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
Graphic 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.
Softcover, 180 pages, 13.3 x 20 cm
Published by Sternberg Press / Berlin
$36.00 - In stock -
Contributions by 0(rphan)d(rift>), Ursula Biemann, Ccru, Kodwo Eshun, N. Katherine Hayles, Francis McKee, Margarida Mendes, Jussi Parikka, Mariana Silva, Jennifer Teets, Jason Waite
Matter Fictions addresses fiction as a mode of producing reality as well as the significance of matter—animal, vegetable, mineral, hybrid—beyond binaries. Recounting a partial history of our relation with matter, the eponymous exhibition at Museu Coleção Berardo (May 4–August 21, 2016) explored how the crossover between cosmological narratives, spatial revolutions of concrete poetry, and hypertextual and territorial fictions might impact our understanding of human agency in a time that calls for action on climate change and technocratic policies. This companion reader features contributions from participating artists and like-minded writers that address the scope of this project as it exceeds the frame of art and the exhibition into the realm of nonhuman ecologies, ontologies, and temporalities.
The texts are oriented around the four threads that structured the exhibition. The science-fiction approach to the ethics of code and digital space is addressed in the texts by Kodwo Eshun of the Otolith Group, Ccru (Cybernetic culture resource unit), and N. Katherine Hayles, and the excerpt from 0(rphan)d(rift>)’s 1995 novel Cyberpositive. Contemporary psychogeophysics and the material realities of the digital are explored by Jussi Parikka’s text and printed drawings throughout the book based on Joana Escoval’s sculptures on electromagnetic conduction. The hybridity of contemporary bodies and rituals is contextualized by Margarida Mendes’s essay on agribusiness and GMOs. And the critique of technocratic and extractionist environmental policies is represented by Jason Waite’s text on Fukushima and artist statements by Ursula Biemann and Mariana Silva. The contributions from Jennifer Teets and Francis McKee straddle all four threads—Teets’s through a reflection on the ongoing series at Museu Berardo, The World in Which We Occur, which she organizes with Mendes, and McKee’s through a newly commissioned work of fiction.
Copublished with Museu Coleção Berardo
Design by Sena/Luz
Softcover, 56 pages, 9.6 x 14.8 cm
Published by Sternberg Press / Berlin
$12.00 - In stock -
How to Know What’s Really Happening
Edited by Mai Abu ElDahab, Maha Maamoun, Ala Younis
In this post-truth era, how does one navigate the endless information available and choose a viable narrative of reality? In How to Know What’s Really Happening Glasgow-based writer and curator Francis McKee looks at various techniques for determining verity, from those of spy agencies and whistle-blowers to mystics and scientists.
This is the third book in the Kayfa ta series, a publishing initiative of artists Maha Maamoun and Ala Younis. Each book in the series is a monographic essay commissioned in the style of how-to manuals that situate themselves in the space between the technical and the reflective, the everyday and the speculative, the instructional and the intuitive, and the factual and the fictional.
Copublished with Kayfa ta and Mophradat
Design by Julie Peeters
2015, English / Arabic
Softcover, 112 pages, 12.5 x 21 cm
$16.00 - In stock -
Mai Abu ElDahab (Ed.)
Texts by Federica Bueti, Malak Helmy, Francis McKee, Haytham El Wardany, Brian Kuan Wood
Five essays that take an intimate look at what language’s role is in moments of dramatic change, and how to find meaning for artistic practices in these transformative conditions. Taking its cue from the aftermath of the events of the Egyptian Revolution in 2011, Final Vocabulary doesn’t provide answers as much as it captures the spirit of the moment of searching in which the writers find themselves. The book was developed out of a live conversation at an event called “The Informal Meeting” that took place in Leuven in January 2015, where participants were asked: Our histories and references are often in a different language (abstract or actual) than we use ourselves, what tools do you think are or might be useful to help you trust your own memories and narratives? What, if anything, do you think we might borrow from art to experiment with language in different situations? In English and Arabic.
