Fantastic ArchitectureDick Higgins and Wolf Vostell
EditorsPrimary Information, 2015
4 West Burton Place
Chicago, Illinois 60610
Primary Information reprints the seminal book Fantastic Architecture, making it widely available for the first time since it was originally published: first in 1969 by Droste Verlag in German (with the title Pop Architektur) and later in 1970 by Something Else Press as Fantastic Architecture. Edited by Dick Higgins and Wolf Vostell, this artist's book/anthology explores the boundaries between pop art and architecture through writings and projects by key artists and thinkers of the 1960s and earlier—from John Cage and Buckminster Fuller to Kurt Schwitters and Joseph Beuys. Primary Information's facsimile reprint is published in an edition of 3000, and distributed throughout the world. It retains the book's unique design, specifically its Mylar inserts, which add unique depth and elaborate on the publication's content.
Dick Higgins (1938–1998) was a poet, composer, writer, performer, and artist. He began his career in 1957 as one of the earliest Fluxus artists and was responsible for many early Happenings. In 1966, Higgins coined the term "Intermedia," to describe the genre- and media-spanning art with which he was involved. In 1964, he founded Something Else Press, a publishing house devoted to artist’s books. Higgins was the author of forty-seven books.
Wolf Vostell (1932–1998) was a German painter, sculptor, and musician. He is considered to have been one of the pioneers of video art, Happenings, and the Fluxus movement. From 1958 until his death, Vostell mounted more than 200 solo shows in Europe, America, and Asia, and participated in more than 750 group shows. From 1954 to 1988, Vostell staged fifty-one Happenings. During the years 1960 to 1962, Vostell gave five pre-Fluxus concerts, and between 1962 and 1994, he performed innumerably more.
James Hoff is the cofounder and director of Primary Information. Along with Miriam Katzeff, he has produced and/or edited dozens of books by artists such as Vito Acconci, Lutz Bacher, Rhys Chatham, Tony Conrad, Sarah Crowner, Destroy All Monsters, Dan Graham, Florian Hecker, Allan Kaprow, Lee Lozano, John Miller, and Aram Saroyan, as well as facsimile editions of the Great Bear Pamphlet Series, and Avalanche Magazine.
Contributors include: Ay-O (b. 1931), Japanese artist who is well known for his work with Fluxus; Joseph Beuys (1921–1986), German visual artist well-known for his work with Fluxus and beyond; Erich Buchholz (1891–1972), German painter and printer maker; Pol Bury (1922–2005), Belgian painter known for his work with the group COBRA; John Cage (1912–1992), American composer, writer and artist; Phillip Corner (b. 1933), American composer associated with Fluxus; Jean Dibbets (b. 1941), Dutch visual artist; Robert Filliou (1926–1987), French artist known for his work with Fluxus; Buckminster Fuller (1895–1983), American architect, theorist, and writer; Richard Hamilton (1922–2011), British Pop artist; Raoul Hausmann (1886–1971), Austrian artist and writer; Michael Heizer (b. 1944), American artist known for his work with the Earth Art movement; Geoffrey Hendricks (b. 1931), American Fluxus artist; K. H. Hoedicke (b. 1937), German artist; Hans Hollein (1934–2014), architect and designer from Austria; Douglas Huebler (1924–1997), American conceptual artist; Milan Knizak (b. 1940) is a Czech artist known for his work in sound, performance, and sculpture; Alison Knowles (b. 1933), American artist known for her work with Fluxus; Addi Koepcke (1928–1977), German artist closely associated with Fluxus and the Happenings movement; Franz Mon (b.1926), German pioneer of Concrete Poetry; Claes Oldenburg (b. 1925), American artist who has worked in various mediums, including sculpture, performance, and writing; Dennis Oppenheim (1938–2011), American conceptual artist; Dieter Roth (1930–1998), Swiss artist known for his works across many media including writing, design, painting, sculpture, bookmaking, and music; Gerhard Ruhm (b. 1930), writer, composer, artist, and publisher from Vienna; Caroline Schneeman (b. 1939), American artist well-known for her work in performance; Kurt Schwitters (1887–1948), German painter and writer; Daniel Spoerri (b. 1930), Swiss artist; Jean Tinguely (1925–1991), painter and sculptor from Switzerland; Ben Vautier (b. 1935), Italian artist associated with Fluxus; Lawrence Weiner (b. 1942), American visual and conceptual artist; Stefan Wewerka (1928–2013), German artist, architect, and designer.
Primary Information's mission is to foster intergenerational dialogue through the publication of artist’s books and writings by emerging and established artists. This includes reprints of historical material and the creation of new artists books. The organization promotes the use of publications as exhibition spaces that can travel beyond the gallery or museum, allowing far more people (particularly those outside of urban areas) the opportunity to experience contemporary art.
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