All PMVABF programs are archived! See below for full descriptions and click the ➜ to watch.

The Classroom / Friendly Fire

The Stage

images of past speakers and participants of the Contemporary Artists Books Conference

All PMVABF programs are archived! See below for full descriptions and click the ➜ to watch.


  • Thursday, February 25th

    • 11am–12:30pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      “Well, is it even a photobook, Dayanita?” with Dayanita Singh and Anshika Varma
      ︎ +

      Dayanita Singh published her first artist’s book Zakir Hussain in 1986, and in doing so, challenged contemporary notions of photography, book, and form. Five years later, Steidl announced the publication of her student maquette as a three-part book object—a witness to her influence in expanding the book form. In this conversation, Singh speaks with Anshika Varma, founder of the publisher Offset Projects based in New Delhi, India, on the significance of provoking a space between the publishing house and the art gallery, and the endless possibilities presented within it. Presented by Offset Projects. ︎➜

    • 12–2pm EST ; 24 hour loop – The Stage ︎
      Performances presented by Printed Matter and Noah Klein

      with Laraaji, V. Vale, Sarah Louise, Mutual Benefit, Yasmin Williams, Nailah Hunter, and Lush Agave + Wild Anima. ︎➜

    • 12:30–2pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      Beau Geste Press, in conversation with Felipe Ehrenberg, David Mayor, and Alice Motard

      On the occasion of the newly launching publication Beau Geste Press, BOM DIA BOA TARDE BOA NOITE shares insight into the practice and history of the eponymous publishing house. The program features two interviews between Alice Motard, the chief curator at CAPC musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux and editor of this new publication, with David Mayor, and Felipe Ehrenberg, who are co-founders of this legendary publishing house. The interview with David Mayor was specially recorded for this years’ CLASSROOM. The interview with Felipe Ehrenberg was recorded back in March 2017 when Felipe visited a show on Beau Geste Press at CAPC just a couple of months before he passed away. Presented by BOM DIA BOA TARDE BOA NOITE.

    • 2–3:30pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      Dark Room, with Phyllis Christopher, Michelle Tea, and Laura Guy

      In 1988, at the age of 24, Phyllis Christopher was drawn to San Francisco with her camera to capture a thriving lesbian counterculture involving sex parties, kiss-ins, and street demonstrations. Join this Book Works program for an intimate conversation about lesbian sexuality and documentary on the occasion of Phyllis Christopher’s debut solo publication, Dark Room: San Francisco Sex and Protest, 1988–2003 (Book Works, 2021). Christopher will be in conversation with acclaimed author, poet, and organizer (and contributor to the book), Michelle Tea, along with Laura Guy, editor of Dark Room. Presented by Book Works.

    • 3:30–5pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      Call & Response, with Kerry Ann Lee, Giulia Vallicelli, Helen Yeung, and Ysabelle Cheung

      Call & Response is a conversation between international publishers exploring how independent publishing facilitates community-building through punk, protest, and zine-making. Giulia Vallicelli (Compulsive Archive, Milan, Italy), Helen Yeung (Migrant Zine Collective, Aotearoa, New Zealand) and Ysabelle Cheung (independent writer, Hong Kong) will share their work and talk with Kerry Ann Lee (Red Letter Distro) about collaboration, correspondence, and solidarity over time and distances. Spanning over two decades and three continents, the panel will discuss the responsive nature of zine-making, distribution, and archiving as a means of survival and creative resistance from the sidelines. Presented by Red Letter Distro.

    • 5–6:30pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      Subject to Change: the Syllabus as Publication, with Collective Question

      The syllabus is a utopian publication. It is asked for and given, and in this exchange it figures as a kind of contract, perhaps even a form of evidence, or a standard against which to measure progress. It directs, draws lines, outlines. It acts like a script, a score, notation, an aid to performance. It's revised each semester to pretend it did something that it didn't do, just in case someone checks, with a hope that this revised version will go the way you want the next time, so that what you thought could have been becomes real. It projects and aspires but is also fraudulent and knows it. This discussion with Collective Question (Chris Lee, Steven Chodoriwsky, and Julie Niemi) is based on their research into Tolstoy College, an anarchist educational community that was part of the University of Buffalo from 1969–1985. Presented by The Southland Institute (for critical, durational, and typographic post-studio practices).

    • 6:30–8pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      Best! Letters from Asian Americans in the Arts

      Editors Christopher K. Ho and Daisy Nam will lead a conversation with Mel Chin, Aruna d’Souza, Hyperlink Press, and Patrick Jaojoco, all contributors to Paper Monument’s new anthology, Best! Letters from Asian Americans in the Arts. Chronicling everyday lives, dreams, rage, family histories, and cultural politics, the seventy three letters collected within ignite new ways of being and modes of creating at a moment of racial reckoning. The panelists will discuss Best!'s origins, how the project shifted throughout 2020, the intimacy and complexity of the epistolary form, and the urgency of moving beyond and exploding open the model-minority myth. Presented by Paper Monument.

