October 10, 2016 - Kunstverein - Will Holder: Sorry! NO We Don’t Do REQUESTS
October 10, 2016


Courtesy Kunstverein.

Will Holder
Sorry! NO We Don’t Do REQUESTS
October 14–December 17, 2016


Dear ______________,

We are writing to gauge your interest in subscribing to STAPLES, a book that will celebrate 20 years, and 20 more, of the work of Will Holder.

STAPLES proposes that description is one way to design, reproduce and enable access to things. It will be written over 15 months, in relation to two parts:

Part 1
Sorry! NO We Don’t Do REQUESTS is an exhibition of 20 years of Will Holder’s work with publications, talks, printed matter, and teaching presented weekly through nine guests' selections (Sara de Bondt, Linda van Deursen, Johanna Ehde, Elisabeth Klement, Maxine Kopsa, Mason Leaver-Yap, Kaisa Lassinaro, Riet Wijnen and Felicia von Zweigbergk) at Kunstverein, Amsterdam, October 15 to December 17, 2016.

Using Kunstverein as space for writing, printing and binding, Holder will recall hundreds of tiny material decisions made in response to a specific context of past collaborators’ work. For example:

STAPLE, steel (not stainless), 20 pieces. Bik Van der Pol’s expansive “research”—and its relations to imperfect representations of a collective past—resulted in the proposal of a series of 16-page, black-and-white stapled booklets (wrapped in a full-colour image section, and coloured paper cover printed in black ink) edited by Lisette Smits and published, when needed, to accompany work. Editorial and design decisions towards an imagined 240 page, glued book could be discovered, learned from, and adapted, piecemeal. This process would be visible to the reader. This five-year series of publications was considered "too complicated." Nevertheless the proposed model was maintained, and came to represent an alternative, but rejected past. The short-term responsiveness of the stapled booklets’ designs vs. a glued book’s long-term significance became hypothetical.

Raddraaier, the printer, passed on the binder’s advice to stagger the staples at different heights along the booklets’ spines, to minimise bumps.

Bik Van der Pol, Past Imperfect, Casco Issues No.9 (ed. Lisette Smits), Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory / Revolver, 2005. 978-3-865882-18-9.

[bolded terms point to other entries in the book]


Part 2
Prospectus: a year with Will Holder at Kunst-Werke, Berlin will take place from January 1 to December 31, 2017. Given a year’s residence at Kunst-Werke, to produce a public programme; Holder has, in turn, passed on the time and production-budget to invited guests (a.o. Jeremiah Day, Linda van Deursen, Christian Oldham, Cara Tolmie, Paul Abbott, Scott Rogers, Lucy Skaer), inviting them to work with him on books—to be published by a books, Glasgow.*

With Bert Paulich, Holder will build and furnish a living-space—complete with his own library—so his guests might find the suitable conditions to work with him. All the while he will add to Part 1, and paraphrase passages from the library for Part 2, where others’ words are close to describing his own principles. For example:

STAPLE It is suggested that the widespread adoption of the staple was instigated by the nazi’s demonstration of its potential for dissemination. Along with DIN standards—staples were described by Jan Tschichold as “the devil’s work.”

Christopher Burke, Paul Renner: the art of Typography, Hyphen Press, 1999. 978-0-907259-12-1

STAPLES will be published “on demand.” A request for a book being a reason to print and hand-bind the latest version of the ongoing writing. Another reason would be for subscribers. Hence this letter, writing to ask if you would be willing to support this project, in the form of a subscription.

You will be the only reader privy to the making of this book, over time. With one entry triggering another, each new edition will show the author’s changes, his decisions to sequence (as glue follows staple…); and the refrain of its entries in conversation with collaborators (so Lygia Clark follows nazi follows staple).

Terms of subscription:

Every four months, from October 2016 to December 2017, subscribers will be sent the most up-to-date edition of STAPLES, making 5 editions, including the "first edition" anomaly (only available at the Kunstverein opening). A subscription will only be available prior to-, or at the opening on October 15 (the number of subscribers will never exceed 200).

In addition, 15 copies—with uncut pages, hand-sewn, glued and bound with ribbon—will be available (delivered in time for Xmas 2017).

You can request a subscription and get information on pricing by mailing staples [​at​] uhbooks.directory, mentioning which edition you would like to order.

Thank you for your time

Kunstverein and Will Holder

*STAPLES will be one of the first books published by a (“uh”) books, Glasgow—an initiative of Will Holder with Emmie McLuskey. A subscription would be of great support to this venture, and its forthcoming prospectus (incl. Falke Pisano’s The Value of Mathematics, Cara Tolmie’s Incongruous Diva and forthcoming issues of F.R.DAVID).

Kunstverein wishes to thank its (Gold) members, Stadsdeel Zuid, and Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst.

This exhibition takes place at a special location:
Hazenstraat 28
1016 SR Amsterdam

T +31 (0)20 3313203 / office [​at​] kunstverein.nl

Share - Will Holder
Sorry! NO We Don’t Do REQUESTS
  • Share
Click to subscribe to e-flux and be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements
Subscribe to e-flux
Be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements.
Subscribe to architecture
Explore the most recent content from e-flux architecture and urbanism
Subscribe to e-flux programs
Keep up-to-date on all upcoming talks, screenings, and exhibitions at e-flux in New York