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, 86 pages, 17 x 24 cm
Published by Art Against Art / Berlin
$18.00 - In stock -
London, Paris, New York, Milan, Los Angeles, Sao Paulo, Palo Alto – art is moving faster than capital like a god wind that no-one can stop let alone control. Meanwhile a lot of art writing and ‘critical theory’ is stuck in the comfort zone of the 70-90s when there actually was an avant garde or subculture.
For art writing to get back on track it needs to shake out of this nostalgia and start engaging with the nuances of what is going on by covering the new breeds of involvement that have emerged since 2009 – the new sincerities and ironies, the more subtle art practices and social variations of market participation that have developed to deal with the institutional grip. For some time an aesthetic suspension of disbelief helped to provide an alibi that allowed us to participate as if we did believe the market was the key to “validation”, but then quickly vanished into feelings of depression after any agency seemed like an impossibility. As the contradictions got wider, different problems have emerged such as whether art is concurrent with the transitional moments of our present culture or technology, or whether art altogether has reached its informational limit.
The art world has slowly transitioned from modernist pretensions that seem like delusional excuses to the public, to developing a new sensibility – one of silent, shared communion, retributions and confessions. It has taken the step into a reality that is more in keeping with the real world of business, design and branding than creating stark ‘alternatives’. Beyond short-term pragmatism and adaptability, how can artists aesthetically work alongside their authentic desire to participate in a logic of the market that by necessity must scale? How can we realistically judge the work of art institutions if they are frozen into following instrumental logics rather than relevance? With the availability of information online, there is no way these logics are not transparent to a committed internet user.
Narratives like these happened in Pop Music years ago. Just as the Music Industry had to face up to its own protocols, the Art Industry needs to be judged on its changing developments; the ways art is being used as a financial instrument, art’s new marketing techniques, art as representation of different sociological interests, art as access to power, status, fame, participation and the rest of it. Until art writing gets really into these driving forces, it won’t be able to say anything interesting about art. It also won’t be able to grow or be writing that anyone really wants to read.
Art Against Art marks a turning point – the one that says by breaking from the overbearing logic of what seems like an inevitability, we can get closer to the conceptualizations we would like society to experience but don’t.
Marion Maneker - Art is Not an Asset, It’s a Reserve Currency
Ben Vickers - Strange Objects and Their Discontents
Martin G Fuller - A Sociology of Art for Artists
Steven Shaviro - Feed
Taslima Ahmed - Left to the Mercy of Roussel
Image spread by Michael Farin
Roberto Ohrt - Needle and Balloon
Manuel Gnam - Centralization and Globalization of Art leading to One Global Hierarchy That Creates Less Options and Forms a Function of Limited Growth
Carles - Creativity vs. Scalability
Artist edition by Megan Marrin
Softcover, 408 pages, 17.8 x 26.7 cm
Published by Center for Curatorial Studies Bard College / New York Sternberg Press / Berlin
$40.00 - Out of stock
With a collection of images curated by Jenny Jaskey and Alicia Ritson
Contributions by Armen Avanessian, Elie Ayache, Amanda Beech, Ray Brassier, Mikko Canini, Diana Coole, Christoph Cox, Manuel DeLanda, Diedrich Diederichsen, Tristan Garcia, Iain Hamilton Grant, Elizabeth Grosz, Boris Groys, Graham Harman, Terry Horgan, Jenny Jaskey, Katerina Kolozova, James Ladyman, François Laruelle, Nathan Lee, Suhail Malik, Quentin Meillassoux, Reza Negarestani, John Ó Maoilearca, Trevor Paglen, Luciana Parisi, Matthew Poole, Matjaž Potrč, João Ribas, Matthew Ritchie, Alicia Ritson, Susan Schuppli, Steven Shaviro, Nick Srnicek, Achim Szepanski, Eugene Thacker, McKenzie Wark, Andy Weir
Realism Materialism Art (RMA) introduces a diverse selection of new realist and materialist philosophies and examines their ramifications on the arts. Encompassing neo-materialist theories, object-oriented ontologies, and neo-rationalist philosophies, RMAserves as a primer on “speculative realism,” considering its conceptual innovations as spurs to artistic thinking and practice and beyond. Despite their differences, these philosophical positions propose that thought can and does think outside itself, and that reality can be known without its being shaped by and for human comprehension. Today’s realisms and materialisms explicitly challenge many of the dominant assumptions of cultural practice and theoretical inquiry, opening up new domains of research and artistic inquiry.
Cutting across diverse thematic interests and modes of investigation, the thirty-five essays in RMA offer a snapshot of the emerging and rapidly changing set of ideas and practices proposed by contemporary realisms and materialisms. The book demonstrates the broad challenge of realist and materialist approaches to received disciplinary categories and forms of practice, capturing their nascent reworking of art, philosophy, culture, theory, and science, among other fields. As such, RMAexpands beyond the primarily philosophical context in which realism and materialism have developed.
