Cornville, Maine: 2013. Artist's book, one of 7 copies, all on handmade paper by Katie MacGregor, each copy signed and numbered by the artist / author, Bonnie Bishop. Page size: 5-3/4 x 8-1/2 inches; 64pp. Bound by the artist: hand-sewn Coptic style binding, single thread sewn through each of the 8 signatures, red wrappers stiffened with archival paper, title blind embossed on front panel, housed in grey paper box. Ms. Bishop has written 7 poems, all concerned with female deities of various cultures, each associated with vengeance or retribution. The images are printed silkscreen for the vermilion and monoprint in gold gilt. The text is handset in Optima and printed letterpress by Scott Vile at Ascensius Press.
Each page spread, gold monoprint textures overprinted with red silkscreens, or white pages with gold gilt silkscreens (the white page serving as negative space and creating images) highlight the text by allowing printing of the text within the images of the human form. The strong line of the silkscreen is repeated over three pages, each time on different grounds, provoking different responses with each image - and revealing the different interpretations possible for each ascribed attribution of "fury." Ms. Bishop's verse conjures up elemental emotions - jealousy, love, revenge, fear - accompanied by pages of organic gold gilt textures, i.e. honeycomb patterns, ferns or circles, which convey an uneasy movement. There is a startling contrast between the vermilion images on the gold gilt monoprints (or white page). The silkscreens are always in feminine arabesques. They tend to leap off the page with an immediacy of color which is typical of silkscreen technique. Ms. Bishop has created a provocative book - challenging traditional notions of what constitutes the "feminine" while at the same time embracing these notions.
This is the second in a series of four books (the first published is titled SHE and two are projected) each of which explores the aspects of the feminine in words and images. Ms. Bishop has taught art and graphic design at several Maine institutions, including Colby College as well as holding positions as graphic designer at Hudson Museum at University of Maine and prior to that Scholastic Magazine. She has participated in a number of book arts exhibitions in Maine and Canada and received a number of design awards. Item #10758