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What is a Catalog Raisonné?

A Catalog Raisonné is one of the most important documents that can be produced about an artist's work. It represents the entirety of their work. Few artists have one. Normally, it takes a team of researchers and many years to complete a catalog raisonné. And it can not be completed until the artist passes away. A catalog raisonné includes details about the art: how it was done, concepts, skills, mood, critical views, stories, photos, history, dates, title, and anything remarkable. 

It can be used to reliably identify the work of the artist by third parties. This can be fraught with legal implications. Many experts refuse to put a catalog raisonné together for just this reason. Stephen Shooster aka Shoosty® makes the pages of these books as he goes. It is a part of his process, keeping things meticulously organized.

As a comprehensive listing with an index, a catalog raisonné becomes an invaluable source for an art collector or expert. Including an artist's work in a catalog raisonné can have a considerable effect on the work's market value.

I don't just prepare these books, I document the art, set the layout, spend days on each artist statement for the year, print them with my printer, bind them by hand with a perfect-bound machine, apply a spline, and lastly cut the pages to perfection. These books are not just catalogs but works of art. I constantly try to make them better. 

Shoosty - February 2023

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