• Hero

    Bookshelf: Fascinating collection of enviable books from excellent illustrator Jiro Bevis


Bookshelf: Fascinating collection of books from excellent illustrator Jiro Bevis

Posted by Liv Siddall,

If you check out Jiro’s London flat on this recent edition of The Selby, you’ll see kitsch objects, weird art, ethnic rugs and enviable clutter EVERYwhere. One look at this floor-to-ceiling mass of artistic and hilarious memorabilia was enough that we presumed a very meaty bookshelf. We weren’t wrong. Jiro’s selection is full of rare and exciting tomes that he’s picked up throughout his life. Aside from the way he’s photographed his books – which could be one of the best examples ever, perhaps save Jaimie Warren – what we love about Jiro’s selection is his insightful description for each one.

  • 3

    The Viper’s Fang by Fergus Purcell AKA Fergadelic

The Viper’s Fang by Fergus Purcell AKA Fergadelic

The Viper’s Fang is a small book/zine by iconic London artist Fergadelic, which was published in 2002 by Perks & Mini. This book is especially important to me because, more than any other, it opened my eyes and made me realise that I didn’t need to listen to my teacher’s advice in college and could draw whatever I liked. Studying Graphic Design at St. Martins, there was definitely an emphasis on traditional design, especially typography, which I took on board but there seemed to be far too many rules that I was constantly being told I wasn’t following. When I came across this battered display copy in Magma walking home from college one day everything seemed to make sense; there was someone who was drawing stuff I loved and seemingly making a career out of it. It was incredibly liberating seeing someone referencing Parliament records, Akira comics, old 60s/70s patches and also, importantly, not taking themselves too seriously. My copy that I bought back in 2002 has pretty much completely fallen apart but, thankfully, Fergus recently sent me a pristine copy that I’m very grateful for. Cheers, Fergus!

  • 4

    The Secret Museum of Mankind by ???

The Secret Museum of Mankind by ???

I first discovered this book online a while back and managed to get a copy on eBay. The book is an incredible collection of photos of tribes and cultures from all over the world (from around the early 20th century). Although fascinating to look at, the book very much feels like it was made to be more of a curious, voyeuristic, freak-show book for people in the West to look at and enjoy rather than some kind of educational, National Geographic-esque piece. Even so, it’s still a very interesting book with tonnes of cool imagery.

  • 5

    Nanoo by Yamantaka Eye

Nanoo by Yamantaka Eye

One of my favourite artists, Yamantaka Eye (who is probably more well known as the leader of legendary Japanese band The Boredoms), is one of the finest artists around, with a special knack for creating some of the most amazing, full-on, spazzed-out photo collage pieces. A massive influence on contemporary artists such as Bjorn Copeland (Gore is a very similar book), Misha Hollenbach, Peter Sutherland and Hisham Bharoocha, what makes Eye’s work so interesting for me, like so many of my favourite artists, is the complete freedom and energy his work creates. I’ve been after this book for sooooo long but finally managed to get a copy a few months back. So good.

  • 6

    Raymond Pettibon: The Books 1978-98 by Roberto Ohrt

Raymond Pettibon: The Books 1978-98 by Roberto Ohrt

One of the illustrators I became fascinated with while at college was Raymond Pettibon. I guess like a lot of the artists I like, his connection to music is a big reason for me being a fan. Pettibon got his break through his older brother, Greg Gin, who was the founding member of Black Flag and record label SST and got Pettibon to create the flyers, album artwork and zines for the band and label, which went on to become the iconic visual identity for so much of the Punk/Hardcore scene that was coming from California at the time. This book is epic – it compiles EVERY zine Pettibon made from ’78 to ’98 with easily over a thousand pages of Punk visual gold. I managed to find a copy of this book on eBay; some art dealer living in west London was selling it but rather than sending it in the post she wanted to see in person who was buying it so came all the way over to my house to personally deliver the book. She was some crazy old punk lady dressed head to toe in BOY and chatted to me for about two hours about punk music and art. She then went to the toilet and puked and passed out, which was pretty weird.

