Untitled (flapflapflap)

 

2001
book work:
Publisher: Ace Art Inc, Winnipeg, part of Crows project, 2001
ISBN: 0-9696265-7-6 (full box set from Ace Art); no ISBN for individual books in this edition of 40
trim size: 7 x 7.75 in
pages: 76 plus cover
production details: hand-trimmed, laser print on acid-free bond (interior) and gloss cover stock (cover); bound with white cotton-wrapped elastic cord
collection Concordia University Library

Untitled (flapflapflap) is a flip-book comprised of a series of photographs shot with an early, lo-res, digital camera of my hands gesturing animatedly as they would when I was talking to my then-young children. At the time, they spoke French with their father and English with me. In our aural landscape of accented official languages, baby gurgles, and toddler-franglais I delighted more than ever in the way touch and gesture assured we understood each other; visual, tactile language that clarifies meaning. When the images are “played” as a flip-book, the hands appear to take off in flight.
On the cover a feathery block of text contains bird sounds from National Geographic Society Field Guide to the Birds of North America, 1987, mixed up with bird sounds in other languages, and infant sounds/words. This mix is framed by a short English text and its translation into French (“Stop searching through your big French-English dictionary, hold it over your head and flap its pages into your upturned face. When at last you set it down, feel how your hands lift right up./ Cessez de fouiller dans le gros dictionnaire anglais-français, maintenez-le au dessus de la tête et faites-en battre les pages devant votre visage relevé. Quand finalement vous le déposez sentez-vous comme les mains doucement se soulèvent”). Sources are listed on the back cover.
The book was originally published as part of a boxed set of book projects (edition of 20), in conjunction with the Crows project, Ace Art, Winnipeg. Crows was curated by Angela Somerset and Marian Butler and included individual book-related objects by eight artists and writers.

here within our curving spaces

2008
Installation: nylon monofilament, elastic thread, fans (Cygnus, 9 hours: 144 x 196 x 72 in / 360 x 480 x 180 cm)
artist book: River Story. 4.5 x 7.25 in closed: 4.5 x 14.5 in open; interior pages hand-cut from laser print on acid-free paper; cover ultrachrome inkjet print on acid-free paper; bound with fluorocarbon braided fishline; 40 copies

In the entry room to the exhibition, elastic threads are stretched horizontally between walls to bounce in a watery shimmer, while marking the former path of the adjacent West Don River. In the adjacent room, a nine-hour orbital pattern of the constellation Cygnus forms a structure of lines into which a swan-like flock is built from fine monofilament. It is placed in relation to the constellation’s position during the summer exhibition.

A flipbook records hourly maps of the night sky faced with aerial photos showing the river’s gradually altered path. Entirely daylit, the artwork’s visiblity changes depending on the time of day and cloud cover, gradually disappearing at sundown.

here within our curving spaces, Koffler Gallery, Toronto (2008)

my Darling

2006
installation: nylon and elastic thread, plastic magnifying lenses, acetate, plasticene, water
artist book: 5 7/8 x 11 in closed: 22 7/8 x 11 open; 18 pages plus wrap-around cover. Hand-trimmed, zig-zag fold, ultrachrome inkjet print on acid-free bond; acid-free glue; single silicone elastic thread; 50 copies

Clear elastic threads hang ceiling to floor and slip around the body as one passes between them. Lenses suspended overhead refract sunlight in wandering spots, on cloudy days spot-illuminating the shadows. Pools of water seem to grow out of the floor, reflecting more light. Flickering lights turn out to be strips of acetate attached to some threads and printed with names belonging to those who once passed near the foundry site, such as Jeanne Mance, Kondiaronk, Petite Rivière St-Pierre…  An artist book locates the site on historical maps along with possible routes taken at the time by those now lost.

my Darling, The Darling Foundry, Montreal (2006)