    • 8–9pm EST – The Classroom ︎
      Transcendent Waves Sound Bath, with Lavender Suarez

      Join sonic healer, meditation teacher, and artist Lavender Suarez for a sound bath, dedicated to the release of Transcendent Waves: How Listening Shapes Our Creative Lives. In this new publication, Suarez poses questions to the reader as well as offers scientific evidence and personal anecdotes, all to make the case for the importance of listening and the positive impact it can have on our creative lives. Presented by Anthology Editions.

  • Friday, February 26th

    • 10:30am EST – CABC ︎
      Books on Places & Books from Places. An Unbalanced Equation, with Briony Anne Carlin, Moritz Neumüller, Azu Nwagbogu, and Nelson de Arrellano

      Some of the most recognized artists’ books dealing with geographical regions were not made by an artist from that place. This round table will analyze the problematic relationship epitomized in such books. It will explore the breadth of these photobooks depicting countries including India, Cuba, or Nigeria, prioritizing photobooks made with artistic intent (as opposed to photographic travel books).

    • 11am–12:30pm EST – The Classroom︎
      Photography in the Sensorium, with Fia Backström, Pradeep Dalal, Shannon Ebner, and Sara Greenberger Rafferty

      For the 2019 MFA symposium “Teaching Photographs” at Pratt Institute, artists Fia Backström and Pradeep Dalal organized a workshop in which they proposed “some . . . strategies on how to situate images by building context beyond representational pointers: presentation, discussion, and practical exercises.” To launch their new publication, PPI #2, Photography in the Sensorium, Backström and Dalal will be joined in conversation with Shannon Ebner and Sara Greenberger Rafferty. In this book, the artists offer examples from their own photographic practice as case studies, breaking down and interweaving their individual approaches to knowing, handling, and naming the circumstances out of which their work emerges. This is the second issue in the series Pounds Per Image (PPI), edited and published through the Pratt Photography Imprint, led by Shannon Ebner. Presented by Pratt Photography Imprint and Dancing Foxes Press.

    • 12-6pm EST ; 24 hour loop – The Stage ︎
      Performances presented with Papi Juice

      DJ sets by: Oscar Nñ, Adam R, Tygapaw, Equiss, Morenxxx, plus Mohammed Fayaz's Visual ASMR, and She Finally Caught A Breath.

    • 12:30–2pm EST – The Classroom︎
      Media Burn Ant Farm and the Making of an Image, with Chip Lord, Connie Lewallen, Steve Seid, Tanya Zimbardo, Igor Vamos, and Doug Hall

      Media Burn Ant Farm and the Making of an Image is a recently published monograph on Ant Farm's sensational 1975 performance, Media Burn. This program will start with film footage of the event at the Cow Palace in San Francisco on July 4, 1975. Connie Lewallen (Berkeley Art Museum Curator) will introduce and contextualize the famous event, and Tanya Zimbardo (SFMOMA Assistant Curator of Media Arts) will moderate a conversation between Ant Farm member Chip Lord and the publication’s author Steve Seid (former Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Archive Curator), along with Doug Hall (artist) and Igor Vamos (RPI). Presented by RITE Editions and Inventory Press.

    • 3pm EST – CABC
      Artist’s Book Criticism Beyond the Book, with Aaron Cohick, Johanna Drucker, Megan N. Liberty, and Levi Sherman

      As more artists’ books are exhibited, it is increasingly important to understand how the institutional context in which they are shown, from bookstore spaces to museum vitrines, helps and hinders criticism in the field. This panel aims to extend criticism beyond the individual book and address the interconnected institutions and power structures that form the field of contemporary artists’ books.

    • 3:30–5pm EST – The Classroom
      Slavery, Geography and Empire in Nineteenth-Century Marine Landscapes of Montreal and Jamaica, with Charmaine Nelson, David Hartt, Frances Loeffler, and Jonathan Middleton

      This conversation takes up the subject of artist David Hartt’s recent poster project for Art Metropole, designed as an advertisement for Charmaine Nelson’s book, Slavery, Geography and Empire in Nineteenth-Century Marine Landscapes of Montreal and Jamaica (Routledge, 2016). These wheat-pasted posters, soon to be on the streets of Toronto, incorporate a photograph Hartt made in Jamaica and uses the language of guerrilla street-art advertising campaigns to promote an academic text that confronts the history of systemic racism in pre- and post-colonial Canada. Hartt’s project points to his own perspective as a Black Canadian now living in the United States, responding to recent events in the US, but also to how these histories are usually suppressed, and how systemic racism continues to be deeply embedded within Canada as well. Presented by Art Metropole.

    • 5pm EST – CABC
      Critical Convening on Terminology and Contextualizing Historic Material, with Megan N. Liberty, Corina Reynolds, Levi Sherman, David Solo, and Vivian Sming

      How does inadequate, inconsistent, or unclear terminology limit our ability to write critically about artist’s books? How can and should we recontextualize historical artist’s books? After a brief introduction, we invite you to join the founders of BAR and a group of international guests in this convening as we split into small breakout groups to explore these questions and work on developing recommendations.

