Contact Warhol: Photography Without End edited by Peggy Phelan and Richard Meyer is a collection of the famed gay artist and photographer’s previously unseen photographs. It is estimated that less than 17 percent of Warhol’s 130,000 exposures were printed for public consumption. The majority was hidden from view on contact sheets that chronicled everything from high society parties to more mundane activities like antiquing at a rummage sale. In 2014, Stanford’s Cantor Center for the Arts acquired 3,600 contact sheets from the Warhol Foundation. Contact Warhol examines and documents these contact sheets and photographs for the first time. They represent the final body of Warhol’s work and cover a range of models, subjects, and activities. Truman Capote sits down for a formal photo session. Gavin Macleod is captured at a party with Joan Collins. Bette Davis works the crowd at a cast party. Included with each of the photos is the actual contact sheet from which it is taken to provide unedited context for both the subjects and the events in question. Friends, boyfriends, socialites, celebrities, business associates, and passersby are all captured by Warhol and seen here for the first time. (MIT Press)
THE KIDS: The Children of LGBTQ Parents in the USA by Gabriela Herman is a look at children of LGBTQ parents and same-sex couples from their own point-of-view. Rather than looking to politicians, activists, academics, or lawyers and judges, Herman spent seven years asking the children themselves about their lives. She is also the daughter of a lesbian mother who later married in one of Massachusetts’s first legal same-sex unions, Herman is uniquely positioned to understand both the difficulties and joys of being raised in a household with LGBTQ parents. THE KIDS is the result of her efforts, which focuses less on the issues and more on the individual. The sexuality of their parents disappear as the children related their universal desires to discover themselves and their place in the world. Interviewed while adults or even still in their teens, Herman has captured the essence of life and family, and shows that true love does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.
Edges Of The Rainbow: LGBTQ Japan by Michel Delsol and Jaruku Shinozaki is a revealing and intimate glimpse into the queer Japanese community. While some religious and warrior orders in Japan have a long and recognized tradition of same-sex love, there still remains a stigma of standing out in Japanese society. Combined with a conservative undercurrent throughout society, many within the LGBTQ community feel pressure to remain in the shadows if not the closet. Edges Of The Rainbow attempts to pull back the curtain and reveal the people and personalities within the community. It is a heartwarming celebration of queer life in Japan and brings together a fascinating and diverse collection of individuals, family, and friends. Delsol and Jaruku have created an unforgettable look at a proud and resilient community often times living on the margins of society. (New Press)
The Art of Tennessee Loveless: The Mickey Mouse TEN x TEN x TEN Contemporary Pop Art Series by David A. Bossert is a collection of the Los Angeles artist’s renderings of the famed Disney icon cartoon. Using bold and vivid color along with a variety of styles, Loveless has taken a simple portrait of Mickey Mouse and lovingly reproduced it in a variety of 10x10x10 portraits. Each portrait captures not just the famed cartoon mouse, but also different themes. As an artist, Loveless pays homage to a range of styles from Mehandi, a form or Indian sin decoration, to a collection of stamps, all featuring Mickey Mouse prominently as the centerpiece of the creation. He also uses this forum to touch on important social issues including the impact of capitalism on our imagination. The Art of Tennessee Loveless features over 100 of the artist’s works in this full color, oversized coffee table book. (Disney Editions)
Steven Universe: Art & Origins by Chris McDonnell takes us behind the scenes of the Cartoon Network animated series, which tells the story of Steven who must learn how to use his powers to protect his community of Beach City from the forces of evil. The book is the perfect gift for fans of the series. It is filled with concept art, production samples, early sketches, and storyboards, as well as exclusive commentary that sheds light on the process. This beautifully illustrated and meticulously written companion book provides the backstory and production secrets behind this wildly popular series. Steven Universe: Art & Origins sheds light on the collaborative efforts with creator Rebecca Sugar, writers, animators, and voice actors to bring this series to life. It’s a gem of a book that will enthrall fans of Steven Universe. (Abrams)
