Québec, Canada

We crossed the border on July 26th, after a month of traveling from Boise, Idaho to Gatineau, Québec. I’ve been back home for a while but a little behind in writing my posts. Have you noticed?

Before we left Boise, we researched to the best way to stay connected while on the road. Our inquisition to Verizon staff seemed endless. It was a full-time job trying to choose the proper company and plan to continue working as we traveled. Verizon made many promises of “hotspots” and “unlimited use” but fell short as usual in defining their terms and happy to take our money. The reason for my late blog posts is the difficulties with getting secure access to the internet with our “hotspots/phones” not working in Canada. 

While I was “home,” I spent a week visiting and walking the streets of Montréal.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Old Montréal

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Old Montréal

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Old Montréal

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Old Montréal

With the forever days of rain in Ontario and Québec, many creatures were visible, like snails in the hundreds.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux

© 2017 Louise Levergneux

I communicated with artists of the area and planned on studio visits. My first visit was to the atelier of Guy Laramée. I spent a great afternoon in his studio seeing and talking about his work. Guy was welcoming and open about his art and techniques. 

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, a wonderful piece in the front room of Guy's atelier

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, a wonderful piece in the front room of Guy's atelier

Guy, like Helen Hiebert, divided his atelier into two parts. As you walk in, the front room is where he paints romantic landscapes. 

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Guy's atelier, the clean room with on going paintings

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Guy's atelier, the clean room with on going paintings

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Guy's work table

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Guy's work table

The back section is where he carves wonderful landscapes out of books. 

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, books waiting for an inspiration

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, books waiting for an inspiration

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, books for a project

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, books for a project

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Guy was in the mist of a new sculpture, here we see the clay model

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Guy was in the mist of a new sculpture, here we see the clay model

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, the book sculpture being worked on with different tools

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, the book sculpture being worked on with different tools

My work is about making us feel more alive. It is about losing yourself in the landscape and paradoxically, finding out you are the source of it all.
The erosion of cultures—and of “culture” as a whole—is the theme that runs through the last 25 years of my artistic practice. Cultures emerge, become obsolete, and are replaced by new ones. With the vanishing of cultures, some people are displaced and destroyed. We are currently told that the paper book is bound to die. The library, as a place, is finished. One might ask so what? Do we really believe that “new technologies” will change anything concerning our existential dilemma, our human condition? And even if we could change the content of all the books on earth, would this change anything in relation to the domination of analytical knowledge over intuitive knowledge? What is it in ourselves that insists on grabbing, on casting the flow of experience into concepts?
© 2014 Guy Laramée, Dragon Over the Clouds, Webster dictionary, inks, pigments, Plexiglass, wood, LEDs; 18 x 21 x 16 (H) inches (47.7 x 53.3 x 40.6 cm)

© 2014 Guy Laramée, Dragon Over the Clouds, Webster dictionary, inks, pigments, Plexiglass, wood, LEDs; 18 x 21 x 16 (H) inches (47.7 x 53.3 x 40.6 cm)

© 2010 Guy Laramie, Le Grand Larousse

© 2010 Guy Laramie, Le Grand Larousse

What a fantastic afternoon experiencing these sculptures!

New York

After a haunting experience in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, our route brought us through New York State.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, arriving at the Stevenson Bird Library in Syracuse, to meet with Peter D Verheyen. See my reflection in the window!

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, arriving at the Stevenson Bird Library in Syracuse, to meet with Peter D Verheyen. See my reflection in the window!

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, traveling to the Stevenson Bird Library from Interstate 81. For clearer directions, please go to Google Maps. 

Peter is the Librarian, Researcher, and Emerging Issues Analyst in the Program Management Center at the Syracuse University Libraries. His position assists the Library in identifying, processing, analyzing, interpreting and maintaining the information it needs to keep abreast of trends in libraries, and meeting organizational and operational needs. 

Providing a virtual home for all the book arts that allows participants from across the globe to share events, training and exhibition opportunities, ask questions, provide answers, and discuss all book arts related topics, Peter says:

I am best known for building and sustaining a community based on sharing.

