Books 2010 – 2015

2011       Surprise, a book made for a CABBAG book exchange.

2012       It Begins Like This, a book to help parents tell their own fairy tales.

2012       Seasons Of Canada, a tiny book expressing the old joke about Canadian winter.

2012       Impropriety, a book based on an overheard conversation between two people.

2013       Buried Memories, a book lamenting the loss of memories that others have of you.

The first time a newborn person achieves something human beings are expected to do, speak, walk, sing, the people who witness the event often express awe, delight, and relief. These events are often memorialized in stories but at some point in everyone’s life, the witnesses die and these memories are buried in time. Sometimes the story remains, but it becomes a kind of myth.  “Buried Memories” is a memorial to this fact of life: the death of all memory.

Reading the book is meant to mimic the act of trying to retrieve memory. The words are intentionally made difficult to read and the images are printed in the colour of dried blood as a metaphor for being alive, for surely memories are what make us feel we are alive.

2013       So Sorry, a book of condolences presented in QR codes and embossed letters.

When someone we love dies, or someone loved by someone we know, we feel the need to speak, to comfort and acknowledge the loss. It is difficult to find the right words. Too often words seem inadequate. Knowing what to say, what words are accepted by our culture, or what might be of comfort to our friends or ourselves, is a matter of experience that many of us don’t have.

These days you can find lots of advice online as to what is appropriate. I found the text for this book on Facebook. The text has been edited to remove references to a specific event. There is nothing ironic in the repetition of words. They are inadequate because they are merely words, but they are all we have when arms can’t hug, when eyes can’t meet, when other gestures cannot be given or shared.

The 20 pages of text are presented in both QR codes and a font designed for dyslexics in order to emphasize the difficulty in expressing emotions and in accepting the words of others in the pain of grief. It also slows the process of reading so that the repetition of condolences gives us a chance to think about and perhaps feel the loss.

 

 

2014       At The Scene Of

This little book was made in the summer of 2014 in response to a call from The Alberta Craft Council for work relating to a topic close to my heart. Called “Continuum,” the exhibition celebrates the cycle of learning that teaching brings. The “house” content was inspired by Rebecca Cowen’s little etching books illustrating four homes and their inhabitants. My book illustrates rooms in a house you might encounter in a strange dream. The colour plates are made with a technique I developed from a question a student asked me about whether one could make a random dot aquatint screen in PhotoShop.

2014        Later That Day

This book was inspired by Rebecca Cowen’s Balsam Street book series, which I fell in love with and acquired. I also used a technique I developed from a question asked of me in a SolarPlate workshop. This book brought me back to cutout silhouettes again.

2015      Can’t Live Without You/Je rêve d’une vie avec toi

This is a book I made in Paris and Edmonton. It is a series of etchings depicting clothing in shop windows or in museums. The text, in English and French, is what I imagine the clothes might say to the viewer.

2015       Normandy Memorial

I made this stitched felt book in response to a trip I made to Normandy in November of 2014 to see the beaches where Allied troops landed on June 6, 1944. The beaches are beautiful: empty of trash, advertising and tourist hordes. They are natural and pristine, as though nothing momentous happened there. This made them powerfully moving places for me. The museum artifact displays and films commemorating the events of that time were also affecting.

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