Books + Magazines

The Exquisite Book Tour

October 29, 2010

I have a lovely book to share with you this morning. Julie Rothman and Chronicle Books asked me to participate in a book tour and I couldn’t resist – I am a fan of Julia’s work and so naturally I’m happy to see her new title, The Exquisite Book, published by Chronicle. It is so stunning, interesting and altogether a fun book to add to your collection of fantastic art books. What I mean by “fun” is that it’s not your typical art book – the pages fold out for one and there’s not a lot of blah blah text — which is nice for a change — you are free to interpret as you please and simply sit back and enjoy the stunning visuals. What makes it so interesting to me, which will be explained more in detail below, is that the book is loosely based on a game started by Surrealists in the 20’s called the Exquisite Corpse.

The Exquisite Book Tour

Julia’s version of this game brings together 100 of today’s hottest indie illustrators, artists, designers and comic artists that so many of us know and love like Jill Bliss, Lisa Congdon, Camilla Engman, Matt Stephens, Susie Ghahremani, Irina Troitskaya, Mike Perry, Caitlin Keegan, Lab Partners, Betsy Walton and many more.

The Exquisite Book Tour

Now here is that detailed explanation of how the book works that I promised, “There are ten groups of ten artists participating in the process. Each artist is contributing one page to the book. The first artist was given a few words to inspire their drawing. Each of the following artists saw only the page that immediately precedes their own. Each artist is using images (and optionally, words) to create their continuation to the story, and the inspiration for the next artist in line. Besides continuing the story of the last artist, there is another, more visual, connection between the pages. Each artist has a horizon line in their image that starts on the left side of the page and ends on the right. Where the horizon line of the first artist’s page ends, is where it begins for the next artist. (The horizon line part has been very loose and it has been exciting to see how everyone interprets it.)”

The Exquisite Book Tour

If you think it sounds cool, well I own the book (thanks, Julia!) and well, it IS cool. I spent at least an hour looking through it and trying REALLY HARD to not remove the gorgeous pages and frame them – ha ha – the amazing work oozes from this book is positively awesome. Thankfully, Julia told me a few days ago that they’ve set up a shop where the art from the book is being sold as prints – yay! You can buy whatever you see in the book that tickles your fancy right here.

The Exquisite Book Tour

You can also watch a video about The Exquisite Book here or purchase a copy for yourself here on the Chronicle website — PROMO OFFER: Get 25% off AND free shipping (in the U.S.) with Promo Code EXQ if you buy from Chronicle Books directly. Weeeee!

Congrats Julia and to your co-authors Jenny Volvovski,, Matt Lamothe, Dave Eggers! Way to go and much success to you all — this book is a job well done!

(images: the exquisite book)


  • Reply Jem October 29, 2010 at 11:30 am

    How gorgeous are the owls peeping out from behind the trees! The concept of the book is so original :-)

  • Reply Tania October 29, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    Oh Holly this book is exquisite! It features many of my favorite artists all wrapped up in a lovely package. The discount is just icing on an already lovely cupcake. Thanks so much for sharing! :)

  • Reply Emily@theNest October 29, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    Oh wow, what a gorgeous book…a must to add to my Santa list…for me :-) !
    Delicious pictures, as always! Thank you!!

  • Reply karina October 29, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    Divine book!!!!

  • Reply Suzette October 29, 2010 at 2:20 pm

    Love it – bought it straight away :-)

  • Reply laura trevey October 29, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    So colorful and fun! I love it ~~

  • Reply Sonya McCllough October 29, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    what an effort and well worth the work … a major production of paper and print … and the music is in the fold out and turn of each page.

  • Reply Jessica October 29, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    Wow. Very pretty!

  • Reply alex October 29, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    what a fabulous idea! Just ordered it as an early xmas present to myself :) Can’t wait to go through it and be inspired!!!

  • Reply handmadesunday October 30, 2010 at 2:12 am

    Great concept and amazing images, as always! The quality looks real nice too! Will there be more? Seems worth collecting :)

  • Reply Simony @ Art and Life October 30, 2010 at 3:43 am

    I loved this book.
    I play this game with my 2 kids when we travel and spend hours at the airport and airplanes. One starts a drawing and the other add something and we keep going on until there’s no more to be added. Always ends in a very surprisingly way.

  • Reply Manuela De Simone October 30, 2010 at 8:17 am

    Lovely book! I want to buy it right now and add it to my artbook collection! :D

  • Reply Seth October 30, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    I have always loved the concept of The Exquisite Corpse and this is such a fascinating way to present it. I am off to Chronicle to buy one now. Thanks for the heads up!!

  • Reply Kiran October 31, 2010 at 4:21 am

    Beautiful arts! I want to frame it on a canvas :) Great Christmas gift idea as well.

  • Reply hena tayeb November 1, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    wow dis is so gorgeoud.. what amazing eye candy

  • Reply Molly Michel November 2, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    I love this (and already ordered a copy)! We used to do something like this in art school when I studied printmaking. Those collections are some of my most treasured books.

  • Reply dri February 20, 2011 at 8:03 am

    LOVE this book. Just got it. brilliant.

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