Peter was the past exhibitions and publicity chair for the Guild of Book Workers. He was awarded the Guild's Laura Young Award for service to the organization in 2009, and their Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016. Here are some of Peter's bindings:

© 2017 Peter D Verheyen, Ladislav Hanka, Remembering Jan Sobota, 2012 Modified Bradel binding; layered Indigo Night Cave Paper endpapers; sewn on 5 vellum slips; spine in parchment; leather endbands; boards edged in parchment and covered with distressed birch wood veneer on covers with onlaid suede salmon leather closure; title stamped in gold on front board. 29.5 x 25.5 x 1 cm

© 2017 Peter D Verheyen, Ladislav Hanka, Remembering Jan Sobota, 2012

Modified Bradel binding; layered Indigo Night Cave Paper endpapers; sewn on 5 vellum slips; spine in parchment; leather endbands; boards edged in parchment and covered with distressed birch wood veneer on covers with onlaid suede salmon leather closure; title stamped in gold on front board. 29.5 x 25.5 x 1 cm

© 2013 Peter D Verheyen, Gaylord Schanilec and Clarke Garry, Mayflies of the Driftless Region, Midnight Paper Sales Press, 2005 Dorfner/de Gonet "open joint" binding; sewn on 3 brown salmon leather slips; flyleaves and doublures of Cave Paper “layered indigo day” paper; graphite top edge; rolled endbands brown salmon leather; spine covered in gray salmon leather; boards covered in full vellum with printed illustrations from text below; salmon leather slips attached to boards and framed with decorative weathered wood veneer; tied mayfly attached to front board. 26.5 x 19 x 2 cm

© 2013 Peter D Verheyen, Gaylord Schanilec and Clarke Garry, Mayflies of the Driftless Region, Midnight Paper Sales Press, 2005

Dorfner/de Gonet "open joint" binding; sewn on 3 brown salmon leather slips; flyleaves and doublures of Cave Paper “layered indigo day” paper; graphite top edge; rolled endbands brown salmon leather; spine covered in gray salmon leather; boards covered in full vellum with printed illustrations from text below; salmon leather slips attached to boards and framed with decorative weathered wood veneer; tied mayfly attached to front board. 26.5 x 19 x 2 cm

© 2010 Peter D Verheyen, Pamela Leutz, The Thread That Binds, Oak Knoll Press, 2010 Modified Bradel binding; red Roma endpapers; sewn link stitch on four reinforced leather tapes; dark red and gray handsewn endbands; spine covered in gray leather with cutouts for tapes; boards covered in reddish brown Pergamena deer vellum; title stamped in gold on front cover with leather onlays. 23 x 15.5 x 4 cm

© 2010 Peter D Verheyen, Pamela Leutz, The Thread That Binds, Oak Knoll Press, 2010

Modified Bradel binding; red Roma endpapers; sewn link stitch on four reinforced leather tapes; dark red and gray handsewn endbands; spine covered in gray leather with cutouts for tapes; boards covered in reddish brown Pergamena deer vellum; title stamped in gold on front cover with leather onlays. 23 x 15.5 x 4 cm

© 2005 Peter D Verheyen, Noirs, Bleus, Sables, Livre de poète de Nane Couzier, 2001 Textblock sewn on 5 leather/vellum slips in black, blue, and brown; graphite top edge; sewn silk endbands; case covered in full blue dyed goat vellum; leather/vellum slips laced through at joint; multicolored colored spine label with title in graphite foil. Leather onlays on case derived from typography of text. 40 x 25 x 2.5 cm

© 2005 Peter D Verheyen, Noirs, Bleus, Sables, Livre de poète de Nane Couzier, 2001

Textblock sewn on 5 leather/vellum slips in black, blue, and brown; graphite top edge; sewn silk endbands; case covered in full blue dyed goat vellum; leather/vellum slips laced through at joint; multicolored colored spine label with title in graphite foil. Leather onlays on case derived from typography of text. 40 x 25 x 2.5 cm

I first came across Peter through The Bonefolder: e-journal for the bookbinder and book artist founded in 1994 managed and published by Peter. My next interaction with Peter was through the Book_Arts-L listserv founded in 1994 and still stimulating after 22+ years. 