Bojack Horseman: The Art Before the Horse by Chris McDonnell is the perfect companion book for fans of the irreverent Netflix animated series. Set in a world where talking animals live and work alongside humans, the show follows a washed-up horse actor attempt to turn around his sordid life. Once a famous television sitcom star but now a victim of his own excesses and self-destructive ways, BoJack is aided with a retinue of questionable advisors and friends in his quest for professional redemption. McConnell takes the reader behind the scenes to learn the genesis and evolution of the character and series. It includes everything from original artwork and storyboards and scripts, to interviews with the creators, writers, and animators. The book traces the show from conception and development to postproduction. (Abrams Books)
The Aids Activist Project by Bill Bytsura pays homage to the original warrior activists in the fight against AIDS. The project is Bytsura’s memorial to those who battled government apathy and inaction to bring awareness to the crisis. The book is filled with full page pictures of the activists, along with words from the subject. Some are short personal notes. Others are boilerplate photographer release forms used as a platform to explain their observations of a community ravaged by an epidemic and a government looking the other way. The Aids Activist Project is equal parts inspirational and motivational, a renewed call to action to fight a disease that still impacts the community. (BillyBystura)
Queer British Art edited by Clare Barlow takes a look at the seismic shifts in gender and sexuality that took place in Britain during the 100 years from the 1860s to the 1960s. Although the death penalty for sodomy was not abolished in 1961 and homosexuality decriminalized in 1967, Britain has a long and varied history of gay tolerance and intolerance. Literary greats like Oscar Wilde were at first lionized for their art, but later pilloried for their previously tolerated sexuality. This unique perspective was captured through a variety of art forms and artists. Ranging from the political to the playful, Queer British Art touches on subjects like the gender experimentation among Pre-Raphaelites, queer domesticity in Bloomsbury, the relationship between artist and model, gender play and sexuality in British surrealism, and more. Barlow has collected works, personal photographs, film, and the words of luminaries from David Hockney to Francis Bacon. (Abrams)
Flying Too Close to the Sun by James Cahill is a stunningly illustrated compendium of 25 well-known myths as represented by artists throughout the ages. Organized thematically rather than chronologically, Cahill spotlights over 200 artworks using a wide range of media into 12 chapters dealing with creation myths to how societies deal with crime and punishment. Emphasizing the breadth of art and ideas covered, the reader will see everything from Botticelli’s iconic painting Birth of Venus (1486) to Maurizio Cattelan’s more recent 18-carat gold toilet, America (2016). Flying Too Close To The Sun captures the tales that humanity employed to explain emotion, desire, creation, origins, the nature of humanity, and more. Each of the myths is presented with multiple pieces of art to provide a unique visual recounting of each myth as well as how different elements of society view the same tale. Flying Too Close to the Sun is a beautiful and groundbreaking survey of myth-inspired artwork selected from over three millennia of human interpretation. (Phaidon Press)
The Good Fight: America’s Ongoing Struggle for Justice by Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt is an extraordinary illustrated oversized book from the creator of the Day In The Life series. Using word and photographs, the book captures the sporadically violent, often triumphant, always risky struggle of Americans fighting back to resist and overcome hatred, oppression, and bigotry because of their ethnicity, gender, skin color, country of origin, religious or spiritual beliefs, sexual orientation, or disability. It contains more than 180 photographs and with a related smartphone app you can view the 60 embedded videos as well. It also includes compelling essays and music and lyrics that rallied Americans to rise up against hate in a struggle to defend basic human rights. The Good Fight is a call to action for those who wish to abolish bigotry and intolerance in America. (Sterling Publishing)
