Thursday, August 23, 2001 to Thursday, September 27, 2001

    • Thursday, August 23, 2001
    The pages from these books have markings left by an anonymous reader. It is the trace of the initiative taken by the reader in the mass-produced self-help book that interests me. These are books I have bought second-hand, like How to be Loved and How to be an Assertive (not Aggressive) Woman. Some of the markings are more casual and others more urgent indications of the emotional state of the reader. These variations, e.g. scribbly pencil marginalia, circled words or one highlighted line after another, suggest variations in meaning. By copying, enlarging the marked pages, and putting them up on the gallery walls, they are transformed from a sequence of pages in a book to a form of art inquiry. Like an x-ray, they become something for examination, exposing how a mass-produced book, designed to instruct in self-improvement, is consumed by a reader. Cathy Busby