© 2014 Peter D Verheyen, the cover of the last published issue of the Bonefolder, found at Book Arts Web

© 2014 Peter D Verheyen, the cover of the last published issue of the Bonefolder, found at Book Arts Web

I'm a subscriber to the BOOK_ARTS-L listserv and enjoy the subjects and questions that keep popping into my email inbox since 2008. Feeling isolated in Utah and Idaho, the book listserv permitted me to be part of an authentic arts community, one that celebrates and sustains book arts. Thank you, Peter! 

To learn more about the Book_Arts-L, review the full FAQ with detailed instructions. If you would like to familiarize yourself with Peter’s career and his path into the field, click here.

Unable to visit Peter’s studio because of my short notice and his previous commitments, Peter emailed me the following photos of his creative space.

© 2017 Peter D Verheyen, Peter's studio

© 2017 Peter D Verheyen, Peter's studio

© 2017 Peter D Verheyen, Peter's studio

© 2017 Peter D Verheyen, Peter's studio

An enjoyable hour meeting and talking with Peter about his work, his career and the artists’ book field. Too short!


Pennsylvania

Traveling across several states to my hometown of Ottawa/Gatineau, Canada, is a destination trip, not a vacation. A jaunt to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, encompassed a desire to see the history of the area and a long overdue sojourn.

I’m entertained by the day-to-day events, I appreciate simple moments characterizing our lives. My artists’ books represent subjects in a unique, creative, and dynamic way for the reader to experience. Life is serious and I enjoy seeing readers re-acquaint themselves with mundane activities that link us together.

The history still lingers in Gettysburg, with fields and fields of monuments and leftover atmosphere of the days of the American Civil War, (as the southerners would call it, “The War of Northern Aggression”).

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg, PA

That being said, artists show many facets of life in their work, which include war.


Dorothy Krause presents the more serious side of life in her artists’ book WarZone: a traveling board game with no winner. WarZone is designed to be played anywhere other than in your own country. Instructions, game board, spinner board and game pieces are housed in a clear plastic suitcase.

© 2017 Dorothy Krause, The WarZone printed at Roland DGA on a LEF-300 in an edition of 10; the book measures 10 3/8” x 12 7/8” x 1 ½”

© 2017 Dorothy Krause, The WarZone printed at Roland DGA on a LEF-300 in an edition of 10; the book measures 10 3/8” x 12 7/8” x 1 ½”

On the top of the suitcase, an image of the first atomic bomb blast is overlaid with a definition of war as “armed conflict, prosecuted with military forces aiming to enforce the political will of the victor upon the defeated”. It also contains information about human aggression from prehistory to the present and questions whether war is noble or morally problematic and destructive of lives and property.
The Spinner Board, printed onto stiff board and contour cut to fit into in the bottom of the suitcase, allows you to choose the country in which to play and gives information on ongoing conflicts around the world. 
The countries shown on the map in black and around the outer edge of the circle have ongoing military conflicts that result in over 1,000 violent deaths per year, including both military and civilians. Other conflicts are shown in red on the map. You can turn the spinner to select a country in which to participate or choose from the list of additional war zones.
The Rules of Engagement state you can place your soldier on any square of the game board and move randomly any number of spaces in any direction. You need not take turns and can remove the soldiers of any other player at will unless you are removed first. If you are on a square with information and instructions, do as you are told.
The Game Board resembles a checkerboard which gives instructions such as “no weapons found: look again”, “tour of duty extended: start over” and “peace negotiations began: pray for success”. Red and black checker-like pieces are “us” and “them”.
The game never ends, but may move to a different place of engagement. There are no winners, only losers.

Maria G Pisano from Memory Press created Vita Defuncta in response to the poem Patterns by Amy Lowell. The poem was first published in 1916 in the collection Men, Women and Ghosts.

© 2005 Maria G Pisano, Vita Defuncta is housed in a publisher’s slipcase, with an open wound at its center, which becomes the symbolic black casket for the book within.

© 2005 Maria G Pisano, Vita Defuncta is housed in a publisher’s slipcase, with an open wound at its center, which becomes the symbolic black casket for the book within.

