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Sunday, 22.05.2022 – 03.07.2022

Extended until 3. July 2022 – One can build a table for 425 books – All printed matters by Roma Publications, since 1998

There are probably very, very few people who would argue that there are not enough books in the world. Libraries, both personal and public, are full of them; bookshops, thrift stores, kitchen shelves, offices, and IKEA showrooms are too. Empty bookshelves are a rarity.

Yet, there is one kind of book that probably the majority of people, even those without an affinity for print, would agree there could be more of. And that’s Roma Publications’ books. They’re the kinds of books which are made with a degree of dedication, experience, and, well, for lack of a better word, love that makes them so unspectacularly spectacular. None of the 425 books listed here stand out because they want to; they’re not shining with metallic ink, they’re not oversized, not heavy or loud or shrill. But they radiate something that makes them special.

I’d like to suggest that what makes the books by Roma Publications stand out is the simple yet beautiful balance that’s produced from a close collaboration of the editor with the artists, photographers, and writers. The books reflect an atmosphere of making books as a practice that’s as much professional as it is based on mad dedication to the object and a network of dear friends and colleagues. It’s an atmosphere one feels upon opening a Roma book.

For the exhibition at the Sitterwerk Foundation, we ended up reacting to both of the phenomena mentioned above. If bookshelves tend to fill up, why not use tables instead? So we adapted a line from an exhibition catalogue by Mario Merz for a show at the John Weber Gallery, New York, in 1973, that read “One can build a table for 88 people” and appropriated it for our exhibition of books. Plus, we embraced our craving for more Roma books and decided to show them all – all Roma Publication books since 1998.

Kunstbibliothek Sitterwerk

  1. May to 3. July 2022
    Exhibition Opening Sunday, 22. May 2022
    2 to 6 pm
    with an introduction to the exhibition by Roger Willems and Roland Früh

Sunday 3 July
3 to 6 pm
The publishing bug
At the finissage of the exhibition we will present Susanne Bieri's new book: an overview of Swiss artists' books, which will be published by Walther König in spring.
To celebrate the enthusiasm for publishing, we invite a group of publishers to present their work and launch a conversation about the 'publishing bug' – why do we want to publish, how do we start, what drives us, what is the 'publishing bug' that some people have?

With works and presentations by Teo Schifferli, Aaron Fabian from innen, Guillaume Mojon and Robert Steinberger from DEARS, Gloria Wismer from Volumes, Dario Forlin, Wanja Harb, Linus Lutz, Lucian Kunz from gaffa and others.

The exhibition and events were realised with the kind support of the Kulturförderung of the City of St.Gallen.