What an honour this is! This week we have Jeff Hamada, founder of Booooooom, one of the most inspirational art and design blogs out there. As well as running this absolute mothership of a creative resource, Jeff also creates his own spectacular artwork,including some really great murals which you can see over on his site. One of the great things about seeing Jeff’s top five books is thinking about how it all intertwines.
His books filled me with a strange, double-edged feeling of intense jealousy and a serious feeling of wanting to get creative immediately, which I hope you feel too. Here he is: “I have two bookshelves in my apartment, a big one and a small one. This is a photo of the small one. It’s closer to my desk and I keep most of my favourite books on it so I can flip through them when I’m thinking about ideas.”
Flora Hanitijo: Pleasure of Slowness
In 2008 I posted Flora’s photography on my blog and a couple months later she sent me this beautiful little book as a thank-you. It was the first book I ever received as a gift in the mail. A year or so after that she was selected by PDN 30 as one of their 30 photographers to watch.
I’ve never posted Tom Friedman’s work on Booooooom but he remains one of my favourite artists. I think when you’re at art school you feel this pressure to like certain work, or at least appreciate particular artists. It wasn’t until after I graduated that I really started to find work that I identified with, humorous work that I actually understood.
Norton Juster and Jules Feiffer: The Phantom Tollbooth
“A slavish concern for the composition of words is the sign of a bankrupt intellect.” A character called The Humbug says that. There are specific parts of this book that I think about all the time – this book is maybe what sparked my interest in text-based art.
Gary Trinh: Beginner’s Spirit
I recently went to Melbourne and met up with photographer Garry Trinh for the first time. Four years ago I asked him to be in the first art show I ever curated (I still have two enormous photos by him, from that show, hanging in my apartment). He is my favourite photographer. He gave me this book when we met up, it’s an edition of one.
Miranda July: Learning to Love You More
This book was one of my main inspirations to start Booooooom. Getting people to be excited about making and creating is something I think about everyday. It’s tricky to ask something the right way so that people will not only understand what you want but actually get involved. Both of those things are important. I’m still learning.