This is the beginning of what I hope will be an ongoing series of sculptural books, or book totems - really haven't coined the name for these yet.
I am part of the Maleny Celebration of Books week in late October and am contributing a selection of my artist's books for display in the Library which Fiona is organising and has mentioned in her recent post. As well as this I have been asked to do a window display of my books in Maleny Additions whose owners are involved in the Celebration of Books project and have a very beautiful shop in the middle of Maleny.
Although many of my books do open up and stand quite sculpturally, I have been trying to come up with a marketable idea for the shop, and also one that may be kick started by being part of my display. I wanted something in the way of books that looked very three dimensional and yet remained true to my passion for paper and for telling stories. What I have come up with is these book sculptures. I am working on dozens of ideas for etchings on them, either printed horizontally or vertically and each one telling a slightly different story. Once I have gone through the process of making all the plates, I will have the fun of printing in various colours and stories. For the shop I am envisaging these to be no taller than 70 cms and ranging down to about 40 cms. Each one is sculpted differently.
The photos below are very much of the work in progress - I made a mock up of a grouping (using one etching plate only) just to see if what I had in my mind's eye was going to work as a concept. Now that I can see them in the studio standing tall, I am quite excited and am busy designing and etching numbers of plates. I am starting with these smaller ones, but I have copper plates and rolled paper which will allow me to work on a larger scale and I would love to do some pieces that stand on the floor and are large enough to make an impression.
I am a great lover of the abstract image but seeing that I am also thinking of these along a commercial line, I will also be making some of my designs more easily understandable and hopefully marketable!
Though these details only show one print and some embossing and hand marking, I will be using a number of etching plates on each piece. Further plans will be to use them in installations with perspex and lighting but small steps first .....