Artists are invited to participate in an exhibit drawing upon ‘handy’ books held in University of Iowa Special Collections as inspiration for new works of book art. The curators will choose a book for each participant to work with and respond to.* Our theme is handiness: books that engage not just the eye, but invite the reader to engage their hands in the use of the book—fold outs, volvelles, flaps, tabs, slices, pop-ups, embossing, debossing, cut-outs, soft cloth. Or books where handling transforms the individual copy over time: not only through ordinary use and wear, but also through intimate forms of bookish passion—such as the use of books as devotional objects, in which gilding might be kissed away by a prayerful reader—and bookish violence, in book burning, cutting, and breaking. Conservation practices are also of interest as forms of handling that alter the book’s physical structure and even its contents. For more information go here.
Co-sponsored by the Rare Book School Mellon Fellowship in Critical Bibliography