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ARTICLE ARCHIVES


Summer 2005

WEB EXCLUSIVE GALLERY:
Sampling—A Showcase of Book Arts

The Sampling department of our Summer 2005 issue is filled with a selection of artist’s books. While artist’s books take many forms, some of which are distant from the rigid rectangular leafed shape we traditionally associate with books, they are narrative. Often illustrated without words, the works convey emotions, thoughts, and stories much like traditional books. We have chosen the work of Allison Cooke Brown, Jette Clover, Katherine D. Crone, Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord, Sharon McCartney, and Gail Smuda to show the multitude of forms the book can take.

Here we expand on our theme and show more work by our featured artists.

Gail Smuda
Katherine D. Crone
Allison Cooke Brown
Jette Clover
Sharon McCartney
Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord

 Gail Smuda

Smuda seeks to reflect a female perspective in her artist’s books, connecting to seamstresses of past eras such as her grandmother through her layering of fabric, stitching, and knitting. The use of found objects and fabrics allows Smuda to make connections on an intimate and personal scale, and the resulting aesthetic of her work speaks to accumulation and appreciation of the history of objects. The nontraditional construction of her books reinterprets the reader’s interaction with the “pages.”

Hung Out to Dry (open), 2002; wood, miniature plastic clothes pins, fabric printed with cut out dolls, fiber fill, linen thread, rubber stamps, and vellum.; 5" x 4 1/2" x 2" (closed). Parts that may look like folded laundry (at least that was the intent) are actually little books that have a word on each page that relates to maintaining clothing such as wash, iron, fold, etc. Photo: Charley Freiberg.

Hung Out to Dry (closed), 2002; wood, miniature plastic clothes pins, fabric printed with cut out dolls, fiber fill, linen thread, rubber stamps, and vellum;5" x 4 1/2" x 2" (closed). Photo: Charley Freiberg.

A Matter of Sanity, 2003; found object (book cloth covered box containing book), fabric and thread; 4" x 6 1/2" x 8" (closed). Each "page" represents the fabric styles of the era in which each woman lived and is a small crazy quilt.  

A larger view of the image below may be found in the Summer 2005 issue.

 

Do I Care Enough?, 2003; book cloth–covered box, wool, embroidery floss; 4" x 6 1/2" x 8". In this work, each page is an individually sewn piece of vintage cloth with its own envelope. Photo: Charley Freiberg.

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Katherine D. Crone

Crone’s books are objects of contemplation, created using the computer to crop, tone, and print images directly onto her materials. The vertically hung strips that make up the pages of her “book” intentionally allow the printed image to recede like the folds of a screen. Crone is chiefly concerned with memories, and her materials speak to the temporal nature she feels memory possesses.

A Year of Accabonac Harbor, 2001; wood, paper, linen thread, acrylic paint, digitally altered photograph, archival ink-jet printing, bookbinding; 8 1/2" x 24" x 3 1/2". Photo: D. James Dee.

A Year of Accabonac Harbor (detail), 2001; wood, paper, linen thread, acrylic paint, digitally altered photograph, archival ink-jet printing, bookbinding; 8 1/2" x 24" x 3 1/2". Photo: D. James Dee.   

A larger view of the image below may be found in the Summer 2005 issue.

Katherine D. Crone, Tokyo Sunday, 2004; digitally altered photograph printed on silk organza, linen thread, acrylic-plastic box; 8 3/4" x 23 1/2" x 4 3/4". This work features a panoramic image of the aquarium designed by Taniguchi, which Crone photographed while visiting Tokyo in 1994. Photo: D. James Dee.

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Allison Cooke Brown

Looking to the domestic environment to find her materials, Brown works with fiber in order to discuss her perspective as a woman.

