Posts Tagged ‘Brian Dettmer’

Book excavations

It is no secret that I am a huge fan of books and book art.

This is the work of Brian Dettmer.  I’ve seen his work around without actually knowing who was doing it.  I love the idea of taking old books and finding something new in them.

From the artist statement on his website:

When an object’s intended function is fleeting the necessity for a new approach to its form and content arises. By altering preexisting materials and shifting functions, new and unexpected roles of old materials emerge. This is the area I currently operate in. Through meticulous excavation or concise alteration I edit or dissect a communicative object or system such as books, maps, tapes and other media. The medium’s role expands. Its content becomes recontextualized and new meanings or interpretations emerge.

Explanation of Book Dissections

In this work I begin with an existing book and seal its edges, creating an enclosed vessel full of unearthed potential. I cut into the surface of the book and dissect through it from the front. I work with knives, tweezers and other surgical tools to carve one page at a time, exposing each page while cutting around ideas and images of interest. Nothing inside the books is relocated or implanted, only removed. Images and ideas are revealed to expose a book’s hidden, fragmented memory. The completed pieces expose new relationships of a book’s internal elements exactly where they have been since their original conception.

I’ve done some work with altered books, but I can only imagine the amount of time and patience it must have taken to work on these.

This last one I found on his flickr stream which I highly recommend you all go check out right now.  He seems to have done an excellent job posting a lot of his most recent work there.  What caught me first about this piece was the title: Do it, Complete Yourself Man (2010)

and here is a detail from same work:

For more on Brian and his work, you can check out his wikipedia page.

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