books and related works

books & related works

A Fool’s Lexicon revised edition 2001. 90 x 76 cm 9 screen printed pages and 6 stencil drawings. Cloth, mdf, sand, door furniture, cord.
This work is a playful thesis about religious ecstasy and the nature of the Holy Fool. It takes its cue from The Praise of Folly (1509) by Erasmus. The work is intended to be an embodiment of Folly. It is unwieldy, pompous and impractical. Basically, it is ridiculous.

In his satire, through the character of Folly, Erasmus complained about ‘those rhetoriticians, who, in order to confuse and impress, dig up obscure words from mouldy manuscripts’. I decided to ignore this complaint and used it as an instruction for compiling the book. Words were then chosen that were pertinent to the theme but no definitions provided – thus, many readers of the Lexicon will require a dictionary to fully comprehend the text. The book is a journey from birth to death, light to dark, through innocence to experience.
How to Use the World 2012 Letterpress with woodblock, etching and other mixed media. Bound using chamois leather with gold leaf over strawboard on 3mm mdf.

Edition of 3

How to Use the World was made as a study for a site specific text based work at Maggs Bros., antiquarian booksellers in Berkeley Square, London.

It is a reworking of a small volume of the same name published in 1688 wherein the author offers the reader rules to live by.

The small edition interpretation of this moral handbook was reduced to a single rule applicable to the life of the book dealer. In each case the rule, Patience, was rendered in a manner relevant to the departments within Maggs Bros. The work, a combination of illumination, calligraphy and printing, emerged as a kind of short history of book manufacture.

work-m-c
Work, Money, Class 2006 Ink on paper.

w-money-c

w-m-class
Decorative letter forms are often used to suggest respectability, lineage and seriousness – that is why the Daily Mail retains its masthead, despite the bilge presented within. But calligraphic script is also beautiful and forces further consideration of any subject, such as these inter-dependent titles/themes.
Tower of Babel 2005 Letraset on streetmap in box
Genesis11:1-9. The people baked bricks and took mortar and said “Let us build a city and a tower with its top in the heavens.” To humble their pride God confused the peoples’ language so that they no longer understood each other and scattered them over the face of the world so that the building was not finished.

The transfer lettering called letraset was once an essential tool found in every graphic designers studio. However, the advent of computer technology made it redundant. I became the recipient of over 100 sheets of Letraset when a small studio had a clear out. The letters were used to build the tower on a streetmap of Manhattan.

illuminated-x
Foliated X 2004 Linoleum161 x163 cm
Cut from lino retrieved during the refurbishment of Brighton Museum, the foliated X is an extreme example of the type of illuminated letters that have been designed since the advent of the book. The X is the symbol of the unknown quantity, and the decoration and presentation are suggestive of a Persian rug or similar.
pen-seal
Pen & Seal 2003 Found water buffalo horns with silver and brass 12.5x10x7 cm & 15x18x7 cm
The quill is the most traditional of writing tools and represents all that has been written, good and bad. It contains the potential to communicate all that is to come. The seal can give official sanction or suggest ownership of an idea. Its mark is the letter X.
page
Page 2002 Reconstituted book dust 22.5 x 15 cm
This is a document of lost ideas. I assisted with the cleaning of the rare and antique book collection belonging to Brighton library. After vacuuming thousands of volumes (and where appropriate, treating the mould) two Hoover bags were full of fine particles -fragments of vellum and paper pages, and dust from degraded leather and cloth bindings.
The dust was then reconstituted into a new page.
insect-box
Insect Box 2001 Found insects and scrap timber
Autosave-File vom d-lab2/3 der AgfaPhoto GmbH
This is a tomb to the unknown insect. In honour of the tiny lives that pass unnoticed, I saved each dead beastie that I discovered throughout the year.
A Closed Book 1995/2002 90 x 76 cm Cloth over plywood,paper,tassels, cord, door furniture, sealing wax, 9 screenprinted pages and 5 steel etchings
This work consists the first unique edition of my book A Fool’s Lexicon (explanatory text above) being permanently sealed shut with sealing wax. This act was undertaken following the completion of the second (revised) edition and consequently, when presented, leaves any potential reader entirely frustrated. Paradoxically this makes the work truer to the heart of the theme than the revised edition.
The Pursuit of Wagner’s Folly 1998 Five panel folding screen. Each double sided, framed panel 179 x 69 cm. Oil on canvas
St Bartholomew’s Church in Brighton is the tallest parish church in the country. Standing at 135 feet high it is known locally as Noah’s Ark and was mockingly described at its inception as ‘Wagner’s Folly’ due to the extravagant vision of its patron, A.D Wagner.

For six months, between 1997-98, I was artist-in-residence in the church, and at the beginning of the project i needed to develop my understanding of the architecture. i had a fear of producing a pile of tedious drawing and instead decided to make a folding screen. This enabled me to establish and describe relationships, real and perceptual,between the interior and exterior of the building. The utilitarian nature of this product is appropriate to the way the Arts and Crafts philosophies have been employed in the building since it was completed in 1874.