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Farrer, Julia

Syntax of bridges / Julia Farrer ; Robert Vas Dias.

[London?] : Ki Press, 2014.
Physical Description:
1 volume : 8 fold leporello with 3 hand-colored cut out etchings ; 28 x 31 cm, in case 29 x 33 cm
Rare Books and Manuscripts
Folio A 2015 45
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Copyright Status:
Copyright Not Evaluated
Restricted fragile material. Use of the item in unfolded form requires permission of the Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts.
"This book was designed in response to Syntax of bridges, written by Robert Vas Dias. Published in 2014, in an edition of 15 copies, on 250gsm Velin Arches, with 5 artists proofs. Etchings printed by the artist. Type designed, set & printed by Kelvyn Laurence Smith, at Mr. Smith's Letterpress Workshop. Binding by Charles Gledhill. Syntax of bridges copyright Robert Vas Dias 2013. Ki Press is an imprint of Julia Farrer."--Colophon.
Date of publication from colophon.
Handling instructions, provided by the artist: "1. Remove the book from the slipcase -- 2. The binding is quite fragile with the printed pages sewn onto a series of metal rods. You should not put weight onto the book in transit as this will crush the binding -- 3. Once you have removed the book from the slipcase you will see that the binding is held together by two velum straps. If you want to leaf through the book in a conventional way, looking at the double page spreads, keep these straps in place -- 4. If you want to open the book out for display you will need to slip the velum straps out of the binding at the top (see images accompanying the work) -- 5. Lay the book on the right hand side of a flat, long surface and gently begin to open up the spreads, working from the front of the book. It might be helpful to have two people doing this so that one person can support the paper slightly as you open the book up. It opens quite naturally to show the three image sections as shown. The title page and back page do not appear if shown in this way -- 6. To close the book, gently work from left to right closing the second and third sections back over each other, and then the first section so that you end up with the title page on top. Feed the velum straps back into the binding before you put the book back into the slipcase.
Selected exhibitions: "Seeds and Syntax" (Eagle Gallery, London, 6 February - 6 March 2015).
BAC: British Art Center copy is numbers 1 of 15, signed, dated, and inscribed by Farrer, in graphite. Accompanied by advertisement for the exhibition Seeds and Syntax, and two printed descriptions of Syntax of bridges (from the exhibition).
"... In their collaboration, Farrer first floated the idea of bridges -- the way they span space, their curves, angles and loops conveying ideas of flow, unity, tension, and hovering, communicating with and linking one side to the other, reflecting the literal and symbolic function of a bridge. Van Dias writes: 'The image of bridges took hold of me and I started, as I often do, by making a list based on associations of the image, its connotations and ramifications. I discovered that I'd done something halfway between a poem and a prose poem, indeed, a list poem, and I started to refine and revise.' The other notable feature of Syntax of bridges is that it's an example of a 'simultaneous book,' a concept that stems from the European Futurist's ideas of simultaneity. Parts of the Syntax text show through cut-outs in the images, as though seen through girders and suspension cables. The text is perceived as a constituent element of the images, and the images engage in a continuing dialogue with the text. The eye might at first take in the over-all appearance of the unfolded book -- it's a leporello or accordion-fold just over six feet in length -- and then the details of text, line, shape, colour, texture. The book incorporates the eight-fold leporello consisting of a triptych of three hand-coloured etchings. Together these elements form the idea of 'syntax': an 'orderly or systematic arrangement of the parts of elements; a connected order or system of things' (Shorter Oxford English dictionary). Syntax is all to do with structure -- the constituent elements of the written sentence, the principles governing the design, engineering, and construction of a bridge, in itself an orderly form. The bridge is also a sculptural object which Farrer has transmitted in her sinuous abstracts. A maquette of the book was exhibited along with a copy of the triptych, at the Eagle Gallery's stand at the London Art Fair ... in January 2014. After much further work, an artist's proof of the finished book was exhibited in New York in November, 2014. The whole project took over a year-and-a-half from concept to final state. Robert Vas Dias."--Description of the work, from the exhibition Seeds and syntax.
Subject Terms:
Artists' books -- Great Britain.
Grammar, Comparative and general -- Syntax.
Simultaneous books.
Accordion fold format (Binding)
Cut-paper works.
Artists' books.
Vas Dias, Robert. Syntax of bridges.
Smith, Kelvyn Laurence, printer.
Gledhill, Charles, binder.

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