The Garden Book, a recent acquisition by Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery, University of Maryland, uses a concertina style design to combine and display a series of images originally developed to mark the anniversary of the Bhopal disaster. 2009 marked the 25 year anniversary of the Bhopal Disaster. Union Carbide released toxic gas into the air during the night killing & damaging the local inhabitants. Planting can Foster a Sense of Belonging marks the anniversary by drawing parallels and making connection between British Imperialism during the Victorian period and organic gardening methods.The images reference designs used in traditional gardening books focusing on pest & disease control. The Garden Book blends these images into aesthetic layers of print bound using a silk screen printed William Morris design.
Concertina style bookmaking allows the viewer to handle the book using traditional page turning techniques and the option to display each page simultaneously conveying a three dimensional aspect to the work.
I first used this technique in The Penny Histories a book I made as part of an international project organised by a collective in Milan. This project demanded each book be slightly different to the next, a challenge to a printmaker who is generally aspiring for accurate repeat representation. I chose to use Hahnemuhle Etching paper for its size, (106x78cm) as I was able to cover the whole surface using silk screen printing and vary each print with image & colour. The book connects with research I had accumulated whilst artist-in-residence at Newcastle’s Literary & Philosophical Society in 2007. The content highlights significant founding members and aspects of social history in the region.