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Artbook @ MoMA PS1 Bookstore
22-25 Jackson Ave (at 46th Ave.)
Long Island City, NY 11101
(718) 433-1088
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Mon, Thurs, Fri, Sun: 12–6 PM
Sat: 12–8 PM 

Artbook @ Hauser & Wirth Bookstore
917 East 3rd St. Los Angeles, CA 90013
(213) 988-7413
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Curtis Cuffie
(Blank Forms)

Signed by contributors Ciaran Finlayson, Katy Abel, and Tom Warren.

Click here to read an excerpt of the book published on Blank Forms, written by contributor Ciarán Finlayson

Signed on the occasion of launching ‘Curtis Cuffie,’ published by Blank Forms, on Saturday Oct 28, 2023 at Artbook @ MoMA PS1 Bookstore.

A panel of photographers Katy Abel, Tom Warren, and art historian and curator Bonnie Yochelson discussed and honored the late artist Curtis Cuffie’s legacy.

There was also a screening of an excerpt from a documentary made by the late photographer Margaret Morton, and a screening of a VHS recording of Cuffie by his partner, Katy Abel. 


Katy Abel is a Cooper Square resident who took hundreds of snapshots of Curtis Cuffie's art as it was seen on the streets.

Tom Warren is an American photographer. Warren experienced the 1980s in New York and captured it photographically. At that time he founded several project spaces and exhibited regularly. He was a significant part of the New York art scene and gained notoriety for his artistic repurposing of vacant spaces in the East Village. With his portraits of the people and life of New York, he created memories and documents of these times.

Bonnie Yochelson is an art historian and curator specializing in photography. Yochelson has written numerous books about New York photographers, organized exhibitions at art museums, history museums and commercial and non-profit galleries, and was on the faculty of the MFA Department of Photography, Video and Related Media at the School of Visual Arts from 1988 to 2017.

Margaret Morton (1948-2020) was a gifted photographer who chronicled the lives and ingenuity of homeless people. In 1989, Morton began documenting the improvised housing created by people living in Manhattan’s Tompkins Square Park. In the decades that followed, she built a remarkable record of how people live and survive at the edge of a society that overlooks them. Her photographs have appeared in numerous publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Atlantic, and her works have been shown in dozens of solo and group exhibitions.

The first book on the art-world legend who installed his ephemeral sculptures on the streets of New York’s East Village

Curtis Cuffie (1955–2002) was an artist from Harstville, South Carolina, who found local notoriety in the 1990s for the thrilling and surprising way he adorned the streets of New York’s East Village. His on-the-spot sculptures were woven into fences, hung from walls and sprawled along the Bowery and Cooper Square.
Making use of whatever he could find to fashion works that were imaginative and real, Cuffie took the street for all it could provide: materials, an audience, a rhythm and a sense of the strange unexpectedness of public life.

He was unhoused for stretches of his life, and his sculptures were viewed near to his outdoor quarters. Cuffie’s art was often removed by city sanitation, but new work would spring up soon after. Though little of his art survives today, a trove of photographs documenting it keeps him in the present.

This publication, the first on Cuffie, seeks to honor the artist and rectify his omission by going backward to recover that which has been left behind. It places Cuffie’s own photographs and those of his companion Katy Abel alongside pictures that photographers Margaret Morton and Tom Warren took of Cuffie and his art on the streets.

Edited by Scott Portnoy, Robert Snowden, Ciarán Finlayson. Text by Alan W. Moore, Ciarán Finlayson, Curtis Cuffie. Photography by Katy Abel, Carol Thompson, Curtis Cuffie, Margaret Morton, Tom Warren

Blank Forms Editions, 2023

Paperback | 8 x 10.75 in. | 93 pgs  | 75 bw.