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books

Bob & Bob: The First Five Years 1975–1980

BOB & BOB IS written like a long, meaty press release, which is in keeping with these two artists’ general tactics. I have never seen one of their live performances, but I like the way they tread the thin line between silly-smart and silly-stupid in this book. It tells the who (Francis Shishim and Paul Velick), what (music, performance, public action, drawing, self-advertising, film, photography and whatever else was at hand), and where (California) of the first five years of this team’s collaboration. Texts of songs, interviews and routines are included. Two of the worst art jokes ever put into print came from Bob & Bob’s early school days at the Art Center in Los Angeles: “I went to the dentist to get Matisse fixed”; and “Hey Bob, who’s your favorite Artist?” “Lautrec!” “Well, I think his work is Too-loose!” With a beginning like that, anything is possible.

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