“We Right The Book” IV

“We Right The Book” IV
Making Scrolls…The Book That Rolls…

I am honored to serve as Artist in Residence at Verdugo Hill High School in Tujunga,  CA (Los Angeles) for a group of 42 Senior English class Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) students.

Our project is entitled, “We Right the Book“, and is supported by an Artist in residence grant from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.  I am working with the students on a series of bookmaking projects during weekly workshops held right in the classroom from September – December, 2017. The students are also assisting with bookmaking workshops held for the community at-large in the Sunland-Tujunga Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library.

The project is designed to offer participating students an outlet for feelings, thoughts, hopes and dreams related to their upcoming transition out of high school, and into the next epoch of their lives.

We started with the basics: Accordion Fold Books, created from folding equidistant sections of material.    We moved from there to the fun, kinetic and versatile Flag Book Structure, then on to theatre-like Tunnel Books.

To change it up, we then created scrolls…the ancient, original portable (as opposed to stories written on cave walls…) books and rolled either horizontally or vertically. We attached bright tagboard sheets to wooden dowels, marbleized our own paper and used it, as well as other collage materials, rubber stamping, hole punched designs and more to our pieces. The results were….beautiful.

Summer dreaming?

Focussed, and private.

She punched out the star shapes from black paper, and glued them on…and it looks like we are seeing through to the night sky…

Beautiful use of framing the marbled paper…

“Winter Wonderland”…no matter that we are in Southern California…imagination rules!

“Never stop doing what you love….”

Another use of black framing…

This is the secret note of encouragement...”   what an inspiring proclamation…

This is what it is all about.

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Faces of France: The Panthéon

 Faces of France: The Panthéon

In the neighborhood of the Panthéon

 in the Latin Quarter of Paris,

there is a strange alignment of carved heads sitting on benches…

as if they had just escaped their sentinel posts on buildings, above doorways.

Simply sitting there.

There was a placard nearby, a seemingly long and wordy explanation, but even though I speak and can somewhat read French, I did not understand  why the heads were there, except perhaps to surprise, and delight.

 I know there must be much more behind it then this, but surprise and delight was my response to this discovery, on our first, jet-lagged afternoon in Paris.

It was our first trip “back” in ten years, and we were ready for surprise and delight. Of course, Paris never disappoints.  That would be impossible.

With all of that liberté, égalité, fraternité, 

the magnificent architecture,

les homages to illustrious philosophers,

and the appropriation, engagement with, and use of ancient public spaces…there is more then enough to gasp at, delight in, and contemplate at any given moment.

Jet lag or no…Paris is a garden of earthy delights, a moveable feast, and a city so breathtakingly beautiful, so moving, so eternal yet transformative  that even wartime folly could not destroy it. Paris lives and continues to create, to give and to nourish our hearts and souls and spirits.

I think now we need its gifts more then ever, this place of repose, yet excitement and incredible vibrancy amidst its foreverness. I am not sure the world could survive without Paris and the fantasy and dreams it represents, its extensive place in history, and its rich out pouring of continual treasures.

If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a movable feast.” – Ernest Hemingwayto a friend, 1950

“Scroll Away” at the Fowler Museum At UCLA

“Scroll Away” at the Fowler Museum At UCLA

The current  exhibition at the Fowler Museum at UCLA, “How to Make the Universe Right” features large scroll paintings from Vietnam and China. This show and artworks were the inspiration for a drop-in family workshop for all ages.

“Examples in the exhibition include vibrantly colored and intricately embroidered ritual robes and headdresses worn by priests, and a spectacular set of eighteen scrolls of elaborately painted deities, made for those engaged in the higher levels of initiation.”–Fowler Museum

Participants were invited to create their very own scrolls, using paper they marbled themselves if they so chose.

With a large turn-out, we had a wonderful time creating together in the Fowler’s beautiful central courtyard!

The lovely and talented Allison, currently interning at The Fowler, supported our workshop!

Our beautiful materials, laid out enticingly, under the tress in the courtyard.

Examples of marbled papers.

Participants digging into the goodies!

This young man resides in London, and was in Los Angeles for business. He said our workshop was the perfect activity for relaxing during his trip!

This young couple, all smiles, did not realize they were working in complementary colors! (Purple and yellow).  If you look closely, you can see that she is the inspiration for the “tiger rider” he drew on his scroll!

This (obviously!) artist made a unique and very imaginative scroll, including marbled papers that folded out from the structure.

