I made this book about the same time as this one but I thought I’d spread them about a bit. This one is a little different from the ones I usually make, in that it is not a blank sketchbook, rather a book art piece.
Its cover is formed from glued slats of boxwood salvaged from a packaging crate destined for the skip (recycling idea #1). It is Japanese stab bound (drilled, not stabbed, obviously) using some old garden string I had lurking in the garage (recycling idea #2) and then stained with Mrs’ Lestaret’s used teabags (recycling idea #3).
The pages are torn from an old hymn book I bought for another project (just used the cover) and I also used parts of it to create the cover panels on the last project (recycling idea #4).
The cover opens by way of two small hinges tacked into rebates cut into the slats.
The cover label is a line from one of the hymns that has been vigorously rubbed and distressed.
Each of the pages has been irreverently defaced in response to the content.
I had originally started making this book much earlier, during the summer, but laid it aside as I wasn’t sure about what it should contain. As I have a few old books in various states of dismemberment from different projects, I had begun to explore what else may be made of them. As I was making the papiér maché for the last wooden book, I began to recall many hymns from my childhood Sundays at the local church, where most of the kids on the street were sent on a sunday morning to give their parents a rest! I was in a less than charitable mood on the evening I made this and went through a number of pages, responding to what was on each page in red ink. The defaced pages and wooden slatted cover were bound together in bookery…
There is a nice movement to the cover as it folds back on its hinges, and I managed to get a good tension in the string, so the book feels really solid.
The gold print on the edges of the pages also adds something to the overall texture of the piece, complimenting the brass hinges too.
As an artist’s book, this doesn’t run deep in context, but has been a cathartic and rewarding experience…