image source: edition fink


Published as volume 1 in the paperback series fink twice / 112 illustrations in image section, 819 illustrations in index, paperback / The series fink twice was awarded as one of the Most Beautiful Swiss Books 2014 and received an Honorary Appreciation in the competition “Most Beautiful Books from All Over the World” in 2015

Publisher Note

With the publication “Art Handling in Oblivion” by Rob van Leijsen, edition fink is starting a paperback series with reprints. Printed in one colour on uniform paper and in a handy form, out-of-print art books – which do not necessarily come from the publisher's own programme – will be formally reduced and reinterpreted to make them available again.
The publication “Art Handling in Oblivion” by Rob van Leijsen is his final thesis in the master’s course Design Spaces & Communication at Head in Geneva from 2012. He has carefully collected artifacts that were stolen from their place of origin through art theft and looting as a picture archive. From Napoleon Bonaparte's extensive raids, through those of the Third Reich, to the looting of the National Museum in Baghdad during the Second Iraq War in 2003, the book is divided into chapters describing different aspects of each looting, and then provides comprehensive evidence of the looting using a variety of materials such as correspondence, documentary photographs, inventory and confiscation lists, including details of the artworks.
The heart of the book is the actual picture archive in the middle of the volume. In five horizontal columns, it lists the various robbery lists parallel to each other. In this way, it becomes visible how the looting documented in this “Catalogue of Conspiracy, Theft, Possession and Inheritance” (as the author calls it in the subtitle) condenses into a repetitive, ominous historical event.

Exhibition Catalogue

Art Handling in Oblivion

— fink twice 501

Rob van Leijsen

Release Place Zurich, Switzerland
Release Date 2014
Artist: Rob van Leijsen
Printrun 1000
ISBN-13: 978-3-03746-501-1
Dimensions 14.5 × 20.0 cm
Pages 384
Technique Offset Printing