© 2005 Maria G Pisano, Vita Defuncta, letterpress printed with type Bauer Bodoni at LaNana Creek Press by Charles D Jones and Terri L Goggans at Stephen F Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX

© 2005 Maria G Pisano, Vita Defuncta, letterpress printed with type Bauer Bodoni at LaNana Creek Press by Charles D Jones and Terri L Goggans at Stephen F Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX

© 2005 Maria G Pisano, Vita Defuncta a limited edition of 25 is printed on Arches MBM Ingres, Fabriano Elle Erre, and Japan Yatsuo, the book measures 11” H x 13” W open

© 2005 Maria G Pisano, Vita Defuncta a limited edition of 25 is printed on Arches MBM Ingres, Fabriano Elle Erre, and Japan Yatsuo, the book measures 11” H x 13” W open

The poem contrasts loss in war with nature. Nature is a constant, as it follows the cycle of the seasons through planting, growth, decay, and renewal. Even in the dead of winter, there is promise of life. 
War has also become a recurring cycle. Unlike nature, which brings change and growth through the seasons, war brings only death. As a result of the death of a loved one, the protagonist remains emotionally static and sterile, presenting a façade to the outer world, where she exists only as a fragile ornament. 
In my response, language and symbolic representations are intertwined with the images, encompassing both the masculine and feminine aspects of the poem. The diamond and rectangle respond to each other and as the pages progress the symbols separate, culminating in the red masculine symbol transforming to a bloodstain at the end of the book. Once opened, one views a perfectly manicured pattern of a white flower-like form, holding the pages. The colors, the papers’ texture, tactility, the structure, are all used to reflect and are in service of the theme.

Elena Mary Siff’s sculptural works and text pieces derive from her background of assemblage art where she has an established reputation. 

© 2017 Elena Mary Siff, War No More

© 2017 Elena Mary SiffWar No More

© 2017 Elena Mary Siff, War No More

© 2017 Elena Mary SiffWar No More

© 2017 Elena Mary Siff, War No More

© 2017 Elena Mary SiffWar No More

I have been collecting stamps to use in my books for a very long time and when I realized I had enough vintage stamps to create an anti-war book I created War No More. In this political climate, it seems imperative to speak out against aggression and hostility and my tiny book is a response.

Elena constantly explores and expands the artistic paradigms of the book as object using visual space, volume, movement, and colour. Her source material for her unique books is often of a social and political nature and is influenced by her favourite poets and philosophers.


Lucy Childs talks about healing in her artists’ book How a Bandage Works. Lucy’s book shows the progress of healing over time. 

© 2016 Marty Kelly Photography, Berkeley, CA  martykelly.com, How a Bandage Works a textile (linen, cotton, silk, and rayon) accordion book  

© 2016 Marty Kelly Photography, Berkeley, CA  martykelly.com, How a Bandage Works a textile (linen, cotton, silk, and rayon) accordion book

 

© 2016 Marty Kelly Photography, 4 by 31/2 by 1 inch, How a Bandage Works opens to 4" x 27"

© 2016 Marty Kelly Photography, 4 by 31/2 by 1 inch, How a Bandage Works opens to 4" x 27"

You can imagine the bandage wrapped around a bleeding wound: a big red patch growing smaller and browner with each layer away from the cut. Imagery sewn over and around each blood patch symbolizes the healing taking place. 

Merike van Zanten visited Normandy in June 2009 for the 65th anniversary of D-Day. 

Merike’s artists’ book A Soldier of the Second World War tries to express the almost absurd contrast between the realities and horrors of the Invasion of Normandy in 1944 and the serenity, peace, and beauty of the Allied Cemeteries 65 years later. Dried flowers from Normandy, combined with photographs of Allied graves, correspondence to loved ones back home and portrait photographs taken before the soldiers went to war convey just that conflict.

