Located on the historic row of Victorian shop-fronts, Cecil Court, Tenderbooks provides a unique space for independent artist publications, contemporary poetry, niche magazines, and rare photography books, among other volumes. The site also hosts exhibitions and commissions limited editions, supporting artist projects and experimental publishing. While the shop, like all others, has been shuttered during the current health crisis, Tenderbooks continues to operate online. In light of the present quarantine, Owner & Director Tamsin Clark shared with Something Curated her ultimate stay-at-home reading list.
Modern Queer Poets || Richard Porter
Modern Queer Poets, as Clark tells, is “A new collection of queer poetry from the wonderful London-based Pilot Press with a gorgeous cover design by Matt Connors.” It is the first poetry collection from Pilot Press, the independent press founded by artist Richard Porter. Selected by both invitation and open call, Modern Queer Poets features contributions from Eileen Myles, Wayne Kostenbaum and CA Conrad, among many others.
To Walk || Raoul de Keyser
This beautiful small-sized publication presents a new series of modestly scaled oil paintings of successive images in process together with a poetic text by the renowned Belgian writer Paul de Moor. Often referred to as a “painter’s painter,” de Keyser has been an influencing figure for contemporary generations including painters like Luc Tuymans and Rebecca Morris. Clark says, this is “A publication that in its small scale gives an immediate intimacy to this beautiful series of de Keyser’s paintings.”
Vestoj ‘On Capital’ || Anja Aronowsky Cronberg
Vestoj ‘On Capital’ looks at all forms of value or assets: financial, human, cultural, social – you name it. Clark dubs Vestoj, “The super smart fashion journal,” going on to say, “It’s always a generous offering of thoughtful texts.” This issue explores how talent is developed and harnessed in fashion, and how this now intersects with branding, and self-branding, which has become so important in all aspects of culture. The issue also examines how value flows between symbolic assets like taste or beauty or cool and economic profit.
147 Backcovers || Peter Fischli & Hilar Stadler
“A moving and joyful collection of vernacular photography used by the Swiss gallery Bischofberger to advertise their gallery programme on the backcover of Artforum. The images can be read like a calendar,” Clark tells. This series has existed on the basis of a contractual arrangement with Artforum that since 1989 guarantees the gallery’s place on the back cover for the year. The photographs used for the advertisements depict nature, generally linked to the time of the year. Included are typical Swiss national sports, images of Alpine life and culture, depictions of traditional arts and crafts, and situations from everyday life.
Omniverse Sun Ra || Hartmut Geerken & Chris Trent
For five decades, Sun Ra brightened the world with his unique and provocative musical philosophy. Touring the world with his formidable Arkestra, he represented and affirmed a new vision of Black history and culture, embodied and spread a new and powerfully influential Black philosophy, and revolutionised music with unearthly sounds. Clark tells, “This is an expansive illustrated guide to the esoteric music and philosophy of Sun Ra.” Now more than ever, the value and radicalism of his protean musical inventiveness, his socially collective self-determination, and his philosophical and poetic profundity can be seen.
Salters Cottages || Gary Schneider
“A stunning artist book commemorating a film featuring Schneider’s friend Peter Hujar,” Clark says. Dedicated to his friend and mentor Hujar, Salters Cottages comprises of stills from a short film Schneider made in 1981, a summer seaside cottage community on Long Island, New York. It is a fifteen and a half minute 16mm film, whose soundtrack is a Bell and Howell projector. An homage to Jean Genet’s Un Chant d’Amour (1950), Salters Cottages features Hujar, John Erdman, Suzanne Joelson and Gary Stephan as the voyeurs and the observed.
Pond || Claire Louise Bennett
Feverish and forthright, Pond is an absorbing chronicle of the pitfalls and pleasures of an isolated life told by an unnamed woman living on the cusp of a coastal town. Clark describes the volume as, “Reflections on solitude and everyday surroundings. An incredibly fresh and transformative writing.” Captivated by the stellar charms of seclusion but restless with desire, the woman’s relationship with her surroundings becomes boundless and increasingly bewildering. Claire-Louise Bennett’s startlingly original first collection slips effortlessly between worlds and is by turns darkly funny and deeply moving.
Feature image: 147 Backcovers, Peter Fischli & Hilar Stadler