A few weeks ago Oola and I headed for beautiful Bainbridge Island to see a show of artist books in the jewel-like Bainbridge Island Museum of Art.
We had made reservations to hear Cynthia Sears talk about the work in a show called
“Artist’s Books Chapter Five: Women, Now and Then” in the Sherry Grover Gallery. When we got there we found to our dismay – then to our enchantment – that the speakers would be artistbookmaking/calligraphy collaborators Carolyn Terry and Annabella Serra.
They are working with painstaking fervor on an alphabet book both dark and delightful.
click on any image to see more detail
Oola immediately fell in love with Carolyn’s earlier books with its drawings, paintings and carvings of insects, other animals, and other surprises.
During all of this we were surrounded by a display of awe inspiring books — technically first-rate, content impressive, pushing the boundaries, and mostly just downright heartrendingly funny.
Take for examples:
Summer Hat with Flower by Diane Jacobs
Strips of paper printed with all the insulting terms that have ever been applied to women and woven into a hat which when worn protects the wearer from the ill effects of the offensiveness.
What She Needs by Sande Wascher-James with text by Sophie Tucker
“From birth to age 18 a girl needs good parents.
From 18 to 35 she needs good looks.
From 35 to 55 she needs a good personality. And from 55 on she needs cash.”
American Breeding Standards by Ellen Knudson
In this book Ellen takes the rules for breeding good horses and applies them to the female human.
The gallery was lighted perfectly for displaying books. Not so great for taking pictures. We crave you indulgence because something really special happened after the lecture and the looking.
Cynthia Sears came back into the gallery with a package, which turned out to be the newest addition to this book art collection. And Oola, who loves anything like Christmas, was watching it all.
With evident delight Cynthia unwraps JoAnna Poehlmann’s Cancelling Out, an accordion book of famous final words.
I have been told that there will be more activities surrounding this outstanding collection beginning in October. Ami Goldthwaite, the book room host, is available Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 – 2.
Check out the BIMA’s website for the most current scheduling.