“In my artwork I always use printed matter – discarded books, magazines, and computer printouts; the cultural debris of our information society. The sculptures I create reference Eastern and Western icons and intellectual figures, thereby exploring cultural meanings and concepts. I always use text in my work and the content of the texts are relevant to my sculptures. My finished sculptures often seem to be wood or marble, though they consist of paper. They are constructed in such a way that the various parts fit together in a seamless manner.” – Chen Long-Bin, from Volta NY
The work of St. Petersburg born artist Ekaterina Panikanova makes use of our complex relationships with books. She mounts books on the gallery wall, splayed and aligned. Panikanova use the collective surface of these books as her perculiar ‘canvas’. Like the ink and paper filling the books’ pages, her paintings are often black and white. In a way, the pieces carry an air similar to old books. They have a subtle atmosphere of nostalgia, of a recording and remembering. [via]
This curious little structure is one of ten Free Little Library “branches”. Ten designer were chosen for the Free Little Library project – each designing and constructing a little library to place in Manhattan. This is the design created by the firm known as Stereotank. In the New York neighborhood of Nolita, the little library offers books and a bit of shelter to anyone passing by. Small portholes allow visitors to peek inside for a preview before being drawn inside. You can find Stereotank’s Free Little Library at St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral School in Nolita through September of this year. [via]
With a background in craftsmanship and carpentry, Jan Reymond creates sculptures by recycling discarded objects. His most well-known installations are made of books. Even in his smaller scale work with furniture, his eye for architectural design is apparent. He’s also created large scale designs made out of discarded cell phones. In addition to this installation work, he crafts furniture and other domestic objects with an eye for practicality and aesthetic pleasure. His work asks us to consider the boundary between functional and non-functional artwork.
When Isaac Tobin is not working as a senior designer for University of Chicago Press or playing with type design, then he is whipping up some pretty phenomenal collages with minimal resources. Each piece remind us that cutting back and holding the line is just as important as drawing it. His seemingly simple use of familiar and found paper products matched with sporadic vintage text and condensed doodling presents an accessible everyday charm that inspires affordable creativity.
Tom Bendtsen’s first book sculptures appeared in 1997. After initially creating basic structures, his work evolved with the idea of using the books’ colors to create a pixelated image effect. Bendtsen even fills the gaps in his structures with objects or scenes that ask the viewer to consider ideas of history, narrative, and creativity. The laterality of the structures and how this mirrors our absorption of contrasts and oppositions inherent in written narrative are also at play. His largest structure is composed of 16,000 books. String is used to create the forms of the sculptures, and then those forms are filled with books.
Guy Laramee delicately cuts caverns through the centers of books. He carves the pages away to reveal caves that seem to be ready to be explored. His work explores the insides of books in a very literal way. Indeed, Laramee’s sculptures in way recall the plot of a classic: Journey to the Center of the Earth. And, in fact, Laramee mentions this book in his statement on the series. He says:
“Like in Jules Verne’s “Journey to the Center of the Earth”, we seem to be chained to this quest. We “have to” know what lies inside things. But in doing so, we bury ourselves in the “about-ness” of our productions – language, function, etc- all things “about” other things.”
Bob Staake, the author and illustrator of more than 50 children’s books, has reimagined the covers of kid-friendly classics from the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, giving each one a twist that is often more PG-13 than G and always darkly comical. With a simple off-beat quip and a slightly adjusted illustration, those once comforting, sweet tales of little trains that could and hungry little catepillars morph into something a little more sinister and a bit disconcerting. You know what? You can take a look at more of Staake’s “Bad Little Children’s Books” after the jump, while I go find a stuffed animal to hug.