© 2009 Merike van Zanten, A Soldier of the Second World War

© 2009 Merike van Zanten, A Soldier of the Second World War

© 2009 Merike van Zanten, A Soldier of the Second World War

© 2009 Merike van Zanten, A Soldier of the Second World War

© 2009 Merike van Zanten, A Soldier of the Second World War

© 2009 Merike van Zanten, A Soldier of the Second World War

While visiting the "recently" dug-out bunkers at Grandcamp Maisy, I was struck by the opposite of that current day and the same day in 1944.
2009 had beautiful weather, very quiet, wildflowers everywhere. In 1944, the weather wasn't so good, it must have been deafening with all the shooting and bombing going on, and certainly, the wildflowers would've been trampled by soldiers' boots. And if not, would the soldiers have noticed them?
I had similar thoughts when visiting an allied cemetery a couple of days later. Really quiet, flowers everywhere, immaculately groomed graves and headstones. You could think the soldiers finally had their peace and quiet, but at the same time, it seemed so unreal and contradictory.

After Reasonable Research, Years with No Acts of ‘Open and Declared Hostile Conflict’ Are Indicated with a Perpendicular Line. Perhaps They Were Periods of Peace by Miranda Maher is an astounding document of the absence of peace in our time. The book lists all open and declared armed hostile conflicts that have taken place between the year 1 and the year 2007. 

© 2009 Miranda Maher, After Reasonable Research

© 2009 Miranda Maher, After Reasonable Research

© 2009 Miranda Maher, After Reasonable Research, the third edition comes in a plastic slipcase and includes a printed statement by the artist

© 2009 Miranda Maher, After Reasonable Research, the third edition comes in a plastic slipcase and includes a printed statement by the artist

Printed with a tiny font and arrayed in two seemingly endless columns, these conflicts fill mind-boggling twenty-two pages. The book is bound in an accordion structure with decorative paper, an uncomfortable reminder that the refinements of civilization are inseparably bound up with brutality.


What are your interpretations of war and armed conflict?

Have you represented these subjects in your artists’ books, writing, art...?

Virginia

Manassas, Virginia, was our next stop. The landscape is forever changing from the desert of the West to unbearable humidity in the East. I am reminded of the effects of the weather back home as we get closer to my hometown of Ottawa, Ontario, and Gatineau, Québec.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Prince-William Campground, Manassas, VA

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Prince-William Campground, Manassas, VA

No time to visit studios, but my internet searches lead me to talented artists’ bookmakers. I was interested in books that reflected the way each of us sees our surrounding landscape. The book Landscape within a book published by Louisa Boyd left an impression.

© 2001 Louisa Boyd, Landscape within a book, handbound artists' book, formed by tearing; the imagery was added with watercolour paint and pencils

© 2001 Louisa Boyd, Landscape within a book, handbound artists' book, formed by tearing; the imagery was added with watercolour paint and pencils

© 2001 Louisa Boyd, Landscape within a book, folded with a landscape image painted onto it in watercolour

© 2001 Louisa Boyd, Landscape within a book, folded with a landscape image painted onto it in watercolour

These artists’ books were developed after a series of personal experiences and events that led me to feel at a distance from nature, periods of my life where I lived in cities and found it difficult to experience quiet, serenity, and events such as the foot and mouth epidemic (2001) in the UK that led to large areas of the countryside being temporarily inaccessible. 
It was during these periods of time I started to recognise how important the natural environment was to me and longed to immerse myself in it and portray it through my work, consequently, the themes of restriction and freedom consistently reoccur in this series of works. In this, there is also a wider message of societal detachment from nature. 
Working with books sculpturally allowed me to represent these concepts in this instance. Pages were used restrictively to only give glimpses of information contained within them due to cut work, how they are bound and exhibited. Images are broken by the pages and disjointed. 
Many of my books are not meant to be opened with pages turned, they are meant to be viewed only as a three-dimensional form. This series of works use this format more so than any of my later pieces. The books are bound on tapes of paper with linen thread using a multiple signature binding. They have no covers.

How do you see your landscape?

How do you portray your surroundings?

How do you view where you live?

Let me know, I would love to hear.

West Virginia, Part 2

As I travel East, the landscape changes from desert and red rocks to green trees, rain, and fog. 

My extended stay in West Virginia reminded me of my connection with animals and how they speak of calm and relaxation, except for bugs!!

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, David Bennet with one of his favourite horse 

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, David Bennet with one of his favourite horse 

The second day at the Mountain Quest Institute was the kill-deer day. Though no animal was hurt in the shooting of these photos, a cement cast deer lost an antler after finding itself under our Putt-Putt.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, David Bennet and Michael rescuing the deer!

