Marc Then Marks: A New Art Book Boutique

By

Published December 10, 2010

 

Ever wonder what Willem de Kooning was really thinking? With a purchase of Collected Writings, a miniature edition of the artist’s diaristic prose, some of the mystery will be revealed. Love the work of Roy Lichtenstein? A mere $3,500 will have you outfitted in a never-worn silk shirt by the artist. Housed in the gallery’s 19th-century fire station on 22nd Street, “The Poster Shop” is Matthew Marks Gallery’s first sale of its kind. On offer is a selection of items from the dealer’s personal archive and gallery inventory. Since the gallery’s inception nearly 20 years ago, Marks has produced dozens of publications and special editions. These sought-after achival books—along with signed vintage rock posters, exhibition prints, records and other objects, created mostly by gallery artists—will be available for $5,000 and under, with most items falling in the $100 range. From Santa stools by Philippe Starck to a DVD of Fischli and Weiss’ silent video Busi (Kitty) of a cat drinking milk (priced the same amount as “a good men’s dress shirt,” as per the artists’ request), “The Poster Shop” is the art lover’s solution to holiday shopping. Sure, Mom might have never heard of Robert Adams, but for $5 at the bargain table, she’ll think you put time and money into selecting a rare exhibition catalogue just for her.

The idea for the sale came about “very last minute,” says the project’s organizer Ed Spurr, but the impetus was that Marks wanted the gallery’s arsenal of collectibles see the light of day. When asked how long the sale will go on, Spurr shrugged, replying, “I guess we’ll just see how it goes.” The laid-back approach to the sale is a nice contrast to other high-gloss, blue-chip boutiques. In fact, the vibe is so cozy in this brick-walled pop-up shop, you half expect the dealer himself to come out in slippers with a hot toddy to help you with your acquisitions.


THE POSTER SHOP OPENS TO THE PUBLIC TONIGHT. MATTHEW MARKS IS LOCATED AT 523 WEST 22ND ST.