Stars of Women’s Soccer is the latest oversized entry from the World Soccer Legends series of books. Highlighting 24 female soccer phenoms from around the world, this book bestows each with a detailed look that will satisfy both the serious and casual fan of the game. Each player section has a full-sized color photograph of the soccer star, along with personal details such as birthdate and country of origin, current team, international games, and other basic information. Stars of Women’s Soccer also delves deeper with insight, not only into athletic styles, professional records, and career highlights, but also with a look at private and personal nuggets of information that shed light onto each player’s motivations on and off the field. Stars of Women’s Soccer is the perfect gift for true fans of every age and gender. (Abbeville)
For You! Modern Day Love Letters by John Arsenault is an homage to the use of the rose as an expression of human emotion. For decades, photographer and artist Arsenault has been enthralled by flowers. While the gay photographer worked diligently on other projects, he also found time to photograph colorful flowers, especially the iconic rose. Only years later after moving to New York did Arsenault realize the significance of his sideline efforts. This book is the photographer’s extended look at his work capturing the rose and our infatuation with the ubiquitous flower. Much like romantics throughout history have assigned various intent behind the color of the rose as a gift (red is for love, for example), Arsenault seeks to capture the ways in which society manifests their feelings for others in the rose with simple representations of the flowers as they exist. Whether held aloft by a single hand or wasting away in an untended vase, For You! is filled with single photographs that encourage the viewer to contemplate the emotions of the giver, as well as the context of the gift itself. (Daylight Books)
Madam & Eve: Women Portraying Women by Liz Rideal and Kathleen Soriano is a compendium exploring fifty years of artwork of women, by women. Female artists have struggled for years to be recognized for their contributions and message to the art world, only to be met with relegation of their work. Only in recent years have there been efforts to set the record straight by giving these accomplished artists their due place. Coauthored by the curator-artist duo, Madam & Eve is the melding of individual experiences and perspectives that represents the work of over 200 female artists — with particular attention given to lesser known artists. The images contained in this book are powerful, poignant, and political, while others are playful, passionate, and idiosyncratic. (Laurence King Publishing)
Dark & Fetish Art is a collection containing over 350 works of art, ranging from steampunk to anime to studio photographs. Each piece selected showcases the richly-detailed beauty and glamorous decadence of gothic-themed art across a variety of media. The book is divided into basic chapters on Fetish Art, Dark Art, Art Photography, and Three-Dimensional Art. Featuring everything from the erotic to the unsettling to the inspiring, Dark & Fetish Art is written in both Japanese and English. It also includes a lengthy introduction by Hiroshi Unno on the history of the fantasy aesthetic. As its title implies, PIE International has beautifully captured a side of the art world not normally seen in traditional galleries and collections, and will make a fine addition to the discerning collector of alternative artwork.
Born to Dance: Celebrating the Wonder of Childhood by Jordan Matter is the author’s sequel to Dancers Among Us. Dance is more popular with children across the socio-economic spectrum. It allows children to freely express themselves, their emotions, and their desires in a wordless format. Whether it’s a child dreaming of being a famous ballerina or a group of kids practicing their latest skills on the playground, dance is a perfect outlet for children to be children. Matter’s efforts initially began with a series of videos on his YouTube channel highlighting young dancers striking poses in everyday locations. Born to Dance captures the exuberance and spontaneity of life through images of dancing children from ages 2 to 18, and also reveals deeper issues facing kids today — such as bullying, loneliness, divorce, and identity crises.
