While working as a river guide for 10 years, I developed a deep love for and connection to the rivers of the West. I became intimately familiar with the rivers’ moods and how they are always creating new channels, new islands, and new ways of moving across the landscape. This book is an expression of my love for the many moods and changes I encountered while working on the river. Each page is a section of a long river map created from memory. The map moves in one continuous stream from beginning to end. The binding cords represent the small streams that eventually converge to form a river. The height of each page represents the changeable depths of every river I’ve encountered. The pages are curved to represent the flowing nature of the currents. This book is bound using a double needle, across-the-spine, single sheet Coptic binding technique. The stitch was developed after careful study of Adele Outteridge’s work. The width dimension includes the length of the outstretched cords.
Aquarelle paper, india ink, waxed linen
Pam Fortner discovered hand bound books in 2005 and immediately became fascinated by the sculptural nature, form and structure of handmade books. She enjoys experimenting with different binding techniques, but feels the Coptic stitch allows her the greatest freedom of expression. Pam says “I love the meditative and rhythmic nature of sewing the Coptic binding. I’ve bound hundreds of books that way. It is the first stitch I think of when I’m developing a new book concept.” Pam is a self-taught artist residing in Colorado. Her multi-media work has been collected world-wide.