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

Bookshelf

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.

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    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!

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    Jiro’s Bookshelf

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    Jiro’s Bookshelf

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Posted by Liv Siddall

Liv joined It’s Nice That as an intern in 2011 and is now one of our editors. She oversees itsnicethat.com and has a particular interest in illustration, photography and music videos. She is also a regular guest and sometime host on our Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Bookshelf View Archive

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    I get the same feeling receiving the zip file from weekly Bookshelf contributors as I did when I used to babysit as a teenager and casually rifle through people’s drawers (by the way, don’t do that). Witnessing the telling spines residing on people’s shelves will always be intriguing, and Holly’s top five is no exception. The editor in chief of i-D has an absolute terasure trove of some of the glossiest, coffee table-worthy tomes money can buy. What’s brilliant about her selection is just how telling it is of her true passion for the world she has been submerged in since beginning as an intern there many moons ago, and of why i-D is so consistently brilliant with her at the helm.

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    The amount of times we’ve checked out new work from Joe Cruz at It’s Nice That and just sat around with our heads in our hands, gobsmacked at how simple and effortlessly beautiful his work is. Not just that, but his style is probably one of the most easily recognised of the editorial illustrators we chat about here. We love him so much that we even asked him to illustrate a piece in our own magazine, Printed Pages. Here’s Joe on the artists, books and African fashion that have influenced his work over the years. Take it away, Joe!

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    Louise Benson from POST Magazine has curated a selection of books from her bookshelf for us! Since we first wrote about POST in 2011, the digital magazine dedicated to showcasing cutting-edge creativity has spectacularly grown, and has become a very intriguing and forward-thinking online platform. The site explores the blurring boundaries between art, fashion, science and technology, and in the past they have published iPad editions of their magazines. For an afternoon, Associate Editor Louise pulled herself out of the digital realm and spent some time with her physical bookshelf. On to Louise for her list of all time favourites.

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    Reel off a list of highly-publicised albums recently and chances are that their artwork was designed by creative director and artist, Leif Podhajsky. From Bonobo to Mount Kimbie and Kelis to Tame Impala, Leif’s psychedelic-inspired designs turn these albums from listenable into incredibly desirable in a matter of seconds. Drawing inspiration from the mystic, the kaleidoscopic, the mysterious and the wild, Leif’s site and blog are a treasure trove of beautiful, technicolour work to marvel at. You can almost smell the sandalwood. Here he is on his top five most inspirational tomes, check out that National Geographic collection!

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    Can you believe Mr Bingo has never done a Bookshelf for us? We’ve been posting about his work, reading his vulgar Tweets and laughing at his books for years and never thought to ask him. Well, maybe we did ask him and he said no – that sounds more like it. In between Tweeting at Alexa Chung, writing alarmingly insulting hate mail and illustrating for big companies, Bingo is a seemingly avid collector of weird-as-shit books. Are titles such as Dancing with Cats and Self Defence for Women up your street? Then read on dear friend…

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    Sometimes at It’s Nice That we like to dip our timid toes into the world of fashion, and what better way to do so than to approach a big dog at one of the best online fashion resources known to mankind? Leon St-Amour is the Creative Director of Mr Porter, the luxury menswear site that – much like us – likes to make people happy each and every day. Where we do it with featuring people’s work, Mr Porter do it with a very special knack for delivering their goods in the most luxurious and hand-clappingly exciting way possible, usually involving a very beautiful white shopping bag being hand-delivered to sartorially-minded folk all over the globe.

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    Wahey! We love booze and books in equal measures here at It’s Nice That, so it’s our pleasure to introduce Simon Lyle and his five favourite books to you today. Simon is the editor of Hot Rum Cow, the printed publication containing the hottest news on all things booze – from cocktails to beers and from bartenders to barflies, this magazine’s got it all. Here he is on which publications have inspired him along the way to becoming editor of Hot Rum Cow

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    Our weekly Bookshelf feature must be fairly nerve-wracking stuff for book artists like Owen Gildersleeve, whose recurring presence on the walls of It’s Nice That is about as unquestioned as the changing of the seasons. How do you represent your own book collection when half of your practice is about creating images for new ones? Fortunately Owen’s passed our test with flying colours, a 10 out of 10 for his five publications that have not only informed and educated him, but make excellent eye candy for us book-lovers too. And if you keep your eyes peeled, you might just spot a very exciting new one all of his own, due to hit bookshelves very soon…

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    We’ve long been enormous fans of Ally Capellino, for the timeless bags and vessels she creates that seem to adhere to and stand up to everyday problems of a “doing” person who rides bicycles, carries a lot of books, or just needs a sturdy bag as a tool rather than something to show off. Saying that, everyone I know who’s got an Ally Capellino bag definitely shows it off, and it’s normally so beautiful that no one really minds anyway.

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    This week’s beautiful bookshelf selection comes from Jasmine Raznahan, editor-in-chief and creative director of Noon magazine, a stunning new publication which we wrote about a little while back and whose spellbinding pages have held our concentration through many lunch breaks. Jasmine’s brilliant bookshelf contains all sorts of beautifully bound publications, including a lovely looking book about an old lady and her cat, and a very striking study of geometric shapes. Jasmine is also the Director of ARPA, and her impeccable graphic designer’s eye certainly shines through in her choices. Here she on some of her absolute favourite books…

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    People who champion the smaller, artier, cuter, brighter, funnier publications there are flopping around all over the world are our kinds of people. Katja Chernova is one of those, so who better to ask to recommend us some publications for our weekly Bookshelf feature? Katja is the founder of Ti Pi Tin, a small but powerful art book shop in London’s weird cousin, Dalston. Ti Pi Tin stocks small publications, zines, and basically anything printed and bound and sometimes unnecessary that you inexplicably just really, really want to own. Here she is on her personal top five reads…

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    If you’ve been dying to know which publications inspire a fashion photographer as prolific as Matthew Donaldson then your prayers have been answered. He’s very kindly told us about five books from his rather beautiful shelves that have informed his work over the years. And what work! Matthew’s photographed for the likes of luxurious big dogs Vogue, Wallpaper*, W and GQ and has also shot slick and witty advertising campaigns for many clients including Sony, Harvey Nichols, Skoda, Coca Cola, Louis Vuitton, Harrods, Missoni, Kvadrat and Marks and Spencer. Ever wonder what a man like Matthew carries around in his blazer pocket? Read on to find out…

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    I knew the Bookshelf of Present & Correct would be beautiful, but I was in no way prepared for this. Each of Neal’s books makes me so jealous that I’m working out a way to break into his house and raid his shelves for more beauties. From rare Ken Garland books to old publications dedicated to stitching typography, Neal’s got it all, and it’s beautifully photographed too. Wait a minute, who exactly is Neal? He told us in his own words.