New New Testament
New New Testament documents Paul Chan’s monumental project Volumes, a series of more than 1,000 paintings made out of dismantled book covers and the texts that complement each painting. “I began destroying books to paint on them, on weekends,” Chan says. “Each cover seemed to call for different things; some expressionistic, others naturalistic, still others plainly monochrome. I never read the books I tore apart.” A selection of Volumes premiered at Documenta 13 in Kassel, Germany, in 2012, but New New Testament is the first time all the paintings have been united in a single book. Each painting evokes how books and works of art now exist in our digitally interconnected world chiefly as objects of search. The texts that accompany each painting are composed with bewildering combinations of phrases and lexical marks that reflect how historical distinctions between art, media and celebrity culture are rapidly dissolving.