About this piece:
Full of the depth and shadow of the bark on forest trees, the forty-eight photo-drawings, an original coinage by artist Sallie Lowenstein, contained in Clothed in Bark are so tactile that the reader expects the pages to be as textured as the bark they describe. The size and shape of the book, the woven spine and the hand punched leather binding were chosen to further evoke the forest. Each cover has a unique spine and is punched to form different patterns that echo the natural uniqueness of every tree. The last signature of pages offers one more surprise. Frank Lowenstein (environmentalist, field naturalist and climate change expert) has written an essay as a tribute to trees and their longevity. The goal of the book was to make an indelible and unforgettable artistic statement about trees. Environmental author Bill McKibben commented that “this is a book as unique in its thinking as in its garb-a visceral reminder of what we’re losing as our forests disappear!”
Each drawing in the book took approximately 28 hours to execute. Each book takes 4 hours to bind: cutting the cover, binding the book, weaving the spine and punching the holes. The images in the book resulted from the artist’s fascination with the subtlety and variety of pattern in trees , but as Frank Lowenstein says in his essay, “Trees are so omnipresent we almost forget they are there.” As Deputy Director of the New England Forestry Foundation he is surrounded every day with the beauty and the essential role that trees play in our world and future. As a result, the essay is full of awe inspiring information that the average individual is unaware of. So far the book has been exhibited at the Fisher Museum of the Harvard Forest, the Peabody Essex Museum and is about to be featured in an illustration exhibition at the Strathmore Foundation and has been bought for museum and library collections around the country.
paper, linen thread, leather
About the artist:
lives in Kensington, Maryland
Fine artist/book designer/author/illustrator Sallie Lowenstein got an early start on adventure at 8 years old when she traveled around the world on prop planes through Asian and Europe. Her journeys color her paintings, sculptures, illustrations, and books. As an art activist and mentor, she teaches art and writing, advocates for creativity, appears at national book festivals, actively exhibits her art, speaks to museum and university audiences about art, illustration, and writing. She believes any work of art or book should leave the viewer with an aftertaste of wonder.