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.
2004, English / German
Hardcover (w. dust-jacket), 200 pages, 24 x 32 cm
1st Edition, Out of print title / Used*,
Published by Sternberg Press / Berlin
$130.00 - In stock -
The fantastic long out-of-print first major monograph on influential German fashion designer, Bernhard Willhelm! First and only printing by Sternberg Press, from 2004, as new condition.
Edited by Vanessa Joan Müller and Nicolaus Schafhausen for Ursula Blickle Stiftung
Text by Ingeborg Harms, foreword by Nicolaus Schafhausen
This book provides an exemplary look at the work of Bernhard Willhelm (*1972), the German fashion designer whose sartorial skills have been hailed by both the fashion industry and the art world. Willhelm, who studied in Antwerp and is now working in Paris, draws inspiration from contemporary fashion culture as well as from his country’s traditional clothing style, the German folklore costumes which he reiterates and deconstructs in his work. This deliberate and unconventional approach to an otherwise conservative Heimat reservoir distinguishes him from other stars in the international fashion industry. The texts discuss Willhelm’s innovative take on his native turf, as well as the impact of contemporary photography and pop culture on designers and artists alike. Fully conceived by the designer, this book documents Willhelm’s most important projects and collections.
“Many designs are characterized by childlike motifs and are regressive in a pronouncedly friendly way. They take a stand against an adult world shaped by obligatory dress codes that put the selection of what is to be worn under social control and separate ‘correct’ clothing from false. ... [His] designs therefore cause consternation also because they create a gently ironic parallel world to those low-life products which presumably are too familiar and banal even for fashion victims to be appropriated and recoded as fashion.” Nicolaus Schafhausen
Co-produced by the Ursula Blickle Stiftung.
Softcover, 100 pages, 22 x 28.5 cm
Published by Walther König / Köln
$48.00 - In stock -
Since 2009 Willem de Rooij (born 1969) has created a series of handwoven textiles: 24 individual works to date, which relate to each other in color, scale and material. About is a comprehensive catalogue of these works accompanied by an essay by curator and historian Vanessa Joan Muller.
Softcover, 192 pages, 12 x 18 cm
Published by Sternberg Press / Berlin
$32.00 - In stock -
With contributions by Tobias Berger, Guy Brett, Simon Groom, Sophia Yadong Hao, Lisa Le Feuvre, Ma Lin, Markus Miessen and Federica Bueti, Tom Morton, Vanessa Joan Müller, Wang Nanming, Paul O’Neill, Edgar Schmitz, Gemma Sharpe
Hubs and Fictions, originally a touring forum, invited international curators, writers, and producers to probe how fiction plays out in a globally distributed art-world ecology, and how infrastructures are invented against its background. In 2012, the forum was staged sequentially at Cooper Gallery (Dundee), Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art (Gateshead), Goldsmiths University of London, and operated as a satellite event to Edgar Schmitz’s exhibition “Surplus Cameo Decor,” curated by Sophia Yadong Hao at Cooper Gallery.
The book functions as a deliberately discontinuous reader; it juxtaposes documents, negotiations, and reflections from and on these conversations. The publication also includes a preface by Andrea Phillips, a new image sequence by Schmitz, and a suite of reflexive annotations exchanged between Hao and Schmitz.
Design by Marco Stout, Stout/Kramer
$32.00 - In stock -
Texts by Giorgio Agamben, Claire Fontaine, Gilles Deleuze, Julius Gavroche, Paul Lafargue, Vanessa Joan Müller, Cristina Ricupero, Tereza Stejskalová, Enrique Vila-Matas
“New Ways of Doing Nothing,” a group exhibition that took place at Kunsthalle Wien in 2014, devoted itself to artistic production that opposes activity and instead gives an affirmative slant to forms of doing nothing or refraining—a major influence being the titular character of Hermann Melville’s “Bartleby the Scriviner: A Story of Wall Street.” The book presents the displayed works and artists, but also continues the process that led to the exhibition. Included along with a conversation between the curators is a text collage of reprints and excerpts that introduces those artists and thinkers who, in the words of Bartleby, “prefer not to.”
Featuring work by Robert Breer, Alejandro Cesarco, Étienne Chambaud, Claire Fontaine, Natalie Czech, Oskar Dawicki, Edith Dekyndt, Mathias Delplanque, Heinrich Dunst, Gardar Eide Einarsson, Marina Faust, Ryan Gander, Lasse Schmidt Hansen, Julia Hohenwarter, Karl Holmqvist, Sofia Hultén, Jiří Kovanda, Rivane Neuenschwander, Georges Perec / Bernard Queysanne, Superflex, Mario García Torres
Vanessa Joan Müller, Cristina Ricupero, Nicolaus Schafhausen (Eds.)