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, David Bennet and Michael rescuing the deer!

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, rescued and back in the garden

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, rescued and back in the garden


A re-occurring phenomenon of Frost, the fog—is unsettling.

Friends, like Alex and David Bennet, embrace this joyous experience. They published a book on the subject entitled The Journey into the Myst...this book shares the beginning of an extraordinary journey. This experience became an exploration into the unknown with the emergence of what the authors called the Myst, the forming and shaping of non-random patterns such as human faces, angels, and animals.

As this phenomenon unfolds in their book, you will discover how Alex and David observed and interacted with the Myst.

41h4Dw82SWL.jpg

What we are about to tell you would have been unbelievable before this journey began. It is not a story of the reality either of us has known for well over our 60 and 70 years of age, but rather, the reality of dreams and fairy tales.

This is the true story of a sequence of events that happened at Mountain Quest Institute, in a high valley of the Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia. 

The story begins with a miracle, expanding into the capture and cataloging of thousands of pictures of electromagnetic spheres known as “orbs.”


Another artist that comes to mind when I think of fog is Ginger Burrell’s Golden Gate Fog. I’ve admired Ginger’s artists’ books for a while and delighted to feature one of her books.

Golden Gate Fog (1 of 1).jpg
Golden Gate Fog for website (1 of 5).jpg
Long an icon of San Francisco, the Golden Gate bridge evokes the romance of a time of art deco beauty and the building of grand ideas. Viewed in fog, it becomes mysterious and hints of images and stories just out of reach. In Golden Gate Fog, the viewer listens to the rhythmic music of the ocean and fog horn recorded by Ginger’s husband, Greg Burrell. Everything was photographed and recorded in a single day while viewing San Francisco as seen through a silken curtain of fog. Journey along the coast, through the Presidio and to various viewpoints of the bridge as you imagine the feel of the cool fog on your skin.
Golden Gate Fog for website (3 of 5).jpg

The desert, the rocks, the mountains, the horses, the rain, or the fog touch our senses. We—artist, create art work and include these subjects to awaken others to these subjects.

West Virginia, Part 1

We left the Smoky Mountains to visit with friends Alex and David Bennet at the Mountain Quest Institute near Frost, West Virginia.

Going around many curves on Hwy 84 in West Virginia.

In this majestic landscape, I ventured to visit the wonderful and impressive horses on the grounds of the Institute. 

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, waiting and ready for a photo

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, waiting and ready for a photo

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, finally the correct shot

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, finally the correct shot

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, thanks for the photo

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, thanks for the photo

As I walked the land, I noticed silver threads of a cob web in the corner of a fence produced by the sun’s rays and a yellow-coloured fly sitting for a photograph. Do you recognize this fly? Is it native to West Virginia?

© 2017 Louise Levergneux

© 2017 Louise Levergneux

Insects as a subject never attracted me till my project Outside the Studio. I incorporated a few bees and beetles and enjoyed catching butterflies fluttering about with my camera.

Libby Barrett’s books capture my attention as I write this post. Libby lives and works in Maine and is often inspired by insects. Many of her book ideas offer possibilities for unusual interpretations.

Libby expresses her love for puns and interest in invertebrates in her artists’ book Web Site. This book is a whimsical interpretation of the theme of an exhibition entitled Spineless Wonders presented at the University of Southern Maine. The four-sided drop box holds an origami spider who's waiting for dinner. 

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Web Site

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Web Site

There in the corner, or under the stair, 

behind the bookcase, or most anywhere anywhere

waiting........ 

Silken thread woven, the vigil begins

hoping that dinner will be captured therein

waiting....... 

The web trembles, dinner has arrived

On today's menu, bluebottle fly

 

For the same show, Libby published an artists’ book entitled Coleoptera. The specimen box is full of little books about beetles. The illustrations are a combination of watercolour and coloured pencil. Each shell swivels to reveal information about the particular beetle illustrated or about beetles in general, and each book is secured in the box with a pin. 

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Coleoptera

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Coleoptera

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Coleoptera

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Coleoptera

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Coleoptera

© 2009 Libby Barrett, Coleoptera

Libby’s latest book Travel Bugs incorporates a series of collages of beetles for which she uses old maps and atlases as collage material. 

