Somewhere in the land of book publishing, a beast is stirring, brushing off years of the print-on-demand laziness and cheap glue jobs that have fueled the engines of Amazon for years. The first rumblings were heard last week with the multi-piece annotated novel “S.” This week, we came across “The Magician”, a very limited-release art project (try 20 copies) that will be a collection of intriguing, paper-based pieces that combine to tell a story.
Dubbed, probably correctly, by the Dallas Observer as “the most complicated art book currently in production,” the story is some 20 years in the making and comprises 12 individual works. The prototype, which incorporates the 12 books into a wood-and-metal magician’s crate, is the passion project of author Chris Byrne and designer Scott Newton. The first limited pressing will only consist of 20 crates of books.
The enormous work incorporates hand-stamping each page of one book, and includes a pop-up book, a Moleskine notebook full of photographs, a folded poster, medical slides…and well no, some of the material isn’t necessarily safe for work.
Check out the Dallas Observer piece for all the details…and then try to think back to the last time you threw yourself with such wild abandon into a paper project…or were allowed to.