She insisted on gifting the piece to me. I am honored, and will use it as a sample for subsequent workshops.  Her painted coveralls were also an inspiration!

A three-generational family group joined us and all the children created

beautiful scrolls, supported by parents and grandparents!

Creating creates joy…

and it is wonderful to have family support.

What could be better on a beautiful day in late summer, with the school year starting soon, and the whole academic year ahead….then to create a scroll in good company, in the courtyard of the inspirational Fowler Museum?

We hope you plan a visit soon.
Maybe there will be a hands-on artmaking workshop free to the public going on…check it out!

 

Le Papier I

Le Papier I

Side stab binding…repurposed materials…emptying the mind…instinctual movement

Faber’s Book, repurposed cardboard, repurposed paper, hemp cord, tissue, pencils, matchbook

Fixing Broken Hearts, repurposed cardboard, repurposed paper, hemp cord, tag, print media

Full“, repurposed cardboard, repurposed paper, hemp cord

2014

 

“If You Remember, I’ll Remember” III

“If You Remember, I’ll Remember” III

If You Remember, I’ll Remember”  an innovative group exhibition about cultural/historical memory  is currently at The Block Museum of Art At Northwestern University .

“If You Remember, I’ll Remember is an invitation to reflect on the past while contemplating the present through works of art exploring themes of love, mourning, war, relocation, internment, resistance, and civil rights in 19th and 20th century North America. This exhibition includes works by artists Kristine Aono (b. 1960), Shan Goshorn (b. 1957), Samantha Hill (b. 1974), McCallum & Tarry (active 1998-2013), Dario Robleto (b. 1972), and Marie Watt (b. 1967). By engaging with historic documents, photographs, sound recordings, oral histories and objects of material culture drawn from institutional and informal archives, these artists highlight individuals’ stories or make connections to the their own histories. Some make explicit links to events across time periods, while in others these associations are implicit.”

The work of transdisciplinary artist Samantha Hill:

‘Since 2009, Chicago artist Samantha Hill has been developing the Kinship Project Archive, a repository comprised of oral histories and more than 3,000 objects, including vintage photographs and scrapbooks mostly from African-American families. The items are obtained primarily through Hill’s in-depth engagement with various U.S. communities, particularly in Anchorage, Alaska, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Chicago. Her installation “Herbarium”(2015 to 2017) was first presented at the Hyde Park Art Center in 2015 and has been revised and expanded for this exhibition. The work was inspired by a gift of artifacts from a Hyde Park family dating from 1839 to 1940 and includes newspaper clippings, letters and other documents related to family history and political events in the South. Hill’s work also features items related to the early of history of Birmingham’s 16th Street Baptist Church, which became a nationally charged site in 1963 when members of the Ku Klux Klan bombed the building, killing four little girls.” —https://news.northwestern.edu/stories/2017/01/if-you-remember-ill-remember-poses-timely-questions/

“If You Remember, I’ll Remember” I

“If You Remember, I’ll Remember” I

If You Remember, I’ll Remember”  an innovative group exhibition about cultural/historical memory  is currently at The Block Museum of Art At Northwestern University .

“If You Remember, I’ll Remember is an invitation to reflect on the past while contemplating the present through works of art exploring themes of love, mourning, war, relocation, internment, resistance, and civil rights in 19th and 20th century North America. This exhibition includes works by artists Kristine Aono (b. 1960), Shan Goshorn (b. 1957), Samantha Hill (b. 1974), McCallum & Tarry (active 1998-2013), Dario Robleto (b. 1972), and Marie Watt (b. 1967). By engaging with historic documents, photographs, sound recordings, oral histories and objects of material culture drawn from institutional and informal archives, these artists highlight individuals’ stories or make connections to the their own histories. Some make explicit links to events across time periods, while in others these associations are implicit.”

I was struck (no pun intended…the piece features nails)

by Kristine Aono‘s stunning installation:

Nails, documents, wood, styrofoam, burlap sacks
11 x 47 feet
Installation at the Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art, Evanston, Illinois
February 4 – June 18, 2017
curated by Janet Dees
“Deru Kugi Wa Utareru is a Japanese proverb which can be translated as “The nail that sticks up the farthest takes the most pounding.” When I came across this saying, it helped to explain how 120,313 people of Japanese ancestry, 2/3 of whom were American citizens, could so obediently submit to being incarcerated during WWII. The proverb and its translation wrap around the room. The walls are wallpapered with copies of letters from my maternal grandfather and documents of testimony by former internees given before congress. Stippled into the walls is a grid of 120.313 holes, one for each person interned. Rusted nails are pounded into the grid, forming a large American flag on the main wall. The remaining nails would fill the walls. Visitors are encouraged to add nails to the wall in memory of or to honor those who were incarcerated.”    —Kristine Aono
 

Patrons are encouraged to become participants in the creation of the piece.

