Artists’ Book Collection


Manly Library has been active for more than half a century and is today the focus of many innovative cultural programs serving our community, including the commencement in 2011 of an Artists' Book collection.

Manly Library Artists’ Book Award 2017

The 2017 acquisitions were announced by judges Ben Rak and Michael Hedger on opening night, Thurs 30 March at the Creative Space:

  • Guy Begbie | 'Brisbane Dérive' (Route 9) | 2016 | $1500 | Wales, UK
  • Gregory Day & Jiri Tibor Novak | ‘A Smile at Arm's Length’ | 2016 | $2800 | VIC
  • Nicci Haynes | ‘…in my drawing costume…’ | 2017 | $70 | ACT
  • Gita Mammen | ‘Feverfew’ | 2015 | $1650 | VIC
  • Alan Purdom | ‘Silence’ | 2017 | $950 | NSW
  • Bronwyn Rees and Elizabeth Banfield | ‘A Different Path’ | 2015 | $1200 | VIC
  • Michaela Stoneman | ‘The Menagerie’ | 2016 | $900 | NZ

Any artists’ book created within the past two years was eligible for entry to the Manly Library Artists’ Book Award 2017. The award is acquisitive. Works were selected and judged by Ben Rak and Dr Michael Hedger.

Ben Rak is an artist and independent curator holding a BFA in printmaking and a MFA from the UNSW Art & Design. He is co-founder and director of Throwdown Press, lectures at the University of New South Wales Art & Design, and whose work explores the relationships between cultural symbols and consumer culture.

Dr Michael Hedger is the Director Manly Art Gallery and Museum. Dr Hedger has long been an arts advocate, with previous incarnations as Director of the Campbelltown Arts Centre, Education Officer at the Newcastle Region Art and, art critic for The Newcastle Herald. He has a PhD from the UNSW Art & Design with a thesis on Land Art in the United States.           

For further information contact Wendy Ford at or 02 9976 1729.

The Collection

An Artists' Book collection in Manly Library reflects in a challenging and thought provoking way the long tradition of enquiry, curiosity and innovation that books signify when placed in the hands of artists. Artists’ books are naturals for libraries, stressing the creative potential of the book medium and restating the long standing relationship between the book and the library.

The biennial Artists' Book Award has provided Manly Library with the opportunity to develop an artists’ book collection and in so doing also contributes to the development and awareness of artists’ books as an art form.

The collection began in 2011 with the acquisitions from the inaugural Artists' Book Award. The entries and acquisitions were selected by judges; Akky van Ogtrop - Art Historian and President of the Print Council of Australia and Therese Kenyon, former Director Manly Art Gallery & Museum. The 2013 Award was selected and judged by; Noreen Grahame - Director of the Centre for the Artist Book and Monica Oppen - writer, printmaker, photographer and bookbinder. Entries were received from around the world, marking this as a globally recognized event.

Each acquired book is available to be viewed in the library and will be digitally available via the library website for unlimited access supporting programming of many kinds: workshops, lectures, exhibits etc.

Manly Library Artists' Book Award 2015

Slideshow of 91 entries to the 2015 Award...........

The 2015 Award was selected and judged by Helen Cole - Senior Librarian and Coordinator of the Australian Library of Art, Queensland Memory at the State Library of Queensland and Steven Miller - Head of the Art Gallery of NSW Research Library and Archive.

Manly Library Artists’ Book Award 2015 acquisitions:

  • 'Chance' by Helen Malone and Jack Oudyn | 2014 | $500
  • 'According to Plan' by Rob Kovitz | 2014 | $65
  • 'The One Who Stopped' by Caren Florance | 2014 | $350
  • 'Country' by Bronwyn Rees | 2014 | $1200
  • 'The Book of Asylum' by Bernard Appassamy | 2013 | $1500
  • 'Collected Dead Letters, Volume 2 by Elizabeth Banfield | 2014 | $900
  • 'A Journey from One Reality to Another' by Mark Wingrave | 2014 | $35
  • 'Living Water: the river hid, logbook, codex' by Annique Goldenberg | 2014 | $750
  • 'Assimilated Museum' by Deanna Hitti | 2015 | $2200

Manly Library Artists’ Book Award 2013 acquisitions:

  • Danielle Creenaune (NSW) for 'Unsent Letters 1' - digital pigment print and kawasa paper, wood intaglio on somerset satin.
  • Anne-Maree Hunter (NSW) for 'Suburban Democracy' - cloth covered book, photography, laser prints, obsolete map end papers & hand stamping.
  • Georgia Thorpe (VIC) for 'In Praise of Shadows / Ties that Bind' - altered Japanese ledger book, linen thread, woodcut prints and engravings, kozo & joss paper, indigo dye.
  • Sandra Winkworth (NSW) for 'Hot Pie Portland' - inkjet print on tracing and butters papers, linen thread, Japanese stab binding.
  • Nicci Haynes (ACT) for 'The Articulate Body' - drawing with ink, wax, sewing and photo collage.
  • Deanna Hitti (VIC) for 'The Country Justice: containing the practice of the justices of the peace out of their - inkjet onto 40gsm stock, hardbound cover, 1020 pages.
  • Lyn Ashby (VIC) for 'Ideo(t) Grammatica' - archival digital papers, boards.

Manly Library Artists’ Book Award 2011 acquisitions:

  • Deidre Brollo (NSW) for her work ‘Untitled’ – Employing archival pigment prints, the work uses specific historical events and their aftermath to examine relationships of people to place.
  • Angela Cavalieri (VIC) for ‘Certe Cosse non si dicono’ - Concertina artist book, hand printed linocut, brush and ink.
  • Gwen Harrison and Sue Anderson (NSW) for ‘Someone Somebody Run II’ - Multiplate photocollograph and collagraph intaglio prints. The work investigates the circuitous administration of refugees by Governments in which their decisions result in brutality and injustice to exposed and displaced peoples.
  • Clyde McGill (VIC) for ‘Atlas: Strongman’ - A hand stitched chapbook of 24 pages of letterpress, digital images, drawings, stencils and text.
  • Lise Melhorn-Boe (North Bay, Ontario, Canada) for ‘Body map’ - Gidée-printed on ink-press fine art matte paper. A look at how environmental chemicals can affect our health.
  • Janis Nedela (WA) for ‘Palindrome No. 39 – MA/AM’- The text of a palindrome inscribed in one direction on one, in the reverse direction on the other.
  • Alan Purdom (NSW) for ‘Homage to Homage’ - A celebration of the influence of Josef Albers of Bauhaus fame.
  • Barbara Schmelzer (NSW) for ‘A Collection of Australian animals’- The book explores the phenomenon that many Australians see their country’s wild animals often only in zoos.