liza Vasiliou, the exhibition provided a unique opportunity to view pieces by designers Anthea Crawford, Barbara Vandenberg, Geoff Liddell and labels CR Australia, Covers, Jag along with early experimental collage pieces by Prue Acton and Sally Browne’s ‘Fragments’ collection, suspended throughout the functioning World Food Books shop in Melbourne.
presented by CENTRE FOR STYLE
November 14, 2013
"Hey Blinky, you say chic, I say same"
H.B. Peace is a clothing collaboration between great friends Blake Barns and Hugh Egan Westland. Their pieces explore the divergences between 'character’ and ‘personality’ in garments....etc
Special Thanks to Joshua Petherick and Matt Hinkley of WFB and Gillian Mears
and a Very Special Thank you to Audrey Thomas Hayes for her shoe collaboration.
Janet Burchill & Jennifer McCamley
May 10 - June 8, 2013
The first of our occasional exhibitions in the World Food Books office/shop space in Melbourne, "Aesthetic Suicide" presented a body of new and older works together by artists Janet Burchill & Jennifer McCamley, including videos, prints, a wall work, and publications.
During shop open hours videos played every hour, on the hour.
2013, English / German
Softcover, 165 pages, 23.5 x 16.5 cm
Published by Walther König / Köln
$40.00 - In stock -
On Performance is the first volume published in this series; it not only documents the performance project that took place in the KUB Arena in the winter of 2010/11, but also contains in-depth essays by Giles Bailey and Eva Meyer examining the theory and history of performance. Artists’ contributions especially created for the publication by Ruth Buchanan, “Coming to Have A Public Life, Is It Worth It?”, Simon Fujiwara, Suchan Kinoshita, Kooperative für Darstellungspolitik, Falke Pisano, and Ian White appear alongside an interview with the participating artists by Eva Birkenstock and Joerg Franzbecker, with accompanying comments by Marina Vishmidt.” (KUB)
Softcover, 82 pages, 19.5 x 14.5 cm
Published by Sternberg Press / Berlin
$25.00 - Sold
With texts by Ruth Buchanan and Ian White
Libraries are generally perceived as storehouses, spaces of stable accumulation and containment. While the architecture may attempt to operate in this stable tone, the material contained within them is often far wilder. Histories, biographies, loose thoughts, detailed notations, bodies, and objects are all temporarily suspended, cataloged, and organized, creating relationships where perhaps previously there was none. An example of where the tension between what is contained in libraries and how it is contained emerges in a highly palpable way in the trajectory of the Staatsbibliothek Berlin. This new artist book by Ruth Buchanan charts three narratives associated with the life of this particular library. The anecdotes become both concrete examples and metaphors through which to interrogate the production, situating, and sharing of meaning.
Design by David Bennewith
Softcover, 192 pages, 30 b/w ill., 13.6 x 20 cm
$25.00 - Sold
Contributions by Ruth Buchanan, Helmut Draxler, Faculty of Invisibility, Katja Gretzinger, Rama Hamadeh, Claudia Mareis, Doreen Mende
What we perceive and think of as "true" is widely influenced by our knowledge—carrying with it implicit conceptions we are not aware of. Design, as a planned action, is necessarily both theory and practice. It brings together thinking and everyday objects and therefore ingrains itself in the contexts we are all living in. Yet, being largely unreflected on, design is likely to simply affirm societal norms instead of questioning them. If design aims at taking a critical stance, it needs to change its acquaintance with knowledge and develop its own discourse to understand the underlying conceptions that are at play.
The metaphor of the "blind spot" proposes the perspective of looking at what is implicit or unnoticed in our perception. By doing so, it seeks to open up common readings of what design is and can do. The montage of texts featured here includes diverse voices and readings, meant to create a space in which debate can unfold, a debate that considers the impossibility of an unbiased position and as such reminds us of our dependence on the other in any conception—and any project design might aspire to.
$27.00 - Sold
Binna Choi, Axel Wieder (Eds.)
Zayne Armstrong, Ei Arakawa, Bob Black, Augusto Boal, Ruth Buchanan, Binna Choi, common room, Paul Elliman, ifau & Jesko Fezer, Zachary Formwalt, Beatrice Gibson with Will Holder and John Tilbury, Kleines postfordistisches Drama, Mattin, Hwayeon Nam, Merijn Oudenampsen, Nam June Paik, Anne Querrien, David Reinfurt, Margit Rosen, Katerina Šedá, Axel Wieder
Casco Issues is a magazine published by Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory, which explores recurring issues that emerge from Casco’s program. The twelfth edition of Casco Issues, Generous Structures, is a playful enquiry into "playfulness" as a value in critical cultural practice. It positions alternative notions of playing against the grain of neoliberal ideologies of "lifelong learning" and "work as play."
By taking the idea of playing and the metaphor of the game as a starting point, the publication addresses what might be called a “ludic turn”—the impact of the notion of play and gaming methods in various research fields and cultural work. Most prominent in the Internet industries and interactive media landscapes, but also in theoretical reflections, historical research, and the work of artists and designers, we are experiencing an interest in play as an educational tool or model for participation. However, with the conscious exception of the game per se, the publication attempts to trace its current impact and critical capacity, and explores various notions as well as concrete modes of play including activities such as learning, sharing, and group work, in relation to space, art, and design. It is driven from a methodological interest in the structure of playing, in its dialectics of rules and possibilities, planning and non-planning, collectivity and individuality. A game, in this sense, is not only characterized by its rules—or, on the contrary, by the liberty of the playing individuals—but is rather a construction of conscious interaction, application and transgression.
Co-published with Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory
Design by Julia Born and Laurenz Brunner, with Sam de Groot
$27.00 - Sold
Lying Freely is the 4th and final part of the itinerant project by artist Ruth Buchanan. Here the 3 previous stages of the project meet within and are also confronted by the space of the book. The book was made in close collaboration with designer David Bennewith and developed accumulatively as each stage of the project was ‘completed’. Over the course of 2 years Buchanan investigated questions surrounding the tension between private need and public appearance, individual agency and collectively received legacy, producing a series of works that each dealt with particular constellations of figure, location and format. The 3 stages consisted of a guided tour, theatre piece and installation. The book behaves on the one hands as a schematic or script for the body of work, drawing boundaries – and on the other hand it proposes a method, an approach, that suggests constant repetition and following, constant reconfiguration. The book becomes an experiment in sharing material, sharing space; absorbing and reflecting its own conditions and the conditions under which it becomes public.
Design and editing by David Bennewith and Ruth Buchanan
Texts by Ruth Buchanan and Marina Vishmidt
Typesetting by Colophon
Co-published by Jan van Eyck Academie and Casco Office for Art, Design and Theory.