Printed Matter

SCUMB Manifesto
Justine Kurland

Inspired by Valerie Solanas’ iconoclastic feminist tract SCUM (Society for Cutting Up Men) Manifesto, SCUMB introduces us to photographer Justine Kurland’s own uncompromising initiative: the Society for Cutting Up Men’s Books.

Publication SCUMB Manifesto
Artists Justine Kurland
Texts Marina Chao, Renee Gladman, Catherine Lord, Ariana Reines
Publisher Mack Books
Dimensions 24.5 x 32 cm
Pages 282 pages
Paper with 2 paper stocks
Binding Swiss bound paperback
ISBN 978-1-913620-56-1
Available here

This volume presents a collection of collages Kurland created by cutting up and reconfiguring photobooks by male artists, as she went through the process of purging her own library of roughly 150 books by straight white men that have monopolized the photographic canon.

The nature of collage — heterogeneous, pulled apart, shape shifting, disrupted, cyborg, fantasy — has long made it a feminist strategy in life and in art. Kurland’s is a restorative and loving ritual. Each collage is a reclamation of history; a dismemberment of the patriarchy; a gender inversion of the usual terms of possession; and a modest attempt at offsetting a life of income disparity.

While markedly different in style, the defiant female visions pictured in these compositions are a continuation of those depicted in Kurland’s earlier photographic projects Girl Pictures (1997–2002) and Mama Babies (2004–07). Each work in SCUMB sounds an electrifying call for freedom — the freedom to create, to destroy, to imagine, and to reshape our visual and social world.

Includes essays by Marina Chao, Renee Gladman, Catherine Lord, and Ariana Reines. Justine Kurland, known for her utopian photographs of American landscapes and their fringe communities, has spent the better part of the last twenty years on the road. Her recent work contemplates her origins: her apartment in New York City, her hometown of Fulton, New York, and her mother’s home in rural Virginia. In these pages Kurland adds collage to her ongoing commitment of imagining a better world for women. Born in Warsaw, New York, 1969, received her BFA from the School of Visual Arts and her MFA from Yale University. Her work is in the public collections of institutions including the Guggenheim Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, and International Center of Photography, among others.

SCUMB Manifesto (2022) by Justine Kurland published by MACK
Includes two volumes of collages and a booklet of text, housed in a custom-designed box.

Swiss bound paperback with silkscreen printed gauze on spine 18 gatefolds, with 2 paper stocks 48 x 60cm poster inserted into back cover. March 2022
€75 £60 $80 and @MACK_Books instagram

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