From Long Nook Books

Eight Begin: Artist's Memories of Starting Out edited by Ada Katz

(New York: Libellum, 2014)

November 10, 2014
We recently received a copy of Eight Begin: Artists’ Memories of Starting Out, edited by Ada Katz. Focusing on artists of the “10th Street” galleries dating from the fifties and early sixties (the Tanager, as one example), the volume contains a set of 1974 interviews edited into a fascinating series of monologues.  Published by the Colby Museum of Art and Libellum books, these conversational texts serve to remind the currently market-oriented art world of the enormous impact of those shoestring-budgeted collaborative galleries.  As Katz (yes, that Ada) writes of a group of artists (Bladen, Dodd, Drummond, Held, King, Pearlstein and Sugarman) that included her husband Alex:  “They came to Manhattan by chance or to go to art school after World War Two.  They all remained by choice, finding an emotional, intellectual, and social life in ‘downtown’ New York into which they seemed to fit.”  As editor Katz argues, this important group narrative of a certain time and place has “lessons to impart to those who wish to find ways to make art outside the existing mainstream.”

-Mary Maxwell