  • 7

    Fiorucci The Book by Eve Babitz

Fiorucci The Book by Eve Babitz

For the past few years I’ve gotten heavily into 1970s and 1980s Italian design and fashion – I think partly because there is some element of nostalgia, growing up seeing all this crazy glamorous stuff in movies, but mainly because it’s so fucking good. This book (along with Barbara Radice’s Memphis) has always been on the top of my 1980s Italian design want-list but the copies I kept seeing were going for stupid money. Then one day a friend emailed me out of the blue with a link to Amazon Germany and BINGO! Some i̶d̶i̶o̶t̶ amazing person was selling a copy for €10, which has easily been one of the best €10 I’ve ever spent. The book is filled with beautiful naked 1980s Italian ladies, references to 1950s rock’n’roll, robots and generally just awesome artwork. Everything in the book is so ludicrously camp, sexy, colourful and fun that it’s impossible not to like.

  • 8

    Avant Garde #8: Picasso’s Erotic Gravures

Avant Garde #8: Picasso’s Erotic Gravures

Growing up where I did, in Bournemouth, there wasn’t a great deal of culture to take in. One of the highlights was getting hold of copies of The Beastie Boys’ brilliant Grand Royal magazine, which, more than anything else I saw growing up, informed me about so much music, film and art counter-culture from the 1960s onwards. Along with the legendary ‘Mulling Over the Mullet’ article, one of the pieces I remember most of all was Geoff McFetridge’s excellent article on Herb Lubalin’s Avant Garde magazine from the 60s and 70s. Over the past few years I’ve slowly tried to collect these beautiful pieces of design, with my favourite being Issue 8, which is an issue entirely devoted to erotic engravings from Picasso. Being an illustrator, it’s always fascinating to see ‘real’ artists working in line drawings rather than painting and seeing how ridiculously good they are. I recently visited Dalí’s museum in Catalunya, which had a whole corridor dedicated to his stunning line drawings, which you hardly ever see for some reason.

  • 9

    The Art of Mœbius by Byron Press

The Art of Mœbius by Byron Press

In the grand scheme of things, I’m not particularity good at drawing. I was probably the best in my year at school (especially drawing Garfield and Dragon Ball) but after that, nothing special. This assessment gets reaffirmed every time I look at the work of French comic book artist Jean Giraud, AKA Mœbius. Every single element of Mœbius’ work blows my mind – his line, the composition, the detail, the facial expressions, the energy, the delicateness, the style, everything blows my fucking tiny, useless mind into pieces. For some silly reason, there isn’t anything around that compiles his work in a single book – the closest and best is this one which was published 24 years ago and is completely out of print and, sadly, now goes for stupid money online. Mœbius passed away last year; hopefully in the near future a new book compiling his work, including everything from the past 24 years too, will be made. The man was an absolute genius.

  • Jiro-1

    Jiro’s Bookshelf

  • 11

    Jiro’s Bookshelf


Posted by Liv Siddall

Liv joined It’s Nice That as an intern in 2011 and worked across online, print, events and latterly Features Editor before leaving in May 2015.

Most Recent: Bookshelf View Archive

  1. Come-de-bouchony-itsnicethat-pienkowski-list

    We’re pretty big fans of French graphic designer Côme de Bouchony in the It’s Nice That studio – we’ve covered his work again and again and again on the site. So it comes as no great surprise that underneath all of that sharp, reference-laden work lies a Bookshelf bulging with first-rate printed matter. The ten most influential people in magazine design, illustrator Jan Pieńkowski and one very long Italian sausage all have their place. Roll up, roll up!

  2. David-luraschi-bookshelf-coveritsnicethat-list

    Paris-based photographer David Luraschi is as adept at photographing undulating hills as he is sprawling nudes, and he brings his unique perspective to both. You might know him best for his series of photographs of people spotted on the streets of Paris photographed from behind – a project that started on his Instagram and has since been splashed about all over the internet.

  3. Charlotte-mei-list

    Now I’m not saying that the Bookshelf feature should act as a barometer of how much we want to be friends with the people we feature, but if you can’t identify niche interests in a kindred spirit by way of their favourite publications, when the bloody hell can you?

  4. Parterre_de_rois_list

    Biannual magazine Paterre de Rois seamlessly weaves contemporary culture with relevant masterpieces from the past. The latest instalment, titled Rebellion, is a hot mix of punchy, full-bleed images, engaging copy and an assortment of paper textures. Editors Molly Molloy (fashion designer for Marni womenswear) and Gianni Tozzi (creative director for FutureBrand Milan) are passionate about print, and here Molly selects five books that proudly sit on their bookshelf. Informing their work past and present, these publications have provided guidance, inspiration and visual delight in one form or another for the pair.

