A flag artists' book

Published on 24 April 2023 at 21:19

Things that happened since I was born

This book was made for an exercise towards my creative arts degree with the Open College of the Arts.  Asked to make something in response to the idea of 'windows and mirrors' I combined elements of the skills I had worked on in micro courses from the unit to make this large flag book.  

  • Researching artists using found texts during the Playful Poetry course made me less concerned about using found text elements within my work.
  • Playful Poetry guided me to think about adding constraints, such as writing each story in 7 words to fit in with my theme of sevens.
  • I (somewhat unexpectedly!) discovered that I like working in 3D during the Assembling Sculpture course.
  • I used the form of a book after teaching myself a range of book folding techniques whilst working on the Power of the Book and was further inspired by the artists I researched that use book forms as sculptural objects.

The text in this piece comes from various websites looking back at news over the past 49 years (from 1974, the year I was born, up to 2022). The flags don’t quite work as well as I would want and although I am not currently planning on remaking this I can see how I could make it better and will take this forward for future projects.  

I added the cover and slip case after finishing the other books in my (forty nine years is) Seven times Seven project.  It is fitting that I have placed this book as 1 of 7 with it being the first that I made.  

This was made to be a ‘window’ and at first glance it appears to be so, looking out onto the world. But, I chose the years covered as a mirror of my own lifetime.  I chose the stories from the many possibilities, maybe because I remembered the events, I felt they reflected current events or they stood out for me. 

Is it a window out into the world or a mirror of my own recollections of my life? 

I watched a few videos on YouTube to learn how to make a flag book.  Here is the one I found most useful.  It is long but I found the tutorial more helpful to adapt for other sizes and number of flags.

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