Copublished with Mophradat
Design by Kaisa Lassinaro
$23.00 - In stock -
Contributions by Albert Angelo, Mark Beasley, Rhea Dall and Charlotte Johannesson, Dexter Bang Sinister, Diedrich Diederichsen, The Digital Theatre, Hollis Frampton, Lars Bang Larsen, Francis McKee, Malcolm Mooney and Jan Verwoert, Rob Giampietro
This bulletin annotates a projected wall text (shown on the cover) that introduced the research program “Dexter Bang Sinister” at Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen. Devised by Stuart Bailey, Lars Bang Larsen, Angie Keefer, and David Reinfurt, the program, like this bulletin, was based on Larsen’s just-completed PhD dissertation at the University of Copenhagen, A History of Irritated Material: Psychedelic Concepts in Neo-Avantgarde Art. The idea was to contrive a popular version of his academic thesis by editing it psychedelically.
This might sound simple, or at least simple-minded, as a textual exercise in psychedelia’s familiar imperatives: Jimi Hendrix’s “Are you experienced?,” Ken Kesey’s “Did you pass the Acid Test?,” or Timothy Leary’s “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” But the irony of psychedelic essences and injunctions should be lost on no one. It’s the self-contradictory voice of the psychedelic police, and on this beat you’ll always find a policeman who enforces a multicolored patriarchal law: “LSD ID, please—we need to check how free you really are ...” This is hardly a new nor a very profound observation, just transgression’s age-old contradiction: the necessity of invoking the law in order to sin against it.
The real irony, though, is how the law returns to psychedelia in the form of categorical imperatives, platitudes, and pigeonholes. If we strip away the usual clichés of psychedelic representation—excess, overload, rainbows, tie-dye—what’s left? What’s worth keeping? What does a hollowed-out, desaturated, low-grade, root-level, emphatically black-and-white psychedelia look and feel like? The closer we looked, the more it became apparent that such austere gears had been the psychedelic movement’s means all along—and so black and white seemed an even more pertinent point of return from which to usefully depart once more. From this vantage, how might that look and feel be put to proper use—that’s to say, transformed—artistically and socially today? This brings us back to the immediate question: what could it mean to edit a thesis on psychedelia psychedelically, without recourse to drugs? How does the TRIP translate to METHOD?
Softcover, 264 pages, 10.5 x 14.9 cm
Published by Sternberg Press / Berlin
$25.00 - In stock -
Interviews: Matias Faldbakken by Nikki Columbus, Will Holder by Richard Birkett, Sophie Nys by Dieter Roelstraete, Clifford Irving by Francis McKee, Patricia Esquivias by Jonas Žakaitis, Norma Jeane and Tim Etchells by Anna Colin, Michael Portnoy by Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy, Hassan Khan by Brian Kuan Wood, Barbara Visser by Malašauskas; and contributions by Mai Abu ElDahab and Dexter Sinister
Following From Berkeley to Berkeley: Objectif Exhibitions, 2008–2010, this publication is the second in a two-part series of interviews with artists who exhibited at Objectif Exhibitions, Antwerp, between 2010 and 2011. The interviews are accompanied by a collection of secondary and parallel material produced in collaboration with each artist.
After Berkeleyopens with a letter from Mai Abu ElDahab addressed to the book’s designer, Will Holder, about parallels between their project and Roberto Bolaño’s book The Savage Detectives. It and proceeds through a series of conversations revealing the references, methods, and interests of the participants at Objectif Exhibitions ranging from reticence and possession in artistic production to a historical account of so-called carrot jokes.
$16.00 - In stock -
With contributions by Andrew Blum, Bruno Latour, Graham Meyer, Pierre-André Boutang, David Reinfurt, Chris Evans, Jessica Winter, Ian Svenonius, Angie Keefer, Francis McKee, Benjamin Tiven, Louis Lüthi, Dexter Sinister, and Laura Hoptman
This issue of Bulletins of the Serving Library doubles as a catalog of sorts to "Ecstatic Alphabets/Heaps of Language," a group exhibition curated by Laura Hoptman at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, from May 6 to August 27, 2012. It is a pseudo-catalog in the sense that, other than a section of images at the back, it bears no direct relation to the works in the exhibition. Instead, the bulletins extend in different directions from the same title, and could be collectively summarized as preoccupied with the more social aspects of Typography.
Video trailer, assembled from thirteen texts in the catalog.
Softcover, 104 pages, offset/newsprint, 165 x 235 mm
Published by Dexter Sinister / New York
$27.5.00 - Out of stock
is assembled from PDFs of THE FIRST/LAST NEWSPAPER (TF/LN)
which was issued from Port Authority in New York CIty
every Wednesday & Saturday during the first 3 weeks
of November 2009