I have to post about two fascinating books I encountered.
On Monday, for some unknown reason, I checked the bottom shelves of the art section of the Polytech library, a world I usually actively avoid because those books are dusty. I spotted "Art and Artifact: The Museum as Medium", by James Putnum, Thames & Hudson, 2001. It is one of those books I usually flick pages quickly, glance at pictures, and never read the texts within, but this one intrigued me, and I read 10% of the book in one sitting. Thus far, it discussed the traditional method of museum curating and displays, and not necessarily art museums, (which intrigues me in the Japanese language, we have separate words for art museums as opposed to history, science and other non-visual art museums,) in particular the existence of the glass cases, and how some artists have made a mockery of them. It also discussed how many/most artists are often collectors, and they need a system of storing and displaying their collection, and I sense there is a love/hate relationship between museums and artists. At a glance it doesn't seem to go too far into the emergence and re-inclusion of installation art towards the end, but still I'm expecting one interesting journey reading this one.
The other book, also from near the floor, is "Whole Cloth" by Mildred Constantine and Laurel Reuter, The Monacelli Press, 1997, though it doesn't appear on The Monacelli Press website. Like many others before, this is a big book of artwork in textiles, but with one notable difference: I can't see the authors' editorial preferences in selecting the works, so the book looks has a feel of representing all kinds of textile works, though many are very large works. Lovely viewing; I haven't started reading this one, but it could be worthwhile.
Let me know if you, too, encounter them.