Justin Staller and I have made a lot of progress on our collaboration, Start Over. The cover uses many hand elements, which contrast with the mechanical typewriter text inside. With the colors, we're trying to evoke the feeling of winter, bare branches and steel sky, the muted memory of dreams.
It feels a little like breaking the fourth wall saying this, but I want to express my thanks. Keeping these sites is something I enjoy and they've allowed me to connect with so many interesting people and their work. So thank you and if it interests you, please follow, like, or subscribe, whatever strikes your fancy,
:: Marianne Dages, Grid, 2 color letterpress print, 2014 ::
Maybe it was the influence of the construction outside my studio window that compelled me to print a grid. I've been watching the steel skeleton go up for months, now the structure is an impossible looking facade of glowing yellow repeat pattern and crossing lines.
I'm working on a collaboration with printmaker Justin Myer Staller. We are working on a double book, two separate "stories" connected by an interest in cut-up writing. I've been working on pasting up the layout of my side of the book, which is typeset in 10 pt "Typewriter." It seems like such an odd idea for someone to have made lead type that looks exactly like typewriter text. The letters are monospaced just like they would be on a real typewriter. So odd!
:: Typewriter 10 pt lead type ::
My text is my dreams. Short pieces of writing describing dreams I've had over the last ten years. My "images" are the backs of wood type. I like the idea of printing the back of letters so that they can't be read. It makes me think of how people describe not being able to read in their dreams.
:: illegible alphabet ::
:: draft of a page spread ::
Start Over is the title. An infinite ribbon. Back to the dreams, every night. Start over.
I fell asleep on my couch this afternoon and I dreamt that an older man sang me a song. He sang it in a very cheerful way and I remembered both the lyrics and the melody when I woke up, the lyrics were "She told me not to be afraid, but I am not afraid of the future." I have been thinking a lot of about dreams lately and also about oracles, and the cryptic nature of their utterances.
The dream also made me a recall a memory from childhood. I used to write songs on the piano. I brought a piece of sheet music with a song I had written to a party hosted by my parent's friends. There was a piano at the party and a musician, she said she would like to see my composition and would play it for me on the piano. But I didn't really understand musical notation, and the song came out odd and dissonant, like a piece of experimental modern music. I hadn't written any of the notes correctly.
So much of my art has come from misunderstandings. These misunderstandings are a gift. Like dreams, they are glimpses at the oracle, and these little confusions end up being more profound than the intended message.