Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Arched Book: Getting Hung

Sometime last summer I was asked and eagerly agreed to participate in a collage show at eyedrum, a mixed-use art space in ghetto central...not far from me. It's a rambunctious spot: chain link fence, parking lot clotted with pot holes, perennial political shifts from visual art gallery to music venue, film viewing station. Energetic, hip, young. Everything I'm not, so I'm very glad to be there.

And I am there! Astonishing effort, egged on by show curator Mandie Mitchell, who I knew when she was a punk undergrad at Atlanta College of Art. Last week was a bear. I've got a new freelance gig grading papers for an online writing program. Last week was my first week of grading actual papers, setting them to the rubric and creating templated comments and a time management system that would get them done in the required 72 hours. OMFG. I cancelled everything I could, except the mammogram and the collage project.

The trick for me was to deliver a piece that was a book, because that's what I do, that could hang on a wall. (Anything sitting on a pedestal would likely be stolen.) Fortunately, I've been taking a book arts class at the Atlanta Printmakers Studio from book artist, Rory Golden. He'd created or adapted a structure that would allow him to ship a book in the smallest container but hang in the largest space. The solution to this is an accordion structure.

Rory calls his book an 'arched' book because it literally arches over the space where it hangs.
It collapses into an object the size of its pages.
In my case, I worked on pages folded to 7 by 7 inches. Each page is folded and loops are threaded into the spines of each page.
Then, send a tape through the loops. One tape is as wide as the loops and fits pretty snuggly. This tape is folded between the pages. Then another, much longer, ribbon (or two) is sent over the tape. This is much looser and longer.

These ribbons run from one point/wall to the other and serve as the 'clothes' line, or track for the pages.

A point of felicity at eyedrum came when we hung the structure in a corner and shadows appeared.

This piece, called "Miss Pearl Fooled Me" is not finished.
Pages are made with mulberry paper, a new surface for me and wonderful!
More on that later.
Gotta go prep for a telephone interview. Still job hunting.

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