Painting Machine is an artist's book designed by acclaimed London studio A Practice for Everyday Life. The book’s unique design and structure reflect aspects of Guy Shoham’s practice, moreover, it is an artwork in itself.
There is a cyclical element to Shoham’s work – often one series evolves into and overlaps with another – and his paintings play with such tropes as real vs illusory, high culture vs low and tromple l'oeil. In response, Painting Machine explores the idea of beginning and end, and is made in two sections: one containing artworks, the other texts. The two sections are bound onto a cloth hardback cover, with the sections sitting on opposite sides of the inside cover. The artwork section appears on contrasting backgrounds of different types, from street photos to veneer samples and digitally manipulated watercolours made especially for this publication, all of which encourage the questioning of what constitutes the work. While pages are unnumbered and works are seemingly organised arbitrarily, the background groupings hint both at the paintings' chronology and inspiration.