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
THURS 11-5 PM
FRI 11-7 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, 168 pages, 25.4 x 25.4 cm
Published by Karma / New York
$85.00 - In stock -
Women with Cameras gathers a popular and widely acclaimed series by the New York-based conceptual photographer Anne Collier that puts the camera in the hands of a female subject, subverting photographic conventions of the male gaze. The backdrops and occasions of these found pictures range from beaches, backyards and living rooms to New Year's Eve parties. Compiled here, they offer a defiant, optimistic rebuttal to the idea of women as passive observers in the worlds of art, advertising and family life. By redirecting the gaze back toward the viewer, Collier gives testimony to the power of photography to affect both self-image and, more importantly, self-agency. As MCA Chicago curator Michael Darling noted of these works (on the occasion of Collier's exhibition there), "taking a retrospective look at these technologies and how women have been portrayed in them prepares you to think about how photos are used today. Her work can create visual literacy and inspire critical thinking."
Hardcover, 105 pages, 22 x 24 cm
Ed. of 1000,
Published by Karma / New York
$88.00 - In stock -
'Thirty-Four Reverse Telescopes and Three Buttons' catalogues the artist’s recent body of coloured Plexiglas works, made between 2013 and 2016, introduced obliquely with a poem by Ben Estes. Painter Matt Connors (born 1973) is known for combining a modernist visual vocabulary of grids and tense, minimal compositions with influences from design, poetry and music. Connors’ recent series of works brings this sensibility into the play of media: paintings in acrylic on paper are mounted on coloured matte board, framed behind colored Plexiglass, creating an effect of nested coloured forms in space.
$59.00 - In stock -
Although Heidi Bucher's (1926-93) oeuvre remained mostly overlooked after her death, a recent revitalization around her idiosyncratic practice has opened the conversation on this pioneer in the feminist dialogue of the 1970s. Born in Switzerland, Bucher moved to California in the 1960s where she collaborated with her husband Carl on "Bodyshells," a series of wearable sculptures exhibited at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1972. She returned to Switzerland in the mid-1970s and began her most iconic body of work, latex casts of objects and rooms. This volume includes a conversation with Christian Scheidemann on conserving contemporary materials; essays from the catalogue of the seminal 2004 "Migros" exhibition; memories from Beatrix Ruf and curator Bice Curiger; as well as a walk through the Swiss Institute exhibition with her sons and collaborators Mayo and Indigo. Embracing the conceptual framework of an exhibition at Swiss Institute and its related public programs, each book in the SI Series adds retrospective context through seminal essays, archival materials, event transcripts, artist portfolios and exhibition documentation, as well as reprints and new translations of important texts. Each book in the series assumes a unique format to delve into the work of an artist, an artistic movement or a philosophical conundrum.
Edited by Karen Marta and Simon Castets, text by Indigo Bucher, Christian Scheidemann, Bice Curiger.
$88.00 - In stock -
Chosen Ones is a comprehensive monograph on the work of German painter Bendix Harms (born 1967), spanning over 15 years of work. A repertoire of motifs recurs throughout the nearly 400-page volume: birds, trees, airplanes, cars and the artist's profile, all rendered in loose, exuberant strokes of gray and muddy orange. Drawing on elusive autobiographical references, the paintings – whether of grotesque figures or more surrealistic scenes – are often humourous and suggestively narrative, compelling in their apparent disregard for and liberation from concept.
Hardcover (clothbound), 91 pages, 20 x 26 cm
Published by Karma / New York
$92.00 - In stock -
Interest has steadily grown in the career of the American painter Lee Lozano over the last decade, specifically in her move toward conceptual art that culminated in her boycott of women for nearly the last 30 years of her life. Lozano’s early work, however, is markedly different. In the early ’60s, she developed a painting method that coalesced several styles in order to relate her radical imagery to the feminist ideas that comprised the overarching beliefs in her life. “Imagine,” writes curator Bob Nickas, “a fluid intermingling of Abstract Expressionism in terms of a figurative disfiguration (after de Kooning), Pop comic rendering (pre-Guston), a heady Surrealism that anticipates the mind-expansion of the Wave series … and a cubism that is circular rather than faceted by geometry.”
Texts by Helen Molesworth and Bob Nickas.
Softcover, 408 pages,17 x 23 cm
Published by Karma / New York
$56.00 - In stock -
This volume is comprised of years of recent writing by the influential New York–based critic and curator Bob Nickas, widely considered one of the few independent voices still at work today. The 50 essays and interviews, written since 2007, are spread across five chapters, touching on encounters with artists from the 1960s to the ’80s to the present – among them, Jack Smith, Andy Warhol, Frank Stella, On Kawara, Isa Genzken, Steven Parrino, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Kara Walker, Wolfgang Tillmans, Kelley Walker and Pierre Huyghe.