Book Art Lives: Annie Bodelier

At some point in life it feels like we are constantly losing people. Sometimes the loss of someone we don't know affects us more than other losses, sometimes that loss just taps into our accumulated grief. Sometimes it just makes us think.

Random internet searches turn up information we may wish to know or not. Annie Bodelier was a book artist who sent me a card in 2005, a little book and a very warm letter dated 19 December 2010, and who was participating in an online workshop making 100 books from Making Handmade Books. She was serious about book art, and she made those 100 books, completing the task in August of 2013. I'm sure she made many more before and after that project. I only recently learned that she had died on July 8, 2014, after a long battle with cancer. Although she had written to me, I did not know her. I did not know she was ill. Her blog is still online. Her books from the workshop are here

In honor of her memory and the memory of her work, here are pictures of the handmade book she sent me. She put herself into the work; it was personal and meaningful to her. In the letter, she wrote, "The one I send you is filled with images from my visual journals and pictures of some books I've made. I hope you'll enjoy this gift from my heart to yours and I wish you a Merry Christmas and all the best for the year to come."

"From one of my journals. Title: Conversation Failed"

"Flagbook. Title: Joy"

"Artist Book — Title: Connections. 
By folding over/under you can change the "sequence."

"The maximum number of pages you can look at is 4."

"From journal #16
Title: the Race Is Over Now"

(Connections, image #3)
"I've used: drawing, stamping, collage, rubbing, sewing, transfers."

"My 'junk journal'
Exploring Gwen Diehn's book: The Decorated Journal
Subject: Layers"

"Exploring stenciling in one of my journals
Title: Zonder Woorden=Without Words"

"Found poetry in one of my journals.
Title: The Emperor's Clothes (from the Fairy Tale)"

"Doodle (zentangle)
Accordion Book
March 2009: A Page A Day"

"From journal #17
Exploring eraser carving
Title: Do Hearts Fly?"

I believe that she also made the artist stamp on the left.

Now that fall semester has ended, I've been going through my studio,
trying to figure out what I want.
Fortuitously I found her card. 
Yes, she was very interested in creating artist stamps.

A lively spirit.


Dymphie said…
Thank you so much for this post. Annie was a gifted book artist, always inspiring others with her unique work and generously sharing her knowledge. She will be missed.
How terribly sad. I've had some online interactions with Annie over the years, both through blogs and Flickr. She always seemed so exuberant, passionate and kind. I imagine she must've been quite an inspirational instructor--as colorful in life as her artwork suggested. Thanks for this memorial post about her.
Dit is een mooi eerbetoon aan iemand die van boeken hield en een ware kunstenares was.
Alisa said…
Thank you, Dymphie, Paper Chipmunk, and Marleen, for adding to the tribute.

Marleen's comment for English speakers: This is a nice tribute to someone who loved books and was a true artist.
Anneke said…
Alisa, thank you so much for your kind words. I'm Anneke, Annie's daughter. I've kept her blog online since her passing, and I still love to visit it now and then. My mom has told me about you in the past, and I know that she wrote to you and that she loved your work. I just read your post about her and I wanted to thank you for you kind words. My mom was my best friend and I miss her more than I ever thought possible, but seeing all the people whose lives she touched in various ways and reading all the wonderful things that have been said about her truly helps. Thank you so much & God bless! Anneke.
Alisa said…
Dear Anneke,
You are welcome. Thank you for writing—I sensed there was a family who loved her dearly, but did not know to whom to direct my condolences: I am so sorry for your loss.
My thoughts are with you.
Anneke said…
Thank you so much, Alisa. I will definitely share this with my father and my brother. My mom and I were very close and our family as a whole has always been close as well, and of course we all miss her terribly. But we all take so much comfort in seeing how many people were so positively affected by her. Her spirit and her energy were limitless. Thank you again for your wonderful post and your kind words, it really means a lot. God bless! Anneke.
Anonymous said…
As one creative soul to another,Annie is surely missed. I have spend time with Annie at a workshop she taught. She is/was warm and a super creative soul. We planned to have lunch together to think up new ideas for bookbinding, sadly it never happened because she got ill again. I love your book Alisa,I made a lot of the ideas in there. Saskia
Alisa said…
Thanks for sharing your memories.
And I'm glad you like the book.