Codex Seraphinianus
Luigi Serafini / Abbeville Press / 1983出版

An encyclopedia of an imaginary world akin to ours but both more beautiful and less intelligible that forces the reader/viewer to re-think the methods by which we try to make sense of things. An encyclopedia is a synoptic version of the order by which we attempt to see the world. Such books reflect a "scientific" method which has ordered sight especially since the enlightenment but back to the taxonomies of Aristotle. This volume alludes to our desire to place sensation into category but offers, tacitly, other criteria of analogy and relation that undo the habits of too tutored thought. PS A 1st edition is now up to 500-700$.
The book is a piece of conceptual art. You open it and are confronted with what looks to be an profusely illustrated encyclopedia of things you have never before seen. The illustrations are inspired and colorful works done in colored pencil. The text is in a made-up language. You are left to decide what this all means, so it is also a puzzle book.



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