Peek a Boo Book

Statement for Book#17: Peek-a-Boo, 2/10/11, each of 8 unbound pages at least 5” x 6 1/2”, 8 pages, mixed media, laminated computer collage layers on paper pages.

Peek-a-Boo, an unbound book consisting of a cover and seven pages, sits in a polka dotted and striped box. I didn’t bind the book pages together because I wanted some of the collage elements to be able to extend themselves beyond their page borders if they desired. In this book anything can happen: Oriental nymphs cavort among watery bubbles in front of an ominous-looking black bridge-like structure (from “Touch Me III” by Yoko Ono). A giant hand containing an eyeball hanging from a rope is hardly noticed by a group of four girls, two of whom have a hand substituted for a head–all this while innocently reposing under Max Ernst’s murderous airplane. A sea turtle regards a sea creature lifted from an Albertus Seba engraving, in front of a landscape created by Eugenio Bittbom (“The Third Tree, Airmail Painting No. 174, 2007.). On page 2, the Cleary twins are placed in front of what I call an ‘eye-egg’. Manon Cleary who recently died from emphysema, was a very wonderful painter and draughtsman. Before she died, I had occasion to ask her which twin was her and which one was her sister Shirley. She said she’d forgotten. In many ways, I find Page 1 to be the most interesting because it expresses to me both safety and peril. The trees, foreground and figure are idyllic, but there is the menace of the cosmic gray striped objects hovering in the background along with the stars (Chris Ofili’s stars), which are not bright and twinkly, but are, rather, black with foreboding.