Not Without My Ghosts: The Artist as Medium
Bringing together more than 30 international artists from the 19th century to the present day, Not Without My Ghosts explores the changing historical and aesthetic terms of artistic engagement with mediumship.
The publication plays with the idea of spectral elements through production. It is wrapped in a lightweight 60gsm jacket material that allows an abstract crop of a chaotically swirling Barbara Honywood artwork to shine through.
The interior of the book is also printed on a lighter paper stock, giving apparitions of upcoming work through the pages.
The graphic identity of the publication takes the Victoriana that is often associated with a ‘ghost’ aesthetic and presents it in a contemporary fashion without shying away from decoration.
Texts take cues from plaques, memorials and ancient publications. Stylistically shaping paragraphs into points or cutting them off at angles.
Titles and headers are set in Fleischmann, an 18th-century typeface with remarkably modern proportions and openness. Body text is set in Rosart, a contemporary interpretation of the work of both Jacques-François Rosart and Johann Fleischmann, giving it close comparisons to the title typeface.
Symbols of the sun and moon sit on the inside covers, marking the start and end of the book. The waxing moon is surrounded by Roman numerals for ‘2020’, the year of publication.
140 × 240 mm
Hayward Gallery Publishing
Not Without My Ghosts: The Artist As Medium is an exhibition of artists and works inspired by mediumistic methodologies and their deep cultural history. Featuring 26 international artists and collectives spanning a range of 200 years, from the 19th century to the present day, it explores the changing historical and aesthetic terms of artistic engagement with mediumship; from perceived spiritual inspiration and creation during séances and trances, to practices of automatism, channelling, and paranormal investigation.
Starting with William Blake and the largely forgotten Victorian spirit artists Georgiana Houghton, Anna Mary Howitt and Barbara Honywood. Their work, strikingly at odds with prevailing traditions of artistic expression, was based on spirit experiences and communications with higher powers. Then progressing to Surrealist experiments and examples of more contemporary practice.
Cut and shaped captions take cues from plaques, memorials and ancient publications. Stylistically shaping the texts into points or cutting them off at angles.
Drawing Room, London
Millennium Gallery, Sheffield
Grundy Art Gallery, Blackpool
Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea
Simon Grant, Lars Bang Larsen, Marco Passi
The corresponding gallery guide is printed on 60gsm paper, the same material as the jacket for the exhibition catalogue. Playing with the idea of the spectral through the translucent paper, printing information on both sides of the sheet.
The eclipse illustration symbolises the beginning and the end. Life and death. Light and darkness. All themes found within the artwork.