There is something magical about turning a stack of paper into a book. It isn't really magic. My fingertips, sore from fighting a needle and thick waxed linen thread, will attest to that. But is feels like magic when I tie off that last stitch and suddenly have a book in my hands. I have always found magic in books, since I was a small child. Libraries and bookstores are always havens, powerful places. All that knowledge. All that potential.
This particular book is a commission, a guest book for a wedding. It is possibly the most beautiful thing I have ever made. I can't take all the credit, as the papers and the ribbon were supplied by Meriko and were used in the invitations she designed and made for this couple. I just added the yellow silk and found a design to tie it all together. The ceremony will be at least partially Hindu, and I incorporated the number 7 into the design, which is a number that is important in the traditions of Hindu marriage ceremonies. I love that, incorporating symbolism in things I make. Even if I'm the only one who knows the symbol or reference is there. Like a secret, a talisman that gives the object some kind of power.
I have finished the paintings for the show and all are framed, wired, and ready. I'm still blocked on my artist statement re-write, though. For the first time I have a group of paintings that are strongly about something, and I can talk about any of them individually in depth, but I'm completely at a loss for what to say about them as a group. I'm going tomorrow after work to hang them. There's a small chance there will be no statement for this show. Maybe part of me doesn't want to explain them. I'm curious if anyone sees in them what I intended without me explaining it, or if my personal symbolic language is too subtle.
There's one I'm going to mark not for sale because Lisa is attached to it. There is another that has three leaves brought to me from Boston last fall by the friend who always brings me the coolest weird goodies from her travels (leaves and sticks and sheets of paper and photos of interesting things). I'm excited about showing these paintings. Also scared, because I love them.