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Cover to Cover 1-17... : eleet warez


The centerpiece of Cover to Cover: On Loan from the Collection took the form a site specific installation in the North Reading Room of the Athenaeum. A carpet of panels were placed under the existing reading and meeting table. Each panel contained a quote culled from the artist books in the collection. A quote was taken from a book by almost every artist present in the collection from 1975. This piece (and the entire show) is named for one of these books, Cover to Cover, an artist book created by the Michael Snow. Snow is most famous for his concrete film work, and his book fits right in. It's a confounding book that plays with the structure of the book itself and differing notions of representation. The book was a huge inspiration for the thinking behind the work in Cover to Cover.

For the installation Cover to Cover 1-17 I "collected" the quotes using my smartphone camera, projected them onto panels, traced them, cut them out manually on a scroll saw, and finally attached them to background panels with a pin nailer. The arduous process was full of error and plenty of room for improvisation in the representation of the text/image. For example, all distortions from the mobile phone photography carried over into the fished product.

Notably, the quotes are only attributed in the titles of each panel, as I imagined myself taking complete ownership of them through their treatment as images and my painstaking recreation of them. This work serves as a self portrait as well as a portrait of the Athenaeum. It literally represents a very small sliver of the Athenaeum's collection while it also autobiographical in that the quotes were selected and arranged by me to create an oddly disjointed narrative based on my own interpretation of the texts.

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