Tag Archives: discarding books
Discarding old books, no matter how objectionable they might be (is a book ever completely objectionable?), always tears at my heart-strings. Someone worked for months, maybe even years to write it, someone poured their soul into the illustrations and others possibly thought long and hard about the typeface, the layout and all the other decisions that go into publishing a book. Granted, in the end, it came off of an automated assembly line with probably hundreds of identical copies but, how ever unlikely, what if it happens to be the very last copy in existence?
Then there’s the recycling issue of course: how many trees died to make a run of books? Isn’t there some way it could be reused?
Good news: there is something else you can do with them – many things, as I’ve discovered since I started following some library-related blogs. I’ve posted before on some fantastic book sculpture and now I’ve created a new category called ‘What to Do With Discarded Books’. I’m going to watch for all the creative options. I’m inspired and hope to inspire some student art for installation in my ‘new’ library this year.
Weeding is a necessary evil and I have a lot of it to do, especially in light of my planned project. Who isn’t bothered by the painful if necessary process of disposing of out-of-date or even severely damaged books? An alternative is book sculpting. I am tempted to try my hand at it, but it is a temptation I’m determined to resist until I manage to give something up or clone myself. One can always look and dream. At the very least I could supply an art teacher who isn’t afraid of a room full of sharp knives in the hands of teenagers.
So with my tea in hand and little motivation to really start my day this Saturday morning, I Googled “book art” and came up with some wonderful results. The first click was to this blog post by Monique Trottier. There are some gorgeous examples there, one of which was this creative and evocative sculpture.
I tried to find the original artists of this image: sculptor and photographer. Tin Eye came up with 117 copies on the internet. (I still feel it is worth posting again even if only I get to see it when I want.) I only determined that it seems to be advertisement for Anagram Bookshop out of Prague but all attempts to find a site for even the bookshop failed. So this work and the image itself will go uncredited unless a reader more informed or more skilled at internet sleuthing comes by to enlighten me.