The immensity  yet subtlety of the piece makes it challenging to photograph…

I found the combination of writing overlaid by nail emerging from it, both of which require manual actions to effect, particularly compelling and evocative, in an almost silent way, like a memorial.

We must not forget.

Chromatic Interactions III

Chromatic Interactions III

CHAPTERS: Book Arts in Southern California” presented at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in LA.

I was commissioned to create an interactive book.

I created “Chromatic Interactions”

Chromatic Interactions is a flag book is comprised of an accordion spine, front and back covers, and flag pages which are pockets with windows cut out of them to reveal both front and back of the cards that visitor participants wrote and drew on, then inserted into the pockets.

 The front and back covers had windows cut out of them that correlated with the windows cut out of the flag pocket pages.

People’s responses, offerings, additions and interactions surprised me…they really did pause and participate.

This is one of my favorites.

May we all have…Joy…in the morning, in the night…all the time.

As Much As Possible.

JOY

Chromatic Interactions II

Chromatic Interactions II

CHAPTERS: Book Arts in Southern California” presented at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in LA.

I was commissioned to create an interactive book.

I created “Chromatic Interactions”

Chromatic Interactions is a flag book is comprised of an accordion spine, front and back covers, and flag pages which are pockets with windows cut out of them to reveal both front and back of the cards that visitor participants wrote and drew on, then inserted into the pockets.

It was eye-opening to see how people responded, what they wrote and drew, and how the book transformed over time.

I am exploring this phenom through a series of posts, now that the show is over. The CAFAM was kind enough to save and give to me many of the file cards added to the book by the participants who interacted with the piece…keeping it in a continual state of transformation.

The front and back covers had windows cut out of them that correlated with the windows cut out of the flag pocket pages.

Someone had to remove the cards so that new ones could be inserted. I am still not sure if this was the Museum staff, or the patron participants themselves. Here is some of what they wrote….

“STRIKE while the iron is hot”

“Speak Out

Stay Calm

Carry On”

“How can we stop the political train wreck?”

“It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. *activism….”

“people say don’t hate anything except for hatred”

This one “speaks” for itself.

Actually, they all do.

People

Speak

Out

CHAPTERS 7: SoCal Book Arts Explored IV

CHAPTERS 7: SoCal Book Arts Explored IV

The Craft and Folk Art Museum of Los Angeles currently has on viewChapters: Book Arts in Southern California curated by Holly Jerger through May 7, 2017.

“Chapters explores the significance of Southern California artists in establishing the field of book arts from the 1960s to present day. The exhibition highlights over 60 artists, presses, and organizations who explore ideas related to conceptualism, feminism, process, and community building through artists’ books, sculptural forms, small editions, and zines. “–CAFAM

Here are some of the book works shown….some provocative, fun and unusual bindings, structures and forms.

Charlene Matthews‘ James Joyce “Ulysses” pole piece. hand lettered.

Concentric cutouts…

The seeming simplicity of these ties…

Flag and accordion structures…looks like the addition of single signature as well onto the accordion.

Wallace BermanSemina Culture.


C.K. Wilde…cut-outs…

Nancy Jo Haselbacher…words on words…


 Turkish Map Fold…Nick Herman

The wondrous Kitty Maryatt…this wild, bridge-like structure…

All this an more at the Craft and Folk Art Museum‘s CHAPTERS exhibition…through May 7, 2017!  Don’t Miss It!

CHAPTERS 6: SoCal Book Arts Explored III

CHAPTERS 6: SoCal Book Arts Explored III

The Craft and Folk Art Museum of Los Angeles currently has on viewChapters: Book Arts in Southern California curated by Holly Jerger through May 7, 2017.

“Chapters explores the significance of Southern California artists in establishing the field of book arts from the 1960s to present day. The exhibition highlights over 60 artists, presses, and organizations who explore ideas related to conceptualism, feminism, process, and community building through artists’ books, sculptural forms, small editions, and zines. “–CAFAM

Here are some of the book works shown….speaking for themselves.

You can visit the show through May 7, 2017, and continue through the chapters of CHAPTERS.