I was asked to show in a gallery in France that was in a vaulted space below a bookstore specializing in art books. It was called Calligrame after Apollinaire’s famous book of poems in which the words form the image evoked in the text. I couldn’t resist the idea of writing a book in which the words were embedded in the paper. So I rewrote my San Francisco Art Institute artist’s manifesto, using kozo fibers cast into the paper, to form the words.
In order to read the text, the paper needed to be backlit, so in true “form following function”, I built large lamps, using the text pages as shades, that were meant to be read as well as to read by. The cover of the book was displayed in the window of the bookstore, while the lamps/pages lit up as the viewer moved through the gallery space.
The gallery owner wanted to remove the regular art books that were often displayed in the gallery space between shows, but I insisted they remain so my manifesto could light up the works of the grand masters.
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