Sunday, May 4, 2014

New Letterpress Artist Book: In the Wake of the Dream

One never knows when a project will demand to be born. I woke up the morning of March 31 remembering five consecutive dreams and quickly wrote them down. I read them over. They seemed nearly complete to me. But if I had just written them from my imagination, how could I revisit them, how would I revise them, make them more satisfying as stories? Both dreaming and waking can produce creative work and I wanted to address that concept as well. The word "wake" had several connotations to me, and I liked that I could get a visual if I turned to boats. Upon researching the wakes of boats, I found a diagram that included a term: transverse, the wave movement across the wake. How excellent was that? I was ready to start production. I set metal type. Then began to print.

Using muslin gave the book a soft feel, like bedsheets. I discovered that when you turn the pages they are absolutely silent. Over time the edges will continue to fray, like our memories do. I didn't want it to look new and remembered I had some discarded book covers that Lisa Kokin had given me after she had used the insides of the books for other artworks (like her pulped self-help rocks). This means that the book covers are several different colors. I tried to vary front and back colors as well, altering them the way I altered my own text.

I wanted to make some prints and an envelope: the dreams allude to them. Suddenly I had many pieces that needed to be kept together. I thought maybe I'd add a tie on the outside for a closure, but I didn't like the look, it was too fussy, and it didn't really do much. My spouse, who has been hearing me talk about books for decades, suggested a slipcase. Yes. Of course. (He was the one who developed the slot and tab book structure that I used to bind the muslin. It is the perfect structure for cloth. Very helpful to have a brain extension so close by…)

So, here it is. In the Wake of the Dream. Also posted on my website.








1 comment:

Sharmon Davidson said...

Fantastically brilliant -I love it, both the idea and its source as well as the finished product!