Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Book Dissections by Brian Dettmer

Wagnalis Wheel, detail
Enter the fascinating world of Brian Dettmer, a creator of intricate worlds hand crafted from books. These are no simple collages or cut and paste endeavors - Brian's works are crafted from a single book or a collection of books strapped together with bits and pieces cut or sanded away to reveal a fantastical creation. He uses encyclopedias, dictionaries, atlases, art books, medical reference books, even paperback novels. They are truly spectacular and I would not be in the least bit surprised if he was either A. sponsored by an exacto knife company or B. has carpal tunnel syndrome. I suspect both.
Wagnalis Wheel, made from an altered set of vintage encyclopedias

Brian is mostly known for his book work, which involves taking vintage books and dissecting them to discover amazing pictures or a special arrangement of words. He uses exactos, knives and various other tools to cut into the books to reveal their innards.

Soft Standards, made from an altered set of vintage encyclopedias

 Soft Standards, detail

Brian is also been dabbeling with other reused materials like VHS and music cassette tapes to create sculptures. He melts the tapes and reforms them into skulls, trees, flowers and more all with a slightly dark undertone.

 Harmony House, cut from a wallpaper sample book

 Harmony House, detail

In his own words: "I am mainly known for my book work, which is what I mainly do, but all of my work deals with redefining existing mass produced media- books, tapes, maps etc.

The Household Physician, front

 The Household Physician, back

all images courtesy of the artist via his flickr site.