The Rise and Fall of Books


Friday, Nov. 10 at 7:30pm
Washington U./Brown

Like many scholars in this increasingly digitized age, Buzz Spector spends a lot of time thinking about the fate of print culture. Unlike most of us, however, Spector transforms his thoughts about the future of the book into works of art. Spector, a professor of art at Washington University, is also an internationally renowned “book artist” whose installations, sculptures, photographs, and drawings have been exhibited in many museums and galleries in the U.S. and overseas. Spector's work often contains books, both as subjects and objects, and “The Rise and Fall of Books” follows Spector during one month in the winter of 2007, as he teaches a class of Cornell University art students how to use books as art-making material and to think about the values that reading and collecting books contribute to society. The film also traces the emotional journey that led Spector to this unique form of art expression.

57 min.

Directed by

Jake Gorst

Film Category

Art & Architecture Spotlight Leon & Mary Strauss Documentary Spotlight Show-Me Cinema


With subject Spector and Garth Reese, head of curation at Washington University Libraries.

Shown with

Chris Francis: Shoes

Chris Francis: Shoes

Virginia Lee Hunter

An artist-in-residence at LA’s Craft and Folk Art Museum navigates the worlds of commerce and art, attempting to reconcile being both an artist and shoe designer without toning down his outlandish and often whimsical work.

With director Hunter.
15 min.

Joe Blaustein and the Flood of Florence

Joe Blaustein and the Flood of Florence

Alan Griswold

A photographer recalls the strange confluence of events that led him to the city the night the floodwaters rose to historic and devastating levels in Florence.

With director Griswold.
14 min.