Copublished with the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College
Design by Zak Group
Softcover, 296 pages, 23 x 16.5 cm
Published by Texte Zur Kunst / Berlin
$29.00 - In stock -
Speculation is clearly the buzzword of the moment; in philosophy, art, the art market, literature, and finance. But what does it mean, exactly, to speculate? Speculation grasps for the nonexistent. As a financial operation, speculation aims to make the future controllable, calculating possible price developments on the basis of empirical data. One of the elementary pacemakers of present-day capitalism, it also plays a pivotal role in generating value in the field of contemporary art. It transforms the character of collections, collectors now aiming at a subsequent resale with profit maximization.
In contrast, theoretical speculation, e.g. in the form of Speculative Realism, is directed toward the fundamentally uncertain. This philosophical movement, which is increasingly present in contemporary art discourse, frequently positions speculation against the programs of critique and aesthetics. The question is whether this leads to an unreflecting leap toward the ‘things themselves’ which in turn requires a critical examination; but also, wherein the opportunities of speculative models lie: Speculation bears the promise of not merely critically addressing what is given, but of catching up with the hypothetical, thinking the potential. In this sense, speculation is a driving force for any creative mode.
In this issue, we ask for theoretical, artistic, and curatorial assessments of the current boom of speculative models. We look at Speculative Realism, the work of its first protagonists and its recent developments, as well as the widely popular curatorial recourses to speculative philosophy, as seen in the exhibition Speculations on Anonymous Materials at Fridericianum, Kassel. Our authors discuss the generation of value in the art system; art’s function in investment portfolios; and the early case of the art speculators “La Peau de l’Ours” in early 20th-century Paris. We also examine the temporal contracts that are implemented by speculative operations. And, with Rainald Goetz and Alexander Kluge, we publish two authors who explore the proximity of speculation and (literary) writing.
Plus a picture spread by DIS and reviews from Berlin, Chicago, Düsseldorf, Irvine, Karlsruhe, London, Los Angeles, New York, and Paris.
Exclusive new artists’ editions by Albert Oehlen and Richard Phillips.
Speculative Realism – A Primer
The Speculative End of the Aesthetic Regime
The Value of Everything
Balanced Investments. On Speculation in the Art Market
How to Sell the Bearskin. An Early Case of Art Speculation
In the Pull of Time
A conversation between Joseph Vogl and Philipp Ekardt
On the Advantages and Disadvantages of Working Speculatively
A survey with statements by Diedrich Diederichsen, Karin Harrasser, Jenny Jaskey, Jutta Koether, and Sam Lewitt
Prosthetic Productions. The Art of Digital Bodies. On “Speculations on Anonymous Materials” at Fridericianum, Kassel
How to Own it
On “Collecting Art for Love, Money and More” by Ethan Wagner and Thea Westreich Wagner
This is Not an Orange
On Lindsay Lawson at Gillmeier Rech, Berlin
Ana Finel Honigman
An Air of Apathy and Awkwardness
On Kaye Donachie at Maureen Paley, London
A Lingering Absence
On Ilse D’Hollander at Konrad Fischer, Düsseldorf
Toward a New Monumentality
On Isa Genzken at MoMA, New York
On Language as Plastic Phenomenona
On Mira Schendel at Tate Modern, London
From Landscape to Lacan
On The Symbolic Landscape: Pictures Beyond the Picturesque at UC Irvine University Art Galleries
Behind the Sequined Curtain
On Pauline Boudry / Renate Lorenz at Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe
Emma Hedditch / Kerstin Stakemeier
Ian White (1971–2013)
First Point, 2014
$40.00 - Out of stock
The dawn of the electronic media age in the 1960s began a cultural shift from the modernist grid and its determination of projection and representation to the fluid structures and circuits of the network, presenting art with new challenges and possibilities. This anthology considers art at the center of network theory, from the 1960s to the present.
Artists have used the “space of flows" as a basis for creating utopian scenarios, absurd yet functional propositions or holistic planetary visions. Others have explored the economies of reciprocity and the ethics of generosity, in works that address changed conditions of codependence and new sites of social negotiation. The “infra-power" of the network has been a departure point for self-organized counterculture and the creation of new types of agency. And a “poetics of connectivity" runs through a diverse range of work that addresses the social and material complexity of networks through physical structures and ambient installation, the mapping of the Internet, or the development of robots and software that take on the functions of artist or curator.
Artists surveyed include
Joseph Beuys, Ursula Biemann, Heath Bunting, Critical Art Ensemble, Fernand Deligny, Peter Fend, Gego, Jobim Jochimsen, Koncern, Christine Kozlov, Pia Lindman, Mark Lombardi, Diana McCarty, Marta Minujín, Aleksandra Mir, Tanja Ostojic, Ola Pehrson, Walid Raad, Artüras Raila, Hito Steyerl, Tomaso Tozzi, Suzanne Treister, Ultra Red, Wolf Vostell, Stephen Willats
Jane Bennett, Hakim Bey, Luc Boltanski, Manuel Castells, ève Chiapello, Guy Debord, Umberto Eco, Okwui Enwezor, Michael Hardt, Bruno Latour, Marshall McLuhan, Marcel Mauss, Reza Negarestani, Antonio Negri, Sadie Plant, Lane Relyea, Craig Saper, Saskia Sassen, Pit Schultz, Steven Shaviro, Tiziana Terranova, Paolo Virno