Afternoon Tea, 2004; box (covered with paste paper, lined with commercial rag paper, with letterpress label, bone-clasp closure, and tea-stained vellum cover page) containing 120 used and emptied tea bags printed with photocopy-lithography excerpts from the artist’s journal; 6 3/4" x 7 1/2" x 2 3/4". Collection of Yale University. Photo: Dean Powell.

Afternoon Tea (detail), 2004; 6 3/4" x 7 1/2" x 2 3/4". Collection of Yale University. Photo: Dean Powell.

Larger views of the two images below may be found in the Summer 2005 issue.

 

Rainy Days #2 (with detail), 2004; accordion-folded book form with painted tulle covering top of metal window-screen pages, plastic screen and thread for text; 6" x 26" x 7" (open). In this piece Brown explores the window screen as a textile, ripping and shredding it methodically to transform it from “ordinary utilitarian substance” to an ephemeral exploration of light and shadow. Photo: Dean Powell.

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Jette Clover

Clover rusts fabric using metal objects she found buried when her house was being rebuilt, as well as the nails she used to board up her windows during recent hurricanes. The resulting images are then layered with her mark-making to celebrate the combination of organic process and material. Through her rusting and printing processes, Clover creates tally-like notations, increasing the visual connection of her work to books or other written records.

Pages II, 2005; cotton, netting, cheesecloth, rusting, monoprinting, screen printing, hand and machine stitching; 29" x 13".

Pages IV, 2005; cotton, netting, cheesecloth, rusting, monoprinting, screen printing, hand and machine stitching; 21" x 23".

Larger views of the two images below may be found in the Summer 2005 issue.

 

Pages III (with detail), 2005; cotton, netting, cheesecloth; rusting, monoprinting, screen printing, hand and machine stitching; 26" x 18".

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Sharon McCartney

McCartney uses a book format to feature commemorative vignettes of personal experiences, which she creates with birds, wildflowers, and insects. The layering of materials is integral to McCartney’s work; she incorporates found objects that possess historical character.

A Constant Sound of Birds, 2004; watercolor, drawing, gelatin prints, photocopy transfers, vintage and decorative papers, teabags, hand and machine stitching, feathers, found objects, lace, found poetry, bone clasp, altered vintage book; 5" x 4" x 1 1/2". Photo: Marcia Ciro.

The Other Day, Awakened, 2004; watercolor, drawing, gelatin prints, photocopy transfers, vintage and decorative papers, teabags, hand and machine stitching, dried mushroom, found objects, bone clasp, altered vintage book with interior accordion fold; 5 3/4" x 3 3/4" x 3/4". Photo: Marcia Ciro.  

Larger views of the two images below may be found in the Summer 2005 issue.

 

Never Really Began Indeed (closed), 2005; watercolor, drawing, photocopy transfer, vintage papers, teabags, stamps, hand and machine stitching, gelatin prints, acrylic, pastel, butterfly wings; 3 3/4” x 3 3/4” x 1/2". Exploring connections between ornament and organic regeneration, this piece focuses on the minute detail and fragility found in natural organisms and the patina of time that McCartney conveys by incorporating antique objects. Photos: John Polak Photography.

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Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord

Gaylord describes a “reading” of her books as a contemplative experience that engenders reverence and even spirituality connected to gathering and appreciating natural objects. She feels a connection to her gathered materials and interprets landscape through partially camouflaged natural objects. In this series Gaylord places her books in much the same format in which she finds the materials she uses.

Spirit Book #40: Patient Protection, 2004; huro-fiber paper from South Africa, Bhutanese paper, wire, seed beads, mulberry branches, binder’s board; 9” x 17” x 9 1/2”.

Larger views of the two images below may be found in the Summer 2005 issue.

 

Spirit Book #43: Renewed Wisdom (with detail), 2004; Mexican amatyl paper, Bhutanese paper, myrrh beads, glass beads, copper beads, thread, lilac and blackberry roots, binder’s board; 13 1/2” x 18 1/4” x 12”. Photo by the artist.

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This gallery first appeared
online in:

Summer 2005

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