We Are All In This

2015
Approximately 4.25 feet x 10 feet
wood, gel-medium transfer, letterpress print, wet collage, sharpie, polyester, thread on 100% hand-made cotton linter and cotton rag paper

We Are All In This amalgamates Charles Darwin’s, On the Origin of Species and Anne Frank’s, Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl—reconstructing the existing content into a visual dialogue transpired through meta-connection. Struggle, survival, preservation, relationship and nature find themselves embedded as they are weaved literally and metaphorically throughout.

Intended as an artist book, traditional bookmaking processes, such as letterpress printing and papermaking, are used out of inspiration from the Rose Rare Book Collection. The honeycomb structure allows for a complex composition to be built around simple relationships while connecting nature. Showing the content of these books, outside of their original book form, allows for transparency between existing relationships while creating new ones.

The hexagons, or the book pages—bound with thread—alter the way the viewer reads the piece. Traditional books are commonly engaged on a horizontal surface, in a linear convention and are touched as they are experienced. The suspended book shifts the way the viewer would commonly interact with a book. Hung from the ceiling, parallel to the vertical viewer, with no beginning or end, the experience is continually changing. Just as the books in the Rose Rare Book Collection eliminate the sense of touch, due to the need to preserve, We Are All In This also eliminates the sense of touch.

The content becomes as important as the form. Each piece holds content that is only found within each individual book. In other words, nothing from Anne Frank’s book can be found on the Darwin piece. They are separate in that regard. However, they are connected, not only through form but through the relationships found within the content. The only visual that is used in both is the Isaac Newton diagram from his book Optiks. I tied this into the work because Optiks deals with the fundamental nature of light. Light is crucial to life and is spoken in both books. Knowing where this work would be installed, further enhanced the meaning, as the effect of light became literally visible on the work—shaping and relocating the shadows.

In both contexts, it is likely that the viewer will feel something and as a result they will feel touched.
Feeling is a direct effect of relating. Humans are constantly trying to relate to something or someone—to make meaning—all in an effort to understand. This idea, along with the human desire to create or contribute something that outlives us, suggests a desire to connect and to influence across time—past, present and future. This desire leads to a chosen preservation for the survival of the human thought and of human experience during and after life—constantly connecting across time.