    • 5–6:30pm EST – The Classroom
      Sasha Phyars-Burgess in conversation with Texas Isaiah and Zora J Murff

      Sasha Phyars-Burgess joins Texas Isaiah and Zora J Murff on the occasion of her new publication, Untitled (Capricious, 2021). The conversation will consider each photographer's individual practice as they relate to themes from the monograph form, the impact of protests against police brutality in 2020, and the rising institutional interest in Black artists at-large. Sasha Phyars-Burgess’s Untitled, spans three bodies of work, from affecting studies on diaspora, family, and place to revolving social phenomenons in which energy, beauty, and power meet. The monograph also includes poems by Ser Alida and Aurora Masum-Javed, a conversation between Sasha Phyars-Burgess, Juliana Huxtable, and Carolyn Lazard, and an essay by Bill Gaskins. Presented by Capricious.

    • 6:30–8pm EST – The Classroom
      Four Decades with BOMB Magazine

      Join BOMB's founder and editor-in-chief, Betsy Sussler, for a conversation with past contributors and artists as they revisit the history of the magazine. Born on the kitchen table of New York’s downtown scene in 1981, BOMB was committed then, as it is now, to delivering the artist’s voice and conversations between artists. Join us for a rare look behind the scenes of BOMB and its genesis, with a Q&A at the end to answer questions about the magazine’s history as well as for those looking to start their own art publication. Presented by BOMB Magazine.

    • 8–9pm EST – The Classroom
      Richard Jackson: Works with Books

      In tandem with a comprehensive exhibition of books and printed matter about the artist Richard Jackson at Hauser & Wirth's Booklab, Art Catalogues presents a discussion with the artist as he takes us through the exhibition to highlight some of the materials on display. The presentation includes his new monograph, featuring an extended chronology of Jackson’s work by Art Catalogues’s Dagny Corcoran, as well as books that made an impact on his artistic practice—ranging from Duchamp to hunting magazines from the 80s. Presented by Art Catalogues.

  • Saturday, February 27th

  • Sunday, February 28th

    • 9am EST – Friendly Fire
      FESTAC ‘77 Mixtape

      Early in 1977, thousands of artists, writers, musicians, activists, and scholars from Africa and the Black diaspora assembled in Lagos for FESTAC ’77, the 2nd World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture. With a radically ambitious agenda underwritten by Nigeria’s newfound oil wealth, FESTAC ’77 would unfold as a complex, glorious, and excessive culmination of a half-century of pan African cultural-political gatherings. In this mix, Chimurenga decomposes, arranges, and reproduces the sound-world of FESTAC ’77 to address the planetary scale of the event, alongside the personal and artistic encounters it made possible. Can a past that the present has not yet caught up with be summoned to haunt the present as an alternative? Presented by Chimurenga.

    • 10am EST – Friendly Fire
      Mutual Aid Networking, with Bryan Villalobos, Zenat Begum, Isaac Miller, and Naomi Lawrence

      8-Ball Community holds a conversation around mutual aid in NYC; how the pandemic and social uprising has impacted—and in many ways, jump started—this critical work. The conversation includes Bryan Villalobos of Public Assistants, Zenat Begum of Playground Coffee Shop, Isaac Miller of Friend of a Friend and EV Loves NYC, moderated by artist, chef, former 8-Ball Board Member and meal planner for EV Loves NYC, Naomi Lawrence. Presented by 8-Ball Community.

    • 11am EST – Friendly Fire
      Tending to the Present: Care & Pace Hour, with Gaynell Meij, Lorenza Perelli, Ashley L. Schick, John Caserta, Barbara Bryn Klare, Maria Epes, and Alex Muck

      This program is a compilation of recent submissions from geographically dispersed ILSSA members, offering opportunities to reframe each moment through a series of brief reflective exercises, readings, offerings, and meditations centered on care and pace—two themes that emerged from the 2019 call-and-response project, “ILSSA Frameworks.” Impractical Labor in Service of the Speculative Arts (ILSSA) is a union for reflective creative practice and publishes participatory projects through the mail. Featuring contributions by Gaynell Meij, Lorenza Perelli, Ashley L. Schick, John Caserta, Barbara Bryn Klare, Maria Epes, and Alex Muck. Presented by Impractical Labor (ILSSA).

    • 11:30am EST – Friendly Fire
      Tributes to Frederick Weston, with Samuel R. Delany, Devin Morris, Svetlana Kitto, and LJ Roberts

      Visual AIDS celebrates the latest installment of their DUETS publication series, featuring the artist and poet Frederick Weston (1946–2020) in dialogue with the esteemed writer Samuel R. Delany. The book features a wide-ranging dialogue, reflecting on Weston and Delany's overlapping histories in Times Square, the deep impact of AIDS on their creative practices, and the ever-changing intersections of race, sex, language, and art. The book launch features tributes to Weston and reflections on his artwork from Samuel R. Delany, Svetlana Kitto, Devin N. Morris, and LJ Roberts. Presented by Visual AIDS.

    • 12–2pm EST ; 24 hour loop – The Stage
      Performances presented by Printed Matter and Noah Klein

      with Sonic Jeel, as they lay, Maral, Kohinoorgasm, and Anna Luisa Petrisko (ALL TIME STOP NOW).