Sunday, August 17, 2008

Altering Books ...

I first saw the work of Nicholas Jones in an interview on The Design Files, and absolutely loved it. His work is beautiful, do yourself a favour and check it out on his website.
(Photo from the Nicholas Jones website).
I love doing things with paper, so this weekend I decided to spend some time transforming two books myself. I would probably never be able to use a 'good' book for this, but really, some books are just not worth keeping. These are two that I got at a carboot sale for about R2 each. (Not that the price of a book determines its value, but that is another issue.) One I bought because it had a nice hard cover, and I intended using it for a journal. The second, a paperback, was bought for light reading, it was supposed to be a thriller, but not very thrilling (actually, it was quite bad), so I never finished it.

Some pics of my final products:






I quite like his statement that this type of book art is as much about the process as it is about the form. I found folding the pages very meditative, in a "fold-top, fold-bottom, turn; fold-top, fold-bottom, turn" kind of way. Do a couple of hundred of these mindfully, and you're meditating, baby! So I placed them with my buddha sculptures ...

And apart from altering books, I read some too. Finished Niall Williams's Four Letters of Love, and The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman. Both really beautiful. Now those I could never use for the above!

9 comments:

Stephanie said...

These look amazing - great idea, and great execution.

They would look cool mounted on a wall, too ...

kendalee said...

These look beautiful anairam! A very good use for otherwise unwanted books.

When we were kids my mum used to encourage me and my 3 siblings to do this with old telephone directories - I'd forgotten all about that until I saw your post :o) I wonder if she was using it as a technique to gain a few hours of relative calm?! I do recall it being very absorbing...

kendalee said...

Oh yes, meant to say... I also read Niall Williams' Four Letters of Love earlier this year and loved it! Will seek out the Alice Hoffman... Thanks for the mention - always on the look out for a good recommendation.

Anairam said...

stephanie - what a good idea about mounting it on a wall! Am going to try it with the hard cover one.
kendalee - never thought of using old telephone directories, and I have two stashed away under my desk! PS The Ice Queen is definitely worth reading - it is a bit of an adult fairytale ...

Bronwyn said...

Brilliant idea! It looks wonderful...and I admire your patience in making them...that's one virtue that just passes me by:)

Anairam said...

bronwyn - Oh, patience ... I work VERY hard at it, I must admit. It certainly doesn't come naturally to me!

karina said...

Great work!!!
I love your Buddha!

d.Sharp said...

I remember doing this back in elementary school, of course not as well!
Like his work.

Anonymous said...

Le 'usband says: Wow, great, two phone directories will keep La Blogeuse out of my hair for a few(?) hours so I can at last finish War and Peace in peace, now, where did I put it down? I'm sure it was right here on the coffee table ...