  5. Studio-toogood-bookshelf-itsnicethat-list

    From furniture design and a fashion line to a series of installations, Faye Toogood is a material aficionado. Her interior and environmental design work is founded in artisanship and “the irregularity of the chosen material,” meaning that no corner of the creative industries has been left untouched by her influence. We caught up with Faye to find out which five books hold the greatest sway on her bookshelf, and her inspirations – from Yohji Yamamoto to Barbara Hepworth – are evident throughout her expansive practice.

  6. Sh_books-itsnicethat-list-2

    From googly-eyed palm trees oozing California cool to a cheeky yellow thumbs up sign against a backdrop of a bright American flag, artist and designer Steven Harrington has been wafting LA sunshine our way via his cartoonish characters for years now. His work is a staple reference for anybody making Americana-influenced illustration, and spans huge hand-screened prints to limited-edition skateboards, all of which is doused in his sunny, funny style.

  7. Laurabradley-bookshelf-itsnicethat-list

    There are few corners of the internet which remain sacred nowadays, but anothermag.com, the online counterpart to Dazed ’s sister publication AnOther Magazine, feels something like a tiny jewel-bedecked cave in the midst of a vast wasteland. Hosting a curated collection of insights into the lives of legendary artists and craftspeople, alongside photographic series, handwritten letters and aspects of the fashion world which might otherwise go unnoticed, the site is a rare gem, and at its helm is editor Laura Bradley.

  8. Ng_inside_2bookshelf-itsnicethat-list

    London-based fashion brand Eley Kishimoto was founded in 1992 by Japanese-born Wakako Kishimoto and her Welsh husband Mark Eley, and has since earned a global reputation for bold print design and collaborations with the likes of Louis Vuitton, Alexander McQueen and Jil Sander. We were lucky enough to pin down co-founder Wakako to find out which publications have most inspired and influenced her on her trajectory thus far. Her response? A beautiful old Japanese/English dictionary, a Jean-Charles de Castelbajac-clad Snoopy, and an old old issue of the National Geographic and all of the treasures inside it.

  9. Alex-tieghi-walker-itsnicethat-list

    When we invited Alex Tieghi-Walker to contribute to the Bookshelf feature we didn’t realise he was in possession of what basically constitutes a library. A looming wall of books, teeming with colour, insight and inspiration. Look at it! It’s enormous!

  10. Book-shelf-list

    If you’ve been for a walk in Hoxton, east London recently there’s a good chance you’ve come across One Good Deed Today, a recently-opened shop selling a curated collection of lifestyle and homeware objects. The objects on sale are lovely, but the approach taken by the owners Romain and Alev is even more so – the products are chosen based on how and where they are made, making it a very responsible collection, and five percent of all proceeds from the store are donated to a charity chosen by the customer at the time of purchase. Nice, huh?

  11. Spuren_cover_00-int-list

    Brighten the Corners (the name comes from the Pavement album!) is a design studio split in two – it’s made up of Frank Philippin and Billy Kiosoglou and based in both London and Odenwald, Germany – so it makes sense that it has two bookshelves to show for it, too. The studio’s portfolio of work includes some very impressive stuff for the likes of Anish Kapoor, Frieze, the British Council and the Department of Education, and with fingers in such diverse pies we were keen to see the books Billy and Frank were drawing on for inspiration. So here they are!

  12. Allbook_spines-teal-triggs-int

    What a treat we have for you today! The one and only Teal Triggs, professor at London’s Royal College of Art and all-knowing figure in everything concerned with print, graphic design history, self-publishing and feminism, has spent some time digging five of the most influential and inspiring books she owns out of her bottomless collection to share with us.

  13. Laserigraphie_cover-int-list

    If you aren’t already familiar with Atelier Bingo then I can’t think of any better way to introduce their joyous work than to have them present five of their favourite publications, in their own words. The atelier consists of Maxime Prou and Adèle Favreau, a creative couple living in an impossibly beautiful barn in the French countryside where they experiment with illustration, graphic design, surface and textile design on a daily basis to create an endless array of utterly unique and distinctive works for clients including Vogue, The Plant, Wanderlust and Wrap magazine. But also just for fun, because why wouldn’t they?