Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Illustrating Publications

Within the boxes of Third Eye Centre archive material I have been discovering an intriguing quantity of catalogues produced to accompany almost every exhibition at the centre. 

Often amongst the paperwork are handwritten notes, proofs and correspondence with the artists, contributors and printers, offering real insight into the development of even the slimmest and simplest of catalogues.   Some exhibitions such as 'It's all writ out for you' a retrospective of Scottie Wilson in 1986, demanded more significant publications.  In this case, a collaboration with the established publishers Thames and Hudson to produce a nationally distributed book and touring exhibition.

Long before and after this support of a large publishing house, The Third Eye Centre has encouraged and produced a remarkable body of creative writing, poetry and Artists’ book through its publishing activity.

It is illustrated through the material in the archive and reading the publications that this activity was not an ‘add on’ in addition to its visual arts programme, but very much a part of it as the centre developed projects with significant Scottish authors and poets such as Edwin Morgan and Hamish Whyte as well as French concrete poet Henri Chopin.  The Last Book of the Rich Alphabetical Hours of Henri Chopin publication and exhibition in 1984 visualised the poets work, and is one amongst many similar visual and literary collaborations in the Third Eye Centres programme including Seven Poets (1981) Noise and Smoky Breath (1983) and Behind The Lines (1989).

Image Credit: Third Eye Centre/CCA Archive, Illustration by Willie Rodger

Until this material is made fully accessible, the Glasgow School of Art Library houses many of these catalogues and publications for reference and research.

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