Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Center Paige: Bluestem

"Everywhere, as far as the eye could reach, there was nothing buy rough, shaggy, red grass... And there was so much motion in it; the whole country seemed, somehow, to be running." This passage, from Willa Cather's My Antonia, is the inspiration for Karen Hanmer's Bluestem. The book is a double-sided flag book with pigment inkjet prints on polyester film. Illustrations are at the front of the book & the text is on the back.

Hanmer wants you to feel that motion of the "shaggy, red grass" & the result can be rather dramatic. The polyester film flutters & rustles when you expand it from the compressed, half an inch form to its full 18-inch potential. Being from the Midwest, I've experienced this "running" & it is a magical experience that I think Hanmer & Cather is capturing. The book comes off as playful, memorable, & nostalgic.

1 comment:

  1. Hanmer succeeded in her mission. The work is a success!
    Reminds me of reading artists from the midwest.