Modern Retro Home: Tips & Inspiration for Creating Great Mid-Century Styles by Mr. Jason Grant unlocks the secrets behind styling a contemporary home with some retro flair. Acclaimed interior stylist Grant draws on design aesthetics from the past to provide the styling novice with the inspiration and know-how to achieve a personalized mid-century look in their own home. The book has chapters dedicated to each room in the house with smaller breakout features covering key design elements like lighting, fabrics, and wall art. Grant introduces new trends such as blending modern furniture with vintage pieces from decades past, or using bold neon colors and geometric patterns for maximum effect. There are no tired old rooms in this perfect how-to book for fans of this timelessly elegant (and fun) design aesthetic. (Hardie Grant)
Play With Me by Grace Banks is a provocative look at how contemporary artists are reclaiming the female form and transforming it into a message of empowerment. Banks profiles 43 mostly female activist artists who utilize dolls, mannequins, robots, effigies, sculpted neon, and even their own bodies as a form of artistic expression. Whether exploring aggressive girlhood or the use of latex as a visual metaphor, Play With Me is a stimulating and sometimes startling look at how these cutting-edge artists are reengineering items previously used to objectify women. The book is divided into four sections: Blow-Up, Muse, Female Gaze, and Cyborg. Each section is filled with art, photographs, and words that deliberately dwell at the intersection of politics and culture. By taking an artifact previously used to objectify women and transforming it instead into a powerful message of identity and equality, Banks perfectly captures this daring and provocative new realm of modern art. (Laurence King)
Female by Chilean photojournalist Pilar Vergara takes a human rights perspective to capture the diversity and uniqueness of transgender women. Four years in the making, Vergara features extended portraits of fifteen transgender women. Some were also interviewed, and their words are included as a bound insert within the book. We meet computer engineers, a composer/musician, an interior designer, an eye surgeon, students and activists, and more — from all ages, races, backgrounds, and interests. Vergara takes the reader into their homes and accompanies them throughout the day to provide an intimate portrait of their lives. She began her career as a photographer during the anti-Pinochet movement in Chile, and uses the experience she gained to bring light to a select group of trans women struggling to find acceptance. (Daylight Books)
Revealing Selves: Transgender Portraits from Argentina by Kike Arnal is a beautifully photographed exploration of what it means to be transgender in the South American country. Arnal collaborated with individuals within the Argentinian transgender community, living with them and documenting their lives through a series of striking images. Argentina was the first Latin American nations to legalize marriage equality and also one of the most advanced and progressive countries world-wide in terms of transgender rights. However, problems and prejudices remain. Transgender women are still subject to verbal, physical, and sexual abuse, physical assault, and police violence. Among the stories is a former sex worker who is now an activist and a single trans mother of three teenaged girls whose partner had fallen to drug abuse. There is particular focus on the residents of the Hotel Gondolin, a small and derelict family hotel that is now home to 50 trans women. Revealing Selves is both a celebration of the Argentinan trans community, as well as a powerful reminder of just how much remains to be overcome. (New Press)
OUT: LGBTQ Poland by Maciek Nabrdalik is the latest in a series of groundbreaking LGBTQ-themed photography books. Poland is a historically conservative and deeply religious country and in 2004, gay rights marches were banned in Warsaw and homosexuality was taboo. With the fall of the Iron Curtain and the influx of Western ideals and economics, Poland has emerged from the shackles of communism — but some habits die hard regarding tolerance and diversity. Nabrdalik ventured into the LGBTQ communities of Poland to interview young adults about their lives and quest for acceptance and identity. OUT is filled with intimate interviews and in-depth portraits of writers, artists, and every day people. This is a deeply moving look at a community constantly forced to ask itself what it means to be Polish and queer in the 21st century. (New Press)
Transcendents: Spirit Mediums in Burma and Thailand by Mariette Pathy Allen documents gender variations among the spirit cults of these Southeast Asian countries. Allen is a pioneer in gender identity, with multiple publications and lectures to her credit. Here she collaborates with Dr. Eli Coleman, professor and director of the Program in Human Sexuality at the University of Minnesota to provide an anthropological and sexological perspective on the genderfluidity of spirit mediums in Burma and Thailand. Using photographs and in-depth text, Allen has compiled a book that is at once a work of art as well as a scholarly examination of the uniqueness of transgender elements within a spiritual community that has existed for centuries. (Daylight Books)
Dinosaur and Wild by Dan Kainen and Kathy Wollard are two of the latest photicular books from Workman Publishing. The books are filled photographs that appear to move as the book or cover is tilted. As a result of Kainen’s patented photicular design and advances, readers can watch a panda eating bamboo, an albatross stretching its massive wings, a Tyrannosaurus Rex biting, Triceratops fighting, and much more. Each picture is accompanied by a detailed description of the animal or dinosaur, making this more than your average children’s picture book. Instead, this fun and informative format actually brings the book to life. Young and old alike will be thrilled with these fun, sturdy, hardbound books. (Workman)