Copublished with Kunsthalle Wien
Design by Anna Haas
$40.00 - In stock -
Vanessa Joan Müller, Nicolaus Schafhausen (Eds.)
Texts by Alessio delli Castelli, Paola Mola
The Brancusi Effect begins with the Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi. Cited as one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century, Brancusi’s considerations of the pedestal launched a reorientation of the relationship between object, viewer, and space, influencing Minimalism and the aesthetic of the installation as a whole. Brancusi’s work, its modular structure and adaptability, can be seen as a point of departure; the autonomy of artworks abates in favor of a reflection on their historical and institutional positioning.
Taking this influence into account, the exhibition and publication collect Brancusi’s original photographic documentation. The installation reflects the recent currency of the sculptural within contemporary art while referencing Brancusi’s sensibility.
Co-published with Kunsthalle Wien on the occasion of the exhibition “The Brancusi Effect,” Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz, June 12–September 21, 2014, and in collaboration with Dan Gunn, Berlin.
Design by Kummer & Herrman
$34.00 - In stock -
Edited by Rosemary Heather and Nicolaus Schafhausen
Contributions by Elizabeth Bishop, Susan Morgan, Vanessa Joan Müller, Nicolaus Schafhausen
This book is published on occasion of the parallel exhibitions Silke Otto-Knapp presented in two markedly different locations: on Fogo Island, Newfoundland, and at the Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz, Vienna. The contrasting influences of place—between rural and urban, new and old world—is evident in the selection of works presented and compiled in this catalogue. The partnering of these exhibitions clearly brings into focus questions about art and its contexts. The tensions between nature and culture provide an appropriate figure for the artwork: a context imagined and devised for the circumstances of its own activation.
Questions of Travel includes essays by Susan Morgan and Vanessa Joan Müller and a conversation between Otto-Knapp and Nicolaus Schafhausen. Müller reflects on how the tensions Otto-Knapp’s artwork engenders are the substance of its experience, while Morgan approaches the work via three significant influences: the cultural geographer J. B. Jackson; avant-garde dancer Anna Halprin and her husband, the landscape architect Lawrence Halprin; and the poems of Elizabeth Bishop. In the conversation with Schafhausen, Otto-Knapp likens the art exhibition to “a theatre situation that is both distinctly separate from reality and engaged with it at the same time.” As the activating element of an exhibition, the viewer could also be said to embody the reality of a work’s engagement. Otto-Knapp took the title for this project, “Questions of Travel,” from Bishop’s poem of the same name, which has been reprinted for this catalogue.
Published on the occasion of Otto-Knapp’s exhibitions “Questions of Travel (Wien),” Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz, March 12–May 25, 2014, and “Questions of Travel (Fogo Island),” Fogo Island Gallery, April 16–August 31, 2014.
Copublished with Fogo Islands Arts and Kunsthalle Wien
Design by Surface
Hardcover, 212 pages, 25 x 32 cm
Published by DuMont / Köln
$57.00 - Out of stock
For more than 30 years, the German artist Isa Genzken (born 1948) has been amassing a body of work in sculpture, installation, photography, collage and film. As one of Germany's brightest stars in the art world, she was well suited to represent her country at the Venice Biennale in 2007, an occasion which this volume commemorates. The title of this book and of her installation at the German pavilion plays with the word's associations as a global and globally contested resource, through a series of sculptural installations invoking in particular America's dependence on oil. This heavy book colourfully documents this major body of new works from Venice in all their glory, through vast, glossy installation shots and abundant sculptural details.
Published by DuMont Buchverlag
Edited by Juliane Joan Rebentisch. Text by Vanessa J. Müller, Nicolaus Schafhausen, Liam Gillick.
"Anyone who has followed Isa Genzken's work over the last 15 years has faced a series of provocations. Provocation in this case flows in more than one direction. We are clearly faced with a form of art production over and above any other cultural commentary—a resolute art production. Yet through this very focus we are also forced away from art to reconsider our relationship with the way power structures evade "true" form in the world—the way insidious power structures leave misleading actual conglomerations of meaning. On top of this, when we skirmish with a work by Isa Genzken, we must think about all the other art being produced in the world. We must consider this while keeping in mind all her prodding and distracting of the complex layering within the contemporary cultural production. An unpeeling of visual form that takes place via an attack on the complex, contradictory melded forms, surfaces, and semiotic flows that result from Genzken's particular ungluing and re-lamination of potentials, signifiers, materials and modes of refusal."