Crystallized Books by Alexis Arnold

San Francisco-based artist Alexis Arnold created this 'Crystallized Books' project by combining borax crystals with weathered books, magazines and computer manuals.

"The Crystallized Book Series was prompted by continuously finding boxes of discarded books/magazines, the onset of e-books, and by the recent disappearance of bookstores.”

"While I have had a fascination with crystals and minerals since I was little, their inclusion in my work happened somewhat by chance. About three years ago, I was force-rusting a metal sculpture using vinegar, salt, and soda ash when I noticed crystals growing on the concrete floor of my studio. Since I was working with concrete at the time, I decided to try and replicate the crystal growth with intention on the concrete and other objects. In addition to my aesthetic fascination with them, the crystals related conceptually to the project I was creating at that moment. The conceptual and aesthetic functions of the crystals have morphed with each project since."

“Time (and its physical/visual presence) is an ever-present concept in my work, as well as a large factor in crystal growth”

“The books, frozen with crystal growth, have become… imbued with the history of time, use, and nostalgia.”

"I mainly use Borax and Epsom salt crystals. This is because of their relatively cheap availability and non-toxicity."

"I try to incorporate mostly found books over buying specific titles, but select amongst them for the most conceptually and/or aesthetically appropriate. If I desire a specific title, I will buy it used. I take titles from my own library collection as well."

"The series addresses the materiality of the book vs the text/content of the book. The crystals remove the text and transform the books into aesthetic, non-functional objects. The books, now frozen with heavy crystal growth, have become artifacts or geologic specimens laden with the history of time, use, and nostalgia. The stories included in books often exist in our memories while the book remains a spine on a shelf."

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Source: redefine


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