About this piece:
In Passage, I sought to craft a unique “reading” experience that would reveal the language of the materials themselves. The imagery in the book was created with pulp or by embedding materials in the pulp as the paper was formed. Sand within the paper – either moving freely or trapped in place – contributes unusual textures and sounds as pages are turned. Viewers’ hands interact visually due to the translucency of the paper, while horsehair extending from a page physically entangles them. Passage is not about what is on the pages – its meaning comes from engaging with the expressive properties of the paper itself and the book as a physical object, and thus cannot be replicated or rendered in another form, certainly not digitally.
The membrane-like quality of the paper in Passage references a blurred boundary or transition from one state to another, evoking the changing perspectives one can experience on a journey into the unknown, or in discovering new layers of meaning.
paper, sand, carborundum, dye, horsehair
About the artist:
Karen Hardy is a visual artist based in Asheville, North Carolina. Her practice is centered on an experimental approach to materials, and is influenced by her background in the natural sciences. She uses innovative hand papermaking techniques and a variety of non-traditional materials in her artist books, sculpture, and installation. Her artist books are widely exhibited and held in collections across the country and abroad. Karen received an MFA in book arts & printmaking from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia, and currently teaches book arts at Western Carolina University.