You may have noticed various people doing 100 day projects or challenges in assorted places on the Internet. I have begun my own version. It will be a 99 day project because 9 is my favourite number.
Here’s the square for Day 1.
Here are the rest of the pieces from the first week.
I have set fairly strict parameters for the project. All the works will be the same size in a square format. All will have four asemic ‘letters’ cut into the surface. Laser printing and/or coloured pencil may be used on either layer.
Anyone who has followed my work for any length of time will know that the square is a recurring format for me. There is also plenty of precedent for the arrangement of four letters in a square. Robert Indiana‘s iconic Love.
From the Museum of Modern Art webpage:
Few Pop images are more widely recognized than Indiana’s LOVE. Originally designed as a Christmas card commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art in 1965, LOVE has appeared in prints, paintings, sculptures, banners, rings, tapestries, and stamps.
The format has been used by innumerable designers. Here’s the logo for the British Co-op.
Xu Bing also uses a variant of the concept for his Square Word Calligraphy.
The underlying theme of my 99 day project is ‘mixed emotions’. The past fifteen months of living with a pandemic have been emotionally turbulent for most people. The English language is full of four-letter words that either describe emotions or are used to vent them, hence the four asemic letters in each piece. The disparity between the torn edges/soft focus laser printing/coloured pencil and the hard edges of the papercut ‘letters’ is also a manifestation of the emotional conflicts people are experiencing. The composition and colour choices are a reflection of the time and circumstances of making each piece.
I am posting a work a day on my Instagram feed if you want to follow along.
I have also been doing a little work on my entry for #areyoubookenough_fruit, the Instagram book arts challenge.
I am sort of cheating, in that I am re-using a format from an earlier artist’s book, Cabbage Pie. (There’s a DIY version here.)
I have also spent a significant amount of time this week stalking, catching, and evicting bumblebees from my studio. They are nesting in my studio roof, and find their way in to the studio by mistake.
This is bee #11. The photo is a bit blurry as the bee is trying to fly through the far side of the glass. There have been twelve so far, but none today so I am hopeful that they (possibly just one?!) are learning that coming into the studio is a waste of everyone’s time.
In other book arts news:
The most recent upload to jeffpeachey.com is a guest post by Scott W. Devine with a superbly lengthy title:
Historical Book Models and their Relevance to Conservation Studies: Thoughts on the Montefiascone Conservation Project Summer School and the Nature of Book Conservation
It covers a wide range of book arts topics and their instruction at Montefiascone Conservation Project Summer School. It is a well-written and well-illustrated piece. If you are interested, you can find it here.
You also might find the recent article Visualizing History: The Polish System of some interest. (I was –obviously– attracted by the grid images.)
The Getty Museum kept many people entertained during early recurring lockdowns with their challenge to reproduce famous works of art and post images to Instagram. People produced remarkable results.
This time around the challenge is to create a still life.
From the Getty webpage:
Make Your Own Still Life
This past year has been, well, a lot. We want to see the objects that have helped you get this far – whether that’s something around your home or out in your neighborhood.
Make your own still life of 3 things that represent this past year, or have helped you through it.
Here’s how to join in:
- Pick three objects. Consider size, shape, texture, and contrast between them.
- Arrange them. Will they be stacked, draped, hung, or scattered, and what is the background?
- Capture it. Play with light, shadow, and material before you sketch, paint, or photograph.
Share your still life with us by posting photos of your creations on Instagram and tagging #GettyStillLifeChallenge!
In other news:
We are in a drought. The native grass –’prairie wool’– has stayed dormant because there is so little surface moisture in the soil, and the dandelion flowers have no stems.
Some things are doing well so far, however. Our ancient plum tree is spectacularly laden with blossoms.
I wish I could share the perfume as well.