“The Way We Live Now” and Other Artist Books from the Polly and Mark Addison Collection, CU Art Museum is an exhibition that explores the curious medium of the “Artist Book.” This exhibition features books created by Damien Hirst, Howard Hodgkin and Susan Sontag, Chuck Close, Octavio Paz and Gunther Gerzso, Agnes Denes, Richard Tuttle, Andrea Zittell, Chris Ware, Peter Wegner, Hamish Fulton, Laylah Ali, as well as many other artists.

The exhibition highlights artist books created in the 1960’s through the 1990’s as well as recent works in the medium by contemporary and emerging artists. The books on view include classic pop and conceptual works such as Walasse Ting’s, 1¢ Life, published in 1964, which includes 82 lithographs accompanied by text and featuring many well-known artists such as Claes Oldenburg, Sam Francis, Roy Lichtenstein, Allan Kaprow and many others. The exhibition also features books by artists such as the Guerrilla Girls, Barbara Kruger, and Ida Applebroog, that address feminist and women’s issues. Works by Chris Ware, Lars Arrhenius, and Laylah Ali utilize the influence of pictorial storytelling and the format of the comic book, the graphic novel, and even the guide book, to create works that address with humor and satire, social phenomena and realities, while works by artists such as Richard Long and Hamish Fulton conceptually explore geography and the natural world.

The term “Artist Book” refers to numerous forms of artistic expression related to the historically evolving medium of the book, which has throughout the ages embodied the work of many participants, including artists, scribes, bookbinders, paper makers, publishers, distributors, readers, and collectors.

This wide-ranging exhibition was curated from the Polly and Mark Addison Collection, a significant modern and contemporary art collection within the CU Art Museums permanent collection, which reflects the exquisite eye of the Addison's and their broad and inspiring passion for collecting and for books. The Addison's 2006 gift of the 47 works in this exhibition significantly enhanced the breadth of the CU Art Museums collection by creating a new specialty within the collection, that of the “Artist Book.”

Since the 1990s, Polly and Mark Addison have gifted over 300 works to the CU Art Museums permanent collection and recently promised an additional 121 works. Their support has significantly expanded the collections holdings of modern and contemporary art of the highest caliber.

“The Way We Live Now” and Other Artist Books from the Polly and Mark Addison Collection, CU Art Museum is curated by Lisa Tamiris Becker, Director, CU Art Museum. Funding for CU Art Museum outreach programs is generously provided by the NBT Charitable Trust, the CU Art Museum Benefactors’ Salon, the CU Art Museum membership program as well as by Polly and Mark Addison.