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Nikita Gale, IN A DREAM YOU CLIMB THE STAIRS (Chisenhale Book Series, Hurtwood Press) is Nikita Gale's first artist’s book. Created to accompany Gale’s first solo European institutional show at Chisenhale Gallery – an extraordinary installation that explored complex themes using Toni Morrison’s The Song of Solomon as a starting point and sculpted (on a grand scale) in concrete, metal, light and sound.


The challenge was to try and capture something of what it was like to experience the installation and also express Gale’s multi-layered and expansive practice in the book. I really wanted to reflect Gale’s practice in the book so that it isn’t just a book about Gale but a book with something of the essence of Gale’s practice in it. There are lots of ways the book aims to achieve this; Gale is very interested in how you can activate attention in different ways within a space so we explored this within the space of the book traversing multiple papers, typographic elements, textures, uses of negative space, image processing, mark making and the physical construction of the book itself employing short pages, throw outs and gatefolds.

It’s a book that asks you to spend time with it and all the different spaces and tenses it occupies – on each visit you should discover something new. There isn’t an element that isn’t considered and the content has a beauty, depth of emotion and intellect that comes directly from Gale. The careful editing and written contributions also help to build a delicate web. In many ways the book is a dream thats asks you climb through it to find myriad meanings.

Artist: Nikita Gale
Edited by: Zoe Whitley & Amy Jones
Contributors: Barbara Kruger, Hilton Als, P Staff, Bénédicte Boisseron 
A Chisenhale Book Published by Hurtwood press

All images courtesy of Hurtwood Press

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