An historical account of Ben Kinmont's bookstore, from the structure's origin, the events and publications it has generated. Kinmont also demonstrates how this activity has contributed to his independence as an artist vis-à-vis the commercial art circuit.
Ben Kinmont, Bookseller is an art work entitled “Sometimes a nicer sculpture is to be able to provide a living for your family”. The project comes out of a need to survive and as an experiment on how to operate as an artist independent of the commercial gallery system. It is the hardest project I have attempted to date, especially as its meaning changes during my daily practice as an artist and my daily labors as a bookseller. As a contribution to my family's living expenses, it has been successful. As a means to independence from the speculative art market, it has provided a healthy and much-needed home in which to pursue the issues which matter to me in my art practice.
Published on the occasion of the exhibition “Ben Kinmont – Open by Chance & Appointment”, Cabinet du livre d'artiste, Université Rennes II, France, from March 10 to April 28, 2016.
Ben Kinmont (born 1963 in Burlington, Vermont) is an artist, publisher, and antiquarian bookseller living in Sebastopol, California. His work is concerned with the value structures surrounding an art practice and what happens when that practice is displaced into a non-art space.