I’ve been very, very happy lately to be having wonderful correspondence, and conversations in person, with several really talented binders. One of them, Tim Ely, is a binder who is far more than a binder. I think he is the greatest living book artist. I’ve examined three of his recent artist’s books in person (I’ve seen a few of his bindings, too, but that’s not what I’m talking about here). I spent hours with them. They are beautiful inside and out. I could write a very serious essay about his books, science, and literature, but I’ll leave that to someone else. Instead, I’m going to brag that Tim sent me a bunch of catalogs from past exhibits and the postcard (above) advertising his upcoming exhibit of paintings and drawings in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. It sounds like an improbably remote location, but it is actually about 10 minutes from Spokane, Washington and near where Tim lives. I considered turning up for the opening, but I won’t. Instead, I’m going to the Center for Book Arts 40th Anniversary Colloquium on artists’ books at The Museum of Modern Art in New York on October 11th. I hope to see some of you there.
In honor of Tim’s exhibit The Impossible Landscape, I’m going to treat us with some Ely eye candy.
It seems like ages ago, but I’m still thinking about my fine art bindings orgy on September 10th. In my last post, I didn’t comment on the La Couleur du vent exhibit, sponsored by ARA Canada and École Estienne, at NBSS. It would have made the post way too long.
Seeing La Couleur du vent (that’s the title of the set book) in person made me think about the three ways we can experience a binding exhibit: an online exhibit; a print catalog; and a live viewing. This was the first time I was able to experience a single exhibit in all three ways. I was struck by the advantages and disadvantages of each method. I also thought of ways each experience could be enhanced.
September 10th was like an orgy of bindings.
I saw so many bindings and spoke to so many binders in one day; it was sensory overload. It has taken me days to recover.
I started out in Somerville at Sheri’s place (Sheri is my editor), met Sonya Sheats in Cambridge, took the T with her to Boston to see La couleur du vent at NBSS. Sonya has a binding (which she doesn’t like) in the exhibit, but hadn’t had a chance to see it yet (more on that exhibit later). We ran into NBSS binding program director Jeff Altepeter on his way back from a coffee run for Dominic Riley, who was teaching at the school last week. We had arrived just in time for Dominic’s informal lecture about his life in fine art bookbinding. What a nice surprise! Sonya and I were allowed to sit in.