Notes from studio: about collaged old book covers

It is hard to say where the ideas for projects come from. I believe, after watching my toddler rip cover off of an old book, might have been Curious George, I felt sad to see the beautiful cloth covered book cover broken. But it could be my long time preoccupation with old books in general led to collages pasted on old book covers. I started the old book drawing series in 2009. The collaged prints on old book covers is its sister project. As any printmaker knows the process to produce a decent print requires piles of proofs, failed attempts, and tests, which leaves a long paper trail. Waste not, is what I try to follow in my daily life, and it carries over to my art practice as well. On the other hand, cutting, covering and uncovering has been the way I operate in my studio (at the moment I have a ‘pop-up’ studio that fits in few boxes on the shelf) which this project directly is about. I do not add any paint or pencil marks to existing prints after I collage them. I cut up my original prints (some of them tests, some needing a new life in another form), arrange the parts and paste the composition onto old painted book covers.

Collaged book covers 2015_K_Mansberg

This year, over the course of spring and late summer, I have made four collages inspired by what I see or imagine about my garden behind the kitchen/living room porch door window. Yes, the studio often pops up on the large table near there.

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