Writing / Books

Murdered with Straight Lines: Drawings of Bristol by Garth England
Edited by Jes Fernie and Theresa Bergne, published by Redcliffe Press, April 2016, ISBN 978-1-908326-94-2

This book of drawings by Garth England is part of the Future Perfect programme and was published in April 2016. It is co-edited by Future Perfect curators Jes Fernie and Theresa Bergne.

Garth England was a long-term resident of Hengrove and Knowle-West in south Bristol; Murdered with Straight Lines tells the poignant story of a childhood lived through a world war and its aftermath; the development of Britain's Welfare State and social housing provision; vernacular architecture, indoor toilets and fitted kitchens.

The drawings were discovered by Jo Plimmer, engagement curator of Future Perfect, when she visited Hengrove Lodge as part of the public engagement programme. Garth died in 2014 but he knew of our plans to publish his drawings and gave us his blessing. The title of the book is a reference to the response that his teachers had to his drawings.

The book is designed by Polimekanos and funded by the Hengrove Arts Fund and the Hengrove Neighbourhood Partnership.
Order copies here


Here's what people are saying about it:

'What an amazing project...very timely words about the dismantling of our welfare state. I urge anyone with an interest in the birth of British modernism and the welfare state to buy it. It's a delightful, poignant and salutary reminder of the beauty to be found and cherished in the everyday'.
David Bickle
Director of Design, Exhibitions & Future Plan, Victoria and Albert Museum

'It's an extraordinary social document, so rich'.
Nick de Klerk, architect, London

'It is absolutely gorgeous, I can't get my nose out of it'.
Shumi Bose, architectural writer, tutor and co-curator of the British Pavilion, Architecture Biennale, Venice 2016

'The whole collection is remarkable. It's incredible how he held an almost perfect sense of proportion in his mind - I loved it'.
Tom Grieve, HAT Projects

'An extraordinary book of drawings'
David Knight, DK-CM Architects

'Really fascinating and moving'.
Vicky Richardson, ex-director of Architecture, British Council

'This is great, and moving. Garth England: the milkman who drew Bristol from memory'
John Harris, journalist, writer & critic

'It's not just a book but a whole life'.
Jane Somerville, Bristol resident

'What a legacy for Garth. I'm sure he would have really liked it and be proud to see his name on the front of a published book of his drawings. I could not put it down when I received it this morning. I read it all the way through'.
R Bill Roberts, Hengrove resident




History Rising
Authors: Jes Fernie, Krzysztzof Fijalkowski and Jonathan Watkins, published by onomatopee 2015, ISBN 978-94-91677-30-4

History Rising is a study of museum display by artist Marjolijn Dijkman and curator Jes Fernie. Readers are invited to reconsider their view of history by looking at the mechanisms museums put in place to create a sense of order and hierarchy within their collections.

By distancing museum objects from their support structures History Rising forms a critique of the assumptions that are made about how things are positioned, who chooses to display them, and how the social, political and aesthetic choices that are made in the process dictate the language of display.

The book consists of visual and written essays, an interview between artist and curator, an inventory of works, and documentation of Dijkman's History Rising installations in museums and galleries in the UK. The installations and sculptures propose strange and fantastical juxtapositions, alleviate objects from the weight of history and create links with modernism, the heritage industry and the aesthetics of sci-fi.

More information on the History Rising programme can be viewed here

Design by Salome Schmucki
ISBN 978-94-91677-30-4
Hardcover, 96 pages
size: 285 x 250mm

Order a copy here

Bombyx Mori
Author: Jes Fernie, published by Firstsite, 2012, ISBN 0948252340

Bombyx Mori documents Simon Periton's commission for Firstsite, installed in 2011. The work is a four-part installation made up of three lanterns and a lamppost. Ova, Larva, and Pupa are names the artist has given to the lanterns, and Polaris refers to the lamppost. The lanterns are suspended from the magical arc of trees in the garden; the lamppost sits at the end of this arc, acting as a punctuation mark and meeting point.

The book is made up of an interview with the artist by Jes Fernie and a series of photographs by Thierry Bal and Simon Periton. It is designed by Simon Josebury.

Available to buy here

46 Brooklands Gardens
Author: Jes Fernie, Published by firstsite, 2009, ISBN 978-0-948252-30-3

46 Brooklands Gardens is a photo essay published to celebrate Nathan Coley's temporary sculpture of the same name. Commissioned by firstsite, the work was sited in Jaywick on the Essex coast, in the heart of the Brooklands housing estate.

More information can be found on the project here

Two Minds: Artists and Architects in Collaboration
Editor: Jes Fernie, Published by Black Dog Publishing, 2006, ISBN 1 904772 26 9

Interest and activity in the field of collaborative practice between artists and architects is growing rapidly. Two Minds documents and critiques this activity, focusing on new work by high profile and emerging practitioners such as David Adjaye, Jacque Herzog, Chris Ofili, Pipilotti Rist and Nathan Coley. The book includes two essays focusing on collaborations in Los Angeles and Germany, alongside a series of in depth case studies funded through the RSA's Art for Architecture scheme.

The case studies are written by Jes Fernie and are divided into three sections Groundscapes, Buildings and Things. They cover a range of small scale artist-led projects, landscape schemes and Stirling Prize-winning buildings.

A selection of artists and architects included in Two Minds: Chris Ofili, Herzog & de Meuron, Joep van Lieshout, Thomas Ruff, Mark Dion, Tania Kovats, David Adjaye, Adam Caruso, Diener + Diener, Lisa Fior, Tony Fretton, Alex de Rijke, Kathrin Bohm, Michael Craig-Martin, Antoni Malinowski and Chris Burden.

Available to buy here

Jes Fernie

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