AMBruno Artists: Anne Rook

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Anne Rook


The making of books, at first a small if significant part of my work, has become an increasingly important aspect of my practice.

I make books as a single object or as multiples. They are a means of evolving and playing with ideas and they derive from or feed into other works. They are digitally printed and I am involved in all aspects of the making of the books. This allows for flexibility of shape and format and if some books follow a traditional format, others can be seen as sculptural objects to be handled, leafed through or spread out. I like the idea of intimacy implied in this handling. All texts and images are mine, although in The Cupboard Altar, An Inventory of Self-veneration for AMBruno's Lists etc collection, I worked with found photographs, some already published in newspapers and magazines. I have described but not reproduced the private photographs.


In collaboration with Graham Rook, I have made three digital animations. These are randomly self-renewing pieces that are designed to run forever. The first was shown as part of exhibitions in Kyoto and in Itami in Japan; the second, Spontaneous Cities, was shown in Sheffield in 2011.

The third, Apple Story was created for AMBruno's Book Act project in Leeds 2014, where a short extract was shown. The idea for Apple Story evolved from the book Apple Labels 1999-2010, A Repertory. A diary of collecting fruit labels, it is transformed in the film by means of repetition and accumulation into a comment on globalization of the food industry.

Anne Rook

My work is concept-based and includes installations, drawings, digital prints and small sculptures as well as books.

In 2000, I undertook a riverside commission for the Norwich Gallery and Norwich School of Art and Design (East International 2000). In 2009, I won the Jury prize, Artists' Book, Bank Sreet Arts, Sheffield.

My artists’ books are held in several collections including in the National Art Library (V&A), Tate Britain, Saison Poetry Library, London, Yale Centre for British Art, Bibliothèque Forney, Paris, and Chelsea College of Arts.

Born and educated in Paris, I initially trained as an art historian in London and taught for several years in London and Cambridge. I graduated from the Byam Shaw School of Art in 1992 and Chelsea College of Art (MA) in 2001.

Apple Story by Anne Rook

Anne Rook, Apple Story (2014)
Still from digital animation. Running time variable.

The other Words by Anne Rook

Anne Rook
The other Words

by Anne Rook

Anne Rook, Blackboards (2014)
Linocut, printed on heavy-weight watercolour paper £85

The other Words, which is part of AMBruno's words collection, is a book about annotations I made while reading Marcel Proust’s A la Recherche du Temps Perdu over a period of 16 months, marks that often defaced the printed page or obscured the text. These notes have been collected in a scrapbook, a record of reading.

Blackboards, which is part of AMBruno's Stills collection of limited edition prints, is based on a reconstructed memory of a still from the beginning of ‘The Blackboard’ by Iranian film-maker Samira Makhmalbaf. Itinerant teachers, fleeing from endless contradictory conflicts, carry the tools of their interrupted trade. The blackboards, crawling up a mountain, are knowledge, its transmission, its rejection, its erasing.

Apple Labels 1999-2010, A Repertory by Anne Rook

Anne Rook, Apple Labels 1999-2010, A Repertory (2010)
Edition of 30.
Inkjet prints on heavyweight drawing paper. Soft cover.
12 pages. Glued and sewn binding. 21 x 14.8 cm.

The Cupboard Altar, An Inventory of Self-veneration  
   by Anne Rook

Anne Rook, The Cupboard Altar, An Inventory of Self-veneration (2014)
Edition of 6. Inkjet prints on heavyweight drawing paper.
1 book of 28 pages, glued and sewn binding, 15.2 x 21.2 cm.
17 loose photographs in folder, 15.2 x 21.2 cm. Watercolour paper slipcase 17 x 24.5 cm.

The Cupboard Altar, An Inventory of Self-veneration 
 by Anne Rook

Anne Rook
The Cupboard Altar
An Inventory of Self-veneration

The Cupboard Altar, an Inventory to Self-veneration, which is part of AMBruno's Lists etc. collection, is an inventory of photographs and documents found in a cupboard. They revealed the self-veneration and self-absorption of their owner. Photographs and documents are listed in chronological order and according to type. The book plays on the idea of self-absorption and on our own voyeuristic inclinations.

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