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The Interpretation Matters Handbook

The Interpretation Matters Handbook is all about the writing produced by art galleries for public information. This book humorously challenges your preconceived ideas and interrogates accepted notions of the art language found in galleries. It wonders if simpler language can be used to communicate better – because, good writing matters.


“Interesting, opinionated and provocative” – Simon Stephens, Editor Museums Journal
“Refreshing and provocative” – Jerwood Foundation
“Her opinions on what makes a text label clear, informative and engaging are accurate, and her advice would be useful at any exhibition planning meeting”- Arts Professional magazine

Between occasional rants, deconstructions of words and phrases, brilliant images, visitor voxpops, excellent contributions from experts in the field, along with the odd impulse to re-write in bold felt tip, there are serious discussions here about written interpretation practice. If you’re a regular gallery visitor, work in the visual arts, study art or curating, then this is the book for you.

This invaluable guide to all things artspeak contains interviews and features from top arts professionals, including:

  • Artists Richard Wilson, David Blandy and Emily Speed, who share their experiences of being written about by galleries.

  • Dr Penelope Curtis explaining her thinking behind the “Walk Through British Art” at Tate Britain – with responses to Tate by three arts professionals.

  • Renowned curators Lewis Biggs, Omar Kholeif and Gerardo Mosquera, who reveal their approaches to interpretation for exhibitions they curate around the world.

  • Simon Martin, Artistic Director of Pallant House Gallery in Chichester, who explains their approach.

  • Dr Abigail Harrison Moore and Amanda Phillips, who detail their collaboration between students at Leeds University and Leeds Art Gallery.

  • Artists Luborimov-Easton, who defend their use of art language – with a response by artist and writer Alistair Gentry.

  • Writer and critic Dany Louise, who shares why she thinks good writing really matters, and explores the different facets of a complex subject.

Review by Jennifer Locke for Arts Professional here.

£15 per copy + postage and packing (1st Class Royal Mail recorded delivery)

 Order you copy by emailing  talk@danylouise. co.uk