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"One of the best art books of 2020"—Roberta Smith, The New York Times

"Incredible...a new scriptorium of art"—Jerry Saltz, New York 

"One of the 10 best coffee-table books for the art-museum obsessed."—Christopher Knight, The Los Angeles Times

"One of the 20 best art books of 2020."—The Brooklyn Rail

 "Sets a high bar that, realistically speaking, may stand unequaled for years to come...a visually stunning exemplar of what a special collections publication can be."—Diane Dias De Fazio, RBM: Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage


Modern Artifacts features all 18 installments of the eponymous series that appeared in issues of Esopus—several of which are sold out—from 2006 to 2019. The “Modern Artifacts” series featured items reproduced in facsimile from MoMA’s extraordinary collection—ranging from documentation related to never-before-realized exhibitions to pages from the Museum’s first guest book—curated and introduced by MoMA’s Chief of Archives, Library, and Research Collections Michelle Elligott.

Six contemporary artists—Mary Ellen Carroll, Rhea Karam, Mary Lum, Clifford Owen, Michael Rakowitz, and Paul Ramirez Jonas—have contributed projects related to a particular aspect of the archives. These contributions—many incorporating removable inserts—appear throughout the book, which also includes an introductory essay by Elligott and a foreword by Esopus editor Tod Lippy. 

Modern Artifacts
Published by Esopus Books
354 pages, 235 color illustrations
ISBN: 9780989911771
USD $60.00  



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