Our collaboration with On Kawara began in 1995 and continued beyond his death in 2014, as in 2017, in accordance with his wishes, we will produce "I READ" post-mortem.
Also, during more than twenty years of collaboration, we have had the honour of producing and publishing all of the artist's major works, which are : "ONE MILLION YEARS", "I GOT UP", "I WENT", "I MET," and "I READ".
Today, we are pleased to present them to you.
Jeffrey Weiss, who did the retrospective of On Kawara at Guggenheim in 2015
One Million Years
16.2 x 11.5 x 9.2 cm
2 books, each 14.4 cm x 10.5 cm, in a slipcase
Edition of 60 numbered and signed copies (from 01/60 to 60/60), 500 numbered copies (from 061 to 560) and 10 artist's proofs (from 561 to 570). Produced and published by Éditions Micheline Szwajcer & Michèle Didier in 1999
I GOT UP
51.2 x 19.2 x 25.8 cm
12 volumes, each 21 x 14.8 cm, in a grey wooden slipcase
Edition of 90 numbered and signed copies and 10 artist's proofs. Produced and published by mfc-michèle didier in 2008
57.3 x 19.2 x 25.8 cm
12 volumes, each 21 x 14.8 cm, in a natural wooden slipcase
Edition of 90 numbered and signed copies and 10 artist's proofs. Produced and published by mfc-michèle didier in 2007
Trilogy, I GOT UP, I WENT, I MET
2008, 2007, 2004
36 books, each 21 x 14.8 cm, in three wooden slipcase (grey, natural, black)
Edition of 25 numbered and signed copies. Produced and published by mfc-michèle didier
37 × 41 × 31.5 cm
6 volumes, each 28.6 x 23.1 x 5.1 cm, in a natural wooden box
Limited edition of 50 numbered copies and 10 H.C. Produced by One Million Years Foundation and mfc-michèle didier in 2017. Published by mfc-michèle didier in 2017
... "It was during my first trip to Japan at On Kawara's home, and after seeing that there were no more books in his Fujinomiya's house than in the New York apartment, that he offered to take me on a tour of bookstores. He seemed to be familiar with the places. But something struck me instantly. About three feet away from each other, there were people standing facing the shelves, reading the book they were holding in their hands. I realized that these people were consulting the books from beginning to end and, when the reading was over, they were placing them carefully back on the shelves. Then I observed On Kawara, who also grabbed one or two pamphlets, stood like the other visitors, read diligently, closed the book and put it back on the shelf. We visited several bookstores, where he repeated the same ritual. I bought a few books, simply because of the aesthetic interest of their graphics, while On Kawara always left empty-handed. When we returned home, I asked him to explain to me what I had observed.
Kawara told me, in a half-peremptory, half-puckish tone, that it was totally useless to buy and pile up books. Since his youth, having little means, he had got used to reading very quickly and memorizing everything, so that he didn't have to buy books. He had kept this habit and continued to perfect his erudition in this way. So Kawara was a Data all along. But I also understood that if learning by heart was first of all an act of economic and political resistance, it was also a fight against time and oblivion..."