Monday, February 25, 2013

sams creek counting book...


sams creek counting book

for BookArtObject Edition 4

laser print on Magnani Revere
Canson Mi-Teintes fold and slit covers
sumi ink and creek water on Bemboka* paper spine

edition of 15

Sams Creek Counting Book - was created in response to the story title 'knowledge'  taken from 'an exercise for Kurt Johannessen' by Sarah Bodman. 

For more than 20 years I've lived beside the tiny watercourse - Sams Creek - I've been playing next to (and IN) the creek all my life - it might be a small and insignificant creek to others, but to me it is the most important waterway in the world. 

Many of you already know that for the past few years I've been quietly working on my MFA project - a part of what I've been thinking as I've been researching, writing and making is the nature of knowledge - in particular, the differences between tacit and explicit knowledge. Tacit, or experiential knowledge is something hard to quantify and almost impossible to transmit through written instructions - swimming, riding a bike, moulding clay to form a pitcher, the ability to tell a storm is coming from smelling the air.... this is tacit knowledge. Tacit knowledge is the sphere of artists and artisans, farmers and gardeners, athletes, dancers and singers... This is the knowledge that I'm acutely interested in.

On an afternoon in early December 2012 I walked to my creek, as I often do, collecting a handful of small things found along the way. These provided the content for my sams creek counting book - the humble, simple, everyday, bioregional (yet sometimes also global...), personal, small, known things of my creek-home...

Held in these simple items are innumerable personal stories, myths, histories: tacit and explicit knowledge of birds and creeks, wind and weather, insects and trees... representatives of the fundamental stuff of existence. This is the knowledge worth counting.

here it is - sams creek counting book

page by page...


its a simple, small, humble 
black and white book


*Bemboka is a small town in my shire – for a brief moment in the 1980/90s a family operated a handmade paper mill there – the venture didn’t continue.... In 2011 I met the Australian distributor of Magnani Paper... imagine the mutual surprise when he told me how he used to manage a paper mill in a small NSW town and I told him where I was from and that I had a stash of that Bemboka paper... yes these small, often hidden histories and tales of connections drive much of my thinking about knowledge and place...


Sunday, February 24, 2013

the evolution of a page...

from scribbled idea to photo, to image reworking,

to first, second and third page designs,

to first trials

it takes time to cook up a new book...



so forgive me if I'm taking my time revealing 
my second edition for BAO



Tuesday, February 19, 2013

a gesture and some hard words...

this day
Justin McGovern

a vibrant, sporty, ragamuffin teen from our little town

was walking home
in the early hours of a foggy Sunday morning

when a few hundred metres from his home

he was struck by a vehicle

that did not stop


Justin died in the middle of the road 

before help could be summoned


a year has passed

 and still no one has come forward to claim responsibility 


I left a paper heart by the cross that sits next to the road


Thursday, February 14, 2013

carpe diem - making the most of mishaps...

Sometimes the best laid plans don't always go to plan...

like when you pen a title page just right

and then you accidentally plonk the page on top of another finished page 
and well...  It all starts looking like a D-grade horror movie
(I'm trying to forget the screams..... shudder)

so to turn a scene of despair to one of joy 
I bound the evidence of my crime into a little notebook...

well two notebooks actually ...

because if a job is worth stuffing up - its worth stuffing up TWICE 
(face palm!)

but I think I've almost redeemed myself with these mini booklets 


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

carpe diem - an AP*

*AP = Artists Proof - but of course you knew that

what you probably don't know is that before my BAO edition of 12 'carpe diem's

I created 2 (slightly bigger, slightly different) APs of the title...

with delicious red bookcloth covers

title page - gouache with ruling pen

'carpe diem'
archival digital prints, gouache, ink
on TH Saunders

190mm x 200mm

I must admit - I prefer the slightly bigger, red bookcloth versions of the title BUT material and time constraints were against me (ie - I didn't have enough bookcloth to cover the 12 smaller books!) soooooo... we do what we must yes?.... ps - One of the 'carpe diem' APs has just returned home from its long stint in Bega Valley Regional Gallery where it was a finalist for the BV Art Award  (which this year focused on print media and craft... yay!). 

Saturday, February 9, 2013

'carpe diem' --- a book

'Carpe Diem'

a small case bound book - unveiled page by page....


'Carpe Diem'
archival digital print
hand date stamped, colour pencil lettered title page
various papers - including what I believe is momigami paper for the covers
(I spied the paper languishing in the corner of an art supply shop -
the owner had 'forgotten' what the paper was!) 

140mm x 150mm (closed)

edition of 12

The title - 'Carpe Diem' came from a selection of 100 short stories titles 
penned by Sarah Bodman in 'An Exercise for Kurt Johannessen'

(this is one of three titles/editions I have put my hand up to undertake.... yes madness)

I mentioned to all the BAO peeps who received this handmade book as part of the BAO exchange - my book requires a smart device with a QR reader app installed in order to view the information - which is understandably frustrating for many people --- I suspect that even when we first-world inhabitants have access to and familiarity with current technology, its just a tad annoying to be forced to use a specific piece of technology... I wonder how many of my BAO recipients shrugged their shoulders and proclaimed it all 'a bit too hard'? (and mumbled curses including my name...). This book is dependent on a privileged (and what I suspect will be a rapidly defunct) technology  - which of course is central to the work. I, perversely perhaps, like imagining that sooner rather than later QR codes and current smart device technologies will be no more - and the website addresses that each code in my book links to will likewise bite the dust -- gone into the interwebs ether.... and yet what will remain is a quirky little tome that forever then hides its contents....

Yes, this idea has occupied me for some years - and this was just a small expression of my thoughts about the future of books...

indeedy I so enjoyed creating 'carpe diem' that I made a wee zine (an abridged version of sorts of the title) that I've already shared with many friends...

I will be posting this little zine to all the BAO edition 4 participants 
(in the fullness of time)


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

TAG - 2

 three map index 'feathers'
 stack of decomposing Colliers encyclopaedias
one rock

cloudy day