© 2017 Libby Barrett, Travel Bugs

© 2017 Libby Barrett, Travel Bugs

© 2017 Libby Barrett, Travel Bugs

© 2017 Libby Barrett, Travel Bugs

© 2017 Libby Barrett, Travel Bugs, detail

© 2017 Libby Barrett, Travel Bugs, detail

This book produced for a group exhibit where the only guideline was that the book structure had to be based on the accordion structure. I decided to stay with the basic structure and use images of my travel bugs as the subject matter. I wish that I could say that the cover paper was my design, but it came from my stash of purchased paper. I chose it because it made me think of the meandering path a bug might take.

Watch your environment and see what surrounds you. Let me know what inspires you from the world’s details.


Comment Note: I would love to respond to the comments I receive. Unfortunately, Squarespace does not provide the name of the commenter and no way for me to respond, unless I respond to the comment directly on the blog. I would love to reciprocate your time and comment on my last blog post--please end your comment with email address or name. Thanks for your comments, please continue!

Tennessee

At this point in our journey—in real life—Nashville, was on the horizon to visit with friend Dana Ryan Perez, I already wrote that post, so to the next city. But not before we lay our eyes on Dana's sense of colour. 

© 2017 Dana Ryan Perez, what a wonderful spot to sit and relax, Clyde seems to think so.

© 2017 Dana Ryan Perez, what a wonderful spot to sit and relax, Clyde seems to think so.


© 2017 Louise Levergneux, entering Smoky Mountains National Park

We took a few days off from traveling and camped in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park which straddles the border between Tennessee and North Carolina. The sprawling landscape encompasses lush forests and an abundance of Mimosa trees still in bloom. The view and greenery were refreshing after crossing Kansas, and Oklahoma, but the forest brought unbearable dampness. Dry! Dry! Dry! is the reason we enjoyed the West so much.

Mimosa Tree

Mimosa Tree

The park encompasses 816.28 square miles (2,114.15 km2), making it one of the largest protected areas in the eastern United States. We entered the main park entrance located just East of the town of Gatlinburg, Tennessee.


I’m still searching for moments in life. How do other artists see these moments and create from them?

If you love mountains for what they represent for you, you will love Guy Laramée’s  carved book landscape entitled El amor for las montanas.  

A Mexican artist friend of Guy summed up his long-standing love affair with the landscape with El amor por las montañas nos curaraOur love for mountains will heal us.

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara. Carved Litré dictionary, inks. 43 x 14 x 27cm (15 x7 x11 inches)

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara. Carved Litré dictionary, inks. 43 x 14 x 27cm (15 x7 x11 inches)

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara.

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara.

Heal us of what? 
Of over thinking? 
Of our obsession with knowledge? 
Of greed?
In fact, it doesn’t matter. Once recovered from a health issue, the only thing you can say is “sickness is over”. Health is like love. Try to describe it and you’re out of it.
© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara.

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara.

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara, detail.

© 2012 Guy Laramée, El amor por las montañas nos curara, detail.

The 13th-century Zen master Dogen was going more or less in the same direction when he said: Although it is said mountains belong to the country, they actually belong to those who love them.
© 2106 Guy Laramée, TIBETAN CHINESE, altered Tibetan-Chinese dictionary, inks, pigments 15,25 x10,15 x 20(h) cm

© 2106 Guy Laramée, TIBETAN CHINESE, altered Tibetan-Chinese dictionary, inks, pigments 15,25 x10,15 x 20(h) cm

Now tell me, do mountains belong to mountain lovers or is it the opposite, mountain lovers belong to mountains? What does “belong” mean, when we are uncertain that we own our own bodies? Is it that we actually belong to “all this”, to “life”? When you feel most alive, don’t you feel that “something” bigger than you runs in your veins? My work is about making us feel more alive. It is about losing yourself in the landscape and paradoxically, finding out you are the source of it all.
Haiku translator, poet, and writer Robert Blyth went in the same direction when he wrote: The mind is seen in the stone.
I would like my art to allow you to you see yourself in a stone. Because ultimately, we are not in the world, the world is in us.

