“The end of art is not the end.” as Ad Reinhardt once said.
The book by Stefan Sulzer tells the story of a visit by the author’s mother to the Dia Art Foundation in Beacon, NY, to see Ryman’s white paintings on display. Once there, the mother felt so offended by the elegant, simplicity of Ryman’s paintings, that she slowly, but in a focused manner let her hand slide across one of the paintings. Stefan Sulzer combines this story with statements and information about Ryman’s work to create a selective and poetic narration of the analytic and emotional reception of art.
The design of the book borrows strategies imployed by Ryman in his own work. The excessive use of white space builds a subtle and hermetic object, which is connected to a statement from within the text, “Mallarmé talked about the white of the page as a void that gives relief from the intensity signified by the blackness of print.”
The first 17 copies are published as a special edition, numbered, signed and touched by the mother.