Some remarks on the link between artists’ books and belles-lettres
The book art and literature seem to be closely linked. Almost from the very beginning of its existence the former was used to store, disseminate and highlight the values of the latter. This state of affairs began to change at the turn of the 20th century, when the great avant-gardes were increasingly emphasising the visual aspects of the written word and, consequently, of books. People were increasingly convinced about the autonomy and independence of books. This led to the emergence in the 1960s of amovement known as artists’ books, which considered books to be works of art in themselves, and consequently, to be more loosely connected with literature. This broad and not yet fully defined phenomenon encompasses awhole range of projects interpreting literary texts or inspired by them. By analysing works of artists like Renata Pacyna-Kruszyńska, Małgorzata Haras, Janusz and Jadwiga Tryzna Itry to demonstrate how authors of artists’ books interpret the writers’ works, using them as abasis for completely new, original and autonomous projects, and to show which direction contemporary book art may follow over the next few years.