Get inspired by finding more moments to express.

Oklahoma

We made a stop in Tulsa, Oklahoma, one of the United States’ largest concentration of Art-Deco architecture. Art-Deco can be found throughout the city's older neighborhoods, in downtown and midtown. 

2017 Louise Levergneux, driving on the Boulder Avenue Bridge in Tulsa, Oklahoma

Mouth open, viewing amazing details all the way to the top of the Boston Avenue Methodist Church. The soaring 225 foot (68.5m) straight lines of the tower provide physical, visual, and philosophical linkage to the Gothic Cathedrals of past ages. The design of the edifice is credited to Adah Robinson and Bruce Goff.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Boston Avenue Methodist Church

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Boston Avenue Methodist Church

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Boston Avenue Methodist Church detail

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Boston Avenue Methodist Church detail

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Blue Dome, built in 1924, served as the White Star Gulf Oil Station in the day.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Blue Dome, built in 1924, served as the White Star Gulf Oil Station in the day.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Alfred C. Fabry was the architect of the Mincks-Adams Hotel. The building is 195 feet (59m) high, making it the 18th tallest building in Tulsa.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, Alfred C. Fabry was the architect of the Mincks-Adams Hotel. The building is 195 feet (59m) high, making it the 18th tallest building in Tulsa.

I enjoyed the gargoyles presiding above the Boston Avenue entrance to the lobby of The Philtower, which complements the tower’s exterior.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, The Philtower, detail

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, The Philtower, detail

The BOK Center, designed by César Pelli, is Tulsa's new arena which incorporates many of the city's prominent themes—Native American, Art-Deco, and contemporary architecture.

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, The BOK Center

© 2017 Louise Levergneux, The BOK Center

This city and its architecture brought to mind Thomas Parker Williams artists’ book entitled Spiral Dome.

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

Spiral Dome began as an idea for a call from a museum in Philadelphia to respond to one of the books in their collection. The book was an 18th-century handbook for building construction. I have always enjoyed James Turrell's Skyspaces and thought about doing something like that with 18th-century construction methods. I made my proposal and did not get in the show but the idea would not die. 

After many trials and testing, Thomas figured out how to make his artists' book a pop-up that would fold into a box. 

As I was designing the parts, I thought this concept could also be executed in steel as a real temple like structure, and the book "Spiral Dome:  Sculptures in Paper and Steel" was born. 
© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome, mounted on a six-part folding base, the book fits into a storage box.

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome, mounted on a six-part folding base, the book fits into a storage box.

The Paper Sculpture is a movable book made of 145 unique cut paper parts bound with black Tyvek. The 145 unique parts include 19 ribs, 18 double hinge sets, and 108 exterior panels that form 18 sections. The starting rib is fixed to the base. To facilitate display, ribs 4, 7, 10, 13, 16 and 19 contain magnets that connect with steel contact points on the base.
© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

Spiral Dome was designed with 3D CAD software. 145 unique parts for the Movable Paper Sculpture were cut and assembled by hand. Ribs, base, and box are constructed of museum board; various papers were used for the panels and hinges. The hinge connectors and binding material are black Tyvek. Covers of the storage box and accompanying book are etterpress printed from polymer plates.letterpress printed from polymer plates.letterpress printed from polymer plates.letterpress printed from polymer plates.
© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

© 2016 Thomas Parker Williams, Spiral Dome

While working on the Spiral Dome Movable Paper Sculpture, I realized it could function as a model for a permanent installation, which I call the Proposed Steel Sculpture. I made preliminary drawings for constructing such a structure. It is illustrated on the cover of the book.
To create the spiral in both models, 18 sections increment in height and dimension from the center of the structure by a factor of 1.014 for each successive section. The last section differs in scale from the first by a factor of 1.2666 or 1.014 to the 17th power. All elements in both sculptures – ribs, hinges or braces, and panels – increment by the same scale factor, as shown in the drawings.

Spiral Dome is part of The UC Berkeley, Environmental Design Library, Special Collections; the Columbia University Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library; and the MICA, Decker Library, Artist Book Collection.

Don’t forget passed creations will influence your work in the future.