This next week if you're in downtown Decatur and you like books, check out the Art Institute of Atlanta-Decatur's book arts exhibit, Wallbound. The exhibit opened in March (how did I miss it?!?! I walk past the building all the time) and closes Monday, May 14th , so don't delay. Wallbound features the work of 23 local, national and international artists who accepted the challenge of creating of book art that had to be hung on a wall. The gallery coordinator Angus Galloway, Institute faculty members Jerushia Graham and Alicia Griswold, all who are bookmakers, artists and paper makers as well, curated the exhibit. (Gallery hours are at the end of this article.)
Wallbound is an exquisite mini-celebration of the book and serves as a reminder that books are something we can touch and hold and enjoy visually. (Insert your disparaging comment about e-readers here.)
Books can also have a narrative that extends beyond the content. For example, in Claire Siepser's, Survivor Jacket (collage, lower right) she has transferred photocopied book jackets of plant and insect guides to a Size 6 field jacket to create something that practically belongs in a L.L. Bean catalog. Another artist who also appreciates word play and fashion is Johanna Renbeck. Her wearable book -- made from curly paper leaves is called Every Leaf (collage, center) and another wearable book – a tiled breast plate - both belong on the runway, albeit at the American Library Association fashion show.
The geometric properties of words are investigated in Ruth Bardenstein's Geometry/Galileo, a large digital print on mylar, (partially shown, in the lower left). At first, the large print looks like abstract wallpaper from a chic boutique, but when your gaze deepens, letters emerge and then you begin to read the embedded words as well. (I appreciate the gallery permitting me to take these photographs even though they were warned ahead of time, that my camera skills are limited. )
Before the exhibit closes, Joey Hannaford (collage, upper right – the piece is called Red X) is lecturing on “The Use of Proportion in Book Forms,” on Wednesday, May 9th at 6 p.m.
Don't misinterpret my pathetic descriptions and pictures, these are fascinating and enjoyable pieces of art to see and if you're near downtown Decatur near the Old Courthouse (One West Court Square, Suite 110, on Ponce De Leon Avenue), be sure to check them out.
The exhibit will be on view in The Art Institute of Atlanta-Decatur Gallery, One West Court Square, Suite 110, Decatur, GA 30030, through May 14. Gallery hours are Monday-Thursday, 9 am to 8 pm; Friday, 9 am to 5 pm, and Saturday 9 am to 3 pm. For information or directions, visit www.artinstitutes.edu/decatur or call 1. 866.856.6203.