Il était une fois (Once Upon a Time)

This was my final piece at Williams College, made during my senior spring studio seminar. In it, I developed—on a much grander scale—the ideas that I had worked with the previous fall in Untitled (the little green book).

Each page of the Coptic-bound book is a single sheet of Stonehenge paper (approx. 30" x 22"). In working with a large space, I found I had a great deal more freedom to organize my images, and I experimented with size, placement, detail, and color.

I chose the medium of pen and ink wash because of its rapidity and its contradictory character. It looks like watercolor, quick to make, quick to dry, seemingly ephemeral. But unlike watercolors, these drawings are permanent. In this way, they are akin to memory: some things fade into the background, while others, through fleeting, are caught and remain.

Wall text:

Memory is a strange thing, taking what it will and attaching importance later to what may seem insignificant at the time. What stays, what fades? In this book, what remains are a few stories that I wished to tell the most. I have not told the full story, but I intend for the viewer to piece together his or her own narrative from these fragments. The pen and ink washes on these pages are akin to memories: some things fade into the background, while others—a gesture, a profile, a shadow—are caught and held. Then they are bound together and made into a narrative. That’s life: you construct your own meaning. You make your own stories.

Graphite, pen and ink wash on Stonehenge paper. Coptic binding with clothbound covers.

31" x 23" x 0.5"

Spring 2010

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