Hans / Jean Arp's diverse visual oeuvre-primarily consisting of sculptures, reliefs, drawings, collages and prints-is world-renowned, yet his sketchbooks remain relatively unknown. Twenty Sketchbooks seeks to remedy this by reproducing as meticulous facsimiles 20 of Arp's small sketchbooks and spiral-bound pads, made between 1950 and 1966 and today held at the Fondazione Marguerite Arp-Hagenbach, located in Arp's last atelier in Locarno, Switzerland.
This publication allows us for the fi rst time to "hold" Arp's sketchbooks in our hands and thereby gain new insight into his working processes. Some sketches reveal themselves as drafts for fully realized artworks, yet the majority are exploratory works in themselves. Twenty Sketchbooks contains over 400 sketches as well as written notes by the artist. The 20 volumes, each produced at its original size, are presented in a handmade box following the design of the carton in which they were found in Arp's archive.
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