Home Search Exhibits Intro FAQs

Work >>Edition(s) >>Object(s) >>Images


Project Statement

by R. Minsky

In 1986 I started to write Minsky in Bed as a sequel to my 1980 work, Minsky in London. In the earlier work I created a character named Richard Minsky and lived his life for 9 months in the United Kingdom, while representing the USA in a cultural exchange as US/UK Bicentennial Fellow. That book documented this experience as seen from his point of view and that of 14 British contributors, with 100 photographs. For the sequel two points of view were presented, but this time I wrote both voices. The subject is the emotional and sexual evolution of a man growing from childhood in the 1950’s through the 1980’s. The conception was to present this work in the form of an incunabulum, printed letterpress, with historiated, illuminated and inhabited initials. The text was written in the first person past tense, as a memoir, and an inset commentary was written in the third person present. The images for the initials are a synthesis of Persian and Indian miniatures, Medieval and Renaissance illuminated manuscripts, Japanese erotica, and American comic books.

Minsky in Bed

Richard Minsky


Richard Minsky

type: initiating

papermaker Created papermaking methodology while artist in residence in paper mill at Ox Bow (Art Institute of Chicago, Saugatuck, MI) in 1990 and commissioned watermarked replication by Dieu Donné Papermill, New York City

born: Manhattan, USA

birth: 1947-01-07

Publication Information

publisher: Richard Minsky

conception: 1986-00-00
production: 1987-00-00:1997-00-00
publication: 1988-00-00:1997-00-00
distribution: 1990-00-00:1997-00-00 issued in fascicles by subscription

publication history: Three copies produced in the author’s studio (see Project Statement) 1986-1997. It was originally issued to subscribers in fascicles, which were then sent back to the author to be bound, after the last fascicle was printed. This was originally projected to be an edition of ten, but since the technology kept changing during production, it became too difficult to recreate the systems needed to print more copies. Therefore, upon completion of the three, the edition was terminated, and the entire text was place on the minsky.com website along with photos of the three bindings that were done, at http://minsky.com/mib.htm. This effectively ended the discussion of “democratic multiples vs. elite artworks” by making the entire work available to anyone who cares to read it, and fair use allows them to print out a copy for themselves if they would rather have it on paper. Many thousands of people have accessed this work for free. [R. Minsky]

Aesthetic Profile

conceptual (AAT)
concrete poetry (AAT)
lettrist (AAT)
post-conceptual (AAT)
postmodern (AAT)
process (AAT)
punk (AAT)
radicalism (AAT)
situationist (AAT)
traditionalism (AAT)
other book art

autobiography (AAT)
erotica (AAT)
history (AAT)
outsider art (AAT)
political art (AAT)
serial art (AAT)
comedy (AAT)
fiction (AAT)
non-fiction (AAT)
visual poetry (AAT)
artists' books (LCSH)
book design (LCSH)
concrete poetry (LCSH)

content form:
memoir (AAT)
non-fiction (AAT)
experimental text (local)
narrative (local)
novel (local)
graphic novel (AAT)
Illuminated Incunabulum

publication tradition:
artists' book (local)
book arts history (local)
conceptual (local)
desktop (local)
fetishistic (local)
fine press (local)
illustrated book (local)
process (local)
small press (local)
Visual Prose

inspiration: Incunabula, Illuminated Manuscripts, Self-indulgent Artists’ Books, Memoirs of Casanova [R. Minsky]

related works: Minsky in London (1980) [R. Minsky]

other influences: The Lovers [R. Minsky]

community: other Book Art [R. Minsky]

Exhibition Information

exhibition history: Zabriskie Gallery, New York City, 1988, “Richard Minsky”; HarperCollins Publishers Gallery, New York City, 1992 “Richard Minsky: 25 Year Retrospective”; The Bridwell Library, Southern Methodist University, 1997, “The DeGolyer Triennial Exhibition of American Bookbinding.”

Related Documents

manuscript type: mockups

location: artist's archive Yale University Arts of the Book Collection

manuscript type: correspondence

location: artist's archive Yale University Arts of the Book Collection

manuscript type: financial

location: artist's archive Yale University Arts of the Book Collection

manuscript type: other

location: artist's archive Yale University Arts of the Book Collection