The Miraculous—Episodes 5 and 6
Raphael Rubinstein

The Miraculous by Raphael Rubinstein, will be released September 25th at the New York Art Book Fair. Raphael Rubinstein will be signing copies at the fair on Saturday, September 27th at 4pm.

The Miraculous is available for pre-order here.

This week, we’ll be posting excerpts from the book.


After seven years of brutal dictatorship, during which many citizens have been killed or “disappeared” by the government, an artist decides to celebrate her nation’s return to democracy by constructing a “Parthenon of Books” on one of the capital’s main boulevards. Over the course of seventeen days, she and a team of assistants build a full-scale replica of the famous Greek temple, made not from marble but from copies of books that were banned during the dictatorship. Each of the volumes, which are attached to metal scaffolding, is enclosed in a transparent plastic bag to protect it from the elements. On the day before Christmas, after the structure has been on display for three weeks, the artist invites the public to dismantle it. Climbing up tall ladders that have been provided, and assisted by cranes, men and women enthusiastically help themselves to the previously unavailable books, publications that might have been their owners’ death warrants had they been discovered by the secret police during the so-called dirty war. Strikingly, the number of books required for this ephemeral Parthenon is nearly identical to the number (according to later estimates by human rights groups) of the dictatorship’s victims: 30,000.


Wherever he goes, a young British artist makes a habit of visiting local photo-developing shops. He has discovered that the owners of such establishments hold on to unclaimed orders for years, and that they are usually willing to turn over old prints and negatives to anyone who pays the outstanding charges. In this way he acquires countless shots of strangers on vacation, getting married, clowning around with their pets, standing for group portraits, striking sexy poses. He creates works by selecting the best of these snapshots, choosing them by criteria that reveal his own artistic vision.

[05] Minujín, Marta
[06] Bond, Henry

The Miraculous